Michael Rakowitz. paraSITE homeless shelter. 1997

Michael Rakowitz paraSITE homeless shelter 1997

  • Not on view

"Parasitism is described as a relationship in which a parasite temporarily or permanently exploits the energy of a host," Rakowitz says, in introducing paraSITE. This temporary and transportable shelter for the homeless is dependent on the outtake duct of a building's heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning system for its form and source of heat. paraSITE is a conspicuous social protest, not a long-term solution to homelessness. "It is very much an intervention that should become obsolete," Rakowitz says. "These shelters should disappear like the problem should. In this case, the real designers are the policymakers."

Gallery label from Born out of Necessity, March 2, 2012–January 28, 2013
the artist
42" x 36" x 11' (107 x 91.5 x 335 cm)
Gift of Michael Rakowitz and Lombard-Freid Projects
Object number
Architecture and Design