Room without ceiling
(1888-1975, 2020)
04:50 videoloop, no sound

Who is transforming a building: an urban planner, a policymaker, a tenant or time itself?

The building plan was developed by Cornelis Vermeijs who worked for the city of Utrecht. The architect designed numerous other neoclassicist schools of similar style at the end of the 19th-century. The building on Lange Nieuwstraat 7 was different. Being embedded in the surrounding architecture of Abraham Dolehof, the design was adapted to introduce the enfilade corridors and rooms facing the courtyard. Already in the 1960’s there were inspection reports that stated the building was falling apart. There wasn’t enough space in the building and the courtyard for the children, not enough daylight, and the building reeked of mold. There were complaints about the initial ‘enfilade’ plans of the building: having no hallway guaranteed constant surveillance, however, that meant that classes would be constantly interrupted.

Next to this, the very tall school building blocked sunlight from other houses, leading to the removal of the two top floors of the building in 1975. The current spaces of the first floor were re-built on top of the ground floor. The building was probably not torn down entirely in order to preserve the Medieval foundations that lie beneath it.

Room without ceiling (1888-1975, 2020) is part of the solo-exhibition 
This Creaking Floor and All the Ceilings Below,

FOTODOK & Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons,
Lange Nieuwstraat 7, Utrecht (NL)
06.03.20 - 14.06.20

Los Angeles, Calif.