Sculpture House In Belgium By Jacques Gillet
Free (open access)
S. Van de Voorde, R. De Meyer, E. De Kooning, L. Taerwe & R. Van De Walle
The Belgian architect Jacques Gillet designed the sculpture house in Liège (1967-1968) as a synthesis of structure and form, collaborating on this project with the sculptor Félix Roulin and the engineer René Greisch. This ‘livingsculpture’ was undertaken by the team as a reaction against the general pressure of that time towards standardisation of forms in architecture, in which an artistic poverty and deficiency needed to be counterbalanced through collaboration with sculptors and painters. The merit of the artistic collaboration is evident when looking at the scheme of the building yard. The materials and techniques used gave the team a creative liberty: steel bars were folded, and placed one by one, to enhance the contingency between nature, space, material and poetry. A metal mesh was affixed to the steel bars and the ultimate form was then secured by projecting a fast setting concrete onto it: direct, immediate and efficient. The exterior is just the mere envelope of the interior; no additional structure whatsoever was necessary. The structure was left bare on the outside, postulating a true unity between form and material. Keywords: architecture, gun concrete, sculpture house, organic, Belgium, Jacques Gillet, Félix Roulin, René Greisch. 1 Introduction Since the end of the Second World War, organic architecture has appeared as a search for beauty that concurs with the notion of ideal construction, as a synthesis of art and sciences. Protagonists of this tendency were, among others, Frederick Kiesler, Mathias Goeritz, Jacques Couëlle, André Bloc and Paul Virilio. Likely the best known example of this architecture, based on organic or sculptural forms is Le Corbusier’s Chapel at Ronchamps. The term ‘sculptural
architecture, gun concrete, sculpture house, organic, Belgium, Jacques Gillet, Félix Roulin, René Greisch.