Interior | Design | Architecture
Green Critics Column InteriorPark. on page 58-59
Design and construction in existing contexts
On holiday, we are attracted by the crumbly history – but everything should be spotless at home.
Tina Kammer about an ambiguous relationship and the attraction of building in existing buildings.
Now they are making a pilgrimage again: hosts of design young people set off to Milan to discover the latest trends in furniture, interior design and design. track.
The largest furniture fair in the world magnetically attracts everyone who is interested in the latest developments, wants to be brought up to date and inspired. Even in the run-up to the hustle and bustle, the city center is transformed into a design temple in which the mighty deity of aesthetics is honored on every corner. Designers from all over the world gather in an impressive setting. The sunglasses are big, the clothes mostly black.
You photograph yourself in front of charmingly crumbling monuments and praise the authenticity of the old walls. The stones breathe history and give us a sense of security in their permanence. Their decay leaves them cold and the patina only makes them look even more beautiful.
Surprisingly enough, we are attracted to it, historically crumbling and are classified as particularly endearing and authentic.
At home, however, a lot is done to ensure that everything is neat and clean and stays that way. Signs of use such as stains, scratches or wear are undesirable and often unacceptable. If necessary, things are simply exchanged as soon as they have exceeded their value for new value.
We love patina, but for God’s sake, not at home?
In times when we are necessarily committed to sustainability, in which we do more and more to conserve resources, the construction ladies and builders, the architects and the craftsmen should be aware that it can make sense To work to existing, traditional techniques can be brought into perfect harmony with new innovations and that redoing everything is not always the right solution, but sometimes even counterproductive.
So why not conserve historical stock by using local and natural materials, which often also provide for a healthy indoor climate, and make it usable again only with the most necessary work steps? Why not work with found things and just leave things as they are instead of coming to a not always better result with a lot of material?
Dignity in old age
This is what happened in the “Schlosserhof” project in a Stuttgart backyard (see photos), where an old workshop was transformed into modern housing units without destroying the identity-creating character of the former ruin and sealing and filling everything senselessly, to the rooms in the truest sense the air stays away.
This does not always happen to the delight of all those involved, who often have to be made aware that the unconventional approach from today’s perspective is justified and that technologies that have been used for decades but have been forgotten have not proved their worth without reason. The rediscovery of, for example, clay plaster, which moisturizes a room when the air is dry and withdraws when it gets too wet, can not be topped with any modern building material. It often takes a long breath and the project managers have to be very sure of their cause in order to be able to communicate and enforce their unusual concept well.
“How fast is a building worthy of preservation
demolished for a faceless new building. “
Respect for the stock is necessary – often enough, the insight comes too late and how quickly a building worth preserving a faceless new building has been replaced or destroyed the character of a found building by insensitive conversions.
Maintaining identity-creating places of lasting value and gently rehabilitating them, letting it be less, sometimes showing courage to overcome the (construction) gap and withstand headwinds – all of this can be worthwhile to give profile and distinctiveness to our environment.
But we drive to Italy anyway!