The vision of a long-deceased architect has been drawing architecture fans to the Hoornsemeer since 2001
Whilst most people would think the Martini Tower, or the new(ish) Groninger Forum as the icon of the city, for architecture fans there’s only one destination: the Wall House #2. It’s not located in the city centre, didn’t cost hundreds of millions of euros, nor has it survived a fire and a war- but it is perhaps the most innovative building in the city.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Wall House, which was completed to designs by the New York based architect John Hejduk. Though architect himself never got to see it completed, plenty of other have, and to celebrate it having been standing for 20 years the Groninger Museum (who own the house) will be holding weekly festivities. As reported by the GIC.
The exceptional form of the building comes from a 1973 design completed by Hejduk for the landscape architect Arthur Edwin Bye. High project costs meant that the house wasn’t built until 2001, and remains the only Wall House completed (despite being called ‘Wall House #2’).
To get an idea of how architecturally significant the house next to a sleepy Groninger suburb is, it’s regularly cited next to Gerrit Rietveld’s Schröderhuis, and Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye.
The house is based around an 18.5-metre long and 14-metre tall wall, which acts as the central thoroughfare and main structural component. Rooms are then ‘hung’ off this wall, and the idea was that the house could grow with its occupants.
Originally, the Wall House #2 was intended to be a calling card for the new Hoornsemeer district, and was put up for sale a 1 million Guilders (it didn’t sell). The Groninger Museum took on the building in the early 2000’s, and use it to this day as exhibition space, or to host artists in residence.
For more information about the Wall House’s 20th birthday party, check out the Groninger Museum’s website.