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Torpedo


Art Gallery

Kunstfort Vijfhuizen, NL

Competition, ‘10

architect DHL architecture

design team Lada Hršak, Daniëlle Huls

exhibition Kunstfort Vijfhuizen ’10

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The Genieloods was built in 1896 as a magazine shed to store cannons at the Vijfhuizen fortification, part of Amsterdam’s defences. While refurbishing this shed into an art gallery a mobile torpedo-like structure shall be placed inside the building houses services for exhibitions. It both accentuates and subverts the absurdity of the munitions that have never been fired here. It can be moved throughout the building but can also be placed outside, in the car park or on the dyke. The torpedo’s skin is robust and similar in appearance to the steel structure of the shed. The building’s mechanical and electrical service systems are basic and autarkic: windmills,

helophyte filters, composite toilets, solid fuel stoves and heat storage. The relationships between the complex’s different elements are heightened in cinematic fashion, using the equivalents of panning, wide angles and close-ups. On reaching the dyke the fort, the Genieloods and their surroundings are visible in a wide panoramic view which gradually disappears on descending the stairs to the magazine. On entering the building the interior is surprisingly bathed in lush rays of natural light that penetrate through the line of cannon holes in the south facade. These openings simultaneously frame glimpses of the fort in all its esoteric and brooding glory.

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