Silencio / Space Group + Brisac Gonzalez

Silencio / Space Group + Brisac Gonzalez
Night View © LUXIGON

A few days ago, we shared C. F. Møller Architects‘ winning entry for the Kristiansund Opera and Culture Center entitled Kulturkvartalet. This project shares its joint first place prize with Oslo based architecture and design office Space Group + London based Brisac Gonzalez. The team of Space Group and Brisac Gonzales have designed a 15, 000 m2 opera and cultural house with a 600-seat auditorium, library, cultural facilities, restaurants and a youth center. ”Our strategy is threefold: a full refurbishment of the building skin, an upgrading of the structure, and an extension of the top floor with roof terrace. The ground floor is conceived as a living room, with spaces for music, newspapers, studying, playing. The café opens graciously to Kongensplass – an urban garden,” explained the team.

More images and more about the winning proposal after the break.

Recognizing the significance of the two existing buildings – the Langveien ungdomskole and Folketshus – the team’s site approach was to introduce a new building that would compliment the original vision of the Pedersen plan and yet retain its own identity and character.

© Space Group / Brisac Gonzales

The complex is organized in a processional manner with the visitor circulation moving along “the red carpet”, which weaves its way through the building and reveals the interior and exterior views of Kristiansund.  ”This spatially rich social mixer takes you to all public accessible spaces – in addition to being a space for impromptu performance, reception, cafe and information center.”

Red Carpet © Space Group / Brisac Gonzales

The main musical hall allows for the greatest number of guests to be as close as possible to the stage, with perfect sightlines. “Our design for the main hall envisions a fluid framework of wooden coffers that gives continuity in the reading of space, and flexibility in the acoustical definition – tune ability – of the room. The auditorium is flexible, yet it is not generic. Rather a space of multiple states of completeness.”

Main Hall interior © LUXIGON

The facade, conceived as  a “curtain to the performance within,” is a translucent porous skin allowing light to penetrate and views to be enjoyed both looking in and out. “The performance remains in focus and the day lighting contributes to the choreography of spaces,” added the architects.  By keeping the facade so open, the activities are able to become a part of the public square rather than trapped inside a private entity.


“The complex represents culture in its most pervasive and innovative form. To create spaces for the unexpected, spaces to inspire us, spaces where the collective and individual can coexist, to inspire experimentation, invention, heterogeneity and freedom, is to liberate culture,” explained the team.

Architects Space Group: Gary Bates, Gro Bonesmo, Adam Kurdahl, Wenche Andreassen , Gesine Gummi,

Ingjerd Sandven Kleivan, Naofumi Namba, Jens Noach, Erich Gerlach, Sassi Heiskanen, Tudor Vlasceanu, Jens Niehues, Rebekah Schaberg, Claudia Laarman.

Architects Brisac Gonzalez: Edgar Gonzalez, João Baptista, Eleftherios Ambatzis, Husain Jaorawala, Miguel Gonçalves, Gordon Swapp.

Structural engineer: Norconsult

Service/ Environmental: Atelier Ten, 19 Perseverance Works

Acoustics: Norconsult AS / Akustikon

Theatre Consultant: DUCKS Scéno

Landscape architect: Sundt & Thomassen AS

Logistics: Atkins.

Visualisations: Luxigon, Eric de Broche des Combes, Laurent Ménabé

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About this author
Cite: Karen Cilento. "Silencio / Space Group + Brisac Gonzalez" 12 Jul 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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