Form, Heft, Material, the mid-career survey of world-renowned architect Sir David Adjaye’s work to date, launched this June at Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow.
The exhibition, organized in collaboration with Haus der Kunst in Munich and the Art Institute of Chicago, offers insight into the global architect’s unique approach, highlighting the ways he weaves local geographies and cultural legacies into his celebrated designs. Showcasing over twenty examples of his built works, including the Moscow School of Management (Skolkovo), the exhibition also provides rare access to Adjaye’s research strategies in the early stage of design development.
David Adjaye: Form, Heft, Material is the first exhibition of a major architect at Garage and inaugurates a new chapter in the Institution’s longstanding interest in developing discourse around contemporary architecture and its role in society today. Adjaye’s firm Adjaye Associates has developed an exhibition design specifically for the Museum, bringing his characteristic sense of light and pacing to Garage’s historical modernist building.
“I am thrilled to bring Form, Heft, Material to Moscow, a city that was critical to the development of my approach to working in diverse geographies across the globe,” said Sir David Adjaye. “Garage is an incredible institution whose international perspective and capacity for stimulating interdisciplinary dialogue has made them an ideal partner. I am honored to be part of the Museum’s deepening engagement with architecture.”
The retrospective is organized into four sections, each devoted to a particular aspect of Adjaye’s practice. Living Spaces collects Adjaye’s projects for private homes, a practice which first brought him international acclaim. Democracy of Knowledge concentrates on Adjaye’s public projects, presenting furniture and external finishes of buildings—all of which, either by appearance or purpose, are connected to various forms of civic education and community building. The section also houses scale models of several projects, including the famous design for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C. This section also includes substantial content on Adjaye’s latest ongoing works, including the Latvia Museum of Contemporary Art. African Research is devoted to Adjaye’s unprecedented research into the architecture of fifty-three capital cities across the African continent. Continuing the emphasis on research, a new initiative, developed in collaboration with MARCH Architecture School in Moscow, is centered on the fourteen capitals of the former Soviet Republics and twelve key Russian industrial cities. Drawing on Adjaye’s ambitious research project Europolis (completed in 2008) for which the studio accumulated a colossal database of the European capitals (population density, total area of the capitals, main roads, underground systems, waterways, internet usage data, GDP, CO2 emissions, employment levels, languages and so on) this new version, Asiapolis presents an analysis of the urban landscapes after the collapse of the Soviet Union, accumulating and visually representing new information on the cities much needed in order to make sense of the changing built environment in Russia and former Soviet Republics
David Adjaye: Form, Heft, Material was initiated by Haus der Kunst and the Art Institute of Chicago and curated by Okwui Enwezor and Zoë Ryan. The exhibition in Moscow is organized by Kate Fowle, Garage Chief Curator, in collaboration with Andrey Misiano, Assistant Curator.