Rotterdam architects Helena Casanova and Jesus Hernandez make two recently completed residential buildings, the Ginkgo Project and The Black and White Twins, the focus of their exhibition “Scale & Perception”. The point of departure is the thesis that architects often merely concentrate on designing objects instead of taking into consideration possibilities of their perception. Based on the two projects, they examine the potential of scale and perception with the intention of achieving the manifold perception of architecture. Ultimately, they express the goal of rethinking phenomenological appropriation of architecture to find an effective answer to the comprehensive global demands that contemporary architecture must face.
The exhibition is set up like an art installation exclusively addressing sensory perception. Two different “miniature rooms” focus on the essential aspects of both designs and create a connection to the real buildings. In the Ginkgo Project, this connection is the sensual facade of ginkgo leaf foliage; in The Black and White Twins, the geometrically interconnecting clinker skin. At the same time, the room-like structures change perception of the gallery space.
An essential component of the exhibition is the book of the same title with photographs by Christian Richters. Through his own particular point of view, Richters shows the many overlapping layers that shape visual perception of the building. The photos are complemented by numerous plans and detail drawings where singular layers are dissected to show what role these individual “layers” play in the perception of the entirety. The book is rounded off by Casanova + Hernandez’s manifesto-like text, “Scale & Perception: Rethinking Phenomenological Architecture in the Global Age”.