The title of this proposal for a family house in the new suburb of Wiesbaden, near Frankfurt, is a reference to The Hypnerotomachia Poliphili (1499), a Renaissance text that intersperses a dreamlike narrative with descriptions of architectural escapes, garden follies, and designed landscapes. Similarly, Reiser and Umemoto’s collages eschew realism for hybrid constructions that evoke an uneasy domesticity. The spaces of the house are discontinuous and irrational. A spiral staircase leads to a bridge, a precipitous corridor becomes an exit hatch, and a soft, fleshy tunnel tethers a platform to a totemic industrial chimney: ascent and descent map a fragmented and unsettling narrative.
Gallery label from Cut 'n' Paste: From Architectural Assemblage to Collage City, July 10–December 1, 2013.