Reuse of Industrial Building in Camberwell London
by Michael Pfister
april 25, 2011
inside the factory building
outside the factory
view on south london from the rooftop
Inspired by the notion of Bricolage described in “Wild Thinking” by Claude Levi-Strauss, the central theme in this semester was working with the real material, with the material available, and the existing structure.
The project is located on a deprived industrial site located in the district Camberwell in London. The old Carpentry factory is an accumulation of old storehouses, working spaces and one very long and narrow three-storey factory building, which is still in use as a carpentry. Our task was to make an intervention that would enhance the public use of this deprived site, aiming towards a use by artists and other cultural events in general.
My own approach was based on the intense and busy working atmosphere inside the big factory building on one hand, and the vast and extensive view on the city from the rooftop. The routing system of the factory was also quite problematic regarding the length of the building, as it only has one very small staircase. I wanted to keep the production-oriented quality as it is, by inserting a vertically alligned sequence of exhibition spaces, functioning as an additional staircase to the buidling. This sequence starts on the ground floor and goes up to the roof, where I placed a new cafe. The vertical connectedness is enhanced by cutouts from the ceilings in the exhibiton spaces.