Spatially Organizing Future Genders: An Artistic Intervention in the Creation of a Hir-toilet

Annika Skoglund*, Robin Holt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Toilets, a neglected facility in the study of human relations at work and beyond, have become increasingly important in discussions about future experiences of gender diversity. To further investigate the spatial production of gender and its potential expressions, we transformed a unisex single-occupancy toilet at Uppsala University into an all-gender or ‘hir-toilet’.1 With the aim to disrupt and expose the dominant spatial organization of the two binary genders, we inaugurated the hir-toilet with the help of a performance artist. We describe and analyse internal and external responses thereto, using Lefebvre’s work on dialectics and space. Focusing on how space is variously lived, conceived and perceived, our analysis questions the very rationale of gender categorizations. The results contribute to a renewed critique of binary thinking in the organization of workplaces by extending our understanding of how space and human relations mutually constitute each other.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)1007-1032
Number of pages26
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

Published online 10. Februar 2020.


  • Artistic intervention
  • Gender
  • Hir
  • Lefebvre
  • Space
  • Toilet

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