Unless Ever People
The building is not just an experiment. It is an experiment. But not just any. The experiment is clear. The building did not meet the requirements of current regulations or of future expectations. In light of the conventional ideas and principles, measured against the norms and standards – the building could not serve anymore.
And yet, the building stood there. The building existed. Despite everything. The building had to disappear. Too useless to exist any longer.
Unless, the experiment. Merely from the perspective of what is there, looking for what is still possible. Without defining the programme or expectations beforehand. Except for the expectation that the building might turn the usual ideas around – might result in a Wendung. Merely through its existence.
Its existence, however, had already suffered a first demolition. Yet, by considering this as a chance rather than a loss, an opening came into view. A chance at an open building. Perhaps as an enclosed garden. With all sorts of things inside. Rooms of glass and an open theatre. A tree and a lamp post and a bench. And a fireplace.
This installation is a moment. A moment in the life of the building. The installation is not so much the illustration of an endpoint as it is a moment in the becoming of the building. A moment on the road to a next moment. Or rather, moments. How the building shows itself today is no more than how the building was imagined at a certain point in time. And this imagination was carefully considered.
A simple way of exhibiting – the sequence as idea. Yet, it is no stranger to the original rooms of the building. And finally, it becomes so much more. The installation as a detour for the wooden frames to become part of the building. As the walls of the building were reinforced by introducing large squares of concrete blocks, the wooden floors of the building will soon be repaired as well by introducing new wooden planks. The planks of the wooden frames here will soon be the planks for the wooden floors there.
A movie is playing. The movie of a single day. Zooming in. Zooming out. Voices in the background. Circulating ideas. Exchanging thoughts. And even here. Never in view. Yet viewed in imagination.
The movie. A final moment. The moment of today. On the road to the moment of tomorrow. And the day after.
The book and the installation are inevitably connected with each other. The installation shows the material reality. The moment. The book reflects on that moment. And on many more moments too. Not only on yesterday and today. But also on tomorrow. Although no moment can be predicted. Or even wants to be predicted. Or should be. Nor may be.
The book leaves no thought unspoken. Only then, a new moment can be found. When those thoughts may differ. And the differences may generate unexpected differences. The debate is the method. The experience, the cornerstone. The imagination, the next Wendung.
This project was realized by architecten de vylder vinck taillieu in a remarkable collaboration with commissioner KARUS, who was heavily involved in the process, and with the guidance of BAVO, an independent research office focused on the political aspects of art, architecture and spatial planning. Participation was the key to this project, in which everyone involved became a co-creator. The installation and publication form a next step for the project, which is continuously looking for new insights in the use of space for care – whichever way it goes.