Page D2.2 . 25 July 2001                     
ArchitectureWeek - Design Department
NEWS   |   DESIGN   |   BUILDING   |   DESIGN TOOLS   |   ENVIRONMENT   |   BUILDING CULTURE
< Prev Page Next Page >
 
DESIGN
 
  •  
  • Two Compact Urban Schools
     
  •  
  • Borromini Awards to Klotz and Nouvel
     
  •  
  • More Staff in Less Space

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]
    AND MORE
      Current Contents
      Blog Center
      Download Center
      New Products
      Products Guide
      Classic Home
      Architecture Forum
      Architects Directory
      Topics Library
      Complete Archive
      Web Directory
      About ArchWeek
      Search
      Subscribe & Contribute
      Free Newsletters
       

     
    QUIZ

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Borromini Awards to Klotz and Nouvel

    (continued)

    Rooted in classical modernism, Klotz uses a simple formal vocabulary that lets materials speak for themselves. The Borromini judges praise his evident mastery of questions of form, expression, and construction. Ideologically far from the vernacular, Klotz nonetheless manages to synthesize internationalist tendencies with a specific sense of place.

    Matthias Klotz established his practice in Santiago, Chile, in 1988. Since then, he has emphasized the "search for simple solutions, with a clear issue," developing projects characterized by strong and innovative spatial configurations, balanced interplays of material, and thoughtful engagement with particularities of site and program.

    A Prize-winning School

    Klotz has worked at a variety of scales, beginning with houses, and including event halls, industrial buildings, a winery, schools, clinics, and urban furniture. His first large-scale building, the Altamira School, was completed in April 2000; it was this building in particular that earned him the Borromini Award.

    Built on the slopes of the Andes mountains, the 108,000-square-foot (10,000-square-meter) Altamira School derives from a clear and simple concept: build the edges, free the center.

    Thus, a cellular organization of classrooms creates enclosure, and the large volumes of the program's gathering spaces create a hollow core. The result is a courtyard building which opens views to the mountains and the sky, while reflecting the demands of site and program.

    The playground railings and perimeter canopy above interweave building and sky. In plan, the inclined ground plane brought the mountainside into the school; in elevation, the open roof line brings in the sky. Making a virtue of the site's slope, the gymnasium and dining hall occupy a lower level, where they take the courtyard's inclined plane for their roof. At this level, the school connects to the street: after hours, gymnasium and dining hall serve as community facilities.

    The street elevation consists of a transparent assembly space flanked by solid classroom blocks. This configuration of solid edge and open center reiterates the building's generating idea.

    The school's large-span assembly spaces offer an opportunity for Klotz to express the building's steel and concrete structure, which he does without overstating it. The quality of the building's structural expression exhibits, in the words of the Borromini judges, "the delicate strength that is becoming the hallmark of Klotz's practice."

    The detailing of the building continues this fine balance. Precision steel-work plays off unrefined concrete, accentuating the character of the two materials. On the north facade, a pattern of colored panels visible through a steel mesh scrim gives the building an optical vibration seemingly at odds with the brutality of its concrete frame.

    This montage of opposites lends interest to the building's formal simplicity. In its strength of concept, sensitivity to site, and elegance of execution, the Altamira School reaffirms the promise of Klotz's early work.

    The Borromini's recognition of Klotz, Khoury, and the eight other young architects nominated for this award draws attention to innovative work from a variety of cultures and geographies. The authors of this work will be worth watching as a new generation of architects engages the social, technological, and environmental issues of years to come.

    The International Award for Architecture Francesco Borromini is sponsored by the city of Rome. It is open to architects from all over the world whose works, at the time and in the context of their realization, have best interpreted the demands of the contemporary world as well as the needs of our collective life, helping humanity's civil and cultural growth.

    Katharine Logan is an assistant editor of ArchitectureWeek.

     

    AW

    ArchWeek Photo

    Entry gate, Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris by French architect Jean Nouvel who won the Premio Borromini.
    Photo: Kevin Matthews

    ArchWeek Photo

    Rooted in classical modernism, Klotz uses a simple formal vocabulary that lets his materials speak for themselves.
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    The ground plane of the courtyard inclines, bringing the mountainside into the playground, and ramping the playground into the sky.
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    The Altamira School derives from a clear and simple concept: build the edges, free the center.
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    The school's large-span assembly spaces express, without overstating, the steel and concrete structure.
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    A pattern of colored panels visible through a steel mesh scrim gives the building an optical vibration seemingly at odds with the brutality of its concrete frame.
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    A montage of opposites exhibits the "delicate strength that is becoming the hallmark of Klotz's practice."
    Photo: Alberto Piovano

    ArchWeek Photo

    Bernard Khoury won Honorable Mention in the Young Architects category for his project, B018.
    Photo: Bernard Khoury

     

    Click on thumbnail images
    to view full-size pictures.

     
    < Prev Page Next Page > Send this to a friend       Subscribe       Contribute       Advertise       Privacy       Comments
    GREAT BUILDINGS   |   DISCUSSION   |   SCRAPBOOK   |   COMMUNITY   |   BOOKS   |   FREE 3D   |   ARTIFICE   |   SEARCH
      ArchitectureWeek.com © 2001 Artifice, Inc. - All Rights Reserved