Drywall and plaster installation by Kennedy & Violich Architecture

An alternate mode of material creation is undertaken through the performance of molding. Within this performance an architect brings together different materials and combines them in such a way that the identity, character, and function of each within the whole is indiscernible. In this arrangement each material relies on every other material in order to function within the whole, and the existence of the whole itself is dependent upon the interrelationship of all the materials involved. For example, concrete represents a prefect molding of materials in that its constituent parts of water, cement, sand, and aggregate all rely on one another to function, and the identity of each is masked by its inclusion within a more complex system of performance. 

While collage speaks of material translation, the performance of molding “speaks of material transfusion and the search of perpetual transformation of matter.”(1)  These ideas can be seen in an installation by Kennedy & Violich Architecture, where drywall and plaster are molded together to form a relationship within which each is dependent upon the other. In this example, the material of drywall takes a form that challenges preconceived notions of its use in architectural discourse. It is only through the performance of molding that the material’s image as drywall is able to recede and give way to a cohesive arrangement and spectacular new form.


1. Kallipoliti, Lydia. “Dross; on the onset of a post-production era.” 

Image courtesy of Material Misuse: Kennedy & Violich Architecture by Kennedy & Grunenberg, 2004.

Note: All written material is protected under applicable copyright laws. Reproduction requires the permission of the author and proper citation.


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