Dec 23, 2008

Great Project of Gehry - Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada

The building is surprisingly Gehry’s first commission in his native city and contains an interesting array of signature elements such as an iconic sculptural staircase emerging from Walker Court (the historic center of the AGO), the sweeping glass-and-wood Galleria Italia extending an entire city block along Dundas Street, and the new contemporary tower with its vistas of Grange Park and of a Toronto Skyline never seen from this angle.
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With this new museum extension, Frank Gehry has devised an unforgettable space to honor the art housed within. Attention to the core issue of the pleasure of art viewing is palpable throughout thanks to the amount of natural light and transparency that permeate the extension.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
Just above the glass facade, you glimpse the top of the new big blue box that houses the contemporary-art galleries, its blocky form balanced on top of the old building.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
“We’re not just opening doors, we’re opening minds”. It is with this forward thinking slogan that the Art Gallery of Ontario opened its doors after a remarkable transformation penned by Toronto- born Frank Gehry.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
The new glass facade, swelling out one story above the sidewalk, seems to wrap the building and embrace passers-by below. Its faceted glass panels, supported by rows of curved wood beams, evoke the skeleton of a ship’s hull or the ribs of a corset. At either end of the building, the glass peels back to reveal powerful crisscrossing steel and wood structural beams.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
The climax arrives in the Gallery Italia, a long narrow sculpture corridor just behind the new glass facade. The entire composition snaps into place. As you watch the figures jostling outside and then turn to the sculptures, urban life and art seem in perfect balance.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
A spectacular new spiraling wood staircase rises from the second floor, punching through the glass roof. The staircase leans drunkenly slightly to one side as it rises, and the tilt of the form sets the whole room in motion.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
In the contemporary galleries, big wood frame windows offer views onto the park in back, and skylights funnel sunlight into the upper-floor spaces.
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge
image(copyright Gehry & Partners),click 2 enlarge

Amazing Water Fountain That Fall From a Large Bridge in South Korea

Banpo Water Fountain will send 60 tons of water 20 meters down to the Han River from the Banpo Bridge every minute. The water fountain runs a combined length of 1.2 kilometers along the sides of the Banpo Bridge. The water for the fountain is pumped up from the Han River which is then returned to the river.
The water fountain will fall gracefully from the Banpo Bridge, much like a waterfall. The water sprays will also "dance" to music in 100 different configurations. At evenings, special lighting will create an even more fantastical scene. OASE, a German company, is the project partner in lighting and sound effects.
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Dec 21, 2008

Science Park, Granada, Spain - By JIMENEZ BRASA Architects

BUILDING & LANDSCAPE
The new Parque de Ciencias building is located in the Andalusian city of Granada. The texture of the fertile lowlands surrounding the Genil River and the imposing presence of the Sierra Nevada mountains provide the central narrative connecting the building´s architecture to the landscape.
The topographic space of the Vega farmland is punctuated by irrigation channels, two-lane roads and highways, and large expanses of olive trees and other crops.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
They lend a subtle geometry to the landscape that rolls and undulates as it stretches into the distance, which is reflected in various angles of the overall building, uniting it with the surrounding terrain. The mountainous Sierra Nevada, ever present in Granada´s collective imagination, lends its jagged forms and potent geological presence to the silhouettes of the two large skylights that introduce natural light into the large lobby space, a central part of the Museum.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
INTERACTIVITY / FLEXIBILITY
The idea of interactivity is present in all levels of the relationship between the Parque de Ciencias and the city, and is a central theme of the project. The site shares its public dimensions with the city through the new urban roadways connected to Granada´s inner center.Just as the Park focuses its attention on scientific themes in an interactive manner, the new building provides its visitors with open spaces where they can move freely, as well as accessibility and continuity. The visitor to Science Park can choose where they want to go in a variety of routes through the interior space, allowing the interested and curious to take an active role in his or her experience of the building.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
The spatial structure allows the building to be used in a highly flexible manner, with various interlocking configurations that interweave different routes and themes. It attempts to turn the experience of space into a pleasure and a game from multiple viewpoints. The visitor´s relationship with the landscape and the building´s interior space unfolds in the context of the time spent during his or her visit.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
SPATIAL ORGANIZATION
The idea of an "enigmatic box " is meant to awaken the visitor´s curiosity, offering its nuanced interior as an invitation to a journey in space from the streets outside.A continuously folded plane standing ten meters high, supported by the large box-like pavilions that house the various Science Park exhibits, defines the large spaces of the vestibule that exists inside its open spaces. The lobby is the permanent reference point of both indoor and outdoor tours.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
This is accentuated by the light entering through the opening facade and emphasized in the core of the building by the skylight that identifies the Park to the surrounding metropolitan area.
The hall´s principal function, as the place of reference for all routes inside the building, is to lead and guide the visitor, those entering from the Plaza de Acceso and the River Garden, putting them in relation to the different pavilions and thematic open spaces inside the enclosure: the Forest of the Senses and the Plaza de Acceso. Accessibility is a basic premise of the building´s entire circulation system.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
As the visitors take their individual paths through the building, they discover the value of light in the contrast between the lobby and thematic pavilions. From the open spaces they pass through various situations and visual spaces, from very compressed (2.7 meters tall, with no light from the skylight) to a space with 20 meters of headroom, with sight-lines 100 meters in length in the major axis under the skylight, thereby visually connecting the Plaza de Acceso and the Forest of the Senses in the heart of the Park.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
THE EXHIBITION PAVILIONS
This spatial and visual richness continues in the absence of natural light in the Pavilion´s temporary exhibitions, in the Journey to the Human Body, the Culture of Prevention and the Tecnoforo. Visitors experience changes in scale in the different exhibition spaces, whose spaces vary in height as well as length. The ramps leading to and from the different levels provide divergent points of view in the building´s space and its contents.
The guiding idea behind the building´s spatial characteristics is that of the versatility of an open system, making the building into a spatial instrument that allows for, over the course of time, the installation of exhibitions of different types and scales, with previously unexpected characteristics.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
SUSTAINABILITY, RECYCLING AND ENERGY HARVEST
The new building fulfills the stated goals of current large public projects: it has been been evaluated by government agencies and complies with the most stringent regulations on energy efficiency. Choice of materials as well as the efficiency and power derived from thermal insulation all allow energy ratios much higher than that of conventional systems, incorporating a number of optimal mechanisms appropriate to Granada´s extreme climate. The building´s construction and operating systems also abide by contemporary technological innovations, ecological and energy-saving criteria, thereby promoting and simplifying maintenance and preservation.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
The building´s roof represents a new plane in the urban environment, an abstraction derived from the agricultural geometry of the Vega plain surrounding it. The roof has an area set aside for photovoltaic cells that will contribute to the sustainability of the project.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
CONSTRUCTION & MATERIALS
The Parque de Ciencias is designed as a continuous envelope, in its facade and roof, which lines the building´s concrete walls and leaves a ventilated area in between. This skin is constructed with panels of GRC (concrete reinforced with glass fiber), with 80 millimeters of insulating material. The support system consists of hot-dipped galvanized steel plated strips that cast shadows depending on the time of day, lending the building a unique texture and the unity suitable for its scale and its formal diversity.
Materials used in the interior include:
Foundation: smooth concrete, irregularly crossed by strips of aluminum.
Lobby walls: fire resistant DM strips on gray panel DM, made from recycled, resined wood fibers.
Ceilings: Suspended plasterboard, with indirect fluorescent lighting.
Skylight: Steel tube structured with polycarbonate cell thermal insulating power. A cover sheet of metal sandwich with 50 millimeters high-density insulation.
Those parts of the pavilion with museum facilities are air-conditioned , with humidity and temperature control. The conditions and acoustic requirements of each of the sites were analyzed in order to provide maximum comfort.
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
image(copyright jimenez brasa), click 2 enlarge
Outline of the project
Project: Development
Competition: 2003
Project year: 2004
Construction: year 2005 - 2008
Architects: FERRATER +JIMENEZ BRASA Arquitectos , Carlos Ferrater Lambarri, Yolanda Brasa Seco, Eduardo Jiménez Artacho
Collaborators: Luis Gonzalo Arias, David Molina, Cristian Eugen
Technical Architects: F. Javier Gonzalez, José Moreno
Instalations Engineering: Ábaco Engineers., Patricio Bautista, Luis Ollero
Structural Engineering: Juan Calvo / Pondio
Acoustics: Higini Arau
Photographs: Alejo Bagué, Fernando Alda
Quality Control: Cemosa
Main Contractor: Dragados S. A.
Location: Avd. de la Ciencia s / n. 18006 Granada. Spain
Constructed area: Total 48.377 m2
Budget: E 40 M. / US $ 50.45 M.
Source:JIMENEZ BRASA Architects

"Cabin Vardehaugen" by Fantastic Norway

"Cabin Vardehaugen" is a small residence in Fosen, Norway designed by Fantastic Norway.The cabin is situated on the top of a rocky hill at the outermost coast of Fosen (Norway). The building is carefully placed and designed in relation to the local terrain, the panoramic view and the specific climactic conditions in the area. A variety of sheltered outdoor spaces enables a dynamic and social relation between the cabin and the surrounding landscape. In addition to this, the design aims to address the traditional, plain and pragmatic building culture in the area. The cabin is 77m² and was erected in 2008 by Åbygg AS.
images (copyright Fantastic Norway),click 2 enlarge
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