With his 'Picture of Europe' exhibition, which was shown at the Haus der Kunst in Munich a few years ago, Rem Koolhaas, whose interdisciplinary projects are published under the name AMO, demonstrated his instinct for going beyond the limits of architecture and integrating sociological, technological and political aspects into his work. The exhibition showed in a critical but humorous way how Europe, as a relatively heterogeneous community of states, is perceived both internally and externally, pointing out the need for a share symbolism, of a universal European visual language.
'Barcode' by AMO: Proposal for a new European flag. It consists of the colours of all EU-states, new states can be added
In 2009 Europe remains the theme. This time the Dutch architect has presented a complex master plan for a European energy park in the north Sea – a project which will involve the neighbouring states of Great Britain, Norway, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and France.
The fundamental idea is to install various types of power station in a ring ('the energy super ring') covering an area of 193 000 square metres, more than a third of the entire North Sea surface. The core of the system will be an international research institute, while artificial reefs will stimulate and strengthen the maritime eco-system. The production belt on the surrounding mainland will be composed of ports, research facilities, power suppliers and turbine manufacturers.
"The North Sea could become a major player in global energy production and trade through windpower alone"
"Due to its high and consistent wind speeds, shallow waters, dense population and knowledge industry, the North Sea is arguably the most suitable area for large scale windfarming in the world...the North Sea could become a major player in global energy production and trade through windpower alone", says Koolhaas.
The aim is to make Europe independent of Russian gas and Arab oil within the next 15 years. When it is in place the calculations show that the 'Zeekracht' installation (Dutch for 'sea power') will produce as much energy as the Persian Gulf as a whole.
Zeekracht is a campaign by the Netherlands association for nature and the environment.
to the Zeekracht website
to the OMA website