Architects: FAR frohn&rojas
Location: Providencia, Santiago, Chile
Design Team: Marc Frohn, Mario Rojas Toledo, Max Koch, Natalia Becerra, Fabio Magnago, Steven Vidovic, Tim Maaßen, Philipp Kentgens, Marius Helten, Isabel Miño, Pia Custodis, Alex Seick, Nikola Freissmuth, Reina Pisano
Area: 1,024 sqm
Photographs: Guy Wenborne
Water Consultant: Constanzo EIRL
Clima Consultant: Masterclima S.A.
Electrical Consultant: Proingel Ltda
Fire Systems Consultant: Gruposchutz S.A.
Lighting Consultant: Docevolts
Contractor: Contractor constructora Ralun Ltda.
Client: Federal Republic of Germany
In February 2010, the building that has historically housed the Goethe- Institute was damaged by earthquake. While FAR continues work on the historic structure, an interim solution was needed, but one with a complete character and integrity of its own. The temporary Cultural Institute is to be installed on an unfinished floor in an office high-rise. The space is characterized by a large depth of 16m between core and façade, but with only limited space for class-rooms, library, office, event- and exhibition space.
A language was created through a vocabulary of existing furniture and a new metal shelving system, configured to subdivide the large open floor. This strategy minimizes the resources while creating a coherent landscape. The furniture divisions are arranged radially around the core, allowing views out from any given point and drawing sunlight into the full depth of the floor. The radial arrangement of the services, exposed and coloured, emphasise the centrifugal force of the layout.
The spatial boundaries are blurred between the offices and classrooms along the façade, and the library and ‘event-zone’ along the center. A heavy curtain allows a flexible acoustic separation of ‘event-zone’ and class rooms. A continuous curve of ‘stretch-metal’ separates the library from the lockable administrative office zone, offering intriguing visual links between the two. The Institute can be playfully reconfigured across a range of activities and demands over the course of a day. Light emitting materials and surfaces add another mysterious spatial layer at night.
The ‘ingredients’ of this temporary scheme fit seamlessly into the historic building where they will take on a new reading through reconfiguration.