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Living like Rietveld

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

“Transform the empty triangle next to the wibautstraat, inspired on one of Gerrit Rietveld buildings”, was the assignment. So the first thing to do was getting inspired by one of Rietveld buildings.

When I heard about the living room above the Vreebug cinema, I was immediately intrigued. Not about the way it was build, or about the way it looked. It was about the way Rietveld lived. With a whole family in one room, divided by curtains in the night. It was the simplicity and sobriety witch was the heart of Rietvelds findings. When he was asked in 1929 to design the Cinema, he created his own house above it.

An other very important element of Rietvelds works, witch also was one of the most  substantial things of the living space above the Vreeburg Cinema was the view over the city (Utrecht).
So I decided to make something with a certain sobriety and the centre of the idea had to be the view. I also wanted to do something with the sudden shapes, stops and parts sticking out. First I had made a triangle by witch I lifted up the whole area for 10 mtr. Real sharp edged and rigid. I wanted it to be an uplifted public garden with stairs in the grass. I did something with the nostalgic feeling

of bath tubs,  the ones you always see between the cows. Getting a little bit of country into the city.

I also made sudden stairs as I call them. Stairs that stop and don’t bring you anywhere, a kind off maze.

I decided to trow away the idea of getting country into the city. But still wanted to keep the a nostalgic part in the area. The view from the uplifted Marquette was nice and high but the area was to sharp edged. I wanted to make something with a lifted round area were you could separate yourself from other people.

While I was making an improved version I had to take in account the railway, and the placing of the area. It is at the beginning of the city. The other thing to think about was the view. I didn’t like the view over there, so i had to create my own view as well in the area. And I did not want to make a place for one family but for more people.
You’re not only living at one floor in Amsterdam, you’re living everywhere. So it had to become a public place.

My starting point was to make a surrealistic maze. Where people could sit and chill but as well look at the weird shape. I’ve made a park with different levels so you could look at the hills as well, as you want a different view. Two uplifted round area’s are totally wooded by trees, that makes a nice forest viewas well. Now I’ve made a park with white/beige large stones. So it looks quiet and simple. In the two hills there are wholes in the stones where trees are growing out. So that there is still a forest in the stone park. The hills are almost stairs so you can sit on them, as well in the winter, spring and autumn without becoming wet of the moist ground. Different swells in the park make it possible for people to find their privacy.
At the most sharp angle of the triangle there is a sudden low area where there are remains of my idea about “sudden stairs” only now they are sudden parts floating and making strange movements where you sometimes can just easily walk over and sometimes do not find a way to get there. People can watch at the structures and trying to make impossible things possible.
Like a mind game. “You’ll train your brain.“

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