The Embassy for Refugees

Created from a kit of almost 700 intricately cut timber parts, Natasha Reid’s temporary Embassy for Refugees was installed on London’s South Bank last month to mark Refugee Week.

The Embassy for Refugees at the South Bank
The Embassy for Refugees at the South Bank

Two structures were placed next to each other, with Reid saying she was inspired by making secret dens with refugee children and also by spaces of sanctuary in nature.

The form was developed alongside Arup engineers, and built from slender OSB, a material normally used to fence off building sites.

Inside the embassy
Inside the embassy

Although the embassy is currently resting in flatpack form in Reid’s studio, it will soon be reconstructed for a tour of UK festivals, parks and city squares.

Renamed the Transient Sanctuary, the pavilion is now set to visit venues including Green Man Festival, Bloomsbury Festival and Bankside Urban Forest, where it will spark a series of cross-disciplinary collaborations.

Embassy designer Natasha Reid
Embassy designer Natasha Reid

Reid says the structure ‘will act as a real-time exploration of what “refuge” means to different groups in a variety of contexts’.

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