During the Covid-19 pandemic, our awareness of our own and collective living space has intensified and grown. My project is an artistic research into a phenomenon of the corona era; the improvised refuges that people have set up in their homes in lock-down, driven by the need for a place of their own. Own place that suddenly meant and entailed so much more.

People took control of the space in their homes in a new way. They adapted spaces based on the needs changed by current events, in relation to the rearranged public space, suddenly inaccessible places and situations outside the home.

To map what was happening behind closed doors, in the seclusion of the lock-down isolation, I called on social media, in my circle of friends and social network to participate in my project. I asked for photo documentation of corona constructions and make-overs. Hiding places, temporary working places, comfort nests, play huts; structures by both children and adults.

I started a search for a way to experience intimate structures and private spaces of others, without ever being able to physically enter them, thus bridging the enforced distance of the Covid-19 lock-downs.

I printed out the collected photos and used them as a starting point for building collage sculptures. In this way I translated the places in my studio documented by people themselves at home from 2D to 3D and interpreted what inspires them. Bending, folding, wrinkling, cutting, sticking, a shape was created. Subsequently, the three-dimensional collages were translated into two-dimensional digital versions by means of 3D scanning. To be able to place the scans online, they have been simplified. Every translation between 2D, 3D and different media had an influence on the structure & texture and thus on the details & shape. It thereby generated new versions/interpretations of the spaces.

The 3D scans make the collages accessible to the public without having experienced them in real life.
Here on the website they can be viewed in an online 3D environment and projected via AR (Augmented Reality) technology and experienced in someone’s own living room.

To achieve this technically, I work together with fellow artists Heerko van der Kooij and José Miguel Biscaya.
I was able to set up the project thanks to the financial support of the Mondriaan Fund, the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts and the Amarte Fund.

Visually, the research is concerned with translating spatial perception between the dimensions of real spaces, representation of spaces and digital space. The work process is aimed at experimenting with new techniques and exploring the possibilities in transformations and interpretations of spatiality, materiality and tactility.

I see ‘Corona constructions’ as true lieux de mémoire (sites of memory) of the Covid-19 years. They stand as a monument and an ode to the common human need for security in seclusion, inspired by an admiration for the human ability to deal creatively with limited space.