by rotative studio (Alexandra Sonnemans and Caterina Viguera)
“By re-interpreting what you come across,
as a designer,
to be able to give a new perspective on the existing and to make visible what
could be, while already using, doing, acting, performing -
and therefore including others.”
The workshop takes an existing situation as its starting point: the ground floor space of one of the Langblokken in Luchtbal. The Langblokken are mainly striking because of their extensive length of approx. 200 meters and their ‘open’ ground floor space. This space – a long, narrow, covered corridor surrounded by two almost infinite rows of robust columns that remind of the classical colonnade typology - is ambiguous. There is no hard boundary that divides private from public, inside from outside; the threshold is almost invisible. Although this space is permeable and strongly connected to the public space, its rigidity and openness doesn’t invite to stay and perform other activities. Once designed as a continuous public space ‘for all’, it never fulfilled its original intentions and remains without any clear function, except for the entrances to the apartments, storage of bikes and shelter from the weather.
The aim of the workshop is to temporary alter the perception and the scale of this ground floor space of one of the Langblokken, by creating new constellations between the existing architectural elements. These new constellations will visually and spatially compress and/or extend the space and generate new rhythms within the ground floor and its surroundings, stretching even further than the boundaries of the existing building. Opening up new ephemeral and imaginary spaces and trajectories can give the space another value and meaning, and evoke new uses.
We will do this by, literally, ‘drawing on-site’, a physical, performative act to interact on-site, in the scale 1:1, while tracing and marking new spatial relationships. Spatial drawings and existing context relate to each other: this spatial interweaving creates a layered image, which is to be experienced while moving through the space. New surfaces, lines and colours rearrange in space to form new compositions.
In order to work on the whole length of the ground floor space, we will divide it in four or five zones, each zone to be appropriated by a team of students and residents, leading ultimately to a large-scale, 200 meters site-specific, collective work/installation.
1. Research and visit on-site: To identify existing elements, to understand the context and scale, and to document and create the base for research, drawing and collages. React on existing rhythms - abstraction: recognisable shapes in an abstract language: focus on specific details in the elements, such as lines and textures.
“The real scale 1:1 allows for a more physical, real-time and in the moment experience of the given information and at at the same time, offers space for interpretation.”
2. Research, drawings and performances
Performance 1: React on the existing elements of the ground floor (e.g. the columns, the ceiling and the apartment cores) and on surrounding elements, and trace new connections between them. For instance: the columns, archetypical architectural elements, can be used as markings or corners for new spatial connections.
*The students and locals will translate the lines of the drawings into real materials (such as wires, textiles, tape, mesh, objects, columns, walls), depending on the thickness of the line, the transparency, the direction (horizontal, vertical, upwards, suspended), the compression or extension.
Performance 2: Prepare different acts in the spatial installation, together with locals, for the opening of the festival of the Meantime.