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Mobile Academy - Akademia Ruchoma

Part 2 Project 2007
Sarah Hollingworth
University of Sheffield Sheffield UK
The Mobile Academy is an education institution based in the Jarmark Europa, Warsaw – Europe's largest informal market. The market is home and livelihood to 30,000 Vietnamese immigrants. The project aspires to take responsibility for the unacknowledged, supporting and celebrating the displaced and clandestine immigrant.

The Academy is not confined to a set curriculum or predetermined building. Instead, knowledge exchange is understood as mobile and the built project is open to uncertainty and change. The architect has relinquished control and all those involved in the project are recognised as collaborators – students, teachers, tourists, traders, and commuters...

Sarah Hollingworth


This exemplary project for a Mobile Academy in an overlooked part of Warsaw, explored the possibilities for collaborative knowledge. The proposal built on the skills and expertise of the immigrant workers of the Jarmark Europa informal market. It aimed to reinvigorate sustainability debates with an awareness of the complex threads of relationality and interdependence between people, things and systems. The project challenged preconceived notions around migration, illegal status, climate change, community involvement and alternative economies. The intellectually rigorous yet playful and imaginative approach questioned some of the assumptions made about the way we understand, represent (and therefore design) cities.

2007
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