Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in Ibiza

Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in Ibiza

When seeing homes like Blanco de Ibiza, the first thing that crosses my mind is that the ancient Greek gods knew exactly what a healthy, tidy and abundant life was all about. Reflected upon the “mortals”, this made them crave for a god-like lifestyle treatment. It is hard to say what triggers the idea that an exclusive lifestyle comes from “above”, but like me, many imagine that the Mediterrean iconic figures drift into a sea of luxury and comfort. The house was built more than 30 years ago and it has been recently restored by the architect Malales Martinez Canut pointing on the perfect blending of two diverse architectural styles, Mediterrean and Spanish.

Ibiza Interior Clean Design Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in Ibiza

Blanco de Ibiza, as the name sais it, is a gorgeous large white “palace” with Mediterrean accents and wooden furniture from Bali. The breezy environment sprinkled with natural fabrics such as reed, cotton and the natural colors such as green or blue create the perfect spot for relaxation. With a stunning view upon the Mediterrean Sea, Blanco de Ibiza is simply enchanting. The infinite blue horizon reflects in all those turquise subtle elements  of décor, that scatter over the lounge chairs. Old authentic fabrics meet new, contemporary materials, creating a unique style. Embracing the Mediterrean breeze, the beautiful oasis of tranquility, created by Malales Martinez Canut, expands its charm upon the “mortals”, just like the nectar “conquered” the Greek gods.

Beautiful Breezy Details Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaClean Soft Details Interior Design Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaMaster Bedroom Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaInspiring Bedroom Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaAmazing View Bedroom Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaBeautiful Details Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaBlanco de Ibiza Bathroom Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaLuxurious Bathroom Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaGorgeous View Terrace Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaDetails Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaSubtle Details Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaRefreshing Atmosphere Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaSwimming Pool Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaBlanco de Ibiza Terrace Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in IbizaBeautiful Terrace Blanco de Ibiza Luxurious Mediterranean Lifestyle and an Exclusive Residence in Ibiza

Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition

Open to everyone, OUTR (Office of Urban Transformations Research), along with RMIT University School of Architecture and Design, just announced the release of Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition. How can we rethink, regenerate, rebrand, rework, reactivate cities dominated by singular economies for a vibrant and innovative future? Designing Possible Futures for growth and adaptation of rehabilitated mines, associated infrastructures and the townships that are dependent on their futures. Integrated social, economic, environmental and infrastructural design outcomes. Produce intelligent innovative short and long-term transition strategies for an adaptive and vibrant regional center. Submissions are due November 30. More information on the competition after the break.

We are calling on renowned international designers and academic institutions from a wide range of disciplines including architects, landscape architects, urban designers, planners, engineers, scientists, entrepreneurs, economists, artists and students to participate in the international design ideas competition titled Transiting Cities – Low Carbon Futures.

Re-Think – Latrobe as a network city, Low Carbon Futures, An Integrated Vision!
Re-Generate – The Regional Landscape, the Local Economy, Through Community Building!
Re-Brand – New, Innovative and Alternative Cities of the Near Future, Strengthen Identity!
Re-Work – Rehabilitated Mines, Redundant Infrastructures, Multiple Cultural Hubs of a Local Productions!
Re-Activate – Celebrate the Past , Intensify Town Centres!

Transiting Cities is an international design ideas competition and it is open to everyone. Participating teams can have one or more members. Projects can be real or speculative proposals. Proposals need not be generated exclusively for this competition but reworked to demonstrate how they can be applied to the site of the competition.

To register and for more information, please visit here.

Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition (1) Courtesy of OUTR and RMIT University School of Architecture and Design
Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition (2) Courtesy of OUTR and RMIT University School of Architecture and Design
Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition (3) Courtesy of OUTR and RMIT University School of Architecture and Design
Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition (4) Courtesy of OUTR and RMIT University School of Architecture and Design

Transiting Cities International Open Design Ideas Competition originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 30 Sep 2012.

send to Twitter | Share on Facebook | What do you think about this?


Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects

Architects: Tectoniques Architects
Location: Nimes, France
Associated Architects: Atelier GA
Photographs: Jerome Ricolleau

Project Area: 1,750 sqm
Landscape Designer: Itinéraire bis
Lighting Designer: Les Eclaireurs
Timber & Metal Structures: Anglade Structures Bois
Environmental Engineers: Indiggo

The Jean CarriËre nursery school in Nimes (southern France) is located in the Haute Magaille neighbourhood, south-east of the city centre, in an area of low-rise housing. The former Platanettes school, which was in prefabricated buildings, was demolished to make way for a modern scheme, with a commitment by the client to ambitious environmental objectives, particularly adapted to the Mediterranean climate.

The plot is characterized by its landscaped setting. Existing large plane trees form a remarkable framework of greenery, create a warm atmosphere, and act as natural climate regulators. The proposed scheme preserves most of them and associates them actively with the architecture.

The second major factor concerns the habitability of the site, which is subject to a major constraint related to drainage. The street that runs alongside the scheme is a storm water run-off corridor. The flood risk prevention regulations put in place by the City of Nimes limit occupation of the ground floor and require the classrooms to be placed on the first upper floor. This arrangement, which is quite atypical for a nursery school, is turned to advantage by the architects, who propose a building that is suspended in the foliage of the plane trees. From the classrooms, the children have a unusual pleasant view of the school’s natural setting.

In order to reduce the mass and impact of the scheme, the building is broken down into four volumes, which seem to slide between the trees. These volumes, occupied by the classrooms and the leisure area, rest on a series of solid stone walls arranged on the east-west grid lines, and on the north-south lines of slender metal columns. This heavy-light contrast is one of the distinguishing features of the scheme.

The cross-shaped plan allows simple, clearly visible operation. The circulation areas are not just ordinary corridors. They are treated like habitable areas, widely open to the landscape, with views in all four directions. The partitions between the classrooms and the circulation areas are partly glazed, to allow through views from one external wall to the other.
The internal atmosphere is similar to an open-plan office area, as opposed to the conventional type of corridor confined between enclosed classrooms.

The ground floor contains the canteen, the multi-purpose room, and the ancillary and service areas. These areas are divided into two self-contained blocks, to preserve the openness and transparency of the whole. The unconstructed areas in the west are used for the schoolyard and the covered playground area, while the east side is used for parking. The covered playground area is extended by raised timber decking, which is itself extended by a lawn play area. At the south-west corner, a storm water retention pond forms a wet garden, inaccessible to the children, which physically represents the site’s liability to flooding.

On the upper floor, the five classrooms face east. The offices, rest areas, computer rooms, library and leisure area are arranged along the east elevation. The building services plant rooms occupy the central strip.

The main elevation facing onto the public space is the south gable. Its limited size is compensated by two large cantilevers, one on each side of the entrance, which is itself framed by two solid stone walls. Together with a raised forecourt, it presents the visible face of the facility on the street, with the school entrance clearly expressed. After going through the glazed entrance lobby, there are two possible routes, one horizontally to the schoolyard and the canteen, the other via stairs to the classrooms on the upper floor. The colours and lighting of these two routes are given deliberately playful treatment.

Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects © Jerome Ricolleau
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Elevation 01
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Elevation 02
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Elevation 03
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Plan 01
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Plan 02
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Plan 03
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Section 01
Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects Detail 01

Jean Carrière Nursery School / Tectoniques Architects originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 30 Sep 2012.

send to Twitter | Share on Facebook | What do you think about this?


‘OJO – From Solid to Air’ Exhibition

Taking place until October 17th, the Academy of Architecture in Amsterdam is exhibiting ‘OJO – From Solid to Air’ which showcases a selection of the work of the architectural practice Office Jarrik Ouburg. The exhibit can be visited Monday-Friday from 9am-11pm and The address of the Academy is Waterlooplein 211-213 in Amsterdam.

'OJO – From Solid to Air' Exhibition originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 29 Sep 2012.

send to Twitter | Share on Facebook | What do you think about this?


Cuatro proyectos para un nuevo Bernabéu

Es el secreto mejor guardado de la Asamblea, la joya de la corona, el golpe de efecto que preparaba Florentino Pérez para dejar boquiabiertos a sus compromisarios…


W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop

Architects: Nemaworkshop
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Michael Kleinberg

Project Area: 79,000 sq ft
Contractor: Case & Associates
Lighting: nemaworkshop

We believe that good designs come from research and exploration, it’s something that develops from within the physical and social contexts of a place. New Orleans is a city brimming with stories. It’s the birthplace of Jazz. It’s where the first cocktail was invented. It’s the stage for novels ranging from A Confederacy of Dunces to Interview with the Vampire. It’s where tarot reading and dark arts thrive. We discovered the city has these fantastic undercurrents wherein stories brew. At the W French Quarter, these mysterious undercurrents which create the social fabric of the city itself are the very basis of our design.

The concept for the W French Quarter has two key tenets which actually share more attributes than one would initially think. Firstly we focused on Jazz – Louis Armstrong, the trumpet, the brass, the mixture of European, African and Caribbean sounds. Secondly are the dark arts – tarot cards, gris-gris, amulets. What binds these is that they are both unscripted and emerge from a mysterious underground. Like the city of New Orleans itself, they have their own internal logic which is intuitive, impulsive and spontaneous.

The floors of the hotel are split into two different types: Jazz or Tarot. In the guestroom there is an image which goes floor-to-ceiling and partially across the ceiling, essentially wrapping the corner of the room. In the tarot rooms the image is of the queen of pentacles and in the jazz it’s a close up of the trumpet. The minibar is a faceted metal object with an illuminated top, a modern take on the idea of a candle-lit alter. Covering the TV is a convex mirror which gives this awesome warped perspective of the room, like you’re looking in to a crystal ball . The full height shutters are a direct reference to the architectural history of New Orleans and offset the clean modern lines of the furniture.

That New Orleans is the birthplace of both the cocktail and Jazz is not surprising as it is a city with diverse cultural currents that mingle and re-inform each other. Sobou captures the idea of mixology as it relates to not only cocktails but also Jazz and the dark arts. Each of the spaces in the restaurant has a distinctive interpretation of the concept of mixology. The entry and front dining space recalls an apothecary which speaks to the origins of the cocktail. From floor-to-ceiling the walls are clad in bottles and the space is divided by apothecary cases and illuminated display cases house a collection of vintage tools, shakers and glasses from the Museum of the American Cocktail.

The main dining space has one way glass installation where glowing bottles multiply into infinity and a pair of large brass light fixtures recalling the end of a brass horn illuminate the space. Visible from all dining spaces is a gently curving brass bar. The honey granite bar top is interrupted at the chef’s table where it becomes an elliptical glowing surface of light. Adjacent the bar is a modern beer garden where in there are self-service enomatic wine machines and beer taps built directly into the tables. Above each table hangs a rectangular brass light fixture inside of which are portraits of women’s eyes. Thus while the exterior of the shades are a direct reference to brass and its role in Jazz, the interior of these pendants suggest a concurrent yet alternative underground movement in the city of New Orleans.

W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg
W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop © Michael Kleinberg

W New Orleans – French Quarter / Nemaworkshop originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 29 Sep 2012.

send to Twitter | Share on Facebook | What do you think about this?


Living Architecture

Interview: Krogmann Headquarters / Despang Architekten

The Headquarters Krogmann in Lohne-Kroge, Germany, by Despang Architekten investigates the numerous characteristics and fundamental opportunities inherent within wood and exhibits a modern approach to the craftsmanship of traditional German vernacular. Designed as a new corporate center of operations for the woodworking company Krogmann,  this new office would need to succeed not only in handcrafting a new image for them, but also serve as a catalyst for future growth while showcasing their ability as ‘makers’ in the field of construction.  Having worked as the builders for several projects for Despang Architekten, their choice to retain them as the design architects for their own project was a natural extension of an already solid relationship built upon the dedication to quality and progressiveness. As an extension of this article, we also had the opportunity to speak with Principal and University of Hawaii Associate Professor Martin Despang about the process involved in the making of this project.

More details and our Q&A with Martin after the break.

Preliminary site analysis determined that positioning the new structure on the southeastern corner of the plot of land would provide benefits both from an environmental control system standpoint – passive solar gain – and that of a metaphysical nature by means of a symbiotic relationship – through transparent public south face overlooking the village. The site features a north-south sloping gradient, providing an added benefit that contributes to the programming and function of the form. The low-slung north face incorporates the main entrance accessed by means of a catwalk bridge, whilst simultaneously functioning as a wind scoop which thermodynamically dissipates the harsh winter winds. The trapezoidal shape rises up to its apex on the south side, opening up to reveal a fully glazed south elevation – which allows for unimpeded daylighting, passive solar gain during the winter months, and expansive panoramic views.

When it comes to the internal programming of the building, careful attention was given to the ability to maintain an open concept that promotes internal communication and a non-hierarchical environment. Despang Architekten looked to the construction and materiality of musical instruments such as the violin and acoustic guitar for inspiration. This resulted in the unparallel surfaces that define the overall trapezoidal shape and the implementation of timber material as the primary finish. Further optimizing the acoustical performance is the addition of acoustical attenuation insulation behind the solid white fir panels – which as an added benefit increases the thermal mass storage of the wall assembly.

Workstations located at the southern portion of the main floor and mezzanine take advantage of the southern views and abundant daylighting. Utilitarian functions such as restrooms and reproduction rooms are housed in the northern backside of the building cleverly sheathed in rich wooden boxes that contrast the light colored white fir. A sandwich insulated concrete plinth comprises the main floor which encloses the archive room below.

One of the many ingenious details that serve to accentuate the crispness of the wood is the seamless transition from interior to exterior, which terminate at knife edge connections to the exterior cladding. In order to maintain the sharp edges of the exterior and still manage water runoff, a hidden gutter detail ensures that design integrity is maintained while still effectively directing water off the roof.

Another detail that warrants expansion is the hidden top and bottom mullion detail, which has the effect of de-materializing the glazing system.  This was achieved by recessing the mullions into pockets above and below the elevation of their respective ceiling and floor, and carrying the finishing materials to abutment of the glazing.

When it comes to the signature black cladding of the exterior, a fiber cement board – Eternit – was utilized as a rainscreen system on all 6 sides. On the roof, the Eternit is secured to metal decking oriented to direct water to the hidden gutter on the north end. This also ensures that there is adequate airflow underneath the panels during heavy rainfall – which is integral to maintaining the integrity of the Eternit.

In between the interior and exterior cladding lies the success of this building’s low dependence on grid supplied resources.  The strategic use of mineral wool insulation combined with rigid insulation where required make up an uninterrupted thermal barrier.  These increased levels of continuous insulation coupled with a calculated building orientation that takes advantage of solar gain are critical elements in Germany’s drive towards Net-Zero construction.

Employing only a simple material palette of wood, concrete, and glass the Headquarters Krogmann takes a refined approach to the construction of high performance buildings with attention to detail through the celebration of its primary materiality.

Read on as we discuss with Principal Martin Despang some of the hurdles that were encountered during construction:

AD – The neighborhood of Kroge is comprised almost entirely of traditional brick residential houses with pitched roof construction. I understand that there was some resistance from the community initially. How did an amicable resolution come about?

MD – Yes, the permitting authorities were initially shocked and called the project an unacceptable alien which does not fit into the existing small town of pitched roof brick buildings. We approached the issue through communication with the local community and showed how the nature and tradition of the small town is not about the brick buildings, but them as an expression of innovation over time. The vernacular way of building in the last century was mainly of half-timbered wood construction with sod brick infill which transitioned to traditional clay brick and fiber cement tiles and shingles for the roofs in the 1950´s to 1960´s. The architectural evolution of the town had not quite progressed the same way ever since, we proposed to jump restart the tradition of innovation. This is what makes the Krogmann Headquarters look so provocative, though in essence it is the continuation of the steady radical evolution of a small town from agrarian to industrial as exemplified by the Krogmann company – a modern cosmopolitan firm in the communicational era.

When it comes to the topic of context, the clients allowed us to define this through a progressive lens that embraces the paradigm a post – fossil 21st century. Since the building is virtually self-sufficient with little reliance on third party energy sources, as prices for heating fuels increase, the expression of the building begins to make even more sense as a catalyst for progressive construction and living. The form of the building is not a provocative gesture, but an expression of the continuation of the tradition of innovation into the 21st century in the small community of Kroge.

AD –  The German legislation and initiatives towards net-zero dependency have been quite visible in the past years. How has this played into the design and your philosophy for future architecture?

MD – A net – zero building does not necessarily have to have anything to do with architecture. The resulting conflict makes Ludwig Wittgenstein´s differentiating definition of ” architecture being like a gesture  and unlike every movement of the human body being a gesture, not every building being architecture” even more timely as when he said it about a century ago.

A ” Passiv Haus” – conceived in Germany – sets forth the most rigorous energy efficiency standards. These standards are typically achieved via construction of a box, insulated with petroleum based Styrofoam, few south openings filled with triple pane glazed plastic windows, and topped with PV panels powering the needed energy. The “PHPP – Passive house Projecting Package” software used is quite sophisticated but the results are often lacking aesthetically.

After our own experience with PHPP design, the Krogmann Headquarters’ intent is to seek out an alternative utilizing the Passive House principles as a guiding tool –  orientation, insulation, air tightness and heat recovery. This is then coupled with the client’s and our own related experience, expertise and instinct of master builder and architect in close collaboration.

Designing energy and architecturally efficient and sufficient buildings is the exciting challenge for the emerging post-fossil 21st century architects, which we as educators have the privilege to be part of their motivation, inspiration and maturation.    

AD –  Having worked closely with the Krogmann company in the past and their expertise in the ‘making’ of buildings, what kind of impact did that have on the execution of the project?

MD – Buildings at their best were always a result of the direct connection of the brain and the hand, the thinking and the making. When Heike and Konrad (clients) came to ask us we thought they had picked the wrong phone number as the previously created together technologically and typologically pioneering solid wood ILAMSI school was wearing the hardest on both of us, which looking back seemed to instead of having separated us bonded us together.

When Konrad (client) said he wanted to be involved in the Contract Documents part, we grinned and said yes we have heard that many times before from the client’s side wanting to save money (at the wrong place). He came to the first meeting with his one to one scale and pencil drawn details to be implemented into his fully CAM manufacturing process and him saying that he learned to think that way architecturally through the ILMASI collaboration (a previous project). Our initial grin turned into the happiest satisfied smile of having gotten as close as possible back to the old collaborative master builders virtue. For us, there is no difference anymore between the “builder” and the “thinker” as both are the other and vice versa in every moment and stage of the project from the first napkin sketch on.

AD – You employ the Eternit panel in a somewhat unconventional method – for roofing – on this building, and it is typically utilized as a wall cladding only.  How did you ensure that the product could perform effectively in this atypical position on the roof?

MD – This is a great example on the topic of the rebirth of collaborative master-builder-ship, the call for “Eternit” came from Konrad who wanted his building to be a materialized expression of his business, and he makes almost as much revenue with installing Eternit than with wood. The thinness of the material seemed an ideal  materialization in relation to the described Semper methodology of ” earthwork, framework and enclosure” so as to articulate the latter in the thinnest and most effective way as a screen to keep the main elements of rain, sun, and wind away.

The thermodynamic generation of the building form created the roof as the 5th façade. Eternit confronted this unconventional application of their material via a warning to the client about him loosing the warranty for a wall cladding only material. Typically this would have made client shy away from experimentation. However, Konrad become hands on and made a full scale mockup at the time the building was in the pre-schematic design phase, and had it weather tested on the site until construction began. With the positive test results he would not need the ‘extended’ warranty as the onsite testing proved the versatility of the boards. To top it off, Eternit has adopted it as one of their flagship projects as well.

The concluding lesson is that nothing is impossible unless one has tried as the nature of innovation requires experimentation. The custom trapezoidal cut sheets are the Darwinist progression of the 1960´s Eternit shingles. 

AD –  As an architect who works closely with the wood industry, how have the advancements in wood technology impacted or influenced the work that Despang Architekten create, notably in this project?

MD – Whereas the collaborative ILMASI School (with Krogmann) was an experimental investigation in solid wood and thermally modified timber technologies of that educational typology, the Krogmann headquarters by the nature of the work / mercantile type looked at and used wood as an inside -out branding with substantial qualities of indoor air and atmosphere performance. We have worked and continue to work with many materials mostly in a stereotomic , mono-materialized way. We find ourselves revisiting quite often our favorite “wood” in interpreting and defining it differently every time.

In the Krogmann Headquarters we have collaborated with Ligno, who is a great innovator in architectural wood systems and technologies. In this project the wood panel is sliced and on its back side stuffed with batt insulation which adds perfection in plan and section through the trapezoidal shape already in the building geometry laid out for acoustical comfort. This is essential for a wide open work space.

Extending the wood research into the profession and classroom by working with students on wood related critical thinking and workshops and lectures with WoodWorks in the US are an important invigorating inspiration for my own critical practice research work and vice versa.  

Recap: Imagining the Lowline / Barasch + Ramsey

As the “Imagining the Lowline” exhibition comes to a close, we share a recap of our visit to the full-scale mockup created by Dan Barasch and James Ramsey.  We have been sharing a steady stream of updates on the project, but nothing quite puts the ideas of this transformative ”urban discovery” into perspective as the ability to experience a portion of their underground public park.   The two-week long exhibit in Market Building D in the Lower East Side was aimed at sharing the ideas of the Lowline with the community to hear feedback and gain support to potentially move the project forward.  During our visit, we had the opportunity to speak with visitors of all different professions, backgrounds and connections to New York, to hear their first impressions of the project and to see if their support lay behind such an idea.

More after the break. 

The expansive underground space Barasch and Ramsey wish to tackle used to function as turn-around point for trolleys crossing the Williamsburg Bridge, but has been untouched since around the 1950s.  The exhibition display offered a detailed history of the site before leading visitors to a full-scale mockup of a “underground” landscape.

It was shocking to turn the corner and see so much light cascading upon a mound of forest-like plants.  Unlike the flowery foliage of its above ground counterparts, the Lowline landscape immediately identified with its unique subterrain positioning.  The landscape included lots of moss and ferns, with low lying foliage.  One visitor commented on the great mix of smells saying the mix of the hard materials, such as concrete, and the different smells of the ferns added to her experience.

Of course, people stood in awe examining the light dispersing parametric roof.  Aside from its amazing innovative approach to disperse light collected above ground to these plants, the shear aesthetic of the form was a real thing of beauty.

While the underground park has generated lots of debate, the general feelings of those attending the exhibition were positive and full of excitement.  And, although the space was a bit humid, people stopped to share a small snack on chairs scattered around the landscape or share a quite conversation while snapping pictures of the roof assemblage.

We spoke with history buffs who loved the novelty of the park, and computer programmers who felt this park would allow them to connect with nature all year round, noting that it’d be “So awesome in the winter!”   A local architect inquired as to the access points for the park, as such marks would need to be extra dramatic as a way to entice people to explore the underground.  Others were fixated on the fact that so much of the project would be developed locally – such as the panel system for the roof – and having more people in the area would help local businesses.   Overall, visitors were excited by the vision and regarded the park as having the potential to be a unique destination point in the city, while making a positive influence on the local community.

Did you attend the exhibit?  Let us know what you thought in the comments below!  And, be sure to check out our previous coverage of the Lowline and we’ll keep you updated on the progress.

IMG_2053 © K.Cilento
IMG_2056 © K.Cilento
IMG_2062 © K.Cilento
IMG_2068 © K.Cilento
IMG_2074 © K.Cilento
IMG_2079 © K.Cilento
IMG_2085 © K.Cilento

Casa Océano / SPACE

Architects: SPACE
Location: Pedregal, Mexico City, Mexico
Chief Designer: Juan Carlos Baumgartner, Jimena Fernández Navarra
Design Team: Sergio Gaytán, Ana Mallón
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Pim Schalkwijk

Project Area: 800 sqm
Lighting Design: LUA

The work consisted of a complete overhaul of a classic house in Pedregal dating from the 50s which, due to its age, was in very poor condition. The original design was in Classic style.

The main decision as regards the design was to respect the house insofar as this was possible, but also to update it to the modern age, creating better and larger interior areas while taking advantage also of the extensive outdoor spaces.

Access was aligned with respect to a regulating north-south axis, from which a ramp leads to the mezzanine of the house, reaching a terrace/vestibule with black stone slabs overlooking the swimming pool area. The main entrance leads the inhabitants through a large wooden doorway to an extensive, living room/dining room area, terminating in a large sandstoned marble wall which houses a large lineal fireplace.

The heart of the design is the house’s main corridor, which begins at the entrance and ends at a completely new inside patio and a marvelous sculpture, highlighted by means of changes in the colors of marbles and woods on floors and walls and bringing natural light to this entire floor, previously very dark. Distributed along this corridor are three bedrooms, a study, the living room and, on the other side, a wonderful kitchen.

Crossing the corridor we find the staircase, leading upwards to the upper floor and downwards to the main floor and swimming pool area.

The master suite is a completely new space within the house, and consists of an enormous dressing room with natural lighting, an inviting double bathroom and the bedroom. The bedroom area has a large window which opens onto a beautiful private terrace with a gorgeous view over the entire property, outfitted with hammocks and a table with sunshade.

In the basement is an extensive games room with Library, billiards, movie theater and kitchenette, all respecting the house’s original marble floor, which has only been given a matt finish for modernization purposes.

The entire space has mobile glass walls which can be fully opened, leading onto the terrace, to the garden and to the magnificent swimming pool.

The main façade has been respected, and modernized with natural woods placed at random over the doors, and with a large number in stainless steel as a finishing touch.

Natural materials, extensive and well-lighted spaces, new areas and a better use of space help to make this a calming house, welcoming and entertaining, all with the fifty-year old flavor of the Pedregal.

Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE © Pim Schalkwijk
Casa Océano / SPACE Elevation 01
Casa Océano / SPACE Elevation 02
Casa Océano / SPACE Plan 01

Casa Océano / SPACE originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 29 Sep 2012.

send to Twitter | Share on Facebook | What do you think about this?