Design Report AR100003
Gallery George Grosz Calum Robinson 05000107 BArch (Hons)
Front cover: taken from the inside cover of the Arts Councilâ€™s catalogue for their 1963 exhibition on George Grosz
â€œLiving with productive antagonism is a quintessential Berlin traitâ€? -Former Berlin Mayor, Eberhard Diepgen
This project explores the idea of ‘Productive Antagonism’ as a term to suggest an alternative method of understanding how Berliners address the past. Berlin is an incredibly culturally and politically sensitive city where controversy seems to be concealed rather than celebrated. The project examines how ‘productive antagonism’ can be used as a design tool to generate an architecture responsive to the highly influential and controversial artist, George Grosz. The synthesized design presents Grosz’s role within the context of twentieth century Berlin and reflects his evolving styles through a prescribed narrative circulation, sympathetic to site specific relationships.
All images are the authorâ€™s own unless otherwise stated. Altered images are referenced with respect to the location of the original. ÂŠ Calum Robinson 2010
Berlin Invisible City Mosaic City
p.12 p.18 p.20
Geographic Context Cultural Context Analysis Spirit of Place
p.24 p.28 p.32 p.56 p.68
p.130 p.134 p.138
Statutory Building Regulations Cost Analysis
p.142 p.143 p.146
Appendix Cost Model Precedents
p.154 p.156 p.160
Word Count: 10980
Fig.1 Chisto’s “Iron Curtain”
Artistic antagonism. Christo blocks Rue Visconti, Paris with 240 oil barrels for eight hours on June 27th 1962.
My proposal is to celebrate the Berliners who made a stand; the Dadaists, the Verists, George Grosz. They drew attention to corruption, injustice and hypocrisy with their controlled use of art as a tool to oppose the powerful and enlighten the deprived. The concept honours this type of ‘trouble maker’, men and women who attack the status quo based on an intolerance of intolerance. Berlin could have become a very different city without them. The objective to design a building for Grosz and his contemporaries offers a potentially powerful insight into the journeys of both Grosz and twentieth century Berlin. Predominantly Grosz, the proposed building is a museum/gallery of his life’s work, each space reflecting the personality of its art from its respective period. Temporary exhibitions of work from other artists, musicians, poets, actors, philosophers and writers related to Grosz accompany the main exhibition as off-shoots symbolising the paths that affected Grosz. It is a visible narrative to his life, to the lives he drew and those he drew for. The energy of each exhibition space is unique and clear to the art it is mirroring. This in itself imitates Grosz’s style of reducing unnecessary or often surplus information to simply convey his message or reveal the true character. Spaces feel immensely different as the journey through Grosz’s life shifts. The constant flow of interior/exterior relationships retain a sense of objective, which are only maintained as they identify Grosz with Berlin. “If one paints someone’s portrait, one should not know him if possible. No knowledge! I do not want to know him at all; I only want to see what is there, on the outside. The inner follows by itself. It is mirrored in the visible.”
This quote from Otto Dix conveys the idea that we should be able to process an understanding of someone purely through an artistic depiction of them. This is inherent in my building, its spaces and its relationship with its surroundings. Grosz is revealed through the synergy of architecture and art. “The Dadaists wanted to create an art which was anti-war and negated the very spirit that had produced war. What they created at the most fundamental level was life: a boisterous, extravagant series of happenings...Pictures were to be part of an intimate space in which one lived, laughed and shouted...The cabaret was alive; creators were physically present as performers close to spectators who could be
provoked into becoming part of the spectacle at any moment.”
The Cabaret was incredibly important to the Berlin Dadaists. It started out as a performance vehicle for new literature and art of early expressionism. It moved into satirical, usually political stand up and a stage for Dada spectacle, of which Grosz was closely involved. To include an intimate theatre space that was based on similar principles to this original form of cabaret is of significant importance to my brief. Politically charged sites develop an intriguing sense of conflict. The building antagonizing its context sends a message of defiance to the men Grosz battled all his life. Having said this, the atrocities that Berlin has seen and felt is still encountered in the remaining buildings and sites from Nazi and Cold War eras. My to build Gallery George Grosz on or near the Berlin Wall, helps the visitor relate to Grosz’s crossing between East and West and the uncertainty of Berlin during the twentieth century. The site near the crossroads of Niederkirchstraße, Wilhelmstraße and Zimmerstraße offers many poignant and powerful insights into Berlin’s recent past, often fuelling emotions. It is layered with history and is currently opposite the Topography of Terror exhibition development; possibly the most difficult area to acknowledge, understand and respect given it’s incredibly sensitive connotations. Dividing them is the second largest stretch of the Berlin Wall in the city, after the East Side Gallery. The tension that this wall creates with the Ministry of Finance is felt everyday as you walk along Niederkirchstraße. My aim is to address the tension and open up the north side of Niederkirchstraße that faces the wall by knocking down the offices joined to the Berlin House of Representatives. This opens up the previously inhibiting area to locate a very public building. Its impact and purpose capture and validate the underlying historical significance of the area and educates visitors on the effects of people with power and those without it through the twentieth century.
“By depicting crimes in an exaggerated manner, art might have a restraining effect on reality”. -George Grosz [Schneede, U.M. (1975) George Grosz: The Artist in His Society. p.38]
1:100 Floor plans on A0
Primary Circulation diagram
Internal rendering in Kaiser exhibition
This crossection starts to show some of the atmospheres, interest in varying scales and lighting that this building relies upon. The words refer to a feeling, idea or material above the period they are reflecting.
Linked views with site KAISER - Former site of the Industrial School of Arts and Crafts where Grosz studied (Education) DADA - The Bunderat and the Berlin House of Representatives (Political) VERISM - The Ministry of Finance (formerly the Reich Aviation Ministry (Political) NAZI STAIR - The Topography of Terror (Holocaust) AMERICA - The Topography of Terror and the Berlin Wall (Cold War)
Quotes to convey the essence of each period 1 Schneede, U.M. (1975) George Grosz: The Artist in His Society. p.19 2 Appignanesi, L. (1975) The Cabaret. p.79 3 Michalski, S. (1994) New objectivity: painting, graphic art and photography in Weimar Germany 1919-1933. p.28 4 Schneede, U.M. (1975) George Grosz: The Artist in His Society. p.179
4 3 2
(Proud?) Graffiti on a bus stop in Berlinâ€™s Mitte district
Before we undertook the study trip to Berlin I wanted to establish what I already knew about the city and what my intentions would be when I arrived. Who did I want to talk to? Where should I go? How should I travel? Should I even make a plan? I wanted to experience as much of Berlin as possible without being trapped by my situation as a tourist. My limited experience of Berlin had illuminated the hidden yet rich cultural identity of the city. Berliners embrace passionately a wide variety of music, art, film, theatre and performance; it has become almost their tradition. My intentions were therefore to engage directly with Berliners to understand what they enjoyed about their city and why. I felt the best way to do this and meet Berliners was through ‘Couchsurfing’. Essentially, Couchsurfing is a network for travellers to stay as a guest with a local in their home. Its aim is to foster ‘cultural exchange, friendship, and learning experiences’ which I thought would be the perfect way to dive into Berlin. Myself and my two colleagues stayed at four separate homes and a youth hostel over 11 days to get as many different perspectives, insights and advice from local people to help us understand the city.
Couchsurfing with Julia and her two children Jack and Lukas. We got the top bunk!
Art installation in the Sammlung Boros Gallery, a bunker renovated art gallery
Discoveries I became very aware of the fractured nature of Berlin. The Wall unzipping East and West Berlin is significant, especially architecturally, but I felt an established fracturing more noticeable through the districts of Berlin. The overall nature of Berlin appears to be very tolerant and open minded but upon closer inspection, is formed from scattered social groups that form an identity for each district or â€˜pocketâ€™ (they are almost small city centres within a larger Berlin). Individually, each of these groups embrace a certain type of character(s) and it is still a loose example of needing the right image to truly fit in. Having said this, Berlin still feels a case of: if you go, you will fit in somewhere. From an economical perspective I learnt that Berlin is incredibly poor. The frail economy has been fighting serious unemployment issues and homelessness yet there is surplus housing left over from former Eastern Berliners leaving for the West.
Surviving facade of Anhalter Bahnhof
The past. It is impossible to hide from the past in Berlin. The Cold War, World War II, the Berlin wall, the bunkers, the remants of buildings, the division of East and West.
Empty spaces (along ZimmerstraĂ&#x;e)
Bullet riddled facade of the Grussel Kabinett, a former bunker in Berlinâ€™s Tiergarten district
Sculpture (?) protruding from the Debis-Haus on Schellingstrae
Kathe Kollwitz sculpture inside the Neue Wache
Impact of history
Antagonism Defiance Hidden memories
Confusion The Hidden Tension
‘Productive antagonism’ is possibly one of the few persistent factors that seem to define Berlin; although ‘productive’ is undeniably subjective. It is a city that, in the last three to four generations, has seen and felt many extremes: failures, victories, ideologies and regimes. Berliners have been accustomed to antagonism for some time, but it is negative antagonism that Berliners should not be forced to dwell on. Pressure to do so would only result in bitterness, irritation and probably more alienation. My belief is that Berlin does not need another monument, memorial or building whose raison d’être is to remind Berliners of their terrible past or act as a token of guilt admittance. Berlin is itself, a constant reminder. Remnant of the Berlin Wall outside the Axel-Springer-eCommerce
The assignment ‘Invisible Cities’ involved the production of a poster with supporting text to communicate pressing social, cultural, environmental or political issues regarding Berlin. It incorporated a significant amount of research and process anaylsis of relevant issues that influenced the evolution of the initial poster design and consequently the evolution a brief.
My initial research into ‘productive antagonism’ drew inspiration from the Berlin Dadaist movement, specifically one of its founders, George Grosz. His style reduces all information into simple lines that serve to satirize his subject thus undermining them and making his own opinion heard. Here are two posters I designed for the assignment, personally I find the first poster more successful.
The term ‘productive antagonism’ is deliberately vague. It could describe how political art raises awareness of issues and problems to positively disrupt the status quo. It can also be seen as a sarcastic remark regarding the productivity of Communist and Capitalist regimes. My initial hand drawn poster (far left) attempts to communicate a homeless ‘Uncle Sam’ figure in Grosz’s style. It comments on the effect of consumerism’s overindulgence and how it has led to the current economic and homeless problems Berlin suffers today. It contrasts with the symbolic red man of East Berlin whose slightly condescending message of ‘Stop’ seems to have gone unnoticed. Together they reference the collision of East meets West and Communism versus Capitalism. The second poster (left) takes the more contemporary figure of Donald Trump to make the issue more relevant today. It exploits his image as a highly successful, Capitalist businessman and compares this to the ruling bourgeois class of Prussian Berlin. The Dadaist technique of photomontage combines Trump’s head with elements of Grosz’s own work, and shoots the title of one of Grosz’s paintings “I Shall exterminate Everything around Me that Restricts Me from Being the Master” out of his mouth at a silhouette of East Berlin’s famous TV Tower. It again suggests a loss of moral control and unexplained greed but is probably more critical of Capitalism than I would have liked.
The task was to build a major location model of the city centre of Berlin roughly 3km (East-West) by 2km (North-South) at a scale of 1:1000. The title â€˜Mosaic Cityâ€™ refers to idea that we were all to make a tile each to fit into the 8x8 grid. For reasons of continuity and quality control it was decided to use 378mmx256mm plywood base boards as a datum surface with a plywood veneer for paths, public spaces etc. The river Spree was to be routed out of the base board to a depth of 3mm and the buildings were to be made from pine but required close liaison with colleagues of adjoining tiles to ensure successful matches.
Johanna Hannerfeldt Hoffert
Antonio Fernandez Lopez
My tile was located by the main roads Alte Jakobstraße, Neue Grunstraße and Sebastianstraße and the side roads Stallschreiberstraße, Seydelstraße
The finished 1:1000 Berlin scale model.
Fig. 2 Aerial site photo
Fig. 3 Aerial site photo
Berlin City model from the Berlin Planning Office
Berlinâ€™s urban development from a small marsh town to a primary European capital city has seen both mass expansion and violent reduction in itâ€™s urban fabric. The Enlightenment, a Prussian military thirst for an ever bigger empire and a strong interest in arts and culture have fuelled the city since its 12th century birth. However a thirst for land can come at a price and the failed regimes of the Third Reich and GDR led to wars and conflict that ultimately put Berlin in economic despair and saw a lot of its built past destroyed. Today, Berlin is at first glance a prosperous, energised city but recent economic downturns have left the city almost bankrupt.
My site on the Berlin City model
Summer Solstice 9am 21st June
Summer Solstice 12pm 21st June
Summer Solstice 3pm 21st June
Summer Solstice 6pm 21st June
Winter Equinox 9am 22nd December
Winter Equinox 12pm 22nd December
Winter Equinox 3pm 22nd December
Winter Equinox 6pm 22nd December
Berlin sits in the Warsaw Berlin glacial spillway and as a result is extremely flat. According to Berlinâ€™s Senate Department for Urban Development the terrain in Mitte itself is approximately 34.5 metres above sea level while the water table is only 31.5 meters above sea level.
Fig.4 Manipulated aerial photo
Fig.5 ‘The Mighty One on a little outing surprised by two poets’
â€œWe realised at that point that we were looking at the insane end products of the existing society, and we burst out in laughter. What we did not see was that a system underlay this madnessâ€œ - George Grosz [Schneede, U.M. (1975) George Grosz: The Artist in His Society. p.68]
1986 death strip
Berlin House of Representatives Niederkirchstraße 5 Berlin’s House of Representatives or ‘Abgeordnetenhaus’ is the seat of the State Parliament of Berlin. It is the second chamber of the Parliament of the Kingdom of Prussia from 1850-1918, the first chamber is in the Prussian House of Lords. The Federal Council or ‘Bundesrat’ of Germany has its seat in the former Prussian House of Lords. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 the elected deputies of reunited Berlin first sat in Chamber here in 1993, sixty years after the Nazi takeover which had robbed it of its democratic function. Formerly the Preussische Landtag (Prussian State Assembly) housed the central assembly for the first time in 1899. A bi-cameral parliament with an upper chamber and a house of representatives, it dates back to the vision of the Prussian national constitution, born out of the 1848 Revolution for a constitutionally elected government. In the 1932 State elections, the Nazi NSDAP became the strongest party in parliament and after Hitler’s appointment as Reich Chancellor, the last sitting of the house took place in 1933. The Nazis found other uses for the building which became an infamous courthouse called ‘Preussenhaus’ (House of Prussia) and a Luftwaffe officers’ club under Hermann Göring until 1945.
Fig. 6 View down Prinz Albrecht Stra e past Ethnology Museum and on to the Prussian House of Representatives, 1905
Fig. 7 Karl Liebknecht addressing demonstrators from the balcony, 1918
Fig. 8 Prussian House of Representatives, 1934
Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum Niederkirchstraße 7 The building was erected between 1877 and 1881 by the architects Martin Gropius (great uncle of Walter Gropius) and Heino Schmieden in an Italian Renaissance style. The exhibition rooms surround an imposing atrium decorated with mosaics and the coats of arms of the German states. In 1924 the building housed Berlin’s Museum for Prehistory and Early History and the East Asian Art Collection. It was severely damaged in 1945 during the last weeks of World War II, and reopened in 1981 after post war reconstruction began in 1978. Further renovation took place in 1998/1999 resulting in what is often described as one of Germany’s most beautiful historic exhibition buildings. Until the end of the cold war in 1990 the building was close to the border between East and West Berlin, at the sector boundary to the East Berlin district “Mitte.” Now its central Berlin location, generous dimensions, and elaborate architectural decorations, not to mention the quality of its temporary exhibitions, have made it a major cultural and tourist attraction.
Fig. 9 Museum of Industrial Arts and Crafts, ca. 1890
Fig. 10 Museum of Industrial Arts and Crafts, ca. 1924
Fig. 11 Site plan of buildings used by the Nazis and when they were acquired, 1938
School of Industrial Arts and Crafts Prinz Albrecht StraĂ&#x;e 8 Built in 1901-1905, the building housed the art school and the library of the Museum of Industrial Arts and Crafts, which included the Lipperheide Costume Library. In 1924 the school merged with the School of Fine Arts and moved to other premises in Hardenbergstrasse, although the library remained at Prinz Albrecht StraĂ&#x;e 7a. It was then rented out to the firm Richard Kahn GmbH until March 31 1933. A special agreement stipulated that artists should continue to use the 42 attic studios. George Grosz studied here under instruction of Emil Orlik, a member of the Vienna Secession. In May 1933 the National Socialists took over the building and converted it into the Prussian Secret State Police Office. Reich SS Leader Heinrich Himmler assumed the post of Chief Inspector of Prussian Gestapo in April 1934. The cellars of the South Wing contained the Gestapo house prison between 1933-45.
Fig. 13 South Wing of the former National School of Industrial Arts and Crafts, ca. 1931 Fig.12 Former National School of Industrial Arts and Crafts, ca. 1910
Fig. 14 Former National School of Industrial Arts and Crafts, ca. 1932
Fig. 15 View of a cell in the house prison, 1948
Prinz Albrecht Palais Wilhelmstraße 102 1737-39 Palais Vernezobre built by Baron Vernezobre de Laurieux 1772 The new owner of the palace is Princess Amalie, Friedrich II’s sister, who uses it for summer residence 1787 After the death of the princess, Friedrich Wilhelm II uses the palace for guests 1790-1806 The Margrave of Ansbach-Bayreuth becomes the new owner then is returned to the Prussian royal house 1830 The Palace is given to Prince Albrecht 1830-32 Karl Friedrich Schinkel remodels the palace and Peter Joseph Lenne redesigns the palace park 1906 Prince Albrecht the younger dies, his three sons inherit the palace 1918 The palace remains the property of the Hohenzollem family even after the German Revolution 1924 The western part of the park is sold as building land 1926-31 Europahaus is built after the demolition of Schinkel’s stables and some other buildings 1928-31 The government uses the palace as a guest house 1934 The SS rents the palace as the Headquarters of the SS Security Service (SD) 1939 The offices in the palace become part of the recently formed Reich Security Main Office (RSHA) 1941 Heydrich commissions extensive renovation of the palace 1944-45 Heavily damaged by bombing and street fighting 1949 Surviving parts of the building are demolished 1958 The site is cleared of rubble and levelled 1961 The City of Berlin becomes the owner of the property
Information taken from: Nachama, A. (2009) Topography of Terror: Gestapo, SS and Reich Security Main Office on Wilhelmstrase and Prinz-Albrecht-Strase: A Documentation. p 17
Fig. 17 The palaceâ€™s colonnades designed by Schinkel, looking north, ca.1900 Fig. 16 Improvement plan for the gardens, 1830
Fig. 18 Hitler passing the Palace, May 2nd 1938
Fig. 19 Prinz Albrecht Palais, ca.1941
Hotel Prinz Albrecht Prinz Albrecht Straße 9 Built in 1887-88, the hotel was initially called Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten (Four Seasons Hotel). It was not a famous establishment like Hotel Adlon or Kaiserhof, but it was considered a “first class” hotel. The Hotel Prinz Albrecht became the central headquarters of the Reich SS in 1934 then the SS Main Office and Himmler’s personal staff until 1945.
Fig. 20 Hotel Prinz Albrecht, ca. 1932/33
Fig. 21 Hotel Prinz Albrecht, ca. 1905
Federal Ministry of Finance Wilhelmstraße 81-85 The building was designed by Ernst Sagebiel (1892-1970), who shortly afterwards rebuilt Tempelhof Airport on a similarly gigantic scale. It ran for more than 250 metres along Wilhelmstraße, partly on the site of the former Prussian War Ministry that had dated from 1819, and covered the full length of the block even running along Leipziger Straße itself to join on to the Prussian Herrenhaus, the former Upper House of the Prussian Parliament. It comprised a reinforced concrete skeleton with an exterior facing of limestone and travertine. With its seven storeys and total floor area of 112,000 square metres. The first 1,000 rooms were handed over in October 1935 after just eight months’ construction. The Reich Air Ministry building was one of the few major public buildings in central Berlin to escape serious damage during the Allied bombing offensive in 1944-45. Afterwards the huge structure was quickly repaired, only the Ehrensaal (Hall of Honour) being much altered, remodelled into the Stalinist neo-classicist Festsaal (Festival Hall), and the enormous Eagle and Swastika that adorned its end wall being removed.
Fig. 23 Reich Aviation Ministry, 1937
Fig. 22 Construction of the Reich Aviation Ministry, 1936
Fig. 24 Engravings of Nazi swastikas and eagles, ca. 1936
Fig. 25 Prinz Albrecht Stra e and Wilhelmstra e junction ca. 1910
Federal Ministry Economic cooperation and development. Saarlandstraße 96 Europahaus was a large high-rise office block located in Stresemannstraße facing the remains of the former Anhalter Bahnhof. In 1924 a design competition was held for what was hailed as the largest new business premises in Berlin, occupying a key site in what was then still called Königgrätzer Straße (it was not renamed Stresemannstraße until 1930). The design included a general reorganisation of the gardens of the Prinz-Albrecht-Palais to the rear and also the Askanischer Platz area. The competition was won by Richard Bielenberg and Josef Moser. After 1933 the central office block was taken over by the Third Reich, who occupied it with numerous Nazi-affiliated organisations, particularly the Reich Ministry of Labour. The building sustained much damage during the Allied bombing raids of World War II, but was not a complete write-off. It is now home to several German Government Ministries and other office concerns. The top four floors house the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Fig. 26 Europahaus complex, 1931
Fig. 27 Europahaus complex, 1943
Fig. 28 Aerial view of Prinz Albrecht stra e, Wilhelmstra e, Anhalter stra e and Stresemannstra e, ca. 1934
Bombed The blanket Allied bombing of Berlin that began in 1943 caused huge destruction in the inner city. In April and May 1944, the government quarter with the SS and Gestapo buildings at its southern edge was targeted by heavy air bombardments. Part of Prinz Albrecht Palais was burnt down and the Gestapo had to evacuate some departments to alternative quarters outside Berlin. It was heavily damaged in an air raid on February 3 1945 and on account of the street fighting at the end of April 1945. On the night of April 2324 the Gestapo shot most of the remaining prisoners on a derelict site nearby. On May 2 1945, the Berlin military commander surrendered. The Hotel Prinz Albrecht was completely destroyed; Prinz Albrecht Palais and the Museum of Applied Arts suffered extensive damage. The Gestapo headquarters had survived although was very badly damaged. Nearly all the important SS and heads of department of the RSHA were no longer in Berlin. Others had poisoned themselves, been captured or had succeeded in fleeing having never been brought to justice.
Fig. 29 Gestapo Headquarters, 1945/6
Fig. 31 Museum of Arts and Crafts, 1946
Fig. 30 Prussian House of Representatives, 1945/6
Fig. 32 South wing of the Gestapo Headquarters, 1951
Fig. 33 Aerial shot, 1948
And now? During renovation of the site, efforts were made not to eradicate the traces of the ‘house prison’ - the process of repression and make the past invisible. There was an emphasis on the character of the “site of the perpetrators” as an open wound in the city, as a special place for remembrance and reflection on the preconditions and consequences of Nazi rule. Since 1997 an open-air exhibition has been shown in the excavation trenches with 500000 people having visited the Topography of Terror annually. In 1993, Peter Zumthor was commissioned to build the documentation centre, following an international competition. Construction began, but financial and technical construction problems eventually made it impossible to realise the building. A new competition was launched and architect Ursula Wilms (of Heinle, Wischer & Partners) won. Completion is scheduled for 2010.
Fig. 34 Excavated foundations of prison cells, 1986
Fig. 35 View of the former SS and Gestapo site, June 1981
Fig. 36 Excavation work along Niederkirchstra e, 1986
Fig. 37 The northeastern section of the ‘Topography of Terror’
List of notable museums and art galleries in central Berlin Mitte: * Das Stille Museum * Deutsches Historisches Museum * DDR Museum * Humboldt Museum of Natural History * Bunker * Museum of Mail and Telecommunication * Jan Wentrup Galerie * Akira Ikeda Gallery * Mehdi Chouakri Galerie * Kunst Werke * PROGRAM - Initiative for Art and Architectural Collaborations * Berliner Medizinhistorisches Museum der Charité * Deutsche Guggenheim * Märkisches Museum * Neuer Berliner Kunstverein * Nikolaikirche * Nolde-Stiftung, Dependance Berlin * Sammlung Hoffmann * Temporäre Kunsthalle * The Picasso Story * Friedrichswerdersche Kirche * Zille Museum Museum Island: * Alte Nationalgalerie * Altes Museum * Bode Museum * Neues Museum * Pergamon Museum Friedrichshain: * East Side Gallery * c/o Alte Gerhardsen Galerie Zehlendorf: * Brücke-Museum * Haus am Waldsee * Kunstsalon Berliner Secession * Liebermann-Villa
Wedding: * Berlin Wall Documentation Center * Neuer Berliner Kunstverein Charlottenburg: * Beate Uhse Erotic Museum * Museum for Pre- and Early History * Museum für Fotografie - Helmut Newton Stiftung * Sammlung Scharf-Gerstenberg * Villa Oppenheim - Galerie für Gegenwartskunst * Das Verborgene Museum * Georg-Kolbe-Museum * Gipsformerei * Museum Berggruen * Bröhan-Museum * Käthe-Kollwitz-Museum Berlin Kreuzberg: * Schwules Museum * Checkpoint Charlie Museum * German Museum of Technology * Jewish Museum Berlin * Martin Gropius Bau * Bethanien * Neue Gesellschaft für Bildende Kunst * Peres Projects Gallery * Berlinische Galerie Tiergarten: * Gemäldegalerie * Film Museum Berlin * Neue Nationalgalerie * Bauhaus Archive * Berlin Musical Instrument Museum * Hamburger Bahnhof: Museum of the Present * Kunstbibliothek * Daimler Kunst Sammlung * Friedrich Christian Flick Collection * Kunstforum der Berliner Volksbank * Kupferstichkabinett
Wedding Tiergarten Charlottenburg
Mitte Friedrichshain Kreuzberg
Information taken from Visit Berlin: List of notable Berlin museums and art galleries Available from: <http://www.visitberlin.de/english/sightseeing/e_si_museen_liste.php?sort=txtBezirk&richtung=ASC> [accessed November 2009]
1904, Neoclassical, Friedrich Schulze-Kolbitz The Bundesrat has its seat in the former ‘Prussian House of Lords’. It was the first chamber of the Parliament of the Kingdom of Prussia between 1850 and 1918.
2008-2010, steel mesh box Ursula Wilms
Ministry of Finance
1937, Neoclassical, Ernst Sagebiel
House of Representatives
Topography of Terror
1881-2005, predominantly postmodernist The E-werk is Germany’s oldest preserved commercial power plant and, until 1997, was a techno nightclub. Today it is venue to host cultural events and is a dynamic residential and artistic space.
1892-7, Neoclassical, Friedrich Schulze-Kolbitz
The Berlin Hi-Flyer or ‘Welt-Balloon’ is one of the worlds biggest helium balloons. It reaches 150 metres to give some great views of the city.
Martin Gropius Bau
1877-1881, Italian High Renaissance,
M. Gropius and Schmieden
Tourist hot spot, gift shops and photos with actor border guards
6 1 2 3 7 8 4
A rentable tourist ‘Trabi’ driving along Niederkirchstraße
Fig. 38 The former path of the Berlin Wall
The former path of the Berlin Wall
Architectural character The Berlin Wall The 200m stretch of Wall that runs along Niederkirchstraße carries an immense weight of history from a relatively short period of Berlin’s total history. Cold War bullet holes, gaping holes reflecting the open wounds of the Topography of Terror, graffiti and crumbling concrete all contribute to tell Berlin’s story of the past 50 years. It is the greatest symbol and single reminder of the Cold War: repression and unification.
1989 Death strip
Fig. 39 Highlighted remains of the Berlin Wall on Niederkirchstraße
Fig. 40 Main pedestrian circulation
Cars and buses/hr
Traffic and pedestrian survey 63
2 A selection of site photos
Spirit of Place
“The first lesson of history is the good of evil. Good is a good doctor, but Bad is sometimes better... Nature is upheld by antagonism.”
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
‘Considerations by the Way’ pp 1083-84 the seventh essay in ‘Conduct of Life’ (1860)
Confused Layers This individual project attempts to illustrate the layers of contrast, contradiction and confusion that Berlin’s urban fabric has sewn into it. It is a response to the atmosphere and sense of disconnection of my site near the junction of Neiderkirchstraße and Zimmerstraße. It was part of my analysis for my previous proposition located at this junction, on the site of the Berlin Hi-Flyer. It emphasises the need for a presence to validate the importance of the highly sensitive area directly opposite, now known as the ‘Topography of Terror’. The final piece took the format of a video presentation to help illustrate the evolution and layering of the surrounding context. Text extracts or articles from each of the eight periods are superimposed over their respective map essentially creating a text hatched outline of the built environment. Individually, these maps can be read and understood but as soon as one covers another, they become illegible. It is clear, however, to see the built environment grow in the video, which raises the question: Is visible progress always progress? This question is interesting because the initial reaction would almost certainly be “No, of course not, how could the National Socialist Regime have been seen as progressive?!” It is of course on every level morally wrong to condone it or similar regimes and yet without them or the events that took place I doubt we would have the strengthened rights or principles we live with today. George Grosz would almost definitely not have been as successful had Germany not suffered the grip of Prussian militarianism or endured the hypocritical conscience of the ruling bourgeois. The defining factor for me is ‘time’. How much time needs to pass before an event or lack of response classifies the period as ‘progressive’ or ‘repressive’? With hindsight we can make far easier conclusions to rate and understand the success of anything. Time and the fact that we are socially and culturally removed give us an objective yet limited opportunity at assessment. It is the lack of first hand experience that makes this task so difficult to fully understand.
1750 - Enlightenment (article)
1850 - Revolutions (article)
1880 - Unification (article)
1910 - Communist attack on the bourgeois (article)
1940 - Mein Kampf (extract)
1986 - East Army deployment (article)
1989 - Reunification (article)
2009 - Angela Merkel Speech (extract)
Biographical Timeline Illustrated Timeline
â€œIn fact, I was each one of the very characters I drew, the champagne-swilling glutton favoured by fate no less than the poor beggar standing with the outstretched hand in the rain. I was split in two, just like society at largeâ€œ - George Grosz [Grosz, G. (1955) The Autobiography of George Grosz: A small Yes, a big No p.97]
Fig. 41 Grosz photographed by Irvin Penn, New York, 1948
1893 1898 1909
Born in Berlin, 26th July His parents move to Stolp (Pomerania) Dresden, studies at Königliche Kunstakademie, pupil of Richard Müller, Robert Sterl, RaffaeI Wehle and Osmar Schindler 1910 The first caricature appears in Ulk (supplement of the Berliner Tageblatt). Drawings now appear regularly in Ulk, Lustige Blätter and other magazines 1912 Return to Berlin, studies at the Industrial School of Arts and Crafts, pupil of Emil Orlik until 1916 1914-15 Infantryman, released early 1916 owing to illness 1916-17 Weßien Blätter make Grosz known. Works with John Heartfield, who with his brother, Wieland Herzfelde, starts the Malik Verlag 1917-18 War service, illness, hospital; court martialled for insubordination. Through the Intervention of Count Harry Kessler, he is saved from the death penalty
This period endured Kaiser Wilhelm’s militarian Prussian State which was characterised by mass unemployment and extreme poverty. The movements of Expressionism and the Berlin Seccessionists saught to illuminate these issues to debilitate the regime and build support for the masses. Futurism (originating in Italy) came prior to World War I (1914-1918) and although promoted significant change, were not against the war effort.
Settles in BerIin. Co-founder of the Berlin Dada movement. Joins the KPD (German Communist Party) 1919 Founds the magazine Die Pleite (Bankruptcy) 1919-1924, together with Wieland Herzfelde and John Heartfield, Jedermann sein eigener Fusball (Every man his own Football) with Franz Jung and Der bIutige Ernst (In deadly earnest) with Karl Einstein 1919 Arranges with John Heartfield satirical marionette shows at the Cabaret “Schall und Rauch’’ in the cellar of Max Reinhardt’s theatre 1919-20 Dadaist theatre performances with the group “Die neue Jugend” (New Youth) 1920 Marries 26th May Eva Louise Peter. Is fined 5000 RM (insult to the army) for his portfolio Gott mit uns (God with us). Scene designs with John Heartfield for Shaw’s Caesar and Cleopatra, production Max Reinhardt 1920 First International Dada Fair 1922 Travels with the writer Martin Andersen-Nexö via Scandinana to Russia. Leaves the Communist Party.
Dada began in Zurich around 1916 but in Berlin it became far more aggressive than its Swiss or French counterparts. Berlin had been reduced to a nightmare city after World War I and Dadaists used shock tactics to publicise their ‘art’ but also to create politicall unrest and criticise the state. The highlight of Berlin Dada came in the hugely offensive Cabaret shows performed by its members while the climax of Dada came in the public enraging 1920 First International Dada Fair. Surrealism grew out of Dada’s anti-war activities but became more influential in Paris than it did in Berlin.
For his portfolio Ecce Homo, accused of insult to public morality. Certain plates are removed from the work, and Grosz fined 6000 marks Awarded Gold Medal by City of Düsseldorf. In December fined 2000 marks for blasphemy for his portfolio Hintergrund, drawings for Erwin Piscator’s Schwejk production Gold Medal of Exhibition of the Olympic Games, Amsterdam Visits New York as guest teacher of the Arts Students League. Return to Germany in October
Moves with his family to New York, rents a house at Bayside, Long island. Opens an Art School with Maurice Sterne. Grosz teaches also at the Arts Students League in the years 1932-36, 1940-42, 1943-44, 1950-55 1934 The Sterne-Grosz School moves to the Squibb building with Grosz as director and sole teacher. It lasts until 1937 1936 Summer in Cape Cod, also in 1937-42, 1944-45 1937 Works by Grosz in the Degenerate Art Exhibition, Munich. Some of loss works are burned in Germany 1938 Looses his German nationality, becomes on American citizen 1941-42 Teaches at the Art SchooI of Columbia University 1954 July, Berlin, costume designs for Bilderbogen aus Amerika for the Berliner Komödie, producer Ernst Aufricht. Thereafter in Munich, Berlin, London, Munich, Hemmenhofen where he visits Dix, in Switzerland, Monte Carlo, Hamburg. 1958 23rd November he is elected a member of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin 1959 American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal. In June he returns to Berlin with the intention of staying. He died there July 6th.
Berlin had begun to embrace a cosmpolitan lifestyle, a product of its fascination and interest in emulating America. It had become a centre of European culture with a very liberal attitude (hence the explosion of ‘Entertainment Cabarets’) to attract people from all over Europe to live and stay in Berlin. However, the ‘Golden Twenties’ were not to last as hyperinflation grew steadily out of control and further political unrest from both left and right wing parties mounted. Support for the National Socialist Party and Communist uprisings created a wealth of tension in Berlin. Verism was a sub-genre of New Objectivity (or in German Neue Sachlichkeit) born in the early 1920s. It had grown out of Expressionism but in fact in opposition to it. Its power came in the ridicule of its subject which at this time was usually highly political.
In 1929, America experienced the ‘Wall Street Crash’ and as an effect Germany were told to pay their reperations from World War I. Hyperinflation had crippled Germany, as well as Berlin, and such factors led the public to support the National Socialist Party who eventually came to totalitarian power in 1933 under Adolph Hitler as Chancellor. The Holocaust and World War II (1939-45) made Berlin a repressed city to create art and all but Nazi approved art became ‘Degenerate art’. After the war, left wing intellectuals and artists (many of whom were ex-Dadaists) satirized post war Berlin through the more visual mediums of theatre and film.
Fig. 42 Grosz ‘Friedrichsgarten’, 1912
Fig. 43 Grosz ‘Pleasure garden’, 1912
Fig. 49 Heinrich Zille ‘Greetings from the Wannsee’, c.1900
Fig. 44 Grosz ‘Freaks’, 1913
Fig. 50 Heinrich Zille ‘Workers dwelling’, c.1900
Fig. 45 Grosz ‘At 5 o’clock in the morning’, 1921
Fig. 51 Kathe Kollwitz ‘Poverty’, 1897
Fig. 46 Grosz ‘The war invalids are getting to be a positive pest’, 1920
Fig. 47 Grosz ‘I Shall Exterminate Everything around Me That Restricts Me from Being the Master’, 1921
Fig. 52 Kathe Kollwitz ‘Woman with dead child’, 1903
Fig. 48 Grosz ‘Suicide’, 1916
Fig. 53 Kathe Kollwitz ‘Outbreak!’, 1903
Fig. 54 Grosz ‘The Guilty one remains unknown’, 1919
Fig. 62 Hugo Ball performing in Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich, 1916
Fig. 55 Grosz ‘Fair spain, far away in the south’, 1919
Fig. 63 George Grosz as Dada Death in Berlin, 1918
Fig. 56 Grosz and John Heartfield ‘Life and Work in Universal City, 12.05 Noon’, 1919
Fig. 64 John Heartfield and George Grosz ‘Dada-merica’, 1919
Fig. 57 Grosz ‘A Victim of Society’, 1919
Fig. 65 ‘Dada First International Exhibition Fair’, 1920
Fig. 58 Grosz ‘The Convict’, 1920
Fig. 66 Raoul Hausmann ‘Dada wins’, 1920
Fig. 59 Grosz ‘Republica Automatons’, 1920
Fig. 67 Hannah Hoch ‘The Beautiful Girl’, 1920
Fig. 60 Grosz ‘Daum Marries Her Pedantic Automaton George in May 1920, John Heartfield is Very Glad of It’, 1920
Fig. 68 Johannes Baader ‘Fourteen letters of Christ’, 1920
Fig. 61 Grosz ‘Grey Day’, 1921
Fig. 69 Max Ernst ‘The Elephant of Celebes’, 1921
Fig. 70 Grosz ‘Dedication to Panizza’, 1918
Fig. 78 Max Beckmann ‘The Night’, 1919
Fig. 71 Grosz ‘Beauty, Thee Will I Praise’, 1919
Fig. 72 Grosz ‘Germany: winter’s tale’, 1919
Fig. 79 Otto Dix ‘Card playing War cripples’, 1920
Fig. 73 Grosz ‘Lovers’, 1923
Fig. 80 George Scholz ‘Newspaper Carrier’, 1921
Fig. 74 Grosz ‘Shut up and Soldier on!’, 1924
Fig. 81 Rudolph Schlichter ‘Hausvogteiplatz’, 1926
Fig. 76 Grosz ‘The Pillars of Society’, 1926
Fig. 75 Grosz ‘Max Schmeling the Boxer’, 1926
Fig. 82 Jeanne Mammen ‘She represents’, 1927
Fig. 83 John Heartfield ‘Adolf the Superman’, 1932
Fig. 77 Grosz ‘The Agitator’, 1928
Fig. 84 Otto Dix ‘The 7 Deadly Sins’, 1933
Fig. 85 Grosz ‘God of War’, 1940
Fig. 86 Grosz ‘A Summer Day’, 1940
Fig. 87 Grosz ‘The Mighty One on a little outing surprised by two poets’, 1942
Fig. 88 Grosz ‘The Wanderer’, 1943
Fig. 89 Grosz ‘Cain, or, Hitler in Hell’ 1944
Fig. 90 Grosz ‘The Grey Man Dances’, 1949
Fig. 91 Grosz ‘The Painter of the Hole II’, 1950
Fig. 92 Grosz ‘This is a man?’, 1957
George Grosz died July 6th 1959, 770 days before the erection of the Berlin Wall on August 13th, 1961. East and West Berlin had been officially divided by 1948 and the open border was closed in May 1952. Grosz would have been well aware of the divorce and consequent dislocation felt from both East and West Berliners but he never truly experienced the full impact of the segregation and alienation as consequences of the Cold War. Many artists have referenced and cited Groszâ€™s work as inspiration for their own. Ralph Steadman, the famous American artist and caricaturist who worked closely with the creator of Gonzo Journalism, Hunter S. Thompson, has a similar albeit more exaggerated style to Grosz.
Fig. 93 The Fall of the Wall, November 10th 1989 Peter Turnley/Corbis
Fig. 94 ‘Hunter on Ducati’ Ralph Steadman, 2009
Fig. 95 ‘Nixon’ Ralph Steadman, 1995
1959 - PRESENT
“No other artist used art as a weapon as effectively and deliberately as George Grosz did during the German workers’ struggle for liberation from 1919 to 1923...he placed it in the service of the revolutionary cause” [Durus, “George Grosz” Eulenspiegel IV No.7, p.111
Grosz’s skin George Grosz was a fundamental part of Berlin’s early twentieth century character as a social and political artist. His art scathingly attacked any regime, class, ideology, religion, or institution he believed impeded or prevented civil rights or liberties. His breadth of work implies a definite progression (or perhaps regression) in style and content over his lifetime. His Dadaist and Verist work appear to have more similarities than that of his later work in America. This period was, as a whole, far more inconsistent and varied, no doubt reflecting his own character as a direct result of the state of the world at the time. Part of the theoretical approach in my dissection of George Grosz involves an understanding of how he reacted to his evolving situations and why. The architecture reflects the forces that moulded Grosz through a progressive rearticulation of structure and material. Joseph Beuys’ concept of attributing meaning to material helps establish inital rules and reference points. These visibly portray the prescribed journey through a reinterpretation of structural language with evolving accents. The four blocks become interconnected and interrelated as a dynamic space is created through punctured voids. Viewers experience in space the interfaces and areas of friction among the periods. Wrapping these frictional spaces with a perforated metal skin expresses the idea that Grosz contained multitudes and that behind the skin lies a trapped fragment of the man. The perforated skin invites people to understand through the play of void/solid and shadow/light, visible from the exterior.
The phenomenon of singularity assumes the local difference emerges out of changes to regions of a continuous field of similar elements. [Reiser, J. and Umemoto, N. (2006) Atlas of Novel Tectonics. p.142]
This concept is pretty vague and can be interpreted for my project in two contradicting ways. Grosz can be seen as the singularity where his physical change of region (Berlin to America) caused a disturbance in the American Art scene/field. Or, my approach conceives that Grosz as this singularity could imply that the ‘continuous field of elements’ is actually his artistic state of mind suggesting that his influence in America was not as profound as America’s influence on him. In America Grosz became a foreigner. His work too became alien in content and objective compared to his past. Visually interpreting Grosz’s life sees his American dream become a trapped white box hung in a concrete block; which in turn is a fragment of his life wrapped by an enveloping skin. It is not a case of trying to hide or make excuses for his (generally regarded) failed American artistic life. But it is a reflection of how a man dealt with his work and his life as he tried to live up to his past.
Basement Floor Plan
Ground Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan
Collections - Kaiser - Dada - Veri sm - America - Influenced (temporary) Public services - Cabaret theatre - Library/Reading room - Cafe (with kitchen) - Cabaret bar - Shop Collection services - Conservation room - Collection managment office - Secure storage and loading bay
Exhibitions (3725m2) Ancillary circulation (1242m2) Offices (461m2) Conservation (720m2) Public toilets (705m2) Public services (850m2) Plant rooms (814m2)
Administration - Directors office - General administration offices - Boardroom - Staff room - Post room - Staff rest rooms - Reception - Gallery security office - Security office Ancillary - Entrance foyer - Cabaret foyer - Cabaret backstage - Cloakroom - Public Toilets - General Storage - Fire escape cores - Plant rooms
KAISER/WEIMAR Painting style India ink, charcoal, heavy line drawing. Caricatures. Lighting Overall quite dark; bleak; high, ordered intense sources of natural light; weak at ground level. Materiality and attributed meaning The thick, ordered, heavy concrete beams and rough shuttered, raking walls reflect the desperation and misery. Structure Ordered, depressing monumentality. Heavy compression conveyed through oversized prestressed concrete beams. These sit on very roughly shuttered, raking concrete walls. [Precedent - Hermeroscopium house, Ensamble Studio] Political Angry at its neighbours, screaming out to be heard but is weak voiced. Acknowledges the site of the former Industrial School of Arts and Crafts, where Grosz studied. Atmosphere/Social Interaction Conveys the bleak, dark, oppressive, disheartening, ordered, struggle that plagued the Kaiser Wilhelm II and Weimar Republic eras. Public interaction is inhibiting in a space with such high floor to ceiling heights. There is a sense of despair and quiet pain, a silence of pity.
DADA Painting style Photomontage, subject/content to cause offense or confute the establishment. Lighting Bathed; bright; almost uncomfortably bright. Materiality and attributed meaning Glass, steel mesh, steel rods, steel tension cables exaggerate the tectonics of tension, physically and figuratively. Pulling things apart only to force them back together. Light too, almost feels like a material being attacked and manipulated. Structure Steel lattice grids form the structure for the undulating floor plates. These appear to be ‘pinched’ together by the steel rods at converging points which also create a moire effect with the framing of the glazed curtain wall. [Precedent - New Museum of Contemporary Art, Reiser + Umemoto] Political ANTI ANTI ANTI Establishment! Enraged, confident and creatively loud. The mocking of its neighbours is very evident. Atmosphere/Social Interaction The transition from a closed dark box into an open ball of chaotic, hectic, rebellious, questioning tension develops drama! It creates its own energy and is ‘in your face’ constantly. The visitor feels slighty overwhelmed and yet excited, sharing the disillusion and confusion of the time.
VERISM Painting style Controlled and restrained line drawings and paintings based on the ‘true individual’. Lighting More comfortable, predominantly artificial lighting. Materiality and attributed meaning Slender, elegant, steel beams and smoothly shuttered concrete walls speak of restraint and refinement associated with the ‘Golden Twenties’ and thus Berlin’s interest with America. Structure The raking concrete walls are smoothly shuttered and tied together with elegant steel I beams. Steel rods supporting the beams are articulated along the structural grid suggesting a formalising of Dada. Political More organised, focussed and opinionated politically, especially against the Nazis. Loud but eloquently vented art. Atmosphere/Social Interaction Formalised Dada takes the form of a ‘sober, realistic view of the world’. The public feel slightly more civilised and therefore comfortable. Their controlled layout reflects the skill of simple clarity yet both juxtapose the art’s content.
AMERICA Painting style Watercolours, inks, landscapes, nudes, apocalyptic scenes, pop art. Lighting Neutral; constant; no intensity; diffused light from a high, non-visible source. Materiality and attributed meaning An alien white plasterboard box is ‘hung’ in the smoothly shuttered concrete shell that interprets Grosz’s life as a foreigner in a new land. It is also ironic in that the white cube is typical of a modern art gallery, implying a level of success that Grosz did not attain. Structure The smoothly shuttered raking concrete walls are hidden by the white plasterboard mask portraying Grosz’s escapism and failing attempts to get back to his previous life and powerful art. Political Continues to attack fascism early on but becomes more romantic and politically neutral. Atmosphere/Social Interaction The uncertainty and lack of direction is felt in the high, empty, neutral space which illustrates Grosz’s artistic suspension. The bland, white art gallery states a lack of engagement and rapport with the public which contradicts significantly with his past and is exaggerated because of it.
INFLUENCED Painting style Artwork influenced by Grosz either in style, content or objective. Lighting Artificially well lit, no natural light Materiality and attributed meaning Pre fabricated concrete panels line the inside walls of the Influenced exhibition space with fairly wide joints in between. This emphasises the monotonous architecture of East Berlin and the depressing fracturing of East and West Berlin as a result of the Cold War. Structure Poured in situ raking concrete walls face the voids while the precast concrete panels line inside the exhibition. Standard steel I beams and columns support and tie the walls together. Atmosphere/Social Interaction The mood of the Influenced exhibit is highly biased by the acknowledgment of the Cold War. The appreciation of Groszâ€™s death in the previous block is saddening and strengthens the feeling of hopelessness within the artificially lit space. A sense of disorientation remains but as different temporary exhibitions take place a feeling of purpose and direction emerges.
NAZI STAIR Painting style Classical art as opposed to the Avante-Garde or ‘Degenerate Art’ Lighting Very dark; not lit at all. The only hint of light that makes it safe to see are within cracks around the ballustrading, through holes within the treads and at the end of the passage. Materiality and attributed meaning Hard surfaces to create an uncomfortable echo within the wrapped stair. Dark patinated steel as an encasement and smooth, flat precast concrete stair treads produce sufficiently long reverberation decay times to signify the extended period of suffering Berlin endured.
THE CABARET The Cabaret in Gallery George Grosz is an intimate theatre space for evening entertainment. It promotes the style of Cabaret that Grosz and the Dadaists initiated back in the early twentieth century, more than a decade before the range of ‘entertainment’ cabaret of the ‘Golden Twenties’. The Berlin Dadaists evolved the concept of cabaret for the Berlin public which was initially invented by Zurich Dadaists at the Cabaret Voltaire around 1916. At this time Berlin was caught in mass unemployment and the First World War before being hit with the crippling hyperinflation of the 1920s. This and the political unrest from both left and right wing idealists gave Cabaret artists endless ammunition to ridicule and lampoon any figure of Berlin culture, including their audience. During the day this space would be used to show films relating to the exhibitions or as a small rehearsal space.
Structure The concrete stair is wrapped in rolled steel and sits on the structural beams that hold up the bridges in the voids. This detail is hidden from public view to give the illusion of the stair being uncomfortably ‘hung’ in the void.
“It emerged either as a laboratory, a testing ground for young artists or the satirical stage of contemporaneity, a critically reflective mirror of topical events, morals, politics and culture”
Atmosphere/Social Interaction The dark, echo-filled, long, slow stair is a discomforting journey down from Verism to America. From ground floor level the public can hear and view - through small holes in the precast concrete treads - footsteps of fellow visitors within the stair. This adds a very personal engagement for the public with the architecture, emphasising the power and fear of the Nazi regime. The end of the stair frames over the wall the newly built Topography of Terror exhibition centre.
The qualities of a classic 1920s cabaret theatre as described in ‘The Cabaret’ (p.12) are:
[Appignanesi, The Cabaret, p.12]
- a small stage - a smallish audience - ambience of talk and smoke - a relationship between performer and spectator of intimacy and hostility - nodal points of participation and provocation
When designing an exhibition [Kalita, N.
(2006) Cost Model: Museums. Building Magazine. p 70] the key issues defining
it are: - The concept behind the exhibition. - The preservation requirements of the artefacts and whether sensitive objects can be grouped in one space without harming the narrative of the exhibition. - Wayfinding, which is determined by the chronological or themed organisation of the exhibition. - Configuring the displays so they are easily viewed but secure. - Use of an effective daylight control strategy that maximises the use of natural light, within the constraints imposed by the conservation needs of exhibits.
Below is an earlier timeline I made to help guide my design process for formulating a journey of Groszâ€™s life within the context of Berlin. It runs: KAISER-WEIMAR-DADA-NEW OBJECTIVITY-AMERICA-BERLIN It is however, impossible to define a certain period to a finite set of dates. Styles of art may be assigned a genre or period but generally the artist simply creates as he/she feels compelled to do so. They are not confined to a style to comply with any given era and thus most work tends to overlap with other periods.
Concepts The initial ideas for the start of this project derived from wanting to produce a building with a clear, narrative circulation to illustrate the evolution of Groszâ€™s work and twentieth century Berlin. From research I was able to conclude that the gallery could be split into certain periods that could flow into the next and create nodal points where elements collide and criss-cross, representing an important time or associating linked artists from different periods. The early foam massing models were experiments into how a ramped circulation could flow through the building and how they might possibly engage and respond to the surrounding context. For example, the tall, flat facade stands up to the Ministry of Finance and allows the building to almost play with height and composition behind its back. Site lines were very important to my initial thinking as I wanted highly political and sensitive areas to inform the layout and nature of the design. Highlighting them as part of the journey and experience created an immediate incorporation of context. This was essential to my building as it helped me understand its role in this very controversial district of central Berlin. Reflection The building did not feel like it â€˜ownedâ€™ the site because the circulation was spread over the whole area. This meant it could not critically engage or contend with its neighbours which I felt was a very important role for my building. The circulation itself also felt a bit too prescribed in that the visitor had to go round the whole exhibition as determined by me and there were no real other opportunities to do as they may have pleased. This would also have made fire escape problematic.
Second Floor Plan
Third Floor Plan
Ground Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Synopsis My first roughly drawn plans and sections of this proposal incorporate two blocks linked by bridges that cross a fairly large atrium. This divides the inhabited wall of primary circulation from the main block of exhibition spaces. Most of the public spaces like the cafe, shop, foyer, reception are on the ground floor with the exception of the galleries which would be ticketed. The exhibition spaces rise up 4 levels to New Objectivity before crashing down to America, representing the ascension of Nazi power and Groszâ€™s move to America. The long arm that runs parallel to ZimmerstraĂ&#x;e references the Wall and would include work associated with the Cold War. This arm also protects a courtyard space sat between my building and the E-werk which would be used for outdoor cultural events and as a recreational space for the public. Reflection The atrium and main exhibition block both felt quite deep resulting in the building feeling not quite as elegant as it should do for an art gallery.
Synopsis Exploration and testing of initial ideas by modelling in foam. The plan was to make the building engage more with its context and feel more elegant (the previous idea is modelled left and bottom left). I also wanted to create some more interesting spaces within the block themselves by considering angled light wells, elements that pop out of the mass and wrapping the circulation to emphasize the road/wall. Reflection These models and the programme are struggling to fill the large site without losing a clean relationship with the context in general. Different positions on the site touch on interesting relationships with neighbours but none seem to address the whole site. The corner seems to be the most important part as it acknowledges the Topography of Terror but without an urban gesture that wraps the site the building always feels a little stranded.
Ground Floor Plan
Basement Floor Plan 7 1
Synopsis In an attempt to address the path of the wall, the Topography of Terror and the Ministry of Finance the building stretches around the perimeter of the site forming a protective cultural courtyard within. It runs set back and parallel to ZimmerstraĂ&#x;e, suggesting a special respect for the former â€˜Death stripâ€™ and events of the East/West divide. The exhibition runs vertically with light wells bringing varied amounts of light down to illuminate each space in accordance with the atmosphere of each period. They also provide visual links with artists and artwork from different periods.
10 Exploded circulation diagram
Reflection The building engages more with the perimeter of the site but the large space within is still not utilised. The suggestion to move site to an area that better suits the programme is the most logical solution
First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan
Third Floor Plan
RESPONSE? BERLIN WALL Berlin House of Representatives
Ministry of Finance
Synopsis The building attempts to form a dynamic inhabited circulation wall that contrasts the connotations of the Berlin Wall opposite. It is also now directly opposite the remaining section of the wall and closer to the new Topography of Terror exhibition building. Visitors climb this route and pop into exhibition spaces as they arrive at them. The punctures vertically and horizontally signify Groszâ€™s ability to attack the establishment from every angle through the varying mediums of his art.
Plans and fish eye pictures of a 1:500 model that explore the punctured voids and the interrelationships of the exhibition spaces .
Reflection The move of site brought new, more intense relationships to my building. Situated between the Berlin House of Representatives and the Ministry of Finance, the building becomes even more politically minded. The building is however, probably too close to the Berlin Wall (for its interaction with the urban fabric and for noise reasons) and could be pushed back to meet the line of the Berlin House of Representatives. This would create an even greater antagonistic approach as the building is now in the heart of the political district.
Synopsis The building is pushed back to respond to the built forms surrounding it. This reduces noise levels from the road and creates more of an entrance to the building. The building is also stretched to make more room for program and so the north facades can communicate again with its neighbours. The main alteration is the extension of the punctures within the building. They form dynamic voids between the exhibition spaces that flow up and through the blocks.
1:200 Working model
4 5 6
Ground floor plan of 1: 200 working model
First floor plan of 1: 200 working model
Second floor plan of 1: 200 working model
Third floor plan of 1: 200 working model
1:200 Working model, south west perspective
1:200 Working model, south east perspective
1 Lighting effects within the exhibition space
2 Looking down through a void
6 Lighting effects seen through the fourth puncture
7 Through raking walls and across ramping walkways
3 Looking north through the third puncture
4 Looking north through the entrance puncture 117
Studying the spaces of the working model
Reflection Spaces within the model are very interesting and there is potential to create atmospheres that truly reflect the periods but the circulation of the building still feels too convoluted and rigidly prescribed. A simple answer is required to tie all parts of the building to one easy route. This would free up the circulation and hopefully remove some of the more unusual, unmanageable space.
8 North orientated skylights spill light over voids
5 Looking into the Kaiser corridor 118
9 Inside the â€˜Nazi stairâ€™
12 Looking down through a skylight passed exhibition floor plates
13 Ordered window layout of the Kaiser periodâ€™s east elevation
10 Looking down through a void
11 Looking north into the the fourth puncture 119
The landscaping strategy incorporates the puncture lines and projects them towards the Wall. The landscaping would follow these lines and provide a buffer from the westerly wind that blows down NiederkirchstraĂ&#x;e.
1:500 on A2 Context plan identifying possible landscaping
1:500 on A3 Sketch Ground Floor plan
Synopsis The idea to group Groszâ€™s work in the central belt of the building allows the visitor to enjoy a concise journey through his life. If they are inclined to find out more then they can pop into an adjacent exhibition through the threshold of the primary circulation wall. The punctures are also widened higher up the building to try and maximise the amount of light reaching the ground floor.
1:500 on A3 Sketch First Floor plan
1:500 on A3 Sketch Second Floor plan
1:200 on A2 Sections and sketching stair detailing
Sketching isometrics to understand circulation and floor levels
Isometric plans stacked up with negative voids
The structure of this building has the potential to be incredibly complex what with raking walls, staggered voids and undulating planes, so the idea to stick to roughly to a grid seems more than logical (see diagrams, right). The primary circulation wall forms two main structural paths across my building and essentially the four blocks are seen as individual buildings with structure around each perimeter. This just leaves the centres for beams to span and tie between the raking walls of each block. They are set approximately at 5.5m centres.
1:100 on A1 Crossection explores the relationships between all exhibitions.
Ground floor structural grid
First floor structural grid
Second floor structural grid
Overlaid structural grids
Structural grid diagrams
The section below was a sketch to play with the height space in the Kaiser block and to understand the effect of the spanning beams on the circulation between the Kaiser exhibition, the rest space and the cafe.
1:200 on A2 Section through Kaiser block
Sketching ideas to articulate the different atmospheres for each period. Giant, heavy prestressed concrete I beams with work hung off them; tension cables stretching work between hooks in the mesh ceiling and floorplate; elegant steel and concrete vaulting; foreign, white, floating boxes in a hidden world of concrete.
Sketching ideas for circulation in parts of the building where there is no exhibition space. Taking the opportunity to offer the visitor an experience between spaces that responds to interior or exterior relationships. This sketch suggests a walkthrough that connects views to the House of Representatives and continues to break into Dada.
Detailing ideas for the â€˜Nazi stairâ€™. Conctruction, structure, material choice, ideas for ballustrades/handrails, are all important factors to consider to create a sensitive approach that is not processional but does invoke some emotional response.
Understanding the detailing for the heavy prestressed concrete I beams to allow light into the space
How can Dada be different? If it subverts and questions art should, or rather can, an architectural technique reflect this? The idea of bending the perception of a classic post and lintel expression is intriguing. Taking inspiration from Reiser & Umemotoâ€™s moire facade proposal for the New Yorkâ€™s New Museum of Contemporary Art, the idea is to physically blur the visual structure and contradict it with heavy elements from Kaiser that seem to force their way in but remain trapped.
Verism is linked to Dada but I see it as a more refined structural expression, where more care has been taken to create the desired impression. The steel rods are set along the structural grid to strengthen the sleek I beam support. This creates the same moire effect but specifically for the people in the Verist gallery space. The artwork is arranged perpendicular to this so as not to obstruct views through.
The four main ideas for the periods: Features and articulation of structure for public spaces are not the same as any of the exhibition atmospheres. The cafe and reading room respect the feel of the Kaiser period but do not retain the dark mood, because it would not make these spaces functional or practical.
Kaiser: ORDER Dada: CHAOS Verism: REFINEMENT America: ALIEN
Structure Servicing Construction Environment
Primary circulation wall
Structural grid diagram Structure The structural grid is spaced at 5.5 metre intervals and informs the general construction of the the steel beams that tie the raking walls together and the spacings for the pile foundations. The exception to this is the primary circulation wall that also acts as a threshold for the boundary between Grosz’s work and that of his contempories. The ‘puncture lines’ that intersect the grid illustrate the structural concrete raking walls inside the building.
Ground Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Diagram showing cores and risers
Second Floor Plan
Service risers Fire cores/escape
Plant rooms (shaded green) in basement
Services Local underground mechanical plant rooms are placed under each of the blocks so they effectively respond to the unique servicing requirements of their respective block. Service risers run up through lift cores, fire cores and structural walls that align vertically connecting the plant rooms to all the exhibition spaces on all floors. Ducts run between raised screed floors to provide ventilation and underfloor heating.
Construction Walls Roof Floors Unique elements Foundations Materials
Walls Most of the walls of the Gallery are poured in situ reinforced concrete and in some cases rake at a maximum angle of 10째. The Dada period however, does not have concrete walls but steel rods running around the perimeter holding up a lightweight steel framework structure. At slected points the rods would bunch together to support the cranks of the ramping floor.
Foundations Due to the extremely high water table in Berlin it is imperative to design a solid foundation system. Bored and cast in place piles are the most logical strategy as they carry the load of the structure to the subsoil strata where there is a suitable bearing capacity. resist This is imperative considering the weight of such a heavy concrete building. These piles are supported to prevent the surrounding soil collapsing. The pressure of the wet concrete creates a good interlock with the subsoil.
Roof The roof of the George Gallery is also made of precast concrete which sit over each of the four blocks on their respective concrete walls. The voids have skylights running like spines between the blocks with minimum structural framing to maximise the amount of light down into them. This framing would also include a mechanised opening system in selected areas to achieve a level of staff manageable conditions.
Floors Nearly all the floors are made of screed sat on a raised metal deck to allow servicing to pass beneath. The Dada section is essentially a giant truss with a raised floor built into it. Strengthened glass with a layer of film to create ambient light levels and to prevent UV light from passing between floors sit on this raised deck. Fig. 96 Bored and cast in place pile construction diagram
Unique elements The precast concrete beams in the Kaiser period and the precast concrete walkway that strides Kaiser and Dada are both made of prestressed concrete. In prestressed concrete the concrete is precompressed by prestretching the tendons in order to eliminate the tensile stress. The prestressing force is transferred to the concrete either by anchorages or bond. In the case of precast concrete components, the tendons are stressed before placing the concrete. The jacks are braced either against special abbutments or the framework. After the concrete has reached the necessary strength, the prestress is transferred to the concrete by the bond between tendons and concrete.
Materials I propose a smooth, light coloured screed on the gallery areas because it is non-slippery, hardwearing, light reflective and capable of taking heavy loads. The perforated copper clad skin would have larger perforations in areas that require more light and no perforations where appropiate. The concrete walls are shuttered to suit their specific atmospheres.
Fig. 97 De Young Museumâ€™s perforated copper cladding
Fig. 98 Perforated metal with light rusted patina
Fig. 99 VERISM - smoothly shuttered concrete
Fig. 100 KAISER - rougly shuttered concrete
Perforated light patina copper cladding 35mm steel frame
Steel channel Steel frame set off 200mm 100mm thermal insulation
Double glazing Pretressed concrete beam
300mm poured in situ reinforced concrete, roughly shuttered
50mm screed 150mm raised metal deck 50mm thermal insulation 300mm reinforced concrete slab 1400mmx600mm concrete pile cap Concrete pile
1:50 Detail section of the Kaiser block
Concerns and implications
Environment Energy efficiency
The main aim of environmental control in a museum or gallery is to create a stable preservation atmosphere that must maintain certain properties of the space evenly throughout, with minimum risk of damage to the collections and at a cost the institution can support. Passive techniques of heating and cooling can utilise the properties of the building fabric and the surrounding landscape to maintain a stable environment.
Relative Humidity Temperature Lighting Acoustics Ventilation Air quality
Energy efficiency I would attempt to minimise the number of spaces where conservation and preservation conditions are required and employ a separate HVAC system for areas where conservation isn’t needed. Zoning the building according to variations in environmental requirements of different exhibits and functions (vulnerable objects should be placed together) and the creation of smaller spaces separated by doors reduces the volume of air that needs to be heated/controlled. A correctly sized and highly efficienct plant with a condensing boiler provides reheating for dehumidification, which substantially reduces dehumidification energy costs.
Relative Humidity Relative humidity poses the greatest potential risk to the collection. Control of relative humidity is crucial to the sensitivity of some objects and the potential for fluctuation in an occupied gallery space. High relative humidity encourages mould growth in organic materials or corrosion of metals, or changes in physical size such as the expansion of wood. Low relative humidity can cause shrinkage or brittleness in some materials. Rapidly fluctuating relative humidity can therefore cause damaging cycles of expansion or contraction, particularly in objects of mixed materials with differential rates of movement. The recommended humidity range is 45-60 (±5)% provided the “buffering effect” of the building’s thermal mass and porous finishes can be utilised to dull short term fluctuations. Close control with a narrower band of RH of 50-55% (±3)% is a prerequisite for international artefact loan. This applies to all areas where the loaned item or its packing may be located, such as display, shipping, storage, conservation and circulation areas. Environmental techniques such as heavy building construction, hygroscopic materials, high ceilings, thermal buffering and window sealing can be employed to help stabilise relative humidity. Utilising display cases create stable microclimates with much closer control.
Temperature CIBSE recommends 20°C for galleries and museums. Lower temperatures results in lower level of moisture in the air and reduces dehumidification loads, operational cost and potential damage to artefacts and the building fabric. Relaxing the temperature level required also reduces the need for complex servicing, thus reducing the energy required for heating and humidification. Many objects are tolerant to changes in temperature within the typical range for human comfort (18-25°C), provided they are not subject to rapid fluctuations or exposed to direct sources of heat, which can cause localised dryness. Specification of lower temperatures in storage spaces also aid conservation by slowing down the speed of any chemical reaction. The strategy to minimise solar gain in unwanted parts of the building primarily is to simply protect the centralised exhibition spaces with service, private and ancillary spaces that wrap round the south face. The addition of double glazed low e glazing prevents unwanted solar gain in the sensitive exhibition spaces.
Lighting Lighting levels and the effects of ultraviolet and infra-red radiation need to be controlled to minimise damage to artefacts. The effects of exposure are cumulative, and so the risk of damage can be minimised by reducing the length of exposure to visible light and by screening from ultraviolet radiation. In display areas, all luminaires that emit UV would be fitted with filters or secondary sheeting. UV filter films or interlayers to laminated glass would be used on all external windows including roof lights. Artificial lighting whould be fitted with filtering diffusers or secondary glazing. Exhibits with drawings, watercolours and inks are particularly sensitive to light damage and the recommended light level is 30 Lux. Levels up to a maximum of 200 lux are generally accepted for moderately sensitive items, such as oil paintings and wood. A balance is important between lighting levels for good viewing and the conservation needs of the exhibits.
Ground Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan
Diagram showing importance of environmental control in each area
Exhibition/Conservation areas - Sensitive areas (high control required) Public/Private areas - Tolerant areas (limited control required) Buffer zones - Neutral (no mechanical control)
Acoustics Internally, acoustic insulation in interior walls and acoustic glass ensure that noise from other exhibitions, the cafe, the kitchen and ancillary spaces do not travel into other parts of the museum, especially other exhibitions and the reading room. Externally, it is important that traffic noise does not affect the atmosphere inside the building. I have tried to compensate for this by setting the building 25m back from the road and by incorporating south facing landscaping to buffer the noise (and incidentally, the westerly wind) from the road due south. I have also placed most of the exhibition spaces in the centre of the building with private or service spaces forming an acoustic barrier on the south.
Diagram to show environmental strategy of stack ventilation in buffer zones
Ventilation I have tried to employ passive design techniques and simplified control systems to help maintain stable environmental conditions. An airtight structure with the high thermal mass of concrete provides inherently more stable internal conditions all year round. The inclusion of buffer zones (air lobbies) and the controlled provision of ventilation rates in accordance with monitored pollutant concentrations and/ or occupancy levels helps reduce uncontrolled air exchanges and minimises energy consumption. Also the provision and management of cloakroom facilities to keep wet garments out of galleries minimises the need for dehumidification within museum areas.
Air quality Objects are vulnerable to damage from particulate or gaseous pollutants from sources within or outside the building. Gaseous pollutants include sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and ozone, which through chemical reactions can attack objects. Fresh air intakes would not be located close to sources of pollution or heat. Where air is taken into areas containing fragile objects, the air passes through an activated carbon or alumina filter to reduce levels of pollutants such as sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides. The maximum permissible level for sulphur dioxide, nitrous oxide and ozone pollution is 0-2 mg/m3. Extraction of air is positioned at sources from areas where polluting activities take place, such as the kitchen and toilets.
Building Regulations Legal requirements Cost Anaylsis
Occupancy levels can be anticipated to fall between a capacity 61600, which under regulations requires for a minimum of two exits (see diagram on page 143). These fire escape cores provide a protected compartment (minimum 900mmx1400mm) for wheelchair refugees to await assistance and do not impede or obstruct escape. To meet regulations, all fire doors are 1000m width, with 1200mm wide corridors and fire stairs, allowing for full disabled access and escape.
Security The security system should be controlled from a centralised location and provide a fully addressable alarm system incorporating CCTV, barriers, alarmed display cases, door mechanism control, motion detection sensors, guard tourstations and panic alarms.The system should also be supported by a communication infrastructure of pagers, two-way radios and a telephone network. In addition, the system should be served by emergency power and have a dedicated, uninterruptible power supply. To maximise security, multiple barriers are created to inhibited a quick exit. However, a conflict arises with the building layout that would compromise fire escape strategies. This is reduced by the close proximity of fire exits.
For fire protection, the building should be fully sprinklered with a â€œpreactionâ€? system to prevent accidental water release in the case of sprinkler head failure. Structural elements surrounding any archive stores, such as walls and doors, need to provide an hour of fire resistance to meet BS 476 for building under 18 metres. As far as possible compartmentation has been integrated through breaking up the exhibition spaces. Fire detection and the alarm system should comply with BS 5839-1:2002. With respect to British building regulations I would ensure that prestressed concrete structural elements comply with BS 8110-1:1997 and that all structural steelwork comply with BS 5950-1:2000 (in Germany prestressing concrete methods require approval certificates). Foundations must comply with BS 8002:1994. The building is set back 18m from its neighbouring buildings to satisfy Buiding Regulations (see diagram on page 142). All ramps within the building are 1:20 or shallower to minimise discomfort for wheelchair users circulating the building and to not hinder their means of escape complying with BS 5588-8 and BS 8300. In addition, there are three public lifts servicing the four exhibition blocks to help improve circulation for wheelchair users. Particulates attach themselves to surfaces of materials to form a layer which, if not itself damaging, can cause damage when cleaning. In the case of paper and parchment BS 5454: 2000 recommends the use of a coarse filter together with a fine filter BS EN 779: 1993 and BS EN 779: 1993 for dust collection. Activated carbon filtration should be used where concentrations of sulphur dioxide and/or nitrous oxide are in excess of 10 g/m3.
Diagram to show building set back 18m
Diagram illustrating fire exits and distances
Ground Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan
Exhibitions (3725m2) Ancillary circulation (1242m2) Offices (461m2) Conservation (720m2) Public toilets (705m2) Basement Floor Plan
Public services (850m2) Plant rooms (814m2)
Fig. Diagrams showing program breakdown
Cost Analysis The proposed location has a bearing on what type of funding is available, as does the proposed status - for instance, whether the museum is national or specialist and whether the type of building required is existing or new build. Possible resources for financial funding: - Trusts and charitable foundations - Regional development agencies and local authorities - The Museums Libraries and Archives Council - German Arts Council - Corporate sponsorship - Individual donors Floor Area Breakdown Overall building Gross Floor Area B=936m2 G=3535m2 1=2482m2 2=2100m2 TOTAL=9053m2 Exhibition Gross Floor Area G=1460m2 1=1335m2 2=930m2 TOTAL=3725m2 (approx. 41%) Total Public Functional Space Exhibition GFA = 3652m2 Cafe = 500m2 Cabaret = 153m2 Reading room = 197m2 TOTAL = 4575m2 (approx. 50.5%) Total Private Space Conservation = 720m2 Office = 461m2 Ancillary Toilets = 705m2 Circulation = 1242m2
TOTAL = 1181m2 (approx. 13%)
With the help of a 6000m2 museum cost model ‘A museum new build extension cost breakdown’ from Davis Langdon Consultants, it is possible to suggest a reasonable cost estimate for my building based on its own floor areas and construction methods. Substructure £519,300 Frame and Upper Floors £1,241,100 Roof £762,750 Stairs £591,000 External Walls, Windows and Doors £2,064,000 Wall Finishes £36,000 Internal Doors £18,900 Floor Finishes £174,300 Ceiling Finishes £137,850 Furniture and Fittings £24,000 Disposal Installations £18,600 Hot and Cold Water Installations £52,050 Gas Installations £6,000 Communication Installations £141,000 Specialist Installations £132,200 Builder’s Work in Connection £60,000 Space Heating Air Treatment and Ventilation £981,600 Electrical Installation £515,250 Preliminaries £1,620,900 Total construction cost £9,096,800 Exhibition fit out (3652m2) Setworks £3,000,000 Show cases £675,000 Mounts £300,000 Electrical and lighting £637,500 Graphics £250,000 Audio visual hardware £1,100,000 Audio visual software £1,000,000 Flooring £127,500 General items £202,500 Preliminaries £1,350,000 Total fit out cost £8,642,500
TOTAL = 1949m (approx. 21.5%)
TOTAL COST £17,739,300
(approximately £18 million)
The primary aim of this project was to explore an alternative method of addressing Berlin’s past. Controversy and the role of the antagonist are undeniable parts of its history and generally, present day Berliners liberal and open minded attitudes accept this. The choice to research and effectively portray an artist who revelled in upsetting the establishment seemed a positive and agreeable endeavor. I picked George Grosz simply because I liked his artwork. The first pieces I saw really stood out due to their highly political sentiments and brashly confident nature. Further research led me to understand his active role with Communism and his move to Capitalist America; which seemed to provide ideal opportunities to reflect the split nature of Berlin. My only concern with picking George Grosz as a figurehead for a building that really explores the Berlin Dadaists and Verists, is his move to America. It could be construed that in running away to America he lost his spirit (he certainly lost his German nationality) and that he became less important. To some degree I believe this to be true, he became less influential (and thus important at the time) but it was not for a lack of trying or because of fear. Nearly all the ‘Degenerate artists’ left Berlin, many for Switzerland, France, Great Britain and some for America. Grosz left before Hitler came to power. His main reason for leaving was that his art was suffering in Berlin and that he needed a fresh start. In America he could not feel the effect of the war as much as his fellow former Dadaists who had stayed in Europe. John Heartfield for example, moved to Prague and continued to ridicule the Nazi regime with photomontages for the publication ‘Arbeiter-Illustrierte-Zeitung.’ There is an argument to suggest that maybe Heartfield would have been a better choice given his commitment to satire and ridicule but for me he lacks the varied media that Grosz had at his artistic disposal and the interesting Capitalist attachment with America.
temporary ‘Influenced’ exhibit that sits underneath Verism. It’s location to that of ‘America’ and the shop cuts up the route to the Cabaret. This is not fundamentally wrong but I think it could be resolved a bit better, as could the location of the servicing cores/risers. These problems are both a result of the punctures that are successful in breaking up the periods but also create problems for servicing and circulation that do not necessarily want dividing. Overall, I think Gallery George Grosz considers its senstive context and is successful in its objective to celebrate antagonism without creating its own negative antagonism. Its form and purpose imply a level of defiance against its political neighbours and its perforated skin suggests a level of transparency that is inviting. The dynamic spaces of play between voids and solids engage and guide the public on a journey inside and intrigue the public in from the outside. I think this would create a fun and social environment that undermines the site’s recent past and would give Berlin a building that is controversial but for all the righ reasons.
My process to represent Grosz through a timeline of his work that concurrently references Berlin, came together quite quickly and successfully. However, realising the balance between prescribed and free narrative circulation became quite a challenge and my building’s form and site changed dramatically because of it. I am happy though with the end result in terms of site relationships and atmospheric reflection of the periods. The circulation became a lot simpler and easier to manage as a result of running Grosz’s work as a band across the four blocks. I feel there is however, a sense of anomaly in the location of a
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List of Illustrations
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Construction and Environmental Research
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Cost Model Precedents
Cost model A museum new build extension cost breakdown: Shell and core [Cost Model: Museums. Building Magazine 29.09.2006. p 68-75] Substructure Total Cost £346,200 Excavation to reduce levels; average depth 600 mm, offsite disposal 1,760 m2 @ £30 Piled foundations; 600mm diameter; 10m average length 120 nr @ £1,000 Ground slab; 300 thick on hardcore bed 1,760 m2 @ £90 Allowance for local slab thickening for abnormal exhibition loadings Item @ 15,000 Frame and Upper Floors £827,400 Structural steelwork; UB and UC sections 310 t @ £1,400 Structural steelwork; hollow sections 75 t @ £2,100 Built-up trusses; hollow sections 11 t @ £2,300 Composite slab, metal deck and insitu concrete 845 m2 @ £80 Fire protection to steelwork; applied on-site 2200 m2 @ £15 Allowance for secondary steelwork Item @ £110,000 Roof £508,500 Insitu concrete roof slab; metal deck and insitu concrete 1,925 m2 @ £80 Flat roof, single ply membrane including insulation, trims, skirtings, flashings, linings to gutters, paving slabs 1,925 m2 @ £100 Extra for access hatches Item @ £6,000 Extra for soffits to roof overhangs 350 m2 @ £45 Mansafe system Item @ £11,500 Rooflights; sealed glazed units; complete 125 m2 @ £630 Allowance for plant access walkways Item @ £50,000
Stairs £394,000 Feature steel internal staircases (rate per flight) 2 nr @ £23,000 Steel escape and access staircases (rate per flight) 4 nr @ £11,000 Balustrades and handrails; clamped glass with stainless steel handrails 230 m @ £700 Balustrades and handrails; mild steel with stainless steel handrails 50 m @ £460 Balustrades and handrails; painted mild steel 40 m @ £250 Miscellaneous access stairs and cat ladders Item @ £10,000 Allowance for additional architectural metalwork Item @ £100,000 External Walls, Windows and Doors £1,376,000 Rainscreen cladding; natural stone on precast concrete backing panels 810 m2 @ £480 Coated aluminium double glazed curtain walling 1200 m2 @ £410 Planar glazing; double glazed units on secondary steelwork 170 m2 @ £1,000 Coated aluminium double glazed window system; strip windows in solid facade 170 m2 @ £360 Solar shading; fixed aluminium louvres 400 m @ £300 Glazed main entrance doors; revolving door with pass doors 2 nr @ £30,000 Allowance for fire escape and fire escape doors in glazed curtain walling 16 nr @ £2,100 Aluminium louvres to plant rooms etc 140 m2 @ £360 Internal Walls and Partitions 206,400 83.23 3.23 Blockwork 840 m2 @ £60 Drywall partition; 1 hour FR 120 m2 @ £50 Single glazed partitions in planar glazing 250 m2 @ £600 Wall Finishes £24,000 Plaster and emulsion paint to wall surfaces generally 1,500 m2 @ £16
Internal Doors £12,600 Solid core timber - faced doors and frames; stainless steel ironmongery 7 nr @ £800 Glazed doors and metal frames; stainless steel ironmongery 5 nr @ £1,400 Floor Finishes £116,200 Screeds to internal areas; 100 thick generally (floor finish included in exhibition fit-out) 1,650 m2 @ £20 Stone tiling to entrance areas 530 m2 @ £140 Screed and timber decking to external terraces 70 m2 @ £80 Entrance matting and matwells Item @ £3,400 Ceiling Finishes £91,900 Plasterboard ceiling and bulkheads; generally 2,100 m2 @ £25 Extra for acoustic treatments in gallery areas 1,280 m2 @ £30 Allowance for additional ceiling finishes in specialist areas Item @ £1,000 Furniture and Fittings £16,000 Directional signage Item @ £10,000 Storage racking Item @ £6,000 Disposal Installations £12,400 Waste, soil and vent pipework 2,480 m2 @ £2 Rainwater installation 2,480 m2 @ £3 Hot and Cold Water Installations £34,700 Cold water services; incoming main, sectional water storage tank, boosterpump set, distribution pipework, fitting, accessories, insulation including final connections 2,480 m2 @ £14 Space Heating Air Treatment and Ventilation £654,400 Heat Source; condensing boilers including flue, plate heat exchanger, pumps and pressurisation unit
2,480 m2 @ £6 CHW Installation; air cooled chiller, plate heat exchanger, pumps and pressurisation unit, pipework, valves, steel pipework, fittings and accessories 2,200 m2 @ £90 LTHW Heating System; serving Air Handling Unit, underfloor heating to public areas and radiators to ancillary spaces; valves, steel pipework, fittings and accessories 2,480 m2 @ £35 Air Systems to Galleries; Air Handling Units with heat recovery and humidification; ductwork, dampers, attenuators, grilles and diffusers, fittings and accessories 1,650 m2 @ £180 Insulation to all services 2,480 m2 @ £14 Ventilation allowance for supply and extract ventilation systems to specialist areas only Item @ £23,000 Electrical Installation £343,500 Mains and sub-mains Installation; Main LV switchboard 2,480 m2 @ £10 Mains and sub-mains installation; distribution boards serving lights, power, LV distribution in xlpe / swa / lsf cable generally, containment, power supplies to mechancial plant and lift 2,480 m2 @ £25 Lighting Installation 2,480 m2 @ £40 Luminaires to general areas 850 m2 @ £45 External lighting installation Item @ £6,000 Lighting control system Item @ £14,000 Emergency lighting installation 2,480 m2 @ £10 Small power installation 2,480 m2 @ £30 Gas Installations £6,000 Incoming gas supply Item @ £6,000 Lift Installations £26,000 3000kg goods lifts, speed 0.5m/s - ground to first floor with stainless steel car
1 nr @ £26,000 Protective Installations £10,000 Lightning protection Item @ £7,000 Earthing and bonding Item @ £3,000 Communication Installations £141,000 Fire detection and alarm installation; Analogue addressable system, panel, detectors, breakglass units, sounders, cabling and containment 2,480 m2 @ £20 Security installation allowance for CCTV installation 12 nr @ £1,000 Security and access control installation; swipe card access to select areas, intruder alarm system inc. interface with existing systems 2,480 m2 @ £30 Allowance for containment Item @ £5,000 Specialist Installations £132,200 BMS Installation; MCCs, inverters, local starters / isolators and associated power, control and communication wiring and wire ways, supplies 2,480 m @ £40 Leak detection system Item @ £11,000 Visitors electronic counting system Item @ £11,000 Window cleaning installation Item@ £11,000 Builder’s Work in Connection £40,000 Cutting holes, forming openings and other builder’s work associated with services installation Allowance @ 3% Item @ £40,000
Museum new build extension cost breakdown: Exhibition fit out Setworks £2,000,000 Construction of walls, ceilings and other supporting work to display objects not in showcases, bases for showcases, projector housings, pivoting doors and moving benches, lightboxes and setwork electrics Show cases £450,000 Cases freestanding or on plinths including fibre optics Mounts £200,000 Mounts in showcases and setworks displays and for separate heavy objects Interactives £125,000 Electronic and manual interactive units Graphics £250,000 Artwork and production of the graphics displays Electrical and lighting £425,000 Electrical distribution, lighting and power throughout exhibition Audio visual hardware £1,100,000 AV equipment serving all units including all computers racking and controls Audio visual software £1,000,000 Writing and translating all naratives included with the displays Flooring £85,000 Floor covering to the new build section of the exhibition General items £135,000 Installation of large objects (e.g. installations and artwork) builder’s work (chases), seating (chairs) etc Preliminaries £900,000 Fit-out contractor’s preliminaries
Total £6,670,000 OVERALL TOTAL COST £13,070,000
Preliminaries £1,080,600 Management costs, site establishment and site supervision. Contractor’s preliminaries, overheads and profit @ 17% Item @ £904,000 Testing and commissioning of building services installations Item@ £17,000 Allowance for design reserve @ 3% Item@ £159,600 Total construction cost Building only £6,400,000
Precedents Construction Materiality Atmosphere Environment
Construction Canadian War Museum, Griffiths Rankin Cook Architects
Construction Loadbearing external wall, double leaf details
Construction Sarphatistraat Offices, Steven Holl Architects
Construction New Museum of Contemporary Art (competition), Reiser + Umemoto
Sagaponac house(competition), Reiser & Umemoto
Construction De Young Museum, Herzog & de Meuron
Materiality De Young Museum, Herzog & de Meuron
The three parallel elements do not lie side by side like detached, abstract art containers but are interconnected and interrelated so that viewers experience in space the interfaces and areas of friction among the cultures represented.
The contacts and switches between the sections of the new museum can be seen as specific places within the greater organism as a whole. At the same time, they are places that joinand seperate from inside to outside and back again.
Materialty Sarphatistraat Offices, Steven Holl Architects
Atmosphere Hemeroscopium House, Ensamble Studio (below) Therme Vals, Peter Zumthor (right)
Environment Beyeler Foundation
complement the daylighting strategy: as daylight fades, triphosphor linear fluorescent fittings gradually compensate, contributing to the maintenance of ideal lighting levels.
It was agreed that daylight should be used as the light source across the whole ground floor, and that the design of the building should seek to maximize the number of hours during which the collection could be viewed by daylight. However, best-practice standards for exposure of works of art to daylight in terms of time, levels, and spectral content could not be compromised by the desire to provide a daylit environment.
The lowest layer in the system forms the visible ceiling of the groundfloor galleries: a grid of perforated metal panels incorporates a paper that diffuses light once more and adds a layer of opacity to the contents of the loft thermal buffer zone. The uniform lighting system is augmented by small low-voltage spotlights positioned on stems at the junctions of each ceiling panel. These can add highlighting and directional light essential for modeling effects of sculpture.
Following studies of lighting conditions in Basel, Arup recommended a target daylight factor of 4 percent, which is around double that in most European galleries. An active shading system to control interior light levels within predetermined limits, particularly on bright summer days, was also prescribed as an essential part of the lighting strategy.
Heating and Ventilation System
These performance requirements were met by the development of a multilayered roof. The outermost element is the layer of fritted glass brise-soleil inclined and positioned to prevent direct sun penetration during all museum opening times but also to maintain optimum admittance of diffused light. Below this lies the weatherproof layer consisting of a double-glazed skin with an ultraviolet filter that removes those parts of the electromagnetic spectrum most likely to damage the paintings to be displayed below. Immediately below this layer are computer-motorized aluminum louver blades that control light levels in each room of the museum. These levels can be arranged to suit the management of the building and the conservation of the collection. When the museum is closed, for example, the louvers are closed to prevent exposure of artworks to daylight. The louvre system lies in the zone between ceiling and roof, which is designed as a â€œloft thermal buffer zoneâ€? and combines with the exterior brise-soleil to prevent 98 percent of incident solar radiation from reaching the gallery spaces below.
A true displacement system of ventilation was chosen for the Beyeler. This was designed to minimize air velocities in proximity to artwork. The air is delivered at very low velocities from linear floor grills, which are made from wood to integrate both visually and functionally with the oak strip floor. Floorboards on either side of the grills can be removed to enable access to the ductwork plenum below (for cleaning) and to electrical sockets (for flexible display). Perimeter heating is through trench connectors installed below the same wooden grills under the windows. The air supply to each gallery module is controlled by variable-airvolume boxes installed in the services corridor at the basement level. This 6-foot (1.8-meter-) wide space runs for most of the building length and contains supply and return ducts, which are fed by two air-handling units, each able to provide up to 50 percent fresh air in favorable exterior conditions. Additionally, the primary air-handling units each incorporate thermal wheels to recover heat from exhaust air in winter and also obtain more heat following dehumidification by transferring heat from the extract air. http://www.architectureweek.com/2003/1105/environment_1-2.html
The lower boundary of the loft is formed by a laminated-glass ceiling designed to support maintenance access to the louver-blind motors and electric lights in the loft. The electric illumination is designed to