Secret Room or Gallery
"To be flexible means to abandon classical architectural values and to be flexible in everyday life; to respect the builders in their individuality."
- Christine and Horst Lechner
Suspended plans or pictures can be taken out of the line of sight as needed simply by putting two units together and/or pushing them aside as a small showcase gallery. Old and new are also clearly distinguishable on the floor. Over the existing, dark flooring of the approximately 120 square meter hall, just below the hanging, suspended cupboards, a sand-colored screed floor as an attached "tray" has been highlighted.The necessary insulation, the new electrical wiring, and other technical installations could be accommodated in this setup. The new shelves in the existing niches also keep their distance to the substance: thin steel plates were pushed into the rear wall so as not to touch the lateral soffits.Existing manholes in the ground, which were formerly necessary for repairing motorcycles, were converted into a storage depot and covered with simple gratings; the tea kitchen is housed in a lockable box on wheels; the bathtub is located behind a glass wall, which can be shielded from light with shades if necessary...The concept of the preservation of the existing space and the visible separation of old and new was implemented down to every last detail.
Respect for the inventory was the basic attitude; flexibility in use formed – these were the design requirement for converting the former two-wheeler garage into an architectural office. The large hall should retain its open character but allow for several, flexibly usable spaces. In addition, a small, lockable kitchen box on wheels with suspended cabinets represents the movable elements. Sliding from side to side over a distance of approximately 9 meters, the wooden boxes floating between the ceiling and the floor serve as room dividers. Because the sliding doors of the cabinets are covered with foam rubber, they can be used as presentation surfaces for drawings. Recognizable distances from the existing substance also separated fixed implants such as the floor or the shelves in the niches. Fitted elements like the flooring or the shelves in the wall recesses were also kept separate from the existing structure through clearly visible, unsealed joints. The material used - concrete and steel - represent typical workshop materials. Their sophisticated finishing, however, produces the very different, very elegant atmosphere of the studio