Illusory Interior: Public Housing as Uncanny Site

Main Article Content

Issue Vol. 6 No. 2 (2023)
Published Jul 25, 2023
Section Articles
Article downloads 330
Submitted : Mar 29, 2023 | Accepted : Jul 15, 2023


In 2021, Indonesia participated in the London Design Biennale, focusing on the theme of Resonance. The pavilion's response centred around public housing as an uncanny site, examining the psychological barriers faced by evicted communities during their transition to public housing. This study provides a conceptual analysis by exploring how the uncanny aspects of the occupants' experiences are expressed in installation using the illusory interior as a spatial metaphor. Through practice-led research, utilising ethnographic surrealism and narrative inquiries, data was gathered and translated into artistic mediums through various experiments. The study identifies several factors contributing to the uncanny sensation among public housing occupants, based on the occupants' experiences in public housing in Rancacili (Bandung) and Penjaringan (Jakarta), such as the shift from horizontal to vertical living, inadequate unit design, the absence of communal spaces, and a lack of ownership. The pavilion design attempts to integrate design theory and art practice, showcasing how installation art can express interiority within built spaces and extend it into installation art. Here, the uncanny acts as a methodological framework for critiquing space and transforming interiority into tangible forms by interpreting the actual conditions using installation art as a medium.

Keywords: uncanny, public housing, pavilion design, interiority, illusory interior

Article Details

How to Cite
Widyaevan, D. A. (2023). Illusory Interior: Public Housing as Uncanny Site. Interiority, 6(2), 201–224.
Author Biography

Dea Aulia Widyaevan, Telkom University, Indonesia

Dea Aulia Widyaevan works as an artist and lecturer with seven years of related work experience. With an architectural background and a fine art master’s degree, she currently focuses on site-specific installation and spatial arts with multidisciplinary approaches. She teaches courses on installation art in design, spatial composition, and fundamental of aesthetic. She is experienced in artistic-based research, focused on issues of psychology, uncanny, and narrative. In her practices and research, she explores aesthetic methods encompassing art, architecture, film, theatre, and interior design. Her works have been exhibited in several international Biennales, and she has been a visiting lecturer at the University of Applied Arts Vienna and BINA Belgrade International Architecture Week 2021, Currently, she is involved in collaborative research with the University of Applied Arts Vienna, focusing on site-specific performance in magic realism. For further information, visit


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