The work of the American artist Mike Bouchet, who currently lives and works in Frankfurt, questions social currents through a variety of forms, including sculpture, installation, painting, film and actions. Two of his recurring concerns are issues of urbanity and consumption. At the 2009 Venice Biennale, Mike Bouchet showed “Watershed,” a 250 square meter single-family house, which he floated in a Venice canal in an attempt to promote the suburbanization of water. For Bouchet, a suburban home is a commercialized architectural fantasy: dream houses sold in kits for the mass consumer.
For his exhibition at the SCHIRN, Bouchet has literally chainsawed “Watershed” into pieces, as a way of continuing his artistic discussion with this popular architectural form. The transformed house is a new sculpture titled “Sir Walter Scott.” Within the exhibition, entitled “Neues Wohnen” (New Living), the physical components of the house are used as material for an examination of the physical and psychological dimensions of contemporary suburban architecture. It is supplemented with further new works by Mike Bouchet. Curator: Matthias Ulrich (SCHIRN)
The folded structure is an architectural experiment using only plastics as construction material. This prototype of a self-supporting building skin is made from just 19 mm thick translucent polycarbonate sandwich panels, arranged in a radial array that is divided into eight segments. The folded geometry in combination with the structural connection of the edges guarantees the pavilion’s structural stability. The individual panels of this high-end lightweight structure are partly glued together and partly joined with an innovative detachable technology to facilitate transport and installation.
Architect, fabrication and construction: State Academy of Arts and Design Stuttgart, Class for Structural Design: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stephan Engelsmann, Dipl.-Ing. Valerie Spalding, students Melanie Fischer and Gerlind Baloghy. For fabrication and construction supported by students Annette Bohr, Franciska Ganns, Alexander Merkel and Raoul Ruoff. Structural engineers: Engelsmann Peters Beratende Ingenieure GmbH, Stuttgart. Sponsoring: ThyssenKrupp AG, Stuttgarter Studentenwerk e.V., Design Composite GmbH
*Exhibition: Museum Künstlerkolonie Darmstadt, September 16 2007 to March 24 2008* Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) is one of the most innovative plastics developments of the 20th century. The amazing versatility of this material makes it an essential component of everyday life. Better known by the PLEXIGLAS® trademark, this extremely weather-resistant plastic was developed to patent stage in 1933 by the Darmstadt-based Röhm company. Its constant high transparency, light weight as compared with glass and wide range of forming options are the attributes that make PLEXIGLAS® an equally attractive material for architecture and design. As a curved windshield for automobiles, this plastic put its stamp on the Streamline movement of the 1930s. Whereas the material was required in huge volumes for aircraft construction during World War II, music boxes, illuminated signs or record player covers such as the famous "Snow White's Coffin" were among its first fields of application in the 1950s. Organically shaped tableware, eccentric handbags and avant-garde furniture were further fortes of the synthetic material. In the "space design" of the 1960s, an era characterized by its fascination with space travel and its pop culture, the possibilities offered by the material were more consistently exhausted. In 1972, the transparent roof construction of Munich's Olympic Stadium revolutionized architecture and opened up perspectives for the use of PLEXIGLAS® in construction. Today, the design potentialities of the material, which has undergone constant further development, are more manifold than ever and are embraced with matching enthusiasm by contemporary designers. By means of selected examples, the exhibition staged to mark the 100th anniversary of the Röhm company displays PLEXIGLAS® in architecture, design and everyday life from early times up to the present. Catalogue edited by Ralf Beil, with texts by Kai Buchholz. Published by Wienand Verlag, Cologne, German/English
Since it premiered in 2004, »Stylepark in Residence« in Cologne has emerged as a highlight during the Passagen in Cologne. After three years at the former Germany Railways Head Office on the banks of the Rhine, »Stylepark in Residence« is this year presenting a new concept - at a new location.