Subtraction Inventories

CSA space, Vancouver, JUNE 09 - JULY 10, 2016.

Fossilized air, secret vacancies, and a breeze.
A plenum pusher. A space full of matter.
An interior weather. And a calculated unbuilding.

In her recent book Subtraction, architect and theorist Keller Easterling urges architecture and building practices to consider subtraction and its interdependence with addition. Her analysis questions an approach to design that too often begins with a “tabula rasa” or a blank slate. With this comes the task of exposing and tracing infrastructure and hidden systems, working conscientiously with what came before, what is to be covered up, and planning self-reversal.

In Subtraction Inventories, an unseen architectural cavity is aired out, and a non-structural ceiling is designed for its own collapse. Eroded synthetic material removed from the commercial waste stream, is hollowed out to vent untouched interiors on the surface of a storied floor.

Easterling, Kellar, Subtraction: Critical Spatial practice 4. Sternberg Press: Berlin, 2014.