Der Schlafraum (The Sleeping Room)

A big size tent, commonly used as a field hospital or an emergency shelter, equipped with all necessary things to guarantee safe and comfortable conditions, is placed in the center of the city of St. Gallen in Switzerland offering anyone the chance to sleep in a public place.

The deployment of emergency structures for the purpose of unnecessary collective sleeping aims to introduce a new perspective in the relation between private property-based lifestyle and the human universal condition.

The project has been conceived both as a social experiment and a personal and intimate experience. It shares the statement by Walter Benjamin:

-The surgeon represents the polar opposite of the magician. The magician heals a sick person by the laying on of hands; the surgeon cuts into the patient’s body. The magician maintains the natural distance between the patient and himself […] The surgeon does exactly the reverse; he greatly diminishes the distance between himself and the patient by penetrating into the patient’s body […] In short, in contrast to the magician – who is still hidden in the medical practitioner – the surgeon at the decisive moment abstains from facing the patient man to man; rather, it is through the operation that he penetrates into him. […] And that is what one is entitled to ask from a work of art.-

Der Schlafraum was accessible 24 hours a day for 4 days from November 19th until Monday November 22nd 2010.