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Michel de Certeau: Spatial Stories

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Garrets-de-luxe

When artists commission architects

  • Studio space of Ugo Rondinone in Würenlos, Switzerland, designed by Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone) 1 / 19  Studio space of Ugo Rondinone in Würenlos, Switzerland, designed by Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone)
  • Exterior of sculptor Udo Rondinone’s house, built in 2012. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone) 2 / 19  Exterior of sculptor Udo Rondinone’s house, built in 2012. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone)
  • Nature, nurture. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone) 3 / 19  Nature, nurture. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone)
  • Large laundry room for all those plaster-splattered overalls. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone) 4 / 19  Large laundry room for all those plaster-splattered overalls. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone)
  • Space to sit and think artistic thoughts. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone) 5 / 19  Space to sit and think artistic thoughts. (Photo: Valentin Jeck, Courtesy Andreas Fuhrimann Gabrielle Hächler Architects and Ugo Rondinone)
  • Atelier Katharina Grosse, Berlin from 2007 by augustinundfrankarchitekten. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten)   6 / 19  Atelier Katharina Grosse, Berlin from 2007 by augustinundfrankarchitekten. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten)  
  • Interior of Atelier Katharina Grosse, Berlin. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten) 7 / 19  Interior of Atelier Katharina Grosse, Berlin. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten)
  • Interior and exterior of the apartment designed for Katharina Grosse by augustinundfrankarchitekten in Berlin, in an old East German department store. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten) 8 / 19  Interior and exterior of the apartment designed for Katharina Grosse by augustinundfrankarchitekten in Berlin, in an old East German department store. (Photo: Werner Huthmacher, Courtesy augustinundfrankarchitekten)
  • “Kent Reservoir”, 2008. House designed for Dinos Chapman by Brinkworth. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth) 9 / 19  “Kent Reservoir”, 2008. House designed for Dinos Chapman by Brinkworth. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth)
  • Entrance to the “Kent Reservoir” house which is converted from... an old reservoir in Kent. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth) 10 / 19  Entrance to the “Kent Reservoir” house which is converted from... an old reservoir in Kent. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth)
  • Stairs and kitchen. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth) 11 / 19  Stairs and kitchen. (Photo: Louise Melchior, Courtesy Brinkworth)
  • “Casa M”, designed for the artist Marcela Mónaco in Rosario, Argentina in 2013. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire) 12 / 19  “Casa M”, designed for the artist Marcela Mónaco in Rosario, Argentina in 2013. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire)
  • The house has a basic framework of exposed concrete cubes. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire) 13 / 19  The house has a basic framework of exposed concrete cubes. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire)
  • Not the life of the ascetic artist exactly. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire) 14 / 19  Not the life of the ascetic artist exactly. (Photo: Walter Salcedo, Courtesy Estudio Aire)
  • Kostner House and Studio, 2013, designed for a South Tyrolean artist by MoDus Architects (Sandy Attia and Matteo Scagnol). (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects) 15 / 19  Kostner House and Studio, 2013, designed for a South Tyrolean artist by MoDus Architects (Sandy Attia and Matteo Scagnol). (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects)
  • The house’s wooden structure sits on a series of V-shaped steel girders jointed together. (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects) 16 / 19  The house’s wooden structure sits on a series of V-shaped steel girders jointed together. (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects)
  • Interior – with giant Swiss Ball? (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects) 17 / 19  Interior – with giant Swiss Ball? (Photo: Marco Zanta, Courtesy MoDus Architects)
  • Studio and loft for Karin Sander in Berlin, designed by Sauerbruch Hutton in 2010. (Photo: Jan Bitter, Courtesy Sauerbruch Hutton) 18 / 19  Studio and loft for Karin Sander in Berlin, designed by Sauerbruch Hutton in 2010. (Photo: Jan Bitter, Courtesy Sauerbruch Hutton)
  • Karin Sander’s studio interior. (Photo: Annette Kisling, Courtesy Sauerbruch Hutton) 19 / 19  Karin Sander’s studio interior. (Photo: Annette Kisling, Courtesy Sauerbruch Hutton)

What is a dream studio or retreat for an artist? Judging from a new exhibition, it can be anything from an old converted reservoir to a mountain eerie to your traditional urban attic: even if nowadays this tends to be a cavernous, severely minimal one. With a dozen projects in the show, each beautifully tailored to the needs of its user and designed by nine different practices from Argentina, Germany, England, Italy and Switzerland, it seems that living the artistic life no longer need involve starving in a freezing garret these days.

With architects sometimes accused of being head-in-the-clouds dreamers – complaining of philistine clients who don't understand their artistic visions – what happens when an artist is the client? And when the usual relationship between architects and artists is that of the former commissioning the latter for an artwork to fit into or onto a building (all too often as a last minute percent-for-art fig-leaf designed to add a bit of artistic integrity to a bad building) – what happens when this relationship is reversed?

In today's overheated contemporary art world, plenty of artists are no longer starving in garrets, and more and more have not just the wherewithal for an absinthe or two, but are even in a psoition to commission their own houses and studios. Indeed in the UK, with many of the newly rich Young British Artists moving out to the countryside and sinking their cash into property like the 19th century industrialists before them – take Damien Hirst with his huge pile at Toddington Manor in Gloucestershire or Anthony Gormley with his Norfolk country house – they have been dubbed “the new artocracy”.

However a new exhibition that opens this week, explores examples of rather more original, unusual and inspired studios, houses and flats, designed by nine different practices, including augustinundfrankarchitekten, Brinkworth, ModusArchitects and Sauerbruch Hutton, for artist clients including Dinos Chapman, Katharina Grosse, Karin Sander and Ugo Rondinone.


Artists Commissioning Contemporary Architecture

From April 25 to July 12, 2015
Bielefelder Kunstverein
Welle 61
33602 Bielefeld
Germany

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