Thomas Schütte ›Pavillon‹
The ›Pavilion‹ sculpture, designed by Thomas Schütte for the city of Krefeld, is a wooden construction with a simple and easy-to-comprehend basic form that can be entered and walked through. Despite having a diameter of almost 15 metres, the sculpture has an airiness to it that is quite fitting for a building of its type. Part of this is due to its recessed base, high ribbon windows, roof lantern and, last but not least, its slightly curved roof segments, which add a touch of chinoiserie to the form. The interior can be split up into eight separate sections. This separation of space makes it easier to use the building as an information pavilion for the Bauhaus anniversary. This allows the information being displayed to be split up and presented in separate ›chapters‹.
Born in 1954 and now living in Düsseldorf, Thomas Schütte is one of the most renowned international artists of our time. His work includes sculptures in a whole range of different media: drawings, prints and, for several years now, architecture. After studying with Fritz Schwegler and Gerhard Richter at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, he began in the early 1980s to discover the model (the architectural model to be precise) as a form of expression and to develop his very own kind of sculpture.
During this time, he used widely available materials to create laconically designed scale buildings and sets that examined the collective and individual mental state during this last decade of the Cold War. Visions of artists’ houses stand next to menacing monumental buildings, elegiac scenes next to sarcastic comments on the zeitgeist. The form of the model enables him to only hint at stories without elaborating on them. The message is kept hovering in an ‘as if’ state.
Schütte’s architectural models thus oscillate between thought, speculation and emotion. The image constructed does not refer to something that was ›actually‹ meant and which it merely stands in for, but it creates new associational fields. The question if and how the model should or could be put into practice becomes somewhat insignificant or even disappears completely at this stage of Schütte’s evolution. The notion that some models could become reality, however, in a subtle way increases the dramatic effect of their immanent concept.