Drawing on the rich archival material from ZHF, the exhibition offers a rare insight into the conception of an early key project by Hadid, from its initial brief to its final built form.
In 1980s Japan, a booming economy presented new opportunities for international architects and designers to create buildings and interiors catering to a new group of style-conscious urbanites. Like much of Hadid’s early work, Moonsoon drew inspiration from the early twentieth-century avant-garde movement in Russia, in particular the works of Kazimir Malevich, whose abstract and geometric shapes were translated into a series of twisted, exploded, and layered architectural forms. This project also incorporates design references such as 1950s French Picon liquor commercials, the works of Alexander Calder, and photocopies of orange peel and pasta. Such eclectic sources represent cultural hybridity as well as a sense of playfulness, qualities which were integral to the vibrant design scene in Japan.
Zaha’s Moonsoon is a case study of an important early project, whose themes were prevalent in unrealised designs in Japan such as the commercial projects Tomigaya (1986) and Azabu-Jyuban (1987) and influenced later built works such as the Osaka Folly (1990). Central to the exhibition is the painting series of Interior Concepts (1989-90) that explores the possibilities of the site and its design concept. Other highlights include an innovative presentation model by artist Daniel Chadwick and Moonsoon sofa (1990), an integral part of the interior’s gravity-defying scheme. Also on show is a newly commissioned video work based on materials in the archive, by graphic designer Marwan Kaabour. Together, these objects offer an insight into the process, presentation, and perception of Hadid’s first completed project outside of the UK.
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