While the American architect Louis Kahn (1901-1974) considered the room to be the essential origin of architecture, the British author Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) emphasized the private space as being vital to female creativity in ‘A Room of One’s Own’ (1929). At the time of writing, her words were a direct challenge to the patriarchal organization of the domestic sphere and, by extension, society at large.
“The House of the Explorer”
28 February – 16 June, 2019
deSingel International Arts Campus – Expo
Desguinlei 25, 2018 Antwerpen
Far from being a timeless form, the room is the product of specific historical circumstances that are related to one of the most controversial and problematic issues in human history: the domestication of society. Our private spaces reveal the differences, both subtle and pronounced, that shape us as individuals. They also expose the extent to which these are influenced by gender, race and class distinctions. Using texts and drawings, the exhibition presents a concise historical overview of the architecture of the room.
The exhibition consists of two different approaches: ‘The Room of One’s Own’ focuses on the history and usage of the private room; whilst ‘Loveless’ sketches out the history of the minimum dwelling. Both of these approaches call the architecture of the domestic space into question, beginning with its most basic element: the room.