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CONTENTS   4 SITES  

SILO

  TETTERODE   DE LOODS   EDELWEIS   APPENDICES   NOTES   SUB-SITES

BOOK:  DAVID CARR-SMITH  -  IMPROVISED ARCHITECTURE IN AMSTERDAM INDUSTRIAL SQUATS & COLLECTIVES

"GRAIN-SILO" SQUAT 1989 to 1998

ATTICS  - p1(of 4) 


< SILO - INTRO <
  
< SILO - GROUND-FLOOR <
  
<
SILO - CENTRAL STAIR <   
 
 SILO - ATTICS  
> SILO - DRYING TOWERS >
  
> SILO - "CORNER TOWER" >
  
> THE PUBLIC SILO & THE KROEG >
  
> NEW-SILO - PUBLIC & PRIVATE >

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the THREE ATTICS

   ATTICS - p1: INTRO / "MUSEUM" & "PYRAMID"  
> ATTICS - p2: SOUTH & NORTH ATTICS INTRO / SOUTH ATTIC INTRO & APTS >
  
> ATTICS - p3: SOUTH ATTIC APTS - cont >
  
> ATTICS - p4: NORTH ATTIC INTRO & APTS >

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INTRODUCTION  

There are three Attics. The central attic - the final destination of the Central-Stair - is the so-called "Museum", from this huge cavity (its centre portion 4.8m high) the shallower Attics of the Silo's wings spread south and north. 

The "Museum" is completely non-domestic, used for casual storage (some perhaps related to the Attics' hoist located at its SW corner). It is capped by the "Pyramid", its huge loft which, apart from its use as a dump-store, was in a sporadic process of conversion into some sort of domestic/workshop use.  

In contrast to the Museum, the South and North Attics are the Silo's most completely domesticated domains. 

    

ATTICS - EAST-FACADE
(paste-up: x3 pic-extracts 9-94 / to W)

The access gallery runs along this side; only at the ends do apts span the building's width. 

      

ATTICS - WEST-FACADE
(pic-extract 6-94 / to EEN)

The dijk facade. All the Attic apts face out on this side, consequently the windows are more individual than those of the east-side access gallery.

 

      

ATTICS - SECTIONS 
(drawing 1892 / info added 2012)
[NB: for enlarged image.]
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ATTICS & APTS - PLAN 
(drawing 2006 / info as at 1995 / top is EEN) [NB: The Attics plan is superimposed on a Ground-Floor plan.]
[NB: for more info (dimensions, etc.) click on image.]

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the CENTRAL ATTIC: the "MUSEUM"    
[ written c. 1994]

Up the last twisted 'gnome-castle' stair, one climbs into the great central wooden attic like a swimmer surfacing astonished in a forest - surrounded by steel trees, flaking cliffs of walls, and standing pipes like giant rigid flowers, their heads bent to suck the gloom.

A wooden causeway spans across its centre, exiting each side via rolling steel doors into the long shallow attics: charging-floors of the silos, once served by conveyors emerging from this great hollow where the remains of motivation: giant rollers and their motors sleep. 

This huge cavity - filled with a dreaming dusty stillness passed by sunbeams; which at night in the dimness of a single grimy tube slips into the weird, alive with lurking cats and the past potentials of machines lost to use - is aptly known as the "Museum".

MUSEUM: STEPS UP TO CAUSEWAY AT ITS S-END
(pic 9-94 / to W)

Near the Central-Stair's entry into the Museum are steps up to its 1.8m high central causeway, which crosses the Museum at the floor-level of the north and south Attics, providing a direct link between them - passing above the busy machinery of the grain-reception and distribution floor.

MUSEUM: ON THE CAUSEWAY AT N END
(pic 6-94 / to SSE)

MUSEUM: ON THE CAUSEWAY JUST N OF CENTRE
(pic 6-94 / to SSW)

MUSEUM: ON THE CAUSEWAY AT ITS S-END
(pic 9-94 / to N W)

MUSEUM: W SIDE FROM THE CAUSEWAY NEAR S END 
(pic 9-94 / to NW)

MUSEUM: W SIDE FROM THE CAUSEWAY CENTRE - BAND-CONVEYOR DRIVERS 
(pic 9-94 / to W)

MUSEUM: W SIDE FROM THE CAUSEWAY JUST N OF CENTRE
(pic 8-93 / to SW)

In the far corner are steps down to the sub-level hoist-floor.

MUSEUM: W SIDE - SW CORNER VIEW DOWN INTO SUB-LEVEL HOIST CHAMBER
(pic 9-94 / to WWN)

Looking down into the sub-level hoist-floor about 4m below the floor-level of the Museum, accessed by steps. Through the opening at the far end the Houthaven water glitters.

MUSEUM: W SIDE - IN THE SUB-LEVEL HOIST CHAMBER
(pic 9-94 / to SW)

The room's electric-hoist projects through the Silo's front facade above the dijk.

MUSEUM: W SIDE - AT THE SW CORNER OF THE W SIDE 
(pic 8-95 / to NE)

View towards the Museum centre from the inner edge of the hoist-hole.

MUSEUM: E SIDE - VIEW TO CAUSEWAY CENTRE -  BEHIND CONVEYOR MOTORS, JUNK, CONVEYOR WHEELS, CORN DISTRIBUTOR-CHUTES (NIGHT)
(pic 6-94 / to WWS)

At night, in the weird gloom of neon, the Museum - especially its east side - was the haunt of 

MUSEUM: E SIDE - CENTRE: CONVEYOR DRIVE WHEELS & CORN DISTRIBUTOR-CHUTES (NIGHT) 
(pic 9-94 / to NW)

 

MUSEUM: E SIDE - FROM CENTRE TO NE CORNER CYCLONE CLEANER (NIGHT)
(pic 6-94 / to N)

The Museum at night, deserted except by cats and full of gloom, is the Silo's most reliably phantasmagorically evocative place. Surrounded by practical objects designed for particular physical actions and outputs, whose forms strongly signal (human) intention, yet whose potential for directed, useful and predictable actions is now blinded, redundant and made incomprehensible (at least to a non-engineer) by breakage; in a 'forest of intentions', albeit truncated and without perceptible goals; it's unsurprising that our psyche's ancient urge to interpret intention and predict change starts to exhibit* a plethora of uncompetent meanings dredged from before ones time of 'recognising every practical thing', from a time of goblins spells and hauntings, and from the store of animated places and things in sub-remembered dreams.

*(Disconcertingly unasked! - or rather, in this situation, noticeably unasked - ie one perceives a separation of psyche and 'me', and 'my' mind seems autonomous: 'haunted', 'on the loose'!).  

MUSEUM: E SIDE - S OF CENTRE: PATH INTO A STORE AREA (NIGHT)
(pic 6-94 / to NE)

The big leaning tube 'presents' a tongue-like packet: someone's passing joke?; a 'notice-me' placing (the glove on the fence-post)? 

In this psychogenic place where all objects are in a state of incomprehensible intention, an equally incomprehensible yet live action can have a sinister presence. In a forest of frozen intentions what does this real yet apparently meaningless act intend?: incipient paranoia suggests that such a 'ritual' intervention into the psychophysical stasis can perhaps 'break the spell' of the locked presences; that the 'power' of the objects' frozen intentions can perhaps be woken, or at least psychically directed.  (De Chirico is supposed to have said something like: "primitive men must have seen auguries everywhere". Also ref his pre-1917 pictures)

 

MUSEUM: E SIDE - S OF CENTRE: PATH TO STORE AREA WITH PREENING CAT (NIGHT)
(pic 6-94 / to NNE)

In the middle of the path is a preening cat. On a hearthrug its posture and movements are familiar, but here, in this incomprehensible yet intention-filled 'forest of symbols', the rare commonplace can easily be experienced from 'within the mind' and the cat seen as a bizarre alien and frighteningly live object, more suitable for a dream!* 

*(Indeed the whole world is such a dream - we need, via unusual perceptions, to be shocked into admitting it. Science seeks, with relative success - by perceiving its roots of action and existence - to distill it from such 'random' dreams.)

 

MUSEUM: E SIDE - CENTRE: CONVEYOR MOTORS (NIGHT)
(pic 9-94 / to NNW)

MUSEUM: E SIDE - S OF CENTRE: PATH INTO A STORE AREA
(pic 9-94 / to E)

MUSEUM: E SIDE - FROM CENTRE TOWARDS S-ATTIC ENTRY & STAIR TO PYRAMID
(pic 9-94 / to S)

We are looking towards centre-south where the causeway enters the south Attic [pic rt-cnt] and where, to the left of that entry, one can mount steps onto a little platform from where an oddly twisted stair starts its climb to the entry-hatch of the Museum's huge loft: the centre feature of the Silo's exterior: the 'Pyramid'.

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the "PYRAMID"   

Above the Museum's ceiling is another and more secret place: the interior of the "Pyramid" that surmounts the centre of the Old Silo's roof-line. Up a slightly twisted stair from the south end of the causeway, one pushes through a heavy hatch into a space converging upwards, crowded with the crisscrossing of stored timber and beams rising from an undergrowth of discarded objects. High in its peak through tiers of platforms and ladders can be seen the underside of a tiny room.

Facing into this homely little room it's hard to believe that its solid floor stops at an edge and under it is a deep space webbed with beams; that one is supported in the topmost point of a tower of cavities stacked down to the 'Hall of Bikes' a hundred feet below. The strange illusion that its table was recently used: of refreshments and a book - is sustained by a roll of tape, a nail and slab of wood; endorsed by the creased cloth, saucepan, and a lamp. The carpet-covered table laid with a few utensils of pewter and ceramic in the stillness of a panelled room, that paradigm epitomised in 17th C Dutch genre painting, is here reproduced in its most threadbare and ironic form in dusty junk ... raised on its high stage, an old relic - to be discovered only after a precarious climb.

PYRAMID (L0): ENTRY FLOOR 
(pic 9-94 / to E)

PYRAMID (L0): ENTRY FLOOR - VIEW UP PAST PLATFORM L-1 TO TOP PLATFORM L-2 
(pic 9-94 / to S)

PYRAMID (L1): VIEW FROM FIRST PLATFORM DOWN TO WORK-BENCH & SHADED WINDOW ON L0
(pic 9-94 / to NW)

PYRAMID (L2): VIEW FROM TOP PLATFORM DOWN TO L1 & L0 FLOOR
(pic 9-94 / to NNW)

PYRAMID (L2): VIEW FROM TOP PLATFORM DOWN TO L1 & L0 FLOOR
(pic 9-94 / to NW)

PYRAMID (L2): SITTING-PLACE & VIEW DOWN TO L0 FLOOR
(pic 9-94 / to WWN)

At the Pyramid's peak is a board floor that isolates a tiny room furnished with a table and chairs which is used by (at least) one Silo visitor for occasional study. 

PYRAMID (L2): SITTING-PLACE IN PEAK OF PYRAMID
(pic 9-94 / to WWS)

PYRAMID (L2): SITTING-PLACE
(pic 9-94 / to SW)

PYRAMID (L2): SITTING-PLACE
(pic 9-94 / to S)

PYRAMID (L2): SITTING-PLACE SOUTH WINDOW - VIEW OF NEW SILO TOWER
(pic 9-94 / to SSE)

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^ Top     > Next Page >

   ATTICS - p1: INTRO / "MUSEUM" & "PYRAMID"

> ATTICS - p2: SOUTH & NORTH ATTICS INTRO / SOUTH ATTIC INTRO & APTS >

> ATTICS - p3: SOUTH ATTIC APTS >

> ATTICS - p4: NORTH ATTIC >

.

CONTENTS   4 SITES  

SILO

  TETTERODE   DE LOODS   EDELWEIS   APPENDICES   NOTES   SUB-SITES