atop a construction crane at the sagrada família in barcelona : image © vadim mahora
vadim mahora and vitaly raskalovym via designboom
russian photographers and daredevils vadim mahora and vitaly raskalovym travel europe with a clear purpose — to illegally climb to the highest point of the city’s main attraction, hang off its edge, and capture their extraordinary viewpoint. their latest adventure had them scaling skyscrapers, construction cranes, and cathedral steeples, exposing some of the most magnificent and outrageous perspectives of architecture and urban sites. their non-conventional form of tourism brought them to 12 cities, soaring to the top of renowned monuments like antoni gaudi’s masterpiece, the sagrada família in barcelona, the iconic eiffel tower in paris, and the gothic spires of the cologne cathedral in germany.
church by ferran vizoso : text and photos via designboom : photography jose hevia
when using new technologies and materials to preserve, extend, or otherwise replace existing architecture one is always faced with the question of how invasive the intervention will be. it is of particular interest because there are so many factors apart from the architect’s own language that need to be considered: the state of the decrepit structure, the types of contemporary materials used, and the ideas the architect wishes to express with the melding of the two worlds. spanish architect ferran vizoso recently completed the restoration of the town church in corbera d’ebre near tarragona, spain, whose roof structure was entirely non-existent. as an icon of the town and a relic from the spanish civil war, the vizoso aimed to restore the masonry structure to return it to its community, and at the same time preserve its new-found character: an open plan where the sun’s rays flood the previously interior space, birds fly across the nave and vegetation subtly creeps in through the windows and over the walls. the solution was found in the use of ETFE panels that create a new roof structure and seal the interior, protecting it from further deterioration while preserving the feeling of being outdoors even when inside the church. known for their impressive durability, thermal efficiency and light properties, ETFE panels create a protective transparent film over the entire ruin. although they are not structurally capable of supporting loads and can be torn if left within a person’s reach, their low maintenance, weatherproof membrane and sustainable construction make them ideal for roof structures where they will not come into contact with hazardous objects. the church now contains an inhabitable micro-climate suitable for use by the community and retains the delicate look and feel of a treasured ruin, history frozen in time. . Read More
photos and text via dezeen
Landscape architects EMF teamed up with architecture firm Ardèvol to remove over 400 buildings from a former holiday village in eastern Spain and transform the landscape into a series of meandering pathways and coastal viewpoints. The Tudela-Culip (Club Med) resort at Cap de Creus in Cadaqués had been a holiday destination for 900 tourists every summer, but in 1998 the coastal site was given protected status as a Natural Park and the resort was forced to close its doors five years later. Working alongside over 50 specialist consultants, EMF and Ardèvol were able to deconstruct most of the buildings of the Tudela-Culip and restore the natural landscape amidst a series of architectural interventions. The most prominent addition to the site is the Cubes Viewpoint, a pair of Corten steel structures facing out to sea, while slabs of stone and more Corten steel were used to create seating areas and landmarks elsewhere around the park. Pathways are divided into a three-tier hierarchy. The main access road is laid in asphalt, secondary pathways are formed from concrete, and informal routes are defined by ankle-height metal railings. Small Corten panels scattered around the site feature cutaways that highlight how some of the natural rock formations resemble animals. The five-year-long project was completed in 2010, but recently received the Rosa Barba European Landscape Prize at the 7 European Biennial of Landscape Architecture.
fran silvestre architects finished a ‘house on the cliff’, an abrupt plot of land overlooking the sea, where what is best is to do nothing. It invites to stay. due to the steepness of the plot and the desire to contain the house in just one level, a three-dimensional structure of reinforced concrete slabs and screens adapting to the plot’s topography was chosen, thus minimizing the earthwork. this monolithic, stone-anchored structure generates a horizontal platform from the accessing level, where the house itself is located. the swimming-pool is placed on a lower level, on an already flat area of the site. the concrete structure is insulated from the outside and then covered by a flexible and smooth white lime stucco. the rest of materials, walls, pavements, the gravel on the roof etc. all maintain the same colour, respecting the traditional architecture of the area, emphasizing it and simultaneously underlining the unity of the house. via : somewhere i would like to live . Read More
i am very proud that openhouse is the first and only stockist and distributor of Dtile here in spain. this system of tiles designed by peter van der jagt, erik-jan kwakkel and arnot visser was a prototype with the dutch design manufacturers droog for 15 years before they set up a company to produce the tiles in holland. and that is where Dtile was born. it is a very clever, simple system of 3 dimensional tiles, that can cover just about anything, where tiles are normally 2D and have to be cut. together we can design your kitchen, bathroom, chimney, seating area or just about anything you want covered by the Dtile, and we can ship to anywhere in the world. come to openhouse to have a look, or send me an e-mail email@example.com
im not too sure where to start with this one. ricardo bofill is either an architect you love or you hate. his post modern work being so strong, it’s a little like 80′s music. usually i post minimal, simple architecture, but there is something about the red wall that amazes me. its so square, like a red castle built from lego, mixed with an escher drawing. yet along with the neuendorf house, it seams to copy, if a little exaggerated, typical mediterranean building. this is one building i need to go and see. via : platformaarquitectura
i am starting a project for my friend carlo to renovate an old farm house in puglia, italy, so i needed to get into the feel of things. minimalism in japan and europe is a different animal, where i love the creativeness of the minimal spaces in japan, i usually find the european versions cold and without life, perfect for an art gallery, where the intention is to look at the art not the space. the neuendorf house in mallorca is a different matter. designed and built between 1989 and 1991 by the then partnership of john pawson and claudio silvestrin, this home for me does not take from its minimalist roots, but from the roots of simple mediterranean buildings. typical houses, especially in puglia, are stone cubes, with courtyards, thick walls of local stone, simple interiors with small windows to keep out the summer heat. and the neuendorf house is perfect mediterranean house, its fading colour coming from the earth it stands on, simple dark rooms to keep cool, a large courtyard and a pool just slightly more luxurious that a concrete box set between the trees. this house is so well known… but this is where i will start
navarre, spain looks like the surface of the moon, and barcelona architects emiliano lopez and mónica rivera’s hotel aire de bardenas like a lunar colony. named after the wind that rolls in over the bardenas desert, the hotel is a cluster of eight pale boxes around a main hall. they sit in the middle of a wheat field between a national park and the town of Tudela. perfect for and escape like no other.
the idea of exploring the mirror for the installation has grown from the desire to capture, explore and experiment with the landscape, rather than the built form. the project itself is not important on it’s not, as much as is its relationship with the site. the mirrorlab is merely a tool to explore and capture the views of the existing and by doing so it becomes invisible, completely dissolving into the landscape. a simple insertion into the bridge, solely supported by the two points, mirrorlab adds a new dimension to the site, both inside the arc by doubling and inverting the space, and outside by capturing and framing the views. pivoting through the centre, the door allows the visitors to interact with and become part of the installation, immersing themselves into and exploring both the real and the reflected landscapes.
all photos : vav architects : miquel merce