Studio An Fonteyne

Samira Lenzin

Tower of Knowledge

KNOWLEDGE: It is constantly exposed to a cycle of conservation, research, production, discussion, testing and appropriation.

KNOWLEDGE OF EUROPE
: The focus lays upon the history of European community, dating back to 1951 as legal actions were taken towards the building of a political, economical and social community.

THE MIND: to think
The analog and digital artefacts of this knowledge, the original sources, are stored and protected within the archive. It is the first step of the cycle.
As I enter the building, I stand within a vast space, exposed to a stacking of floors cutting themselves further away from this central opening the further up I look. My intuition tells me to follow the pink shape wrapping itself around the vertical shaft shooting up through the space. Whilst walking up the ramp, I get glimpses inside the archive. Walking past its shop window frames, I see all kinds of shelves and displays showing a selection of what is kept on those floors. Further up, the ramp takes me to another space. People sitting along the opening focused on whatever they are reading. Shelves, books, paper. As I am accessing the documents and research documented within the library, the second step of the cycle begins.

THE SPIRIT: to desire
I am torn towards the books, the knowledge inside of them, as I start wandering around. I open a book and start reading, start wanting to know more, so I take another book. One interest leads to another, with one answer being questioned by another and all of a sudden I find myself within a accumulation of research. New questions arise but no answers can be found. Others seem to feel the same way so collectively we take our interest further up, into the tower and to the labs. We rent a space composed of a few tables and chairs. Here, we can process what is at hand and develop what could not yet be answered. Our thinking provokes the desire to continue our research and fill in the gaps of knowledge.

THE BODY: to do
New findings and theories have to be discussed and tested within a broader community. We take the discovered knowledge and bring it up to the auditorium. A space of contemplation and clear view. Driven by our motivation and commitment to the discoveries we share them in the collective. The new knowledge is assessed by the community before being brought back down again for re- appropriation until ultimately it can serve others, too.
Every now and then, being mentally exhausted, even frustrated sometimes, I need a break. Thoughts and emotions have to be processed so I escape to the other tower. The rooftop connects them as an extension of the public space. Enabling me to interact with others outside the formal environment, an interaction not only on a social, but also programmatic and urban level. I go for a dip in the pool, climb up a wall or throw a few balls inside the smaller sibling of its neighbour.

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