Starthuisje [Starting House]

John Körmeling


Sculpture, 28 x 10 x 12.5 cm.
Materials: steel, plaster

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. BK5968).

This model of a starter’s hut is the design for one of the few projects realised by the Dutch artist John Körmeling. This odd building has stood at the rowing match site at Harkstede near Groningen in the Netherlands since 1992.

“Although I do have a penchant for conceptual art, I find durable projects great fun. My first building, the Starting House, has now been standing at the rowing competition course in Harkstede for ten years. It isn’t being used anymore, because they’ve discovered that it’s too windy there to row! They have now given the wind some purpose by setting up windmills there, but the Starter’s Hut is deserted. It’s a pity. If I were to drive past it, not knowing who had designed it, I would certainly take a photo because I think it’s so beautiful. I like that, art that confuses you, where you have to make a mental adjustment to understand it.”  (John Körmeling)

John Körmeling studied architecture. But he does not like linear solutions, compromises, or purely functional or decorative things. So it is easier for him to use his energy, creativity and absurd ideas as an artist rather than as an architect, although his fascination with space can be felt in all his work.

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