Formations is an ongoing design research into a type of sandstone, called mergel, that is found in the South of the Netherlands. For centuries is was used for masonry construction until it became a raw material for cement production. Today only one artisinal quarry remains open and is used predominantly for restaurantion works. Mergel is rarely, if ever, used in a more reflective contemporary manner. In collaboration with Fer Rouwet, the oldest active miner of mergel we’ve been seeking to reappraise mergel as a construction material in its own right,.
The proposal envisions a network of above ground pavilions that demarcates the underground territory of the geological formation where mergel is excavated: the Maastrichtiën . The design seeks to emphasise the spatial qualities of the underground mines and specific material qualities of mergel.
LOCATION: Zuid-Limburg, The Netherlands
The Prix de Rome is the oldest and most prestigious award in the Netherlands for visual artists under the age of 40 and architects under the age of 35. The award dates back to 1808 when Louis Napoleon introduced the Prix de Rome in the Netherlands to promote the arts. Although the award adopted various guises over the years, the aim has always been to trace talented artists and promote their further development and visibility. Since January 2013, the organisation and funding of the award is handled by the Mondriaan Fund. The Fund does so with due respect for the Prix de Rome’s long history and with the express wish to guarantee its status as an independent award.
TITLE: States of Exception
STATUS: Work in progress