kobayashi + zedda

Toronto, ON

Architects employ sound, light, colour and iconic imagery in their work to stimulate the senses, to express emotion, enhance a sense of space, trigger memory or tell a story. Often, in cold, northern environs, the architect manipulates these components to create a sense of warmth, familiarity and attachment. When done poorly, it is escapism, when done well, it is an architecture that can extract all available energy for the benefit of the user.

Frieze attempts to entice the participant into believing they are entering a cold, empty landscape. Recreating these extreme conditions has helped us, as architects and builders, gain a better understanding of how to avoid them.

The plastic air curtain has an iconic yet humble, industrial status. It is thin, clear and penetrable yet opaque in the sense that it is divisive. It can also be beautiful when arranged with precision. It separates two different climate zones; the habitable and the inhabitable. The sheerness of the plastic air curtain is also a reminder of the magnitude of our reliance on human processes and dependence on hydrocarbon-based energy to separate us from nature. The plastic air curtain always distorts light, always concealing some part of the reality beyond.