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Beyond text?Critical practices and sensory anthropology$
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Rupert Cox, Andrew Irving, and Christopher Wright

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780719085055

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719085055.001.0001

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Boru-vedak (a work of lies): looking for Libeskind in Sri Lanka

Boru-vedak (a work of lies): looking for Libeskind in Sri Lanka

(p.89) 5. Boru-vedak (a work of lies): looking for Libeskind in Sri Lanka
Beyond text?

James Thompson

Manchester University Press

James Thompson’s photo-essay Looking for Libeskind documents a break down in humanitarian aid. Following the Tsunami that destroyed parts of Sri Lanka, a new housing scheme was planned that involved the high profile architect Daniel Libeskind for the fishing village of Unawatuna the plans of which include designs for new houses, buildings and a reshaping of the environment. Thompson searches for evidence of the housing scheme to photograph but finds that it was never built. Instead the maps and designs mostly constitute a humanitarian gesture. As Thomson notes “Of course, architects design buildings, they don’t build them so it is wrong to be critical: Libeskind’s architectural commitment to Sri Lanka had been completed. Humanitarianism had had its performance”.

Keywords:   Libeskind, Sri Lanka, Performance, Architecture, Disaster

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