an unfinished building.The unfinished building is of course the most literal interpretationofunfinished in architecture, however it is still subject to a certain abstractfascination. When a building is still under construction, although entangled inscaffolding and plastic, one begins to see the contours of its being, itsessence. There is a moment between the perception of scattered elements ofmaterial—like a stack of wood lattices and sacks of cement—and the perceptionof a complete and finished work of architecture, perfectly clean and stark,with all its finishing and detail. This in-between phase is where the buildingbecomes its own, it is no longer a selection of raw materials put together, butall of a sudden begins to make sense in itself.Perhaps the fascination for theconstruction phase appears, because at this moment the work keeps anabstractness that is lostat the moment whenthe building goes into service.
It stands in the landscape like a sculpture,like pure form, like a sketch where we can freely imagine how the work is to becompleted, or simply let that margin of unknown play in our sub-consciousness.Many architects express a certain fascination for the building site, seeingtheir work become real, but at the same time it remains mysterious, there are unsolvedand unknown creeks and corners, and many things can still be edited or changedcompletely. The architect Jan De Vylder talks about his fascination for thework on the building site. When arriving at the execution phase, the buildingis already drawn many times, and each time the building is drawn it ispotentially finished.
But as the drawings are done, and the project begin tomaintain a complete form, that is the first moment when one can start changingthings, because only then we can understand what we can or should change.1 Thismeans in a sense, that the project is always finished, but can also always bechanged, and in the intersection between time frame and opportunities tochange, we find that the one potential among many which gets realised, is aresult of a chain