The Palais de Tokyo inaugurate the hamo, a new place entirely dedicated to education, mediation and inclusion through art on September 16 and 17, 2023, on the occasion of the European Heritage Days.
This inauguration is the culmination of a project initiated in 2019. Thanks to the exceptional support of the Jonathan KS Choi Foundation and the patrons of the cercle art et société, the Palais de Tokyo now has a permanent structure designed to welcome people in all their diversity (individual visitors, families, schoolchildren, people experiencing exclusion or disability, socio-educational players and relays…), with particular attention paid to mental health, which the Palais de Tokyo is making a priority at a time when awareness of neurodiversity is becoming widespread, while psychological suffering is increasingly affecting younger generations.
Like a village at the heart of the exhibitions, this new facility embodies the civic, inclusive and ecological role of the Paris art center, open all year round even outside exhibition periods. A genuine platform for encounters, the hamo also aims to imagine new ways of living together in a damaged world, and to question the relationship between institutions and their audiences.
Designed by Freaks Architecture, in collaboration with the Palais de Tokyo teams and their socio-educational partners, the hamo is a new, freely accessible territory, connected to the Palais de Tokyo entrance hall, in which particular attention has been paid to warm, ecological shapes and materials.
A generous agora has been specially designed to bring visitors together for educational and convivial activities and events, reminiscent of a public square environment. The agora is criss-crossed by three mobile architectural units – educational huts – with a variety of functions. From mediation through gesture to the initiation of the public to different techniques and plastic practices, they provide a new framework for programs that have marked the history of mediation at the Palais de Tokyo, such as the Tok-Tok workshops or workshops for adults, and inaugurate new formats, such as the “bien mieux” program, aimed at young people in psychologically and/or emotionally fragile situations.
In addition to its educational vocation, the hamo includes a space dedicated to innovation and resource sharing: the salon des communs. This space has been designed to welcome not only people with special needs, but also partners and professionals from the socio-educational sector, encouraging the emergence of new approaches to art. In particular, it can be used to bring together and create points of convergence between cultural mediation and care, so as to encourage the development of shared projects. It can also host training sessions for social, educational and disability intermediaries. The space can be set up in a variety of ways for meetings, training sessions, prevention sessions, documentary resources, etc. In order to support the Palais de Tokyo in its reflections on how best to welcome people, particularly those with mental health problems, and to establish evaluation protocols, a scientific committee has been set up.