EXPERT & SPEAKER

Van Bo Le-Mentzel TINY HOUSES • NEW WORK

“Construct more, buy less.”

The German architect and DIY expert Van Bo Le-Mentzel, born in Laos in 1977, motivates us to take things into our own hands. His Bauhaus inspired DIY furniture collection with the provoking title “Hartz-IV Möbel” is socio-critical and at the same time radically innovative. With this, Van Bo Le-Mentzel focuses (not only) on people with tiny money and style consciousness. The idea of this low budget DIY furniture arose to Van Bo Le-Mentzel when he himself was living on state support and started experimenting with handmade furniture after he had fi nished a course in carpentry at community college. With this project, Van Bo became part of the sharing economy because he sends out his construction plans on request and for free. He is rewarded with pictures, articles and likes on social media. In 2010, he presented a 21 square meters “Hartz-IV-flat”. Soon after and based on this, the “100-euro-flat” developed as a so-called tiny house. The 6.4 m2 small house is placed on a trailer and comprises a kitchen, restroom, offi ce, bedroom, and living room. The “co-being-house”, as labeled by Van Bo, also evolved in light of the current development of scarce inner-city living space and the refugee crisis. His latest project is the “Bauhaus Campus Berlin”, an artistic experiment with the motto “Study, Build, Research.” The temporary tiny house campus is supposed to provide possibility spaces for democratic utopias created by people with and without German nationality. Time and again, the tiny houses also function as New Work spaces. Van Bo Le-Mentzel and dan pearlman have been connected for a long time. He started as an employee and later continued working as freelancer for the agency group, which has supported the creative mind in many free projects.

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