holder

view from the dike, photo Jenne Hoekstra

 

KAPKAR/CDH-P2P
chat house
Corpus den Hoorn, Groningen, NL

MARK 42 – Frank Havermans lures passers-by (Feb/Mar 2013)

text by Arthur Wortmann

‘In America, every community that’s worth a damn has an abandoned house that all the kids know about. And that’s where they go and party.’ Architect Robert Stone said this in Mark 21 in reference to a pavilion he had designed in Joshua Tree, in the California desert. It’s a statement that comes to mind when you see the meeting point designed by Frank Havermans and commissioned by the Centrum Beeldende Kunst Groningen arts center. Beside a dike in a somewhat out-of-the-way little park in the Corpus den Hoorn district of Groningen stands a concrete structure with a steel cabin attached to it, looking out over a canal. The steel is rusty, Corten steel. The concrete has a peculiar appearance. It was poured on side, but the form work was first lined with tree bark. This is now stuck to the concrete and is slowly beginning to rot away and make a home for other organisms that adhere to the remains. Benches of rough oak have been installed at the foot of the concrete pedestal. An inclined ramp leads to the Spartan steel cabin, an ideal spot to sneak a smoke, hang out idly or meet people. Havermans: ‘The meeting point is a gift to the community, as the final element to a renovation of several years. The form is derived from the maritime elements like boats and bridges from the immediate surroundings. The thing attracts attention, elicits a reaction and is difficult to ignore. As a result, conversations start naturally in this spot, among people strolling by, cyclists, dog walkers, rowers, and so forth.’ Which explains the name of the project: ‘Praathuis’, or ‘chat house’.

photo Jenne Hoekstra

entrance, photo Jenne Hoekstra

front view from the dike, visitors, photo René de Wit

front view from the dike, photo René de Wit

side view from the dike, photo René de Wit

view from the dike, photo René de Wit

view on grass field, chatting visitors, photo René de Wit

view on grass field, photo René de Wit

view from the dike, photo René de Wit

view inside, children playing

view inside, children playing

view inside, visitor in contemplation, photo René de Wit

Construction Model

Model KAPKAR/ CDH-P2P