The Negotiating Wall

The project proposes an alternative model for Berlin’s cultural landscape and explores the possibility of the fundamental architectural element of the wall as a mediating device between the home and the studio. Questioning the current antagonistic relationship between live and work, the disparate realms are brought together in a negotiated space, while unfolding tensions, contradictions and potentials for a renewed mutual exchange.

It is a response to a critical reading of the city as an archipelago of secluded citadels of culture, that fails to define a dialog with the city and detach themselves from the domestic realm as the visionary playground. Instead, a programmatic explosion of the cultural clusters reinstates the city as a larger test site for the architectural discourse and design. The fragments – literal content, expertises and affiliated resources - are reintroduced into a 'splintering urbanism' and claim a series of firewalls as vertical sites for shared inhabitations as a means of preserving the crucial voids in a wounded city fabric. Various types of 'layered', 'pivoting' and 'pregnant' walls suggest programmatically dense yet volumetrically compressed conditions, while producing new spaces along much finer lines and boundaries between life, work, storage and display.

The master city planner becomes a mini-planner on a macro-scale, who unfolds a series of interventions with the negotiating wall as a dividing yet all-encompassing figure - a tangible reconciler in a present-day society of immaterialized boundaries.

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Vertical Sites for Inhabitation

Programmatic Explosion of Cultural Clusters

'Layered Wall' Intervention

'Pregnant Wall' Intervention

'Pivoting Wall' Intervention

'Layered Wall' Interior

'Pregnant Wall' Interior

'Pivoting Wall' Interior

Splintering Urbanism

Preserving voids by claiming adjacent firewalls

Stages and audiences