Often your projects start with an image or a metaphor but not with a predefined form. The process of design is important for you. Could you explain that a bit further?
In every new project we are in search of its unforeseeable idea. Unfortunately its whereabouts are unknown and therefore cannot be reached by public transport. In order to reach this unknown destination, this idea, we have to build our own means of transport. For me, architectural sketches are such a vehicle, and the metaphors are this vehicle’s fuel.
Your projects seldom are singular buildings, but rather ensembles. What is the concept behind this?
You are right – for example, upon walking through the Jewish School in Berlin, many visitors get the impression that the school is like a small city. It has squares, streets and narrow passages. The same is true for the Koningin Máximakazerne in Schiphol; it is like a walled medieval city.
Born in Krakow 1931, Zvi Hecker grew up in Samarkand, studied Architecture at Technion, Haifa, painting at Avni Academy, Tel Aviv, taught Architecture at Université Laval, Quebec, and Universität für Angewandte Kunst, Vienna. In 1960 he set up his practise in Tel Aviv and in 1991 in Berlin. Zvi Hecker has realised internationally acclaimed projects in Israel and Europe. His work is exhibited regularly in galleries and museums and it is part of the collections of Centre Pompidou in Paris, MoMA New York, Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Jewish Museum and Berlinische Galerie in Berlin. He lives and works in Berlin.
Zvi Hecker died in September 2023.
Cover portrait, Copyright: Arkadiusz Luba