What is deconstructionism



International trend in architecture since the beginning of the 1980s, which pursues a fragmentation of the architectural body and a heterogeneous, seemingly “collapsing” reorganization of the components. In 1988, the American architect Philip Johnson organized the “Deconstructivist Architecture” exhibition in New York, which finally established the term as an international style designation.

Deconstructivist architecture is characterized by a remarkably free, playfully easy handling of architectural elements and structural structures. Familiar categories such as regularity, sequence or symmetry are largely alien to her. In contrast to traditional architecture, deconstructivism breaks through the fixed order of above and below, opposes orthogonal facade or spatial structures and transforms the architectural elements (e.g. roofs, stairs, doors, windows) into autonomous formal values ​​that are close to sculpture and industrial design.

For example, a roof performs the function of a roof, but at the same time it shows itself as an independent design element that would also exist outside of its architectural context, related to sculpture or design. The deconstructivist building presents itself as a jagged, heterogeneous conglomerate of forms that not only documents the greatest instability, but also gives the impression that it is collapsing at any moment.

Another characteristic is the pronounced, delicate play of light and shadow of the architectural components, combined with a dynamic that is unusual for architecture.

Although geometric shapes are preferred, deconstructivism defends itself against the rational, balanced order of architectural masses of constructivism and the De Stijl group. Nevertheless, the first-mentioned in particular serves as a source: notwithstanding the fact that the vast majority of constructivist architectural projects were denied execution beyond design or model, works by Vladimir Tatlin («corner» and «counter-reliefs», «Monument to the Third International»), El Lissitzky (“Prounen”), Kasimir Malewitsch (“Architektona”), Wladimir and Georgij Stenberg (“Constructions”), Jakob Tschernikow and Ivan Leonidow on the most important suggestions. The sculptor Gordon Matta-Clark also provided essential suggestions with his slashed, cut-open houses from the 1970s.

The Austrian architectural association Coop Himmelb (l) au is one of the best-known representatives of deconstructivism. One of her most prominent works is the Funder Werk 3 factory in St. Veit / Glan (1988-1989). The Hysolar Research Institute of the University of Stuttgart, which was built by Behnisch & Partner in 1987, and various buildings designed by the American Frank O. Gehry are also of outstanding importance. Last but not least, Zaha Hadid, Daniel Libeskind and Bernard Tschumi are to be performed. © Königsdorfer Medienhaus, Frechen (René Zey)