Building and work of art in one
Where does art end, where does architecture begin? The Bauhaus school, the cradle of classical modernism, did not distinguish between art and craft. And neither does the sculptor Max Seibald. When he converted an abandoned saddler’s house in the Carinthian community of Großkirchheim, he created an object at the juncture between sculpture and house. While the façade is clad with weathering steel panels, the interior walls are plastered with earthen clay. Due to its elastic quality, the natural building material allows for the quality of workmanship desired by the artist down to the last detail.
A minimalist sculpture – for living and working
The name My Space is well chosen. Here, someone has appropriated an empty space. By creatively transforming the dilapidated building into a place of art and culture, the owner, resident and sculptor Max Seibald configured the space according to his own ideas.
In accordance with his understanding of art and architecture, he created a sculptural building. A small model called “urban form” – a small forged metal sculpture – shows the design idea that was realised in cooperation with architect Gerhard Kopeinig.
A building reduced to the minimal, consisting of an almost two-storey plinth, above which is a gabled roof floating on a glass band. For a roof terrace, the roof was “pushed apart” in the middle so that it now protrudes at the gable ends.
A contemplative interior – with an exterior effect
Inside, the ground floor is dedicated to art, the first floor and the attic to residential space. Drywall boards made of clay earth and wood fibre were used for the few room-dividing fixtures and the walls.
The ground floor is one large room. The single-flight staircase to the upper rooms protrudes across it like a sculpture. The walls are solid except for three openings – the door and two floor-to-ceiling windows.
The walls and their surfaces take on special importance in a space that is so inwardly focused. A warm grey clay plaster not only gives them a bright colourfulness, but also corresponds to the design requirements. Clay earth is a material that can be creatively shaped and refined by hand.
A place for encounters – with art
For all its difference from the surrounding buildings, the house is integrated into the context of the site – a place with a mining tradition and in the direct vicinity of a zinc smelter listed on the national registry of historical places. The gable roof and the straight-lined cubature of the artists’ house are reflected in the existing buildings. “I perceive the entire ensemble as a sculpture,” explains the artist.
Programmatically, Max Seibald sees the house as a contribution to the cultural life of his home village and the region. He regularly organises exhibitions and artistic events on the ground floor, during which you can visit the house.
Visits are possible during the summer exhibition in August (Wed. to Fri. from 16-19h) or by special arrangement.
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Walls with a mission – comprised of clay earth building materials from CLAYTEC
The sculptor Max Seibald transformed the dilapidated building into “his place” with only a few spatial interventions. For this, he mainly used natural building materials. Wood and clay earth for the construction. Sheep’s wool from East Tyrol was used for insulation.
With modern drywall clay boards, interior walls can be built quickly and easily. When plastering with clay, a glass fabric mesh was incorporated as reinforcement.
Wood fibreboards were used for the interior insulation. They were adhered to the room side of the exterior walls using clay mortar and then plastered with earthen clay. After priming, the walls were given a high-quality finish with YOSIMA clay designer plaster in “Kolumba-Grau”.
The neutral grey has proven itself as a background for the presentation of artworks and can be given a variety of individual design finishes using various handicraft techniques. The grey colour results solely from the addition of different coloured clays.