A project funded by the city of Bat-Yam, the abandoned Riviera nightclub on the beach of Bat-Yam, south of Tel-Aviv, has been turned into a seaside art gallery and artist colony. Designed by Derman Verbakel Architecture, the 1,200 square meter grid of concrete columns and beams, which had been the décor for a lively night scene in 1950s and 60s, was reconverted within only a few weeks last summer. This project then became a space for artists to live and create on-site art inside and outside the gallery. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The design blurs the distinction between beach life and gallery culture by opening up the façade and revealing the original colonnade and allowing for the beach sand to continue inside as a stabilized sand floor. Yellow neon lights are used for signage and lighting, and form a reference to New York’s Coney Island. The roughness of the interior has been kept by only painting the existing structural grid and adding light elements that do not affect the openness of the space, such as fans, light spots and movable panels for display. The intent was to create an exhibition space you can visit in a bathing suit while eating ice cream.