Tunisia_Phase 1

 

Hammams are the traditional bathhouses from Tunisia. Apparently similar to the famous Turkish bathhouses, Tunisian ones keep some particular values and original roots such as the importance of water instead of steams on the whole bathing process. These places have become a perfect scene for social leisure and people’s relations in the country.

Despite the ancient tradition of these places in Tunisia, they are still usually being visited by many people as not all houses are equipped with central heating nowadays. This is the reason why it is fairly visited in winter and autumn. Once inside a Hammam, people does not have an obligation to stay nude if they do not want to, but they will at least wear a towel or underwear. The same place is used for both men and women but there are turns for each gender depending on the time of the day.

Hammams follow a specific distribution of spaces and layout and so they do have deep architectural values within its walls. Users follow a specific bathing process starting by cold and hot water rooms until reaching a kind of sauna located in the heart of the building. All these spaces are highlighted by a steamy and blurry atmosphere that creates different situations of intimacy. Besides, some elements and items are added like special soaps, water buckets, carpets or sitting platforms or decks to culminate the configuration of the whole space.

The social fact of Hammams are included to Wellbeing and Health inside the circles of sustainability referring to culture.

On the clip there can be seen some fragments of the Tunisian movie Child of Terraces by F. Boughedir, featuring a young boy who discovers sexuality by going to a Hammam.

 

Complementary Information:

1d216e346d5660cfd541c37b4f663287 35298e1114cbf7084e876c0b46b3a210Photographs by Ozgur Cakir.

Letter from Tunisia: All steamed up

 

 

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