Saturday, February 06, 2010

Animating Architecture: Burnham Pavilions by Spirit of Space

It begins with a single, small boy running through the scoops of the Ben van Berkel/UNStudio pavilion that stood in Millennium Park last year, and ends with a time sequence of the Hadid Pavilion at night, transformed by Tracy Dear's lighting. The movement of human form through structure illuminates in a way no still photo can.

At yesterday's formal opening of Studio/Gangs Columbia College Media Production Center, I had a chance to meet Red Mike of Spirit of Space, a multimedia company consulting company that makes films about architecture. “We both saw how the camera can capture and convey the emotions involved in spaces,” partner Adam Goss told the Architectural Record.

Peter Zumthor's Baths at Vals, Switzerland, one of the most admired structures of the last century, is usually depicted as at the Galinsky website here, carefully composed shots, devoid of humanity. Spirit of Space's video, on the other hand, actually gives you a feel for how Zumthor's work is actually experienced, complete with people, even those not so fashion-model-perfect as their surroundings. With watery handprints, they leave their mark, however fleetingly, on Zumthor's stone. It concludes with a lovely shot of Zumthor's masterwork, in it's verdant natural surroundings, being enjoyed by a solitary women of a certain age, her face, in a frilly pink bathing cap, floating serenely above the waterline.

Spirit of Space's videos, many of which you can see here, help point to a new way of understanding architecture. Avatar, schmatatar, this is a form that cries out for 3-D.

2 comments: said...

that's not their Vals footage; it is just re-edited.

Petra Lynn said...

Thank you, I'd not heard of the firm. I really liked the videos. Makes my work seem inconsequential.