15th Architecture Biennale Venice 2016
GAA Foundation Palazzo Mora, Venice
28-5 / 27-11-2016
3th floor, room 3F
Strada Nuova # 3659
Studio Frank Havermans, a studio for Architecture, Art and Urban Space, creates strategic, site-specific interventions. Their experimental installations cover a broad spectrum ranging from autonomous architectural installations to buildings and from furniture to urban models. The work derives from a fascination for architecture, urban dynamics, constructions, gravity and tangibility. The installations can be understood as structures that let the human body relate to the outside world from within its own secure environment. The architectural innovations always provoke the use of space around them. Objects might be useful but are never accommodating. In a world where everything is about efficiency, speed and standardisation, the Studio offers distinguished, innovative and tailor-made solutions driven by imagination.
By building and organising constructions themselves, Frank Havermans advances the possibility to create architecture independent from institutions, contractors and even architects. Not surprisingly, the workshop is an important part of the Studio.
If you take your time, modest means may suffice to create architecture that existentially contributes to the environment in a positive way. Initiating your own project, organizing and building it yourself is liberating and cuts out several tenacious layers of the process to allow more freedom. The Studio cultivates and extrapolates this principle in their works. Using basic architectural principles Frank Havermans creates new forms that do not directly reference any accepted architectural vocabulary. The work is often more related to industrial or rural construction, aircraft technology or coach building. Using and transforming elements from these fields, it returns them to the surroundings as hybrids. This sets the work apart from regular contemporary architecture; the design language is expressed in an architectural dialect. To Frank Havermans, architecture is a mentality, a way of looking at their surroundings, rather than a formality derived from a programme of requirements and wishes.
For its designs, the Studio uses only physical models that change their functionality repeatedly during the design and building process. Design models evolve into a true-scale final presentation model with fully developed details and a thoroughly tested construction. It is also literally the three-dimensional building plan that is used in the workshop and on the construction site. After the entire process, the model attains an autonomous status: instead of merely representing a built reality, the models have their own architectural value. With this statement, Frank Havermans stresses the idea that architecture is not always about the resultant building. A building is not necessarily architecture and architecture does not necessarily equate a building.
The exhibition is based on the design models from the Studio’s own collection. With these constructively interrelated models, Frank Havermans creates an architectural landscape from their own designs, advocating an architecture that is both more imaginative and free.
Supported by Creative Industries Fund Netherlands