Itinerant Architectures: Part II.


Berlin, Germany 2012

     Architectural time is a rate of change marked by the history a particular place holds, or by weather, or any number of factors social, economic, or cataclysmic. The Berlin exhibition of Itinerant Architectures addresses notions of architectural time drawn from experiences in two very different locations. The first, Badger, California at a site near the Sequoia/ Kings Canyon wilderness where nature is reclaiming temporary trailer architecture. Left by Synanon, an intentional community and drug rehabilitation facility turned cult and later disbanded, the place now has seven mobile trailer structures where there once were a hundred. The second location is in the former East Berlin utilizing two structures, the Rathaus Weissensee, a once government building that is currently in a state of disuse and the Funkhaus, a cavernous DDR relic that once served as the radio transmitting station for East Berlin.

     Relinquishing its primary identity as structure, architecture is redefined as transient sculptural system. Political regimes change, tornadoes happen, and structures break down. Rates of construction, demolition and decay can be slow or extreme. Structures that are thought of as solid and static are always on the move. The Berlin exhibition included photographs and plans for both locations. The temporary architecture of the California woods is positioned across the gallery from an image of an unused German government building and the entire show resides within a DDR monolith.  The references to cathedral architecture are present throughout the projects and serve as a counterpoint. All architecture is temporary. This work puts a reverential lens to transience by cutting a cathedral window into a decrepit mobile home, constructing a 20’ wheel made of styrofoam trailer insulation, drawing the plans for an enormous rose window on an interior office wall of an old radio station, applying a mock “stained glass” to a building that is falling apart and providing a slingshot tool and bricks to symbolically assist in the process of change.