the forgotten architect
Juliaan Lampens is one of Belgians most forgotten architects of all times, even though he was one of the pioneers of Belgian modern architecture. His most ‘known’ works date from the sixties in which he introduces a new way of living, an open house in which the landscape becomes part of the house.
Lampens (°1926) is a minimalist concrete architect. Although before 1958 he was designing traditional and classical houses with small, modern detailing. The expo in 1958 changed his way of designing drastically, starting with his own house.
Too many ornaments distract from the spaciousness. His houses are open concepts in which everything is connected without walls or small rooms. There are no limits, the surrounding becomes part of the interior.His houses resulted in large concrete spaces without separate rooms but with a logical structure and carefully thought through details.
According to Lampens himself, it’s all about ‘getting the maximum out of the minimum’.He’s most ‘famous’ project was a chapel located in Kerselaere 1966. Back then politics dominated architecture so he decided to cheat by showing fake plans of a classical chapel, only the pastor saw the real plans of the chapel.Other than that his work consists mostly out of houses. The open house concept seems to be contagious since he has built similar homes for the children who have grown up in them.