Sam Jacob Studio is a collaborative architecture and design practice that makes buildings, places, objects and strategies.
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A Very Small Part of Architecture resurrects Austrian Modernist architect Adolf Loos’s 1921 design for a mausoleum for art historian Max Dvorák. Though never built, the image of Loos’ design has haunted architectural culture ever since. Here the heavy dark and masonic form is recreated at 1:1 scale using a lightweight timber frame and scaffold net: A ghostly reenactment of an unrealised architectural idea.
It takes its title from Loos’ essay Architecture (1910 ) in which he argues that “only a very small part of architecture belongs to the realm of art: The tomb and the monument”.
Built within Highgate Cemetery, amongst the many monuments and memorials to the dead, A Very Small Part Of Architecture makes a different kind of memorial. Not one dedicated to a person, an event or a moment in time, not designed to remember the past but instead to imagine other possibilities, altered presents and alternative futures.
A Very Small Part Of Architecture is commissioned by the Architecture Foundation and has been generously supported by ZHA, Carmody Groarke, RCKa. SJS is grateful for engineering support provided by AKTII.