Architecture and Design Museum

Thick Skin
by Viola Ago and Hans Tursack
Arts District Location

“Our design is a large, monolithic object, that takes inspiration from the Earth Artist Michael Heizer’s lifelong interest in the marriage of photographs of the natural landscape and the material presence of massive geological fragments. Our installation is to be sited in the A+D courtyard; a large visual intervention in the post-industrial fabric of the Arts District. The graphic panels of the object cue viewers into a juxtaposition between the rapidly developing, hyper-urban condition of downtown LA and the material realities of the inhuman landscapes that surround it. The geometric and otherworldly nature of the work is somewhere between an installation, sculpture and a post-human monument or obelisk. Thick Skin began as a research project led by us at the A. Alfred Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. The project primarily explores optical interactions between complex architectural forms (three-dimensional geometric studies) and flat, two-dimensional graphics. We are specifically interested in the visual effects offered by printing graphic designs on rigid panels that can be used to clad-or-skin buildings. In this sense, our large object to be installed in the A+D courtyard (10’ at its highest point when installed) can be understood as an abstract model, or proto-architectural proposal for full-scale building projects.”
-Viola Ago & Hans Tursack