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The Architectural Trio: Edition #31
Welcome back to another Architectural Trio! This week’s Trio was a lot trickier to pick than last week as there was a lot of impressive architecture on display. In the end, I have settled for two starchitect designed pieces and a playful nursery. At the moment I am overflowing with ideas for articles, I just need to find the time to write and post them. As a result, keep checking back for more! Enjoy the Trio and have a good week.
Lego House, Denmark, BIG
Whether you like or dislike the style of BIG, you can’t dispute that this project is perfect for their geometric, blocky aesthetic. Lego house is a 12,000m² centre located in the Company’s hometown of Billund that provides a new attraction for fans of the plastic bricks. It is formed of 21 block modules which were designed to mimic the appearance of the toy, with two stepped volumes providing an engaging, playful public space. I am a big fan of the white tiled cladding as it looks clean and ordered whilst reinforcing the strong angles of the blocks through light and shade. The roofs of each module act as coloured play areas with all manner of creations, from sharks to rockets to camels. It would be a lovely surprise to chance upon these areas during a visit to the centre if you didn’t know they existed since they are invisible at ground level. Whilst this design is perhaps a tad predictable, it perfectly embodies Lego’s ethos and seems very fun to explore and interact with. With this in mind, it has to be seen as a success.
The Morinoie, Japan, Masahiko Fujimori
This nursery in Sendai, Japan, has been built to accommodate growing demand from young families in the area. Its unique facade makes it a landmark in the community and clearly expresses its function. The portals also create extra space and fun nooks for the pupils to interact with. In my opinion the colour palette adds a lot to the design, helping it to stand out and make the children excited to attend the nursery. Internally wood and cork flooring has been used in a refined and simple manner. The fittings seem very tactile and warm, welcoming the children and encouraging them to explore. The roof playground also contains the portals which act as lookouts, as well as a garden which will be used to teach horticulture.
National Holocaust Monument, Canada, Studio Libeskind
I will admit, I used to hate Daniel Libeskind buildings before visiting one. However, I can’t describe how powerful and emotive my experience was in his Imperial War Museum North in Manchester. I used to think his buildings just used awkward, jagged angles and nothing else, however in reality a wealth of thoughtful design and subtle detailing perfectly represent the often sobering subject matter. Fortunately, this monument in Ottawa, Canda, seems no exception. The plan reads as a warped Star of David, whilst the harsh and sparse internal courtyard focuses the eyes on murals of various concentration camps and killing fields. Tall, sheer walls and narrow openings which compress visitors contrast beautifully with wide open vistas at the end of passageways. Externally, planting which will become increasingly dense over time represents hope and the flourishing of those who managed to flee to Canada. Libeskind is a master of using his architecture to induce raw, primitive emotions and reflection about some of the most horrible tragedies in history.