Bee Breeders has released the results of their Blue Clay Country Spa competition, which asked participants to design a non-urban ecotourism facility in Latvia. The competition invited students and professionals to “interrogate the inherent tensions between subject and object, [and] building and site,” as well as to “engage the agency of typological form—including, for instance, the courtyard, shed, garden, and pavilion.”
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Focussing on prefabricated and sustainable means of construction, Italian practices 3GATTI Architecture Studio and OFL Architecture have envisioned an airy forest resort and spa in the historical region of Kurzeme, Latvia. The Pinecones Resort does its name justice by the spiky cone-like units that inhabit the site, made possible through the use of an inflatable roof constructed from ETFE, a lightweight polymer film.
PLH Arkitekter has been announced as one of two winners in the international design competition for Rail Baltica, organized by The European Railroad Lines, Ltd. As a part of the European transport network, Rail Baltica will be a multi-modal public transport hub in the Latvian capital of Riga, with a railway bridge crossing the Daugava River.
As part of ArchDaily's coverage of the 2016 Venice Biennale, we are presenting a series of articles written by the curators of the exhibitions and installations on show.
The Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art Foundation has selected Adjaye Associates to lead the design for a new contemporary art museum in downtown Riga. Selected from a pool of 7 finalists including wHY and Lahdelma & Mahlamäki, the winning design features a strongly animated roof geometry designed to pull soft northern light into each of the gallery spaces.
The Baltic Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Biennale, representing Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, will explore the "transformative efforts at play" that are currently "reprogramming an inert region beyond the delineations of separate nation states." It "intends to explore the built environment of the Baltic States as a shared space of ideas." Located in Enrichetto Capuzzo's Palasport Arsenale Giobatta Gianquinto, a Brutalist architecture sports hall located next to the Arsenale, the exhibition will also be accompanied by a series of related events that will be presented in the form of a cross-section through Baltic space unfolding as "a non-linear stratigraphy."
For an article featured in Blueprint Herbert Wright examines Riga's new National Library of Latvia, completed by 89-year-old Gunārs Birkerts this month. Located in one of Latvia's most historic urban settings, the library - locally known as the "Castle of Light" - challenges the city's recent history of Soviet public architecture with a contemporary, if not as equally monumental, cultural edifice. Initially conceived in 1988 now, over twenty five years later, the structure stands as a €163million testament to Latvia's rich academic and public cultural heritage. Earlier this year, "14,000 Latvians formed a 2km human chain to pass books from the old to new libraries." Wright's exploration of this seminal building on Birkert's œuvre is complemented by Janis Dripe's excellent photographic studies of what is certain to be one of the most important Eastern European buildings of this decade.
From the Curators. The exposition with the project title Unwritten highlights issues regarding the perception, research, and conservation of Latvian post-War architecture. Unwritten chronicles, in fact, inexistent research on this.
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