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"Folding space"
sculpture, manuscript, 2022
Ceramics, Metal
technical support: Steven Putman
part of the verdute collection

Vedute (1991) was founded with the purpose to build up a collection of 3D-manuscripts: a library of three dimensional objects as visualized thoughts that make the concept of space accessible and tangible. Vedute invites artists, designers, architects and others active in different disciplines, to visualise their fascination with space in a work measuring 44 x 32 x 7 cm in closed form. Unlike books, 3D-manuscripts reveal their content as visual statements. Some are directly accessible, others disclose themselves literally step by step; the variety is proving to be endless.

Vedute compiles and maintains the collection, and presents the works in order to stimulate the ongoing debate on architecture and space. Beside the individual acquisitions Vedute initiates various theme projects constituting the different sub-collections such as The City Library of the Senses (1995), The Written versus the Constructed (1997), Colour & Space, (1998), 00:00 Time & Duality (1999/2000) and ‘Acoustic Architecture-Architectural Acoustics’ (1999/2000).

The Vedute collection found a new home in the Netherlands Architecture Institute in Rotterdam. Small presentations from the collection are organised in the studyroom of the library of the Boijmans van Beuningen Museum, also in Rotterdam with regular seminars on special manuscripts.

Verdute stichting invited Jonas to make a Manuscript.


Jonas Vansteenkiste united three of his fascinations in one manuscript; those for Scripted Spaces, for Facadism and for the Wunderkammer. 


Common denominator is the mental and physical impact of architecture on us, on human beings. Indeed, Scripted Space theory deals with spaces that are programmed in such a way that the viewer feels like the center of a story. Facadism manifests itself in the artist's environment, where demolition-new construction preserves only facades, thereby temporarily standing alone and then reduced to mere aesthetics. Finally, in the Wunderkammer, it is all about multiplicity and stratification in presentation. Iconic for Vansteenkiste is The Picture Galley in Sir John Sloane's Museum, where folding wall panels triple the exhibition surface. 


Vansteenkiste brings these elements together to move from the closed book form of the manuscript to a spatial arrangement. The work shows metal frames, partly filled in with ceramics. Color and material refer to traditional brick facades; the combination with metal creates the atmosphere of industrial construction. Openings in the sheets reveal layers underneath; fragmented architecture. 

Hinges enable the unfolding and upright positioning of the facade sections. With this action, the manuscript suddenly takes up space. In that architectural space, work acquires an inside and outside, front and back sides emerge. The manuscript "Folding Space" is a playful hommage to architecture, a mold for thinking about space.


Maaike Behm

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