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“Das Haus” 2015 – Encountering Past and Future


In 2015, “Das Haus – Interiors on Stage” actually turns into a stage – a setting-like structure of spacious interiors and “housing cages” of various sizes that are supposed to question our conception of the home. The design of the architects Neri & Hu laid out in two stories for the first time in the series of “Das Haus”, promises innovative approaches to the concept of living space both on an aesthetic and a philosophical level.

“The effect of our house at the imm cologne will surely be less relaxing than that with Louise Campbell’s version from last year,” announced Lyndon Neri at the imm cologne press conference in Shanghai on September 10th. Together with his partner Rossana Hu, he presented the model for “Das Haus” 2015 to a group of international journalists. “Our ‘Haus’ is supposed to unsettle people because we want to challenge them so that they don’t just see a trade fair with the most beautiful furniture and the best materials, but really begin to question where we stand today – especially also in China. Whether we’re using furniture in the right way? How much do we need? And what is it really: the home?”

At the beginning of the installation stands a metal frame scaffold, which represents an enclosure as cage, conveys the idea that the home is both, a place of refuge and a cage for our possessions and housing rituals. An enclosed bridge that meanders through the entire house leads the spectator through the various cages and allows only cut-out-like views into the interiors and housing scenes in the cages. The idea of the concept was originally derived from the spatial experience of a typical Shanghai Lane House. The ambiguous title of “Memory Lane” alludes both to the urban tradition of the Shanghai lanes, which are characterised by close neighbourly relations, and to the paths of memory that the visitor is invited to follow with a walk through the installation.

The façades of the five “houses in das Haus” that are integrated in the metal frame are to be constructed from various materials such as bricks, wood and wire – including integrating artefacts such as entire reclaimed windows and doors from old traditional Chinese buildings. Acting as an architectural sculpture, the construction will display various housing scenarios that will shift like dreamscapes between recalled and future images of the home. The path through “Das Haus – Memory Lane” will turn into a guided tour through the history of housing rituals as Neri & Hu view them. At the same time they will also introduce a number of new products and versions of products that they want to develop with European brand-name companies until the imm cologne and in part to present as prototypes especially for this project.

Photo: Neir & Hu, koelnmesse

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