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Mies van der Rohe’s Villa got illuminated with lasers

The legendary Villa Farnsworth, a modernist building by the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, was illuminated with a grid of red lasers. The temporary installation was designed by Iker Gil and the media art duo Kraftwerk.

The villa, considered a key example of international style, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2006. The aim of the project is to emphasize the geometry of the building, its connection with the natural environment, as well as history.

Lasers turn on in various combinations, highlighting individual elements that are difficult to assess when you see the whole house. In addition, the lighting draws attention to invisible elements: the trees that were here before, and the levels to which the Fox River rose during the floods.

Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe designed the Plano, Illinois home for Dr. Edith Farnsworth. The walls are completely made of glass, mounted on metal supports. The internal space is open, only the kitchen and two bathrooms are allocated in it. Construction took six years and was completed in 1951. The client was unhappy with the result and quarreled with the architect.

Ikel Gil hopes that the installation will allow people to look at the famous house in a new way. “It’s important to understand that historic buildings like the Farnsworth House can be continually reinterpreted,” he says. “Great authors were ahead of their time, and we must return to their legacy.”

The installation uses a laser display from Geometry of Light. Soundtrack was provided by the Barcelona sound producer Oriola Tarrago.

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