Richardson makes Proposal for Berliner Palace Portal
International artists are invited to make proposals for an Art in Architecture (Kunst am Bau) project for the internal staircases of Portal 1 and Portal 5 of the Humboldt Forum in Berlin. It is in the reconstructed Berliner Palace, known in German as the Berliner Schloss. The building is being rebuilt on its original site to replace the Peoples Palace, an East German building for the people which was built during communist times on the site.
The Proposal for the Humboldt Forum
Richardson’s proposal is inspired by Alexander von Humboldt scientific knowledge developed from his travels in the Americas. She became fascinated by Humboldts stories and theories while living in Colombia as a student. Participating in this competition is an opportunity for her to reengage with her own time and travels in Colombia as well as Humboldts. Her idea is to bring this experience into the work in Berlin and take visitors on a journey from the low lying jungles of the Amazon regions to the volcano mountain tops of the Andes during their visit to the Berliner Palace.
Under the stairs on the entrance level she proposes a lush garden like retreat of ferns and palms painted on ceramic mosaics. On the underside of the stairs she has proposed using golden acrylic sheeting as a reference to the light that streams through the jungle canopy.
As the visitor climbs the stairs to the second level they reach the snow capped volcano top. It will be painted in rich high-key colours mimicking the vegetable colours used in indigenous textiles and with graphic allusion to the geographic discoveries of the time. In reference to the architect Schillers original ‘Star Room’ that was located behind the door in Portal 5, Richardson has also proposed to include a subtle LED lighting pattern within the volcano painting that will light up at night and be seen from the Schlüterhof. The lights are also a reference to Alexander von Humboldts theory of the cosmos which inspired the title of Richardsons’ proposal.
All the proposals were exhibited during March 2018 in the Humboldt Box, Berlin.