30.10 – 01.11.2014

Alkistis Thomidou & Martin Michette



Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tiles

How do we approach the modernist legacy as architectural heritage?

The Neue Nationalgalerie is a monument of the 20th century, and now, for one last time, visitors are able to experience the building in its original conception. This intervention takes advantage of the upcoming renovation and the expectations that grow around it.

Mies van der Rohe practiced integrity and honesty in his use of materials. His mature buildings achieved a refined beauty thanks to his sophisticated application of elemental materials such as steel, glass, wood and natural stone. As his work ages it confirms the boundaries of the man made.

PVC tiles are applied on to the existing surfaces of the Neue Nationalgalerie, employing a low budget material to tease the glamour of high-end architecture. The grid, the grain, and the depth of the materiality are distorted, challenging the precision of the original design and the supposed solidity and intransience of building.

¹ Mies van der Rohe, “On Restraint in Design”, The New York Herald Tribune 28 June 1959