Project IV: Erosive Studio Space

This current assignment focuses on the past artist analysis and becoming the architect of a place of work. The artist, Vhils, who is a Portuguese street artist, uses destruction as his technique and theme in art, where this will be carried out on an architectural space. In his popular wall carvings found in Portugal, China and Rio, he addresses the problems of gentrification, where people of gentrified areas lose their identity. Being forced out of their homes and displaced, they become victims to gentrification, Vhils would carve their faces into the walls to bring awareness that they are part of the identity of the area.

Inspired by the idea of Vhils using destruction as his tool to address an issue, as an architect he would use Venom as his destructive force. Venom, from the Spiderman series, is an extraterrestrial Symbiote species who takes over a host and feeds off of their negative emotions to help strengthen his own powers. He also blocks out and damages the host’s mind, slowly taking control of their body.

Further inspired by Tamsin Van Essen’s Erosion series, which focuses on a host being eaten away by a parasite, then highlighting the “infection” that ruins the host, Venom could be viewed as a biological erosive force, similar to a Lichen. Venom would feed at the already existing cracks and damages of built areas and further destroy it. In process of exploring Venom as a destructive force, I experimented with ways to destroy solid objets with liquid-like affects. With this, I analyzed how to control the way ice would melt by using salt. From this, I discovered that Vhils would create the starting point of Venom’s path of destruction. Therefore changing the overall atmosphere into an erosive place of work.

This place of work would be located in the Architecture Building within the exterior facade of the studio spaces. As the erosion caused by Venom takes place, Vhils would be creating a space used as an extended studio place for student, in terms of the actions that shouldn’t be done in studio, such as spray painting and using power tools. This space would be beneficial to the students but with negative impacts because they are conceptually the “destructive” ideas that shouldn’t be done in studio due to their hazards and health risks that further damage the general studio space. Vhils would bring out the issue that these actions are being taken away, but are helpful to the students to complete projects and assignments. So to give the students the ability to do these illegal action, Vhils uses Venom to create these erosive spaces that will act like an extended studio space.

Photographs of Ice Exploration

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Video Clip of Ice Exploration

Photographs of Site and Site Model