Design School Zollverein
Essen, Germany

The Design School and the immediate landscape are equipped with high-tech interactive information technology, allowing the users to access and interact with the information contained within. Designed as a “plug-in-park,” landscape ridges feed into the main axis of the site and define the exterior activity spaces of the school complex. Infrastructure is provided for the staging of temporary events such as performances, recreation and conferences. The park invites visitors to plug in and interact. By connecting to the landscape, one also connects to the building itself.

The design concept is based on the surface of a conveyor belt that is folded onto itself to define spaces as introverted and extroverted. The introverted envelope contains program designated for students and faculty of the school. The extroverted surface unfolds into the plug-in landscape and is programmed as an auditorium and a start up factory for recent graduates. The design was selected for the Surfaces section of the 2004 Venice Biennale.