It could not come at a more opportune moment: and it can be made real. As part of a design project at the Boijmans van Beuningen Museum entitled Migration Matters, designers have offered solutions both real and imaginary to the problem of migration — including an embassy for the migrants themselves. The In-Limbo Embassy offers refugees in the Netherlands “a neutral meeting place that represents this group as an embassy.” With actual asylum-seekers as “ambassadors,” the “embassy” offers those in limbo – migrants who may not stay in the Netherlands but also, for various reasons, may not return safely to their countries of origin — “space for dialogue, debate en cultural exchange on equal footing,” according to the “embassy” web site. In addition, via legal loopholes, the “embassy” allows “undocumented migrants, who are not allowed to work… the opportunity to contribute to society.” Photographs of some of the migrants in the Netherlands, for instance, are available for sale via its crowdfunding site here.
For the moment, the In-Limbo Embassy is limited to the Netherlands, where it, too, is a migrant, traveling around the country and initiating dialogues and activities with local residents and local governments. (It has also been nominated for a Dutch Design Award.) In an ideal world, it would eventually become more than an art work and — in a (perhaps utopian) example of life becoming art — an actual home for refugees across the globe.
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