Daniela Campins & Nikki Leone – Interstice

With this experiment Nikki Leone and Daniela Campins intend to build a standing sculpture that comments on the artificiality of our built environment. By taking apart an architectural scale maquette of an already existent complex, the artists play with this found object and rearrange it into impossible structures. By definition a Maquette is the sketch or preliminary model used to visualize the shapes and ideas of a final product such a sculpture, or building. The intent is an ongoing event with the potential to re-incarnating into several arrangements and possibilities, so it is not a permanent piece. Its first manifestation consisted on the 4 pieces from the original model elevated individually on wood sticks that resembled house on stills from less developed countries. The highest of them at eye-level, maneuvering to stay up under weather conditions, stacked on the grassy surface of a colleague’s backyard was connected to the other 3 parts by weak stringy wood that maintained an elegant and upright position for the next few days, all the parts were barely stacked in the ground and gave the illusion of weightlessness. The sculpture was placed outdoors to create a relationship between perception and reality, the individual and the environment. By continually re-using the parts this piece will continue to morph into several manifestations of the impossibility of utopian and dystopian ideas and structures. This ongoing artwork flirts with ideas of play versus function, impermanence, different possibilities of revealing a system, and the urban experience.

The term interstice was used by Karl Marx to define the exchange communities that were escaping from the economic framework of capitalist economies, in that they were outside the laws of profit: barter, selling at a loss, autarchic production, etc. The interstice is a space in human relations which, by inserting itself more or less harmoniously and openly into the global system, offers other possibilities of exchange to those that are already working within the system. (Nicolas Bourrriaud, 2000)

The original model was a 3’x5’ replica of the new Education, Social Science, Media Studies department is formed by 3 unified models containing 4 buildings and landscape areas that replicate the 209,750 square feet complex that houses high tech classrooms, offices, meeting rooms on the west side of UCSB campus. The architects studied Santa Barbara Building tradition, county Courthouse and are attempting to gain certification from the U.S Green Building Council.

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