In lieu of the project descriptions and full-page architectural photos familiar from other monographs, MVRDV Buildings uses journalistic reports, interviews with users and countless amateur shots to give the reader an impression of how the works are used and esteemed. It offers a fresh take on the representation of architecture, in monographs in particular.
At the book’s launch, Andrea van Pol will look back at MVRDV’s 20-year history with principals Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs and Nathalie de Vries. She will also talk to authors Andreas and Ilka Ruby and designer Joost Grootens about the monograph’s concept and design.
MVRDV has become known around the world for its iconic buildings, which include Villa VPRO in Hilversum and the Dutch pavilion for the 2000 Hannover world exposition. Behind these designs and thought provoking projects such as PIG City and FARMAX, lies an oeuvre that is less homogeneous than one might expect and that few know well. “If you are continuously conditioned to digest the iconic, you are bound to overlook projects that are different and more modest in appearance – they simply don’t register on the perceptual radar,” write Ilka and Andreas Ruby.
Explicitly eschewing the voice of the critic who interprets the work and that of the designer who explains his or her intentions, MVRDV Buildings breaks with certain routines that are bound up with the representation of architecture. What are the benefits of this approach? What does MVRDV’s work have to tell us once we set aside notions like datascapes, diagrams and densities? And how do users experience blue houses, orange bleachers, vertical shopping streets, residential silos, book mountains?
The Ruin comprises eight exhibitions in summer 2013, each of which illuminates an aspect of The New Institute’s agenda for the future. One of these, Treppen/High Rise Down Fall, a collection of images by Johannes Schwartz, will feature photographs of MRVDV’s emblematic pavilion for Expo 2000 in Hannover .
The publication MVRDV Buildings can be ordered a NAi Booksellers with an early bird discount of 10 euro until 4 July (discount code: MVRDV).
MVRDV Buildings book launch
Location: The New Institute (Auditorium)
Address: Museumpark 25, 3015 CB Rotterdam
Time: 5pm (bar open after event until 8pm)