Homo Faber: a narrative
Monograph dedicated to Günter Günschel
Curator: Cornelia Escher
The term homo faber describes the human being able to appropriate and accommodate the natural world with the help of the tools and technical devices it creates. In 1957, the Swiss architect and writer Max Frisch portrayed this type in his novel Homo Faber: un rapport. The novel concentrated on the specific world view of modern man as an engineer mastering nature – and the decisive disfigurations this specific position entails. With its focus on the conflicts between nature, technology and the human condition, the novel by Max Frisch mirrors some essential topics of Günter Günschel’s experimental work. Günter Günschel was one of the outstanding protagonists of experimental architecture in Germany.
The presentation in the course of the Biennale is the first posthumous exhibition of his work in a museum space. Günter Günschel’s work asks for the specific “solitude” of the architect in his role as a homo faber and for the place of the human in an architecture developed in a technological age. Moreover, he scrutinizes architecture as a practice that both recreates and destructs the image of nature. In so doing, Günter Günschel touches questions that deserve a reconsideration in the light of the current debate on the role of the human and the posthuman in the anthropocene.
Günter Günschel, Germany
Bertrand Cavalier, France