Tom Fruin, a New York-based installation artist, recently traveled to Copenhagen where he built this stunning outdoor pavilion in plaza outside of the Royal Danish Library. Constructed out of hand welded angle iron and about a thousand scraps of reclaimed plexiglass, Kolonihavehus is a portable structure commissioned by CoreAct, a Copenhagen-based performance company headed by Anika Barkan and Helene Kvint. The outdoor sculpture will provide a backdrop for a series of daily poetry performances, which began on October 14th and will end on November 13th.
Fruin takes much of his inspiration from found objects and his urban environment and focuses on the overlooked or discarded remnants of society. The Kolonihavehus is a 12 x 12 x 14 house inspired by a garden shed originally intended to give state workers a refuge from cramped living conditions in the city.
The structure is made from a series of 30 individual panels welded together out of angle iron and fitted with multi-colored scraps of plexiglass ranging in size from 2×2 inches, to 24×36 inches. All of the recycled plexiglass was found or scavenged from a variety of sources, like a defunct plexi distributorship outside of Copenhagen, a closing picture framing shop, the basement of the Danish State Art Workshops, and the dumpsters outside the Danish Architecture Center.
Completely portable, the Kolonihavehus can be dismantled into its component parts and transported in a van. The door is mounted with handmade pivot hinges, while operable windows keep it from overheating. A light installation mounted in the space below the roof lights up the pavilion at night into a candy-colored lighthouse and during the day the interior is swathed in bright colors.
The design for the sculpture was created by architect J.D. Messick and the computer controlled light sequences were designed by Nuno Neto. Daily performances exploring the concrete poetry of Denmark’s own Vagn Steen will take place in front of or inside of the sculpture until it is taken down in mid-November.
Images © Tom Fruin