The images presented in this feature document a selection of Arno Brandlhuber projects, exploring the subject of legislation in his work. My attraction to this approach derives from how Brandlhuber, in the process of explicitly incorporating the subject into his practice, engages deeply with his surroundings and with the wider context of his work. Through his conscious and ongoing commitment to engaging with processes of legislation, he creates works that are both profoundly integrated into—while at the same time highly distinguishable from—their spatial and legislative environments.
Yet within my work as a photographer, the subject of legislation itself has only a limited appeal. Above all, I am interested in generating visual knowledge and understanding of how human activity and subtle forms of use, appropriation and territorial claims function to produce space and shape our perception of our surroundings. As a consequence, I want to explore architecture’s intention and agency in the effort to negotiate, renegotiate, and shape social dependencies, while at the same time inquiring into the potential relationships created through architecture within the urban context.
In this sense, I see legislation as a membrane between what might be called ‘local conditions’ and the daily renegotiation of the rules that govern them. For me, architecture, as well as processes of urban evolution and urbanization, can be seen as witnesses to the formal intelligence or informal ignorance involved in this renegotiation.
This interrelationship between the formal and the informal is also what interests me most in Arno Brandlhuber’s work. It is this interdependence that I want to explore and question through photography, images, and publications. In doing so, I also want to challenge and explore common practices of publication involved with spatial production today.
ARCH+ feature 50, Erica Overmeer on Brandlhuber+, is part of the English-language issue “Legislating Architecture", published in May 2016 to accompany the contribution by Arno Brandlhuber and Christopher Roth for the Venice Architecture Biennale 2016. The german issue will be available in September 2016.