WOLVES.VILLAS

INFO

ATM: 251 SPECULATIONS

Look, idk, I was depressed for a while. For personal reasons I’d rather not go into here. Things just weren’t going according to plan. I thought making a video game might cheer me up, or at least cheer you up, which is probably the next best thing.

Mies was depressed for a while too. Things just weren’t going according to plan. He’d produced a set of plans in the late 1920s for Erich and Elisabeth Wolf for a not-so-modest house in Gubin; a small town sliced in half by the Polish/German border. Mies thought of it as something altogether new, what some historians would later refer to as his first truly modern residence. But Elisabeth was less and less enthused by the prospect of modernity as construction dragged on. She took it upon herself to soften the whole affair, ivy crawling across the exterior, crown molding and tacky furniture stuffing the insides, etc. As you might have guessed, Mies and Elisabeth had a falling out before construction was completed. Later on, a not-entirely modern house that wasn’t entirely Mies’, nor entirely Elisabeth’s, was blown to smithereens during the second modern war.

Now there’s some talk about rebuilding Villa Wolf. Some longshot idea of tourists traveling to an obscure German suburb to see an obscure work of a modern master. Problem is, nobody’s really sure what constitutes Villa Wolf. That is: whether Villa Wolf is the house that Mies drew (but never built) or the object decorated by Elisabeth and blown to bits some years later. Not much survives of either villa, a few preliminary drawings from Mies and a grainy snapshot of Elisabeth’s overstuffed interior. Forensic historians are working to reconstruct the Wolf’s expansive furniture collection, but the whole thing seems like a lost cause.

At the time, it seemed to me that more interesting than this or that Villa Wolf, was the idea of a villa permanently trapped in some kind of purgatory between a drawing and a building. I wanted to make a video game that would let people endlessly speculate on possible permutations of Villa Wolf, a way of preserving the house without crushing the ambiguity of the whole affair. For the last few months I’ve been dumping an archive of .obj furniture into Mies’ preliminary drawings. I pay people on the net extremely small amounts of money to perpetually redecorate the villa. So far I’ve collected a few thousand possible Villa Wolves.

Idk, honestly the whole thing made a lot more sense to me at the time, but like I said, I was in a bit of a mood. Anyway, I hope it cheers you up a bit.

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