WASSUP (Water, Amenities and Sanitation Services Upgrade Project), 2007–2013
This is a Project. It was project headed by Anna Rubbo and Global Studio and collaborator: Sticky Situations, Johannesburg Department of Planning and University of the Witwatersrand. It is dated 2007–2013. Its medium is bucket drain: cement, sand, buckets; tap and toilet upgrades: plastic taps, plastic cisterns, ceramic pans, other plumbing parts, tools, paint, brushes, plastic or cardboard stencils.
Diepsloot, in Johannesburg, was established in 1994 as a relocation site for families removed from other informal settlements, living under the poverty line. Despite challenging conditions, a 2007 survey showed that 98% of Diepsloot’s residents did not want to move away from its vibrant culture. Focusing on environmental upgrades and public health, designers and residents used GIS technology to map and fix toilets, and developed a new bucket drain system. WASSUP grew out of these efforts. Easy solutions, such as stenciled instructions, began to address problems. A new artist network and local children celebrated by painting the forty-six newly upgraded toilets. The branding of WASSUP, now a business cooperative, created further local recognition and reduced vandalism.