A 145’ long table meandered through The Drawing Center’s Gallery, displaying 70 of Frederick Kiesler’s drawings and 1 notebook in a loop. The walls of the gallery were left blank – for the first time in The Drawing Center’s history. Visitors were guided along a curatorial itinerary divided into four themes relevant to the avant garde architect’s work: Correalism, Perception, Endless Architecture, and Exhibition Design. Along the way, they faced each other from varying distances across an inaccessible void in the center of the gallery.
Larger drawings were displayed on tilted panels, generating surprise, and causing visitors to adjust their viewpoints. Endless Table was fabricated with powder coated CNC milled aluminum, acrylic, and mdf, and was assembled in two days. The ‘V’ shaped aluminum table legs were designed to both support the table and structurally join together its 21 re-configurable modules.
From The Drawing Center’s press release: “This exhibition explores the pivotal role drawing played in the interdisciplinary and multifaceted work of Austro-American designer, artist, theoretician, and architect, Frederick Kiesler (1890-1965). Frederick Kiesler: Co-Realities will trace Kiesler’s interest in the expressive and conceptual possibilities of drawing through key projects and concepts from the 1930s to the 1960s, from his early work as a scenic designer to his revolutionary designs for Peggy Guggenheim’s Art of the Century Gallery, and his decades long investigation into the unique structure of his Endless House. As so few of Kiesler’s installations, sets, or projects remain or were ever realized, the drawings have become key to understanding his significant contribution to 20th century thought. Philip Johnson called Kiesler “the best-known non-building architect of our time.”
Client : The Drawing Center
Project Location : The Drawing Center, New York
Status : 2007 – 2008
Area : Length: 145 feet
Program : Exhibition of Frederick Kiesler Drawings
Sustainability : Re-usable modular display system
Awards : International Association of Art Critics (AICA/USA) national arts award for Best Show in a Non-profit Gallery or Space.
nARCHITECTS Team : Eric Bunge, Mimi Hoang (Principals); Alice Wong (Project Architect), Dominique Gonfard, Peter Turba
Collaborators : Curators: Dieter Bogner & Joao Ribas
Image Credit: Frank Oudeman