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COOP HIMMELB(L)AU: Dynamic Raumplan

Exhibition discussion
Thu, March 5, 7 p.m.
Wolf Prix + Eric Owen Moss: The Never Ending City

Dynamic Raumplan is on view in the SCI-Arc Gallery through March 8

COOP HIMMELB(L)AU's "Dynamic Raumplan" in the SCI-Arc Gallery is not an object but a spatial installation that operates like a machine, designed to communicate a new urban vision for the future. In this installation, the city is seen as a complex system whose complexity increases constantly due to the intensified inter-connectivity of its components and continuously emerging new parameters. This dynamic approach to urban planning demands a shift from linear cause-and-effect thinking that attempts to offer fixed solutions to a problem, to employing new tools that work with feedback loops, taking a vast number of parameters into account to arrive at possible future scenarios that don't predict but rather serve to orient the future.

The installation proposes energy as a critical, new parameter for urban planning of the 21st century, a catalyst for a new city morphology, a major paradigm shift similar to the impact the automobile had on cities in the 20th century. Dynamic energy lines derived from the sun, wind, water, the earth and green will now replace building lines forming three-dimensional fields of potential for new urban typologies in an attempt to generate an energy self-sufficient urban district.

The installation can be read in several scales, from a city block to a city district and an urban region. In a sequence using two simultaneous projections, one by one the energy lines forming the energy potential of an imaginary site are displayed. Later, these envelopes are slowly filled with possible urban volumes, "...rigid yet constantly transforming, designed yet loosely defined, standing yet slowly moving, adapting always to the current needs of the system. Like the brain. Like a cloud. Like a city."

COOP HIMMELB(L)AU was founded in Vienna in 1968 and has since then been operating under the direction of CEO and design principal Wolf D. Prix in the fields of art, architecture, urban planning, and design. Another branch of the firm was opened in the United States in 1988 in Los Angeles. COOP HIMMELB(L)AU currently employs over 100 people from 19 different countries. In numerous countries the team has realized museums, concert halls, science and office buildings as well as residential buildings. Presently COOP HIMMELB(L)AU is working on various projects in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

The company’s most well-known international projects include the Falkestrasse attic conversion in Vienna, the multifunctional UFA Cinema Center in Dresden, the BMW Welt in Munich, the Akron Art Museum in Ohio, the Central Los Angeles Area High School #9 for the Visual and Performing Arts, the Busan Cinema Center in Korea, the Dalian International Conference Center in China and the House of Music in Aalborg, Denmark. Among projects currently under construction are the Musée des Confluences in Lyon, France, and the European Central Bank (ECB) in Frankfurt/Main, Germany.

01.30.15 - 03.08.15 | SCI-Arc Library Gallery
Opening reception: Friday, January 30, 7pm, Moderated by Todd Gannon
What’s a Guggenheim?

A group exhibition of design proposals by SCI-Arc directors & faculty

On view January 30-March 8, 2015 in the SCI-Arc Library Gallery
Exhibition Symposium & Opening Reception: Friday, January 30, 7pm

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation continually re-invents the contemporary museum experience through their commitment to architecture. Architectural masterpieces such as Frank Lloyd Wright’s Guggenheim New York and Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Bilbao not only speculate on new ways of organizing art and space, but they create alternative worlds. At the close of the era of mega-projects and the globalization of the art world, the question is: what’s next?

After failed attempts to build in Vilnius in 2008 (with architect Zaha Hadid), and then in Helsinki in 2012, the Guggenheim Foundation has once again set out to build. The socio-political climate has changed since Bilbao, and architecture, too, seems to be at a crossroads. What will this new attempt do for art? For Helsinki? What new worlds will it construct? How will architects respond differently in this century than in the last? Will a contemporary sense of austerity and local culture transform the architectural icon?

This SCI-Arc Library exhibition will engage some of these questions through proposals made by SCI-Arc directors and faculty. An opening discussion moderated by Cultural Studies Coordinator Todd Gannon will invite participants to discuss their competition entries. The exhibition will feature design proposals by Hernan Diaz Alonso (Xefirotarch), Griffin Enright Architects, Hodgetts + Fung, Jones, Partners: Architecture, Eric Owen Moss Architects, Oyler Wu Collaborative, Pita & Bloom, Russell Thomsen (Idea Office) and Tom Wiscombe Architecture.