FROM DULL FACADE TO EYE-CATCHER
Edegem is a charming Flemish town that originated in the Middle Ages and grew into a popular village nearby Antwerp. Unfortunately, the charm of Edegem was severely affected by less charming new buildings in the center. It was decided to renovate the Market Square. A striking feature is formed by a once blind facade that has transformed into a work of art, ‘The Wall’ by Philip Huyghe. M2uur bv was commissioned to produce and assemble his design.
Vectris cvba, Leuven
Philip Huyghe, Antwerp
70 panels, 150 m2
At first glance, Philip Huyghe’s design consists of a photo of a birch forest on a white surface. A closer look reveals details. Small photographs of Huyghe’s mother and the creator himself in all sorts of absurd situations. Often with a wink, sometimes with a tear. Four illuminated cassettes leap out of the flat surface. Like screens, they display colorful photographic scenes. An estrangement permeates the design. Here, the artist tells his story of an undigested past as a visual journey through time.
Huyghe contacted M2uur bv in 2011 with a request for help. He had been commissioned to make a work of art, but got stuck in the implementation. The vision was there, but how to get from design to realization? M2uur bv advised Huyghe in material and assembly options, drawing up a budget and action plan. In addition, in this project phase, proofs were provided and models were made.
Sublimated aluminum proved to be the best material for this project from technical and aesthetic requirements. The final design was post-processed and formatted for production by M2uur bv. The formatted files were transferred to thin aluminum sheets in the production process using a sublimation technique. Under pressure and heating, the ink particles were then integrated into the top layer. The images were finished with a scratch- and color-resistant coating. Finally, the aluminum sheets were processed into 70 impact-resistant but highly manageable sandwich panels.
Huygens’ work is the proverbial icing on the cake of the redevelopment plan for Edegem. The plan created cohesion in the buildings and gave an impulse to the public space. With “The Wall” in a prominent spot next to the Town Hall, a real eye-catcher has been realized. This transformed a dull corner of the Market Square into a very special place. The combination of the design and the innovative techniques give the square a unique touch.