{ subversion }


Beside the use of the scissor lift as prosthesis of preservation, the act of going up and looking down through the oculus aims at a symbolic subversion of the building. The lift tries to give a human proportion to the monumental scale of the atrium space. The oculus in the roof, like in the pantheon, could be seen as a divine eye looking down on the humble human. By bringing the visitor up, we offer a divine point of view as a human perspective to subvert the symbolic meaning of the oculus and the monumentality of the atrium.
The subversion of the sacral dimension of the space relates to the concept of profanation as coined by Agamben. The domain of the sacred, according to him, has not disappeared with secularization but rather has been reproduced in modern political formations like the Italian fascist ideology. In his book, Agamben points out that “to profane does not simply mean to abolish or cancel separations, but to learn to make new uses of them.”


Bert Stoffels