The Construction

In 1993, House was Rachel Whiteread's most ambitious work to date. Like many public sculptures and memorials, House was a cast. But unlike the bronzes which commemorate triumphs and tragedies, great men and heroic deeds, House commemorated memory itself through the commonplace home. Whiteread's in-situ work transformed the space of the private and domestic into the public — a mute memorial to the spaces we have lived in, to everyday existence and the importance of home.

The house was carefully coated in a de-bonding membrane and then splatter-gunned, room by room, with two layers of concrete - fine white Locrete (used on the white cliffs of Dover) and then 10cm of mesh-reinforced concrete, with special reinforcing bolts at the corners. The external interior was gradually sealed up, the last person leaving through the roof. — Kester Rattenbury, Building Design, 29 October 1993

These photographs show the construction of House.


(Above) Coating the concrete interior. Rachel Whiteread, House (1993). Photograph: Edward Woodman

(Below, in sequence) Interior room during construction. Rachel Whiteread, House (1993). Photograph: Edward Woodman; Hallway interior during construction. Rachel Whiteread, House (1993). Photograph: Edward Woodman; Interior construction in preparation for concrete casting. Rachel Whiteread, House (1993). Photograph: Edward Woodman; Interior staircase during construction. Rachel Whiteread, House (1993). Photograph: Edward Woodman

 

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