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Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project

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Organization
Abstract
Proposals to reconstruct architecture usually face two key reproaches. First, they would deceive beholders in denying historic events and their annihilating effects, often subscribing to hegemonic history narrations and identity formations. Second, reconstructions would necessarily remain superficial, pale, and unconvincing approximations of a lost original materiality which alone could guarantee the desired historical sensation. This is apparent in historic debates from the post World War I reconstruction of Ypres to the ongoing Schlossdebatte. Yet this commonplace argumentation seems to have become partially obsolete due to the recent acknowledgement of a conceptual next to a material authenticity and of the intangible aspects of tangible heritage in preservation theory, due to the impact in cultural studies of Judith Butler's concept of the performative nature of gender and sexual identities, and due to a number of unconventional reconstruction designs. If we think of replicas as instances of architectural performativity in a Butlerian sense, could we not distinguish replication strategies that dissimulate their nature as replica from designs that enact an absent building yet consciously perform this enactment? Elements of the latter attitude can be found in the temporary 1:1 model of Mies's Golf Club project for Krefeld, designed by Robbrecht and Daem Architects and built in plywood near to the project's original site in 2013. Depending on their position in and around the pavilion visitors alternately experience this replica as an immersive evocation of Miesian architecture, with the varnished plywood evoking marble panels, but also as a self-exposing scenographic device that alienates its own illusionism, for instance when the supportive framework is left uncovered. Precisely in the design and the materialization of this kind of replicas lies a possibility to attain a sharp conceptual authenticity. Such self-reflexive enactment might not be enough to resist but still to trouble any straightforward ideological recuperation.
Keywords
replica, model, Robbrecht en Daem, Mies van der Rohe

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
Liefooghe, Maarten. 2015. “Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project.” In 68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Abstracts, 20–20. Society of Architectural Historians.
APA
Liefooghe, M. (2015). Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project. 68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Abstracts (pp. 20–20). Presented at the 68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), Society of Architectural Historians.
Vancouver
1.
Liefooghe M. Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project. 68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Abstracts. Society of Architectural Historians; 2015. p. 20–20.
MLA
Liefooghe, Maarten. “Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project.” 68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Abstracts. Society of Architectural Historians, 2015. 20–20. Print.
@inproceedings{6715797,
  abstract     = {Proposals to reconstruct architecture usually face two key reproaches. First, they would deceive beholders in denying historic events and their annihilating effects, often subscribing to hegemonic history narrations and identity formations. Second, reconstructions would necessarily remain superficial, pale, and unconvincing approximations of a lost original materiality which alone could guarantee the desired historical sensation. This is apparent in historic debates from the post World War I reconstruction of Ypres to the ongoing Schlossdebatte. Yet this commonplace argumentation seems to have become partially obsolete due to the recent acknowledgement of a conceptual next to a material authenticity and of the intangible aspects of tangible heritage in preservation theory, due to the impact in cultural studies of Judith Butler's concept of the performative nature of gender and sexual identities, and due to a number of unconventional reconstruction designs.
If we think of replicas as instances of architectural performativity in a Butlerian sense, could we not distinguish replication strategies that dissimulate their nature as replica from designs that enact an absent building yet consciously perform this enactment? Elements of the latter attitude can be found in the temporary 1:1 model of Mies's Golf Club project for Krefeld, designed by Robbrecht and Daem Architects and built in plywood near to the project's original site in 2013. Depending on their position in and around the pavilion visitors alternately experience this replica as an immersive evocation of Miesian architecture, with the varnished plywood evoking marble panels, but also as a self-exposing scenographic device that alienates its own illusionism, for instance when the supportive framework is left uncovered. Precisely in the design and the materialization of this kind of replicas lies a possibility to attain a sharp conceptual authenticity. Such self-reflexive enactment might not be enough to resist but still to trouble any straightforward ideological recuperation.},
  author       = {Liefooghe, Maarten},
  booktitle    = {68th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Abstracts},
  keywords     = {replica,model,Robbrecht en Daem,Mies van der Rohe},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Chicago, USA},
  pages        = {20--20},
  publisher    = {Society of Architectural Historians},
  title        = {Replica as Critical Architectural Performance: Mies 1:1 Golf Club Project},
  year         = {2015},
}