In the space of a decade, the Groningen-based architecture bureau Onix has created an impressive body of work that expresses its highly idiosyncratic ideas about architecture.
In many of its projects Onix seeks out novel positions, in which the context and specificity of the local play an important role. They manage this without ever falling into the traps of facile, historicizing solutions or losing sight of global developments. Even more important for Onix is the view that contemporary architecture is overly dominated by concepts and superficial appearances, and too little by actual experience and use.
The crux of Awaiting Significance is therefore the ‘ authentic architectural experience’. Over a six-month period, Onix invited guests -from expert architecture critics to absolute laypeople- to stay in a big new apartment complex. In return, the visitors noted down their experiences with neighbours, shops and public transport, representing a completely new form of architectural critique.
The book includes a richly illustrated overview of all the important projects by Onix. The bureau unravels its motifs and themes in its own maNUfest.
Wood Works is an adventurous exploration of wood architecture by Onix, an architectural firm based in Groningen, The Netherlands and in Helsingborg, Sweden. Their preference for wood has a lot to do with the specific qualities of this material: it is flexible, warm, natural, and environment-friendly. What makes Onix’s work especially fascinating, is how they make full use of the opportunities this particular material offers for experimentation and how they push that to its limits. Always playing with both traditional craftmanship and the latest techniques in construction, Onix design a world that is just a little bit more exciting than usual, a world where the inhabitants and users of an environment become just little bit more involved with that environment and with each other.