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A Place To Call Home

Part 2 Dissertation 2023
Rhiannon Flack
University of Plymouth | UK
‘A Place To Call Home’ explores what happens at the individual level when rental tenants cannot freely use, amend, or otherwise change their home due to not legally owning them. The focus is centred around the freedom of personalisation and the constitution of the home as a central point of inward preservation and outward projections of our personal identity. We can create authentic and self-conscious connections to place through a reciprocal relationship between the self and surroundings, however, this act is weakened through non-ownership, legislation, and architectural qualities.

This multi-faceted and ontological understanding is situated within the body—world relationship established by Merleau-Ponty (1908- 1961). A theoretical analysis encompassing the works of Steward Brand, Hundertwasser, Edward Relph and Walter Benjamin have been used alongside a qualitative collection of photographs portraying a revolt against the austerity of modernism. Notions of bodily autonomy, security and identity have been explored through theorisations of layers, traces, and depth; concluding a potential porosity within the liminal condition where transferable and meaningful traces can be made. The discussion proposes a non-permanent and transferable skin within rented homes that allows inhabitants to successfully make place and home despite changing environments and without disruption or breach of tenancy agreements.

Rhiannon Flack

Ioana Popovici
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