FROM FL to FI
The on rolling project and its fragmented reveal
Taking the studio as point of departure, the project presents itself as a continuum, challenging the instances of permanence within a collection of work, in relation to place. My factory animates the conversation between the fleeting moment and the fixed in this context, operating across the spectrum of mass, fixity, performance and time.
The studio is a factory of both culture and mass. Here, identity is crafted through the constant exchange between the ephemeral and concrete, which transitions between different physical and cultural landing contexts. In this factory, the method of making and assembling of a whole is fragmentary and resembles an archipelago. I call it an archipelago as each piece of work can be read as a singular independent element although it is part of a larger collection of work.
The primary precedent for the project was Donald Judd’s 101 Spring Street house which is an example of a landform, in this case his house, bringing together a series of independent objects in a permanent installation. He vehemently argues against the way art is being showcased and rejects the ephemeral quality of art (having to be installed and taken down) emphasising on the need for art to connect to site.
I disagree with Judds sole frame in which the project should be placed and experienced and consider he neglects the alternative set of contexts which accompany the artefacts as part of a project.
My factory projects a speculative ground, which doesn’t fix these fragments to a site. The logos of the archipelago is developed as a ‘dia-logos’ of collisions which reject the proposal of a sole placement for the artwork. It acknowledges itself as a mimesis of thinking, situated at the scale of the table it is presented on and at the scale its narrative implies. In this sense the factory is forming a counterpart to the traditional gallery space, where objects were de-contextualised but existed in fixation to each other and to the physical space in which they were exhibited. We need to come to terms with the fact that the podium is rejected, and replaced with spectacle, interaction. SMASH!
- Nauman says “…[if] I was an artist and I was in the studio, then whatever I was doing in the studio must be art. At this point art became more of an activity and less of a product.”
WHAT WE MAKE:
Fascinated with Judd’s radical approach and somewhat utopic Marfa Foundation, it is interesting to consider the clash with another major ideology that was taking form in New York at that time. While Judd was transforming the building into a home, a studio and most importantly a laboratory of ideas, the explosion of consumerism reverberated in Andy Warhol’s “Factory”.
For Warhol, the factory is the space of the momentary, generating 15 minutes of fame and the nomad artwork assembly line. The impermanence of The Factory exists through a set of memories of events hinged on parties where the only constant becomes the iconic image and the sofa as place of gathering and happening – Here event becomes simulation of place.
Pairing the two, whom both impose their beliefs and appropriate objects of others to form their own identity, I question the issue of identity within the spectrum of the different states of the objects we make. Clashing the fleeting with the fixed, on a material level, these experiments interrogate the issue of identity through:
– the visual of the object as representation
– the figure of the object (the object itself)
– the formal object (geometry, materiality, form)
– the behavioural implication of the object (the event)
The archipelago of objects become tools with which you think of and understand the artist/author. It projects the behavior, showing intention. The factory takes this assemblage of fragments which drift and collide, revealing how the project oscillates between states of fleeting and fixed throughout its existence. With these absurd scenarios, I test the act of encasement rendering it redundant.
When placed back into its original context, the place of gathering becomes an artefact. It is stripped down of its social purpose and by enhancing its formal quality, the issue of placement is palpable as it challenges the dynamic of the event. By trying to permanently maintain the event, the event doesn’t take place.
HOW WE MAKE: ARCHIPELAGO AT INFINITE SCALE
The archipelago constructs immediate collisions, moments of tension between artefact and event which critique Judd’s proposal of a sole context for the project. Judd doesn’t acknowledge the spectacle intention in his actions. His complete orchestration and doesn’t negotiate its apparent fixity. In truth, the outcome of his ideology is in constant change depending on its site (conditions) and can only be experienced temporarily.
Similarly, while Warhol’s work is founded on fleeting events, his superstars survived past the 15 min of fame. While the Factory was destroyed its image is permanent.
ARCHIPELAGO AT TABLE SCALE – PAGE TURNER
The apparent fixity is present throughout the different landing points of a project. The ideations of architecture in the architectural student’s projects perform interminently, episodically. The Perpetual Project installation presents the project as an event with a predefined rhythm and predetermined lifespan after which it is left redundant. The act of placing this installation becomes the focus of the exercise as attention shifts from the result of the project to the activities that are supposed to produce that result. “The documentation of the virtual and real steps necessary to realise the project becomes the main object of interest”. – The objects become scaffolding for fictions. – brings us again to think of the spectacle.
WHERE WE MAKE: PLACE/SITE – CULTURAL VS GEOGRAPHICAL
Place becomes a key term to interrogate, both in terms of site and context, in relation to the current form of architectural project. It offers the viewer different possibilities of perceiving & relating to the work, and negotiate their own position towards the object & its location.
PANORAMA: ARCHIPELAGO AT NO-MAN’S LAND SCALE
If building has traditionally been assigned the job of keeping out the rain, as Sylvia Lavin states,”architecture loves a cloud”. From Brunelleschi’s famous perspective apparatus which captured the movement of a cloud in a mirror to the atmospheric spectacle characterising contemporary architects (such as Sanaa/herzog), the traces of weather have permitted architecture to animate building materials. The effects are its inhabitants, spectatorial stand-ins and this is becoming architecture’s place. Neither a site or context, but a landscape of events wherein visibility of individual constituent objects become clouded by their performance within a manifold/ continuum. The focus becomes the interaction between event and environment.
When encasing, the archipelago displaces the subject in ‘No-man’s-land’. The continuous landform, where objects are reintroduced in tension with each other is revealed in the form of a continuously changing panorama view which discloses the unexpected. It is potentially infinite and in constant redefinition through the different interactions.
The series of events become the physical space that it inhabits, thus the event gets displaced. They are the site of the permanent installation. ( Beatles reference) – The permanent installation is attained in the recording of the insertion.
My factory examines what we make, how we make and where we make it. While exploring the space of production where identity is shaped through the making of immaterial or mass; What sits between making event and artefact?
Nothing. I believe the two are interchangeable as they rely on the spectacle, following the transitions of its various landing places (from space of production to place of installation). They are in constant exchange, knitting the ground on which I, as an architect, navigate, oscillating between ways of arranging the cultural and physical world.
The project brings this spectacle forward as a process rather than a result or an effect, where the edges of the notion of ‘place’, of belonging, are blurred out. They are becoming slowly intangible as the relationship dynamic between the physical environment and the individual is in constant movement.