Lost and Found Bureau

Lost and Found Bureau
Investigation into how the memories of forcibly left homes can transform the narratives of loss into narratives and landscapes of positive change

Maria Kremer / Maria Gunko
Yerevan, Armenia
Maria Kremer and Maria Gunko co-founded Homeing in Yerevan, an interdisciplinary and participatory research art project exploring Home and migration.
Team members
Maria Gunko
Maria Kremer
Field of work
Architecture, Multimedia, Curating, Research
Project category
Raising awareness
Project submitted

Maria Kremer is an architect, artist, and curator based in Yerevan. Her practice is notable for engaging in a dynamic dialogue with temporary and vernacular structures, exploring the boundaries and intersections of space, culture, poetics, and community. Her work has been exhibited at Tbilisi Architecture Biennial, in Het Nieuwe Instituut Rotterdam, HayArt Cultural Centre Yerevan and nominated for the EU Mies Award 2018. Maria is founder of zvon studio which was named among the top 40 under 40 European architecture practices by Platform Magazine in 2022.

Maria Gunko is an urban geographer, anthropologist, and visiting professor at the Yerevan State University. She is currently writing her DPhil in Migration Studies thesis at the University of Oxford focused on places of out-migration.

Together they co-founded an interdisciplinary and transnational research art project Homeing that aims to create a space for critical reflection and collective cultural experiences integrating various social groups around the notion of Home and ways of making Home at times of mass migration, forced displacement, and radical uncertainty.

Homeing collaborates with cultural, media, and research institutions such as urbanista.am media (Armenia), Yerevan State University (Armenia), CISR.Berlin (Germany), Library About Georgia (Georgia).
The project encompasses data collection, archiving, and research, the results of which shape interconnected events — exhibitions, urban interventions, discussions, workshops, and more. These events take place in locations influenced by recent waves of migration, where Homeing fosters dialogue between urban professionals, creatives, social scholars, and migrants.

In an era when landscapes and lives are increasingly marked by abrupt devastations due to wars, social upheavals, and environmental catastrophes, alongside the climate and social change, Lost and Found Bureau is conceived as a space (both physical and digital), where individual memories of forcibly left homes generate a new, collective cultural experience.
Lost and Found Bureau is a wooden cube covered with bubble wrap, which is travelling through different locations, collecting memories of migrants during exhibitions, cultural and scholarly events. Through a qr-code, visitors are invited to answer some questions associated with homes – ranging from materials, lighting, colours, and smells, to perceptions, activities, socialites, as well as the significance of architectural details. There is also a digital version of Lost and Found Bureau, so that anyone from everywhere can answer questions about a forcibly left home, through the Homeing project website.

Lost and Found Bureau in association with Yerevan State University is currently conducting sociological research, analysing the responses. For the interpretation and representation of results at exhibitions it uses new technologies, such as AI and VR. New technologies are used alongside artistic works produced by displaced creatives who engage in the reading of collected memories .