Artist's studio installed on top of historic Amsterdam department store
Netherlands-based firm i29 recently transformed the interior of a small tower on the roof of Amsterdam's 19th Century De Bijenkorf department store into a novel studio that will host a series of artists-in-residence. The project is dubbed Room on a Roof and indeed comprises just one room.
The designers cite inspiration from Alice in Wonderland and wanted to create a inspiring fairytale-like studio that plays with scale and space. In an effort to bring this about, i29 divided the room into two parts.
One part is painted in white and features a telescope for the resident artist to gaze out of the window upon Dam Square and the surrounding area, plus a few pieces of furniture. A restored spiral staircase also dominates the room and leads to the tower's dome
The other part of the room is the more interesting, and consists of a stacked wooden structure with integrated pantry, desk, storage space, sink, and a bed (for naps only – the artist will go home at the end of their working day). Likened to a livable cabinet by the designers, the different areas of the structure are reached via ladder.
The Room on a Roof project is partnered with the Netherlands' Rijksmuseum national museum. From January 27, it will host a series of artists, musicians, designers, and architects. Dutch artist Maarten Baas is the first, and the project is set to continue for over two years.
Though the tower is clearly too small to host any sizable events and not open to the public anyway, the plan is for the works created in the space to be shared with the public somehow. Ideas mentioned by i29 thus far include an online live performance, displays in De Bijenkorf's windows, and an exhibit in the Rijksmuseum.