Here’s a selection of pieces.
Our digital reality is smooth and perfect. High definition is standard.
EDPM granulate, on the other hand, is a material with low resolution. Like voxel, fragments unite to form a larger whole. The grain structure underlines the physical character of the material – both visually and haptically.
Tarmac comes to mind with all its brutal associations. Yet, upon touch, the flexibility of the foam and EPDM shell implies a surprising twist in the perception of the pieces.
Fast-paced urban life seamlessly alternates between various activities and passivities. Work, play and recreation are condensed in time and space, to the point where the boundaries between them seem to blur, like a sprinter looking sideways. At the same time, a deregulation can be observed across all areas of cultural expression: The high fashion industry is turning to sportswear symbolism, while streetwear labels are infiltrating haute couture. Naive works of art line the galleries, private blogs reveal more truth than newspapers, and companies hand out bonuses for failed projects. Wherever one looks, rules are overturned for the sake of innovation and progress.
In the midst of these turbulent times, we adapt the strategy of disruption and welcome an unusual material to the interior. At first glance, the mystical surface evokes memories of flawless clarity, like that of a crystal. Only on closer inspection does it reveal its true identity: EPDM granules are often used for the construction of sports fields and running tracks, but their incomparable appearance and properties also make them ideal for interior applications. The High Speed Collection oscillates between reality and fiction, function and concept, analogue and digital.
The Brazilian tropicalistas combined the popular and the avant-garde as well as the local and the foreign. The vases act in their spirit by taking tropical plants and giving them a new form and life.
Many houseplants can be propagated by taking a cutting from a mother plant and placing it in water. This asexual means of reproduction produces a plant that is genetically identical to its parent. The vases celebrate the beauty of this sometimes weeks long process by focusing the beholders perspective on the botanical protagonist.
The grid allows the anxious observers to monitor the roots growth and at the same time teaches patience because the natural process can’t be accelerated.
The vase Obliqua is specifically designed to propagate small and medium size houseplants. A rectangular frame can be extended to different heights seamlessly in order to fit many different types of cuttings of up to approximately 400 mm length.
The vase Palta is specifically designed to grow Avocado trees. A common kitchen leftover is thus given a second purpose and turned into a living design object.
The vase Variegata is specifically designed to propagate plants from cuttings larger than 400 mm length. The top of the frame divides the full body of the vase into three equal segments to allow finding the best possible standing position for the cutting. An extension is not needed since cuttings this size are strong enough to hold upright by themselves.
Looking at our personal cosmos of inspiration we realized that it expands far beyond our field of study. Driven by curiosity we started researching the principle of Aufgabe Null at the Institute of Architecture at TU Berlin to find out what was so exciting for us about transdisciplinary inspiration and how we could channel ideas deriving from it into spatial proposals.
The result is a personal epistemology within and around architecture which helped us developing our own holistic working method.
In Was bedeuten all diese Dinge räumlich? we showcase studies of this method that ever since is part of our design strategy: We combine a classic research of the existing, deepen the gained knowledge in conversations with colleagues that work in creating domains and summarize our findings in spatial artefacts in order to feed them back into the cycle of public discussion and interpretation.
Aufgabe Null is a studio for functional art composed of architects Hilaria and Nikita von Saldern.
Their practice is informed by versatile perspectives and a transdisciplinary understanding of their surroundings. While their work often contains notions of critique or irony, it always primarily constitutes propositions and challenges limitations, valuing originality over the risk of failure.
As if predetermined by their architectural studies, the works of Hilaria von Saldern and Nikita von Saldern oscillate between functionality and end in itself.
The always bilaterally developed pieces of Aufgabe Null have been presented in Milan as part of the Salone del Mobile, at Paris Design Week and at Brussels’ Collectible fair. Renowned publications such as Architectural Digest, DEAR and Sight Unseen have reported on the studio.
COLLECTIBLE, Brussels, 2021
WantedDesign Manhattan, NYC, 2020
RADICAL CRAFT, Berlin, 2019/20
1000 Vases, Paris, 2018
SaloneSatellite, Milan, 2018
Biennale Urbana, Venice, 2015
Leere zählt, Berlin, 2015
WantedDesign Manhattan, NYC, 2020