Counterweight Roommate, 2011

Commissioned by the Scope Foundation for
Scope / Basel 2011


Part III of the Social Relationship Architecture trilogy by Alex Schweder La and Ward Shelley


Tethered to either end of a single rope, movement in this vertical habitat for two depends on the opposite movement by one's roommate. When one wishes to go up to the kitchen, the other must go down to the bathroom.

Counterweight Roommate is a self-contained living unit with facilities for eating, sleeping, and working. It was inhabited day and night for the continuous five days of Scope Basel by the artists.


(Detail from) Concept drawing for this piece is being exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art. Click to see whole image.


The bathroom, located in the ground floor enclosure

Two views in the kitchen, located on the fifth floor, at the top.