The Galeriehaus at Lindenstraße 34–35 in Berlin-Kreuzberg is an object of spatial hypothesis. The building sits at the overlap of different historical conditions: regarding both its own insides as well as the surrounding inner city as interior contexts. Biographically, the buildings were host to various programs and functions due to their convertible spatial qualities inside the structural concrete skeletons. Together with another historical block, the twin house was integrated as a war ruin into a newly built residential development during the IBA rebuilding efforts of 1987. The model converts the interior of the historical roof into a contemporary construction by opening it up from a storage space to allow transparent public function. Adhering to the spirit of critical reconstruction, the restored block edge and courtyard structure take their cue from prewar Berlin’s permitted building height, which forms the speculative basis in the proposed project for a type of city plinth typical in Berlin. In the discourse on urban growth and the spatial possibilities of increasing density, dealing with this city plinth forms the starting point for a multitude of projects: a contemporary interpretation of a historic roofline is one.
The architectural practice “Thomas Baecker Bettina Kraus” was founded in Berlin in 2013. With a diverse team, the founding partners – Bettina Kraus and Thomas Baecker – work on both architectural and urban design issues as well as product design. Each task is approached independent of scale and instead measured according to creative, economic, ecological and socio-cultural parameters. Every project is fundamentally based on conceptual, rational and intuitive thought processes. While navigating through the issues of functionality, context and technical feasibility of any given project, the work itself begins to develop its own formal and intellectual dimensions. A dialogue with the client then leads to the emergence of a custom made solution with a specific spatial figure and materiality.