Indepth Arts News: |
"LIMBURG COLLECTION III: Dom Hans van der Laan"
2000-10-14 until 2001-01-28
As part of the Limburg Collection project an exhibition will take place around the monk architect Dom Hans van
der Laan (Leiden 1904 - Vaals 1991). This exhibition is partly taken over from Leeds (United Kingdom). As well
as architectural models and teaching aids there will be shown archive materials and drawings. In November a
conference will be held.
The exhibition focuses on a number of beautifully constructed models and teaching aids designed by Dom Hans
van der Laan to demonstrate his theories. The facsimiles of these teaching aids will be available for the public to
handle. Such play was always considered by Dom Hans van der Laan to be important both as a teaching aid
and to assist the instinctive understanding of space.
To indicate the basis and realisation of Van der Laans theory and working process, the exhibition includes
archive material such as different versions of the Abacus and Form Bank used in the development of his
architectural practice and the demonstration of his theories. Drawings will indicate the origins of his Plastic
Number, and a most extensive survey and measuring of Stonehenge, considered by Van der Laan to be the
very birth of architecture. This exhibition is fundamentally concerned with a theory, architectural aesthetics and
the experience of space.
The architectural practice and legacy left by Dom Hans van der Laan (Benedictine monk, theorist of architecture,
teacher and architect) produced just four buildings. They, however, represent the manifestation of an extremely
intense and rarefied architectonic theory. According to Van der Laan, the essence of architecture lies in its
proportions: everything else is secondary. The theoretical and practical research of Van der Laan is based on his
discovery in 1928 of the Plastic Number, a system of measurement and proportion developed by Van der Laan,
partly as a consequence of finding the Golden section too limiting.
Hans van der Laan
Modellen van Dom
Photo: Susan Crowe