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The German Architecture Museum shows digital drawings by Antonio de Campos.
The client wanted an unobstructed view of the sky in the morning: Capital Hill Residence in Barvikha Forest, Russia, test design for an original, digital drawing, 60 x 120 cm. © Antonio de Campos, 2010

Buildings of all kinds, proposals for competitions, but especially designs by the stars of the architectural scene circulate in the media today in the form of renderings and drawings long before they are realised or, because they are not built, shelved. Similar to models, such two-dimensional representations often celebrate their own artistic language and unfold a special kind of magic. This also applies to the works of artist Antonio de Campos, which were created between 2003 and 2015 as preparatory works for projects and objects of Zaha Hadid’s office and are still being presented by the Deutsches Architekturmuseum (German Architecture Museum) in the interim accommodation DAM Ostend until 28 August.

Views from different angles, axonometries and deliberate distortions – in the 1980s, Zaha Hadid first became known for her pictorial representations of architecture that seemed like visions pointing far into the future. These complexly charged and confusing images formed an independent facet in the architect’s oeuvre. While the perception of the architectural images of the office has so far been largely focussed on the charismatic founder, the DAM exhibition now presents Antonio de Campos’ artistic contribution to this.

Antonio de Campos, born in Brazil in 1961 and trained as an architect and filmmaker, was involved in the image production of Zaha Hadid’s office from 2000 onwards. As the creative director of a video production company with new graphic presentation possibilities, familiar with video animation and computers, de Campos helped to merge the levels of architecture and film, which became the new hallmark of Zaha Hadid’s architectural representations after the turn of the millennium. The show at the Ausweichquartier in Frankfurt’s Ostend district takes a look at Antonio de Campos’ laboratory of images and presents 43 works, some of which consist of several parts, created between 2003 and 2015. On display are complex collages of prints, foils and spray techniques. “Some works,” says the announcement, “resemble more a frozen movement of air than a representation of a building. Other sheets appear like an X-ray, flashing with high gloss or shimmering with many colours.”

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