Made in slums
Mathare / Nairobi
Made in Slums is the volume which accompanies the exhibition of the same name at the Triennale Design Museum. The book is about a small local experience – the Mathare slum, Nairobi, regarded as the embodiment of a community’s ability to devise its own functional and symbolic tools, developed in an original self production process starting for the little material available locally.
The book and the exhibition, curated by Fulvio Irace, came about primarily due to the work done on the ground by the NGO Liveinslums, which worked for two years in a development cooperation project, fostering the construction of a school and the setting up of a community agricultural project in the Mathare slum.The association involved the young Italian designer Francesco Faccin into the project. He was offered to design the school furnishing and equipment using local materials and manpower. From the observation of environment Faccin developed the intuition of being in front of a systematic and extraordinary catalogue of objects, hand crafted but designed in a logic of small series production: knives, rubber shoes, pots, street food stalls, etc.
In order to narrate the story of these objects, the photographers Francesco Giusti and Filippo Romano made a photographic reportage portraying the complexity of this context and the faces of its protagonists. Through an intense sequence of photographs and explanation texts, Made in Slums researches and explores the most unexpected territories of the new international design scene.