Dystopian: A mechanical, moving stair. Clicking gears. Raw.
Utopian: A fractal, calming stair. Incremental growth. Organic.
From their project Between two Floors KripZ presented us with their concepts for two stairwells that were far from the ordinary. Both were quirky, well thought out, and hardly your average set of stairs. Each set of stairs played with the idea of being either dystopian or utopian, and set within a hotel in a particular site.
The city is dystopian. The city stairs were mechanical, focused on scale and rotation and really expressed the rawness of the materials. Iron gears and chains made the stairs wind up and up, similar to the gears of a watch, which qutKripZ examined for inspiration. This is a very interesting concept that matches a dystopian setting. We can imagine a world where production is the key and the humble citizen is of lesser importance than the continual movement of the manufacturing line. The rotating cogs also make us wonder whether these stairs act more as an escalator, although they are hardly conventional in that respect- they are unique. We were impressed by KripZ knowledge of ArchiCAD, which they demonstrated through this stair design. They designed each of the individual bits and cogs themselves, and showed a decent mastery of the extrusion and mesh tools.
The island is utopian. Inspired by fractal architecture, the island stairs used two similar shapes and repeated them, focusing on incremental growth. The pieces increase in size as they reach the top, and this sense of opening up is supposed to give a sense of peace, calmness and happiness. We really appreciated the thought put into this and liked how an organic, fractal staircase such as this one would be perfect for an island utopia. Indeed, thought was put into every detail of this staircase. Kriptz applied a paua shell structure to these stairs enhancing the fact that these stairs are in an island setting. One tiny improvement in our opinion might have been editing the shade of this texture slightly as they were quite dark, and personally we believe a lighter shade may have been more fitting for a calming, utopian setting. However overall these stairs were very well considered and looked quite beautiful.