23 October 2015—13 November 2015
On October 23, at 7 pm, in Mariupol, IZOLYATSIA launched an exhibition, Letters to the Mayor, organized in a joint effort with Storefront for Art and Architecture (New York). The project continues the research in the field of architecture in Eastern Ukraine, initiated by the international residence program Architecture Ukraine.
The purpose of the Letters to the Mayor project is to provide a public forum for discussion. In this perspective, a selected diverse group of architects and designers was invited to write a letter to the Mayor of the city of Mariupol, articulating some of the pressing concerns and desires that, as an architect, they believe play an important role in transforming the city.
The letters are exhibited as an interactive installation that also comprises specially designed “Office of the Mayor”, Poster and Wallpaper. Eighteen letters are presented in the exhibition; as only five Mariupol-based architects applied, the project is represented by both residents, regional contributors in Ukraine, and international architects who had conducted research and work in Mariupol during the Architecture Ukraine residency. Issues of concern and in need of reformation include corruption, pollution and ecology, preserving historical sites, letting go of dying industrial focus and developing new creative industry, and the unconventional reaction that a shrinking city might have advantages after all.