The House Upstairs


Location:  Joan Pratts Warehouse, Barcelona 
Year: June 2023

The House Upstairs
is the physical portion of my final thesis created for the graduation show of Metáfora Studio Arts. Composed of six moving frames, this piece is intended to take on multiple forms, functioning not only within but for a space. The intention was to create a space with two entry/exit points, an open roof, and an accumulation of found material, altered in a manner that makes it stronger. 

The House Upstairs references a dream state of what home can resemble, how one may find themselves in a location untied to themselves.

A “house” constructed of six mutable frames, held together by clamps to promote its mutable qualities. Made from welded metal frames, second-hand fabric, thread, rope, oil on canvas, found objects, and organic material.

Studio scraps
Big Sur
Pants that didn’t fit
The woman I asked to take a photo of
Joelys sock that was Roses sock
Kelly’s hair
A strangers slip
The meeting point of Colorado/Wyoming
The blanket that always appears
Bandana from Raval
Apron from L’Eixample
Mother of pearl
A branch from our park after the fire
Paint rag
The MariStar
The backside

The following excerpt was generated during the creation of this piece:

I have a recurring dream that is very vivid. I am living in the house I am living in now, we live on the ground level and the light comes from above. Everything in the dream is the same except for the house upstairs. The house upstairs is connected by a staircase and a door, it has wide open space and lots of sunlight that pours in through large windows. There is a kitchen, and the angles of the walls are nontraditional, making geometric rooms with blocky corners. The house is ours, it's included in the one we live in. But it's vacant and mostly empty. We forget about the house upstairs, we are occupied with what's below. Occasionally I remember the house upstairs, I go up and feel light on my skin, I look at the rooms and consider which one I would take as my own. I want to move into the house upstairs. I want the light. I’ll take the small room. There is so much vacancy I feel like it can't be true. How could this space go unused? I get the feeling it's not, there is a lack of dust and the air smells warm in a way that's alive. There is an internal space outside of my window downstairs. When I look out and up I can see the windows that lead into the upstairs kitchen. One night I look out the window and see a family of four climbing from outside into the window of the upstairs house. They have been using the house as their living space, and I feel untrust, I should have moved up there sooner. The next day I walk up the stairs with a pot in my hand, ready to defend myself and my space. I can sense someone's presence. There is a man sitting at the desk in the room I want as my own. He turns and looks at me with complete calmness. I acknowledge to him that he's been living in my house, pot in hand. He tells me that I forgot about the house, so that's why. He tells me that multiple people live here, including a family. I would hit him in the head but I do not want to, he is nice and he has a point about my absence in the space. The dream continues in many ways, of me going up and down the stairs, talking with the man, and eventually accepting the space as one that should be shared. I cook dinner for the children living in the upstairs house and they show me how they climb into the window. It's nice to know that I can find sunlight in the morning and hear the rain at night. It's nice to know that I can be within each space, all the rooms upstairs and downstairs. The house is within. I am the entire house, every wall, pipe, corner, and brick. I have access to it all, and I can always find a way inside.