THE BARTLETT SCHOOL OF ARCHITECT, UCL
This project is for a visitor centre on Vallisaari Island for the ephemeral Helsinki Art Biennale. From the Pepper’s ghost hologram of forgotten history, the fog screen as a recreation of abandoned tunnels, through to the water velarium as a remembrance of forbidden lakes, the architecture brings together various nostalgic moments from Vallisaari Island.
While the physical architecture offers a site for the fictional events to occur, the transitory forms of water articulates an intangible enclosure. Yet, the spatial experience is completed with augmented projection. During the seasons between biennales, the centre is exposed as a bare construction invaded by the surrounding sombre greenery. As a bold display of its energy infrastructure, the structure becomes a performance of its technicality. As tangible as it seems to be, the biennale centre reveals its true self to virtual eyes. The architecture’s permanent form cannot capture its totality, as it is the ephemeral which shaped the actual biennale.