The Long Thin Yellow Legs of Architecture (1988) Coop Himmelb(l)au

Otto Snoek
About the artwork

Until well into the nineties, Coop Himmelb (l) au worked in deconstructivism, for which this image is exemplary: not looking for harmony and synthesis, but rather for fragmentation, chaos, contrast and movement in the design. The duo designed the sculpture as part of the project 'Images in the City' in 1988. The sketch was created in one short moment during the design process. This consciously chosen intuitive method of Coop Himmelb (l) au results in expressive designs for buildings and sculptures, including the sculpture made for Rotterdam. The Long Thin Yellow Legs of Architecture, either "The long, thin, yellow legs of the architecture”. Originally the work was to be placed for café 'De Unie' on the Westersingel, but the work was too large. It is an open construction of sheet steel and beams. The materials derived from functional construction contrast with the effect, which is emphatically non-functional. In this way of working, the architects suggest a lightness of the image that cannot be reconciled with the format. The use of color also contributes to this: the heavy steel beams and plates are largely painted in light colors such as yellow, white and azure blue. For more information: Sculpture International Rotterdam

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About the artist

The agency Coop Himmelb (l) au was founded in Vienna in 1968 by Wolf D. Prix (Vienna - Austria, 1942) and Helmut Swiczinsky (Poznan - Poland, 1944). Coop Himmelb (l) au is an architectural duo that is related to the visual arts. Both members studied architecture at the Technical University of Vienna and the Architectural Association in London. In 1968 they entered into a partnership and since then the duo has worked exclusively on joint projects. In the Netherlands, Coop Himmelb (l) au is best known for their design for the pavilion for old art of the Groninger Museum (1994).

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