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Across the Wall

Autor principal: Carmen-Daniela Petrea
Coautori: Irina Avram, Ionela Mădălina Zărnoeanu

The proposed design illustrates the Crossing Boarders theme by framing the stand as an enclosure. The walls of the enclosure are treated in two distinct ways. The two sides adjoined to the existing complementary functions are designed to provide an optimal book exposition, with plenty of options for frontal book display. The other two sides, situated alongside the main corridors, that constitute the stands relationship with the public, are a metaphoric representation of limit or boundary, cold and inaccessible from the outside. To this effect, the outside faces of the walls are painted black, and besides the functional access areas, the only connection with the inside are small windows where books will be placed. This symbolises the way art connects us with the outside world, let us tell our story to others, all leading to crossing borders. The inside atmosphere is warm and friendly, the colour of the Kraft cardboard and the wood making it a good place to linger among books, in a comfortable inviting setting. It is this atmosphere that invites the public in, past the dark cold walls and into the pleasant light one can glimpse through the access openings.

Located diagonally opposed, the two access areas facilitate the flow of traffic. Once inside, there are many sitting places that invite the visitor to freely and comfortably peruse the books they are interested in, thus avoiding the flow of visitors who may only want a quick visit and would like to just look at the exhibited titles. One can find sitting places integrated into the three free-standing modules, that also provide book exposition, as well as in the “pile” formed in the outer corner of the stand, an arena of modular sitting places piled together in a random way that invites you to browse books, to socialise, to look at the world and share ideas, thus creating a small agora-like place. These randomly positioned modules will be used as sitting places during book launches, conferences and other public events organised in the stand. By arranging the modules for such a public event, the outer corner of the stand is free of function, and by sliding the two outside walls the stand becomes more open and accessible now from three different points. The two access openings get smaller, but still allow visitors to walk through the stand, even during an event. Opening the corner and placing the speaker in this area allows a large number of visitors who are in transit and to attend the presentation if they wish, having a very direct access that does not interfere with the other participants. At a metaphorical level, the events that gather people together are those that generate openness, that eliminates borders.

The designated kid’s corner, located in the opposite diagonal corner, a more secluded and protected space, will have chalk drawing activities as part of a specific project. In the exterior wall there are some removable modules, painted with chalkboard paint, that the children can draw on and reinsert into the wall. Thus, the exterior appearance of the stand changes from day to day as the walls become more colourful and friendlier, filled with children’s chalk drawings.

The enclosed stand has a more open feature, a signal that captures the audience’s attention from afar and provide information about it. Above the stand, at a height that makes them more visible, are place a number of cardboard boxes painted in the colours of the Union Jack.

All walls and modules designed for book display will be made out of Kraft cardboard boxes, placed on top of each other just like building blocks and glued together for better stability. Sitting modules will be made out of plywood in the form of boxes, which can used in various ways. Plywood will also be used to make the sales desk, the information desk and the small podium necessary for event speakers. The use of cardboard boxes somehow translates to the ephemeral nature of a book stand and is the answer to the requirement to make a construction from recycled and recyclable materials.

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