Primitive Matters

– 2010

“The notion of primitivism is inseparable from the question of colonialism”
(Primitive: Original Matters in Architecture, 2006. Felipe Hernandez and
Lea Knudsen Allen)

Primitivization of the “Other” was one of the discriminatory strategies used by the colonizer in order to support its claims to cultural authority. Colonisation occurs through attempts by the colonizer to recreate “doubles” of itself through the process of education, religion, language, culture and architecture. However this undertaking is never fully achieved and the “doubles” remain forever unfinished, always in a process of formation.(Bhabha, Homi)

Primitive Matters: Huts interrogates the colonisation process against the backdrop of the Magnificient Seven. Colonial architectural relics that are iconic representations of the civilising process. Built around the largest park in Port of Spain, Trinidad; one belongs to the Catholic Church and is occupied by the Archbishop, another to the Anglican Church and the third is The Queens Royal College. The remaining four belonged to rich wealthy merchants and plantation owners.