When viewing or entering any work of architecture, any (interior) space, building or public square, some form of interaction takes place between this architecture and the person viewing or entering it. Viewing and entering change how we perceive our environment such that we conceive of it anew time and time again.
The studio, which works in an interdisciplinary and collaborative fashion, regards terrain as being architecture’s perhaps most fundamental prerequisite. Starting from the idea underlying the faux terrain (false ground) which originally occupied the space used to mediate between two and three-dimensional reality in 19th-century panorama buildings, Stiefel & Company Architects take their installment of the exhibition series APPLIED ARTS. NOW as an opportunity to investigate observational and descriptive processes as constituent components of space production, conceiving of viewers and users as co-authors of our constructed environments.
The term faux terrain can essentially be used to describe any artificial construct which suspends the hierarchy between the real and the virtual in favor of give-and-take between several possible realities. Accordingly, Stiefel & Company Architects understand faux terrain to be both a method of design and a possible role of architecture in the public sphere.
The other view This MAK exhibition combines a range of highly diverse and variously dimensioned architectural models with the projection of four films made specifically for the occasion. These films deal with individual projects as well as with reference material related both to these projects and to the design process as such. The projects are shown from differing perspectives. The film projection View 1 shows several of the studio’s projects as a documentary of sorts, representing an opportunity for an in-depth view. The experimental films View 2 and View 3 make possible an external filmic look at works by Stiefel & Company while providing specific insight into several of their reference spaces. View 4 shows a faux terrain in Buffalo, New York. The overall filmic concept for this exhibition was developed in collaboration with artists Josh Müller and Stephan Lugbauer.
Stiefel & Company Architects was formed in the spring of 2012 from the architecture studio Stiefel Kramer Architecture Vienna/Zurich, founded in 2003 by the two Swiss Hannes Stiefel (architect) and Thomas Kramer (publicist). Since 2011, Patrick Krähenbühl has worked as a visiting partner at Stiefel & Company Architects.
Hannes Stiefel studied architecture at the University of Applied Arts Vienna (master class of Wolf D. Prix) and at SCI-Arc in Los Angeles. He was a lecturer at the University of Applied Arts Vienna and has repeatedly held visiting professorships at the University of Innsbruck, the University in Buffalo, NY, in Ottawa, Canada, and in Beirut, Lebanon. Hannes Stiefel currently holds a visiting professorship at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.
His architecture firm has taken part in numerous exhibitions including the 2006 and 2010 Venice Biennales and has won multiple awards including the Austrian Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture’s “outstanding artist award” in the category “Experimental Tendencies in Architecture” (1995) and an Advancement Award of the City of Vienna (2007).
Curator Marlies Wirth
A cooperation between MAK and the University of Applied Arts, Vienna
Exhibition series APPLIED ARTS. NOW The exhibition series APPLIED ARTS. NOW is intended to create a platform for contemporary forms of applied art and thus provide greater visibility for particularly interesting artistic stances originated by graduates of the University of applied Arts, Vienna who live and work in Austria.
Past exhibition of the exhibition series:
PATRICK RAMPELOTTO. Adventures in Foam
25 Jan – 6 May 2012