u-hall (2009)

Children enter the mobile space of u-hall to find themselves in a room with a live projection of the outside on both interior walls, on which they are encouraged to draw. If they draw on the projected image of a person, this new “accessory” sticks to the person throughout the entire frame. u-hall arrives in various neighborhoods with the goal of giving children a small sense of agency over their environments. This idea came to me in Lebanon in the summer of 2006 when the war erupted. Suddenly, everything revolved around the war. The TVs were always on, and channels flipped through to get all perspectives and any bits of “new” news. When the electricity was cut and the TV no longer available, conversations spiraled towards analyses, updates, and rumors. As adults, many of us strove to find some logic in this illogical situation, but I was very much concerned about how children felt and how to explain the situation to them? These circumstances prompted me to explore digital magic as a means of losing oneself temporarily.