Architecture is bound by the vertical and horizontal surfaces that shape volumes which define our habitable spaces. It is these surfaces that in turn move, project, separate and lead us to experience moments within the built environment. So what happens to architecture when we are able to stretch these boundaries? Trace Room which attempts to answer this question, is an installation commissioned by The Victoria and Albert Museum's Friday Late event on 29 June 2012: Unbuilt De/ constructing architecture.
Designed and installed by London practice Atelier ChanChan. Trace Room explores the realms between art and architecture. It unfolds the de-materialization of architectural elements which have traditionally defined the boundaries of a room. As the installation begins to blur, bend, erase and explode these traditional thresholds, it begins to articulate new ones. The new boundaries become a repetitive use of cord lines that collectively create a permutable mesh that suggest a sense of limit. The cord wrap also brings forward conversations about privacy, visibility and the absence of traditional walls to separate space.
The ephemeral room stretches vertically within the double height volume of Gallery 25, partially enclosed by the sweeping staircase wrapping around the gallery and leading into the National Art Library. With the rise of 3D printing we are sure that we will continue to see this kind of architectural language beyond an installation and into formal spaces of habitation. We are thrilled to experience new methods of shaping spaces and finally witness architecture opening up into a new dimension.
About Atelier ChanChan:
Atelier ChanChan is a practice based in London, operating in the realms between art and architecture; it was founded in 2010 by Cambridge scholar and AA scholarship graduate Zoe Chan. The practice takes a phenomenological approach to its work; aiming to create unique and beautiful spaces within the city. We investigate the relationship between architecture and emotion and how material, space, light and form can be manipulated to create new, imaginative, experience-driven architectures. Often interested in the de-materialisation of architectural elements and thresholds; much of our architecture and installations experiment with transparency, scale and the perception of space and its limits.