The public space is the stage where our lives unfold, individually and more so in our communities. The creation and co-creation of this space inheres the same core value as the design of a chair, a building or a stage-set: it is the precise framing of an unknown, the definition of a potentiality which will be filled and shared by others. I understand scenography as this synthesis of theatre and architecture, the sensory open space for narratives to unfold. The lecture discusses a selection of examples starting from Ancient Greece to present time, relating to various forms of architecture operating as a regisseur, in public as well as private spaces which are akin to theatre.
Serge von Arx, (Architect and Professor of Scenography), is the artistic director of the scenography department of the Norwegian Theatre Academy (at Østfold University College), and external professor at the Danish National School of Performing Arts. In 1997, von Arx completed his degree in architecture at the ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology). In 1998, he began his long-term collaboration with Robert Wilson on over 50 stage, exhibition and design projects all over the world, and he is a regular mentor and architectural consultant at “The Watermill Center” on Long Island, New York. In 2001, he opened his design studio in Berlin and since 2006 he is a resident in Oslo. Between 1998 and 2009, he regularly wrote for the “Neue Zürcher Zeitung”. Serge von Arx lectures, publishes, runs workshops and works internationally as a scenographer, designer and architect, in practice and research focusing on „performative architecture”, the meeting and subsequent amalgamation of theatre and architecture. In 2019, von Arx was a guest lecturer at Zurich University of the Arts in the Master Program for Curatorial Studies. He curated the architecture section for the Prague Quadrennial 2015 and he was part of the curatorial board for the PQ 2019. He is a member of various boards, notably for the Norwegian Artistic Research Program, and the Scandinavian Artistic Research Journal VIS.