The Book of Profanation, 2011

Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency
The Book of Profanation, 2011
Installation view
Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation
Photo by Alfredo Rubio


Architects Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti co-founded Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency (DAAR) with Eyal Weizman in Beit Sahour, Palestine (2007) and Campus in Camps (2012) to address the numerous spatial and social interventions needed in refugee camps and elsewhere in Palestine. Through their work as co-directors of DAAR, an architectural studio and art residency programme, architects Hilal and Petti combine conceptual speculations and architectural interventions to subvert, reuse, profane and recycle the existing infrastructure of colonial occupation.

Hilal and Petti have participated in various international exhibitions, including the Sharjah Biennial (2011, 2017); Venice Biennale (2003, 2008, 2009, 2013 and 2015); Asian Art Biennial (2015); Bienal de São Paulo (2014); Common Assembly, Nottingham Contemporary, UK (2012); REDCAT, Los Angeles (2010); Home Works 5, Beirut (2010) and Istanbul Biennial (2009).

Hilal and Petti have also lectured internationally at March Meeting 2016, Sharjah Art Foundation; Columbia University, New York; Tate Modern, London; Global Art Forum, Dubai; Edward Said Memorial Lecture, University of Warwick, UK; Al Feneiq Dheisheh Refugee Camp, Bethlehem and The Human Rights Project, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, US, among others. They co-authored Architecture after Revolution (Sternberg, 2014), an invitation to rethink today’s struggles for justice and equality, not only from the historical perspective of revolution but also from that of a continued struggle for decolonisation.

Hilal holds a PhD in Transborder Policies for Daily Life from University of Trieste, Italy, and she directed the UNRWA Camp Improvement Program in the West Bank for seven years. Petti holds a PhD in Urbanism from IUAV University of Venice. Together they were awarded the Prince Claus Prize for Architecture (2010) and Foundation for Art Initiatives grant, and they were nominated for the Visible Award, Curry Stone Design Prize, The New School’s Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics, Anni and Heinrich Sussmann Artist Award and Chernikhov Prize.

This collective was part of Sharjah Biennial 10 and 13 and March Meeting 2016.


Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency (DAAR)

Human Geography

Michael Bears’s illustrations, cast in the vocabulary of graphic novels are a map of DAAR’s networks and origin of projects.

Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency (DAAR)

The Book of Profanation

The Book of Profanation, exhibited here for the first time as an experimental prototype, is a compendium of recent projects by Decolonizing Architecture Art Residency (DAAR).