Architects: Decio Tozzi
Collaborators: Stefani Samara, Natalia Necco
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Ricardo Canton
From the architect. The orchidarium Professor Ruth Cardoso has its form inspired on the “habitat” of the africans, indigenous and pré-colombian’s cultures.
The solutions for the domain and transformation of nature were studied to indentify the way to obtain diffuse illumination and permanent ventilation using constructive process and form suitable with technique used by these cultures.
In this way the forms found in several Africans communities and indigenous Brazilians tribes, that use zenithal openings for the controlled entrance of light and permanent ventilation, made with soil, assume, through actual steel technology with glass and plastic transparent walls, a diaphanous hut form.
A leaked beam, in an arc shape, structure the model and propose the orchidarium scale offering the necessary air volume to the permanent air’s displacement, required to keep the orchid’s delicacy.
From both side of this leaked beam there are a sequence of curve frame-work supported on the ring of the semi-circular, locked by horizontals meridians that configure the quarter of sphere of the orchidarium’s form.
On one side the intersection of this metallic spherical structure make itself in the beam’s inferior architrave and on the other side in the beam’s superior architrave, enabling the air’s escape through the concrete master arc’s openings that has the permanent ventilation’s function.
Its implantation follows the pre-colombian habitat’s implantation lesson, found in Brasil, that used to bury half of the habitation to be protected from the strong wind, letting only the roofs outside.
Similarly, in the Villa-Lobos Park, the Orchidarium’s level is 1,5 meters bellow the land line and the access is through a generous ramp since the entrance.
This solution creates a foundation naturally, above 1,20 meters from the Park’s level, where lands the hut’s transparent form that configures the Orchidarium.
Its scale integrates itself to the Park’s free space and relates, harmoniously, with the other Park’s buildings and the water’s tower. Thus the orchidarium’s design created as diaphanous hut, honors the Professor Ruth Cardoso as a contemporaneous expression of primitive cultures that as anthropologist she studied and as citizen she always defended.