Covid-19 has not stopped the cultural initiatives of the Architektur Galerie Berlin. On January 14 the gallery curated by Ulrich Müller held an online opening via Zoom of a new exhibition about Kawahara Krause Architects, founded in Hamburg in 2009 by architects Tatsuya Kawahara and Ellen Kristina Krause.
The exhibition continues until February 17, illustrating the architectural studio’s design philosophy through a series of working models and a site-specific installation made out of paper ribbons.
The studio’s works include a number of small pavilions balancing art with architecture which have earned considerable appreciation and praise among the critics, such as the Wooden Hut and the Garden Folly built for private gardens in Leonberg and the Belvedere designed for "Planten un Blomen” park in Hamburg.
The common feature shared by these buildings is their apparent simplicity, though on closer examination the design principles determining them are anything but simple and easily deciphered. For we must not confuse the search for clear, simple structure, often based on a strong sense of geometry, which is a key feature of their work with univocal meaning. Something that is clear or simple is not in fact necessarily univocal, and even geometrically simple structures can generate complex spatial situations, making ambiguity a central key to the architecture of Kawahara Krause Architects; hence the exhibition title “Equivocal”.
The site-specific installation designed for the exhibition at Architektur Galerie Berlin definitely clarifies the studio’s design philosophy. For the gallery, architects Tatsuya Kawahara and Ellen Kristina Krause designed a spatial installation consisting of identical volumes made out of paper ribbons. The volumes face one another at different angles, and their arrangement in the room creates transitory spaces. The movement generated between the volumes makes them appear both permeable and closed, "so that the gallery space oscillates between actual and phenomenological transparency", so that simply altering the arrangement of these simple basic elements in relation to one another is enough to create a complex spatial situation.
The exhibition is completed with a series of studio models of built works, allowing the public to explore the architects’ design philosophy through concrete architectural projects. Architects Tatsuya Kawahara and Ellen Kristina Krause underpin their design work with many years of teaching in a number of universities, including HafenCity University in Hamburg, Leibniz University in Hannover and Universität Siegen in the German town of the same name.
Kawahara Krause Architects are currently working on the design of a new pavilion: the L Pavilion for Karl-Marx-Allee in Berlin.
Images courtesy of Architektur Galerie Berlin, photo by Kawahara Krause Architects
Title: Kawahara Krause Architects Equivocal
Date: Jan 15 – Feb 17, 2021
Opening: Jan 14, 2021 7 pm
Location: Architektur Galerie Berlin, Karl-Marx-Allee 96 - 10243 Berlin Germany
Welcome: Ulrich Müller - Architektur Galerie Berlin
Introduction: Regula Lüscher Senate Director of Urban Development / Permanent Secretary
Hilde Léon léonwohlhage architects
Performance: 30 January 2021, 4 pm
Iku Nakamura piano
Mab Cardodo dance
Gallery talk: 25 February 2021, 7 pm
Martin Fröhlich AFF architects
Tatsuya Kawahara and Ellen Kristina Krause
Exhibition: 15 January – 27 February 2021
Tuesday – Friday 2 – 7 pm
Saturday 12 – 6 pm
Studio: Kawahara Krause Architects (Tatsuya Kawahara, Ellen Kristina Krause)