The Sol y Sombra research project, supported by Umea University, Sweden and led by architects with experience in social projects in Latin America, Russia and the UK, supported by a team of 22 researchers from Europe, the UK, Venezuela, Colombia, the US and Canada. The project generates a knowledge base for design to support civil society and economic and social mobility in the context of the Venezuelan migration crisis in Colombia. According to the latest figures, around 30% of the country’s population are displaced or rely on
Our aim is to investigate human movement on many scales, from the geopolitical to the everyday and to design systems that aid the situation with digital and physical infrastructure and spatial intervention. GFU: Sol y Sombra sheds light on informal value systems, shadow labour and life economies, which had not been visualised before. We used 2GIS data and first-hand accounts, social media networks and data collected by researchers prior to the pandemic, and mapped the information spatially in relation to political borders, geography and the natural environment. The research is focused on three conditions: the frontier between Venezuela and Colombia, typical migrant journeys, and an example arrival city (Barranquilla). The visualisations reveal interesting correlations that suggest solutions, made visible by geolocating data and mapping it in relation to environmental conditions. This research, shared with Future School during the Biennale Architettura 2021, allows us to understand this crisis in some of its complexity, both on a small and a large scale. The next steps are to bring proposals to realisation together with local and transnational NGO partners.