Now on first glance, and certainly many after, this creation by the acrobatic pair Acrojou appears to fit firmly within the category of art. However, without getting into any metaphysical debates over the differences between art and design, there is an equally strong case to make for it being an object belonging to ‘design’ the category as well.

Arch2o-The Wheel House-Acrojou (1)

Courtesy of Acrojou

Conceived and built by Jeni Barnard and Barney White, the two halves of Acrojou, The Wheel House is a composition of all the major components of a house, literally rolled into a wheel that is a little over 2 meters in diameter. The act surrounding this set piece consists of the acrobats causing the wheel to roll forward along a path known only to them, by continually climbing over and around one another. There is grace and precision in the way they set to their tasks, with moments of levity and humour as well as those of gravity and something akin to sensuality.

Arch2o-The Wheel House-Acrojou (3)

Courtesy of Acrojou

The whole of the wheel is packed with parts of home. Abbreviated parts share space with complete or scaled recreations of what makes a house; they are carefully fit amongst each other. What is created and designed, is a stirring statement and question about what the home is and how we take bits of it with us everywhere we travel

Acrojou Circus Theatre perform on the streets of central London

Courtesy of Acrojou

By Matt Davis

Courtesy of Acrojou

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