Ephemeral spaces

Logroño, La Rioja

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In the Tunnel, an ephemeral installation mounted in the Calado de San Gregorio of Logroño

Joao Branco y Paula del Río

FAD Awards finalist   Ephemeral interventions
Description Technical file

The Jury's appraisal

Stone, magic and human curiosity are sufficient elements to bring visitors to the idea of the infinite. Simplicity and synthesis.
A small hole as the discreet protagonist of the installation, embodied in a set of wooden panels and a play of mirrors that endlessly reproduce images that succeed each other. This succeeds in enhancing the quality of the existing box, an ashlar stone vault that was delicately restored without modifying its constructional essence.
The intervention in the space invites us to participate, it suggests complicity, elicits surprise and curiosity in the visitor while emphasising the architectural space.


“In the Tunnel" was an installation included in the contents and programme of Concéntrico 01, the Architecture and Design Festival of Logroño. The festival’s aim was none other than to give new value to a series of forgotten or hidden spaces in the city’s historic centre, showing them to its inhabitants through architecture.

This proposal, in a predetermined manner, sought the necessary interaction of the people through the different scheduled surprises and perhaps also the occasional bewilderment when faced with the manipulation of the space and the architectural provocation proposed by the authors.

The Calado de San Gregorio is a tunnel –the calado, or depth, of the name—formed by a vault of ashlar stones 30 metres long. The entrance, a central door in one of its ends, unhesitatingly reveals the astonishing vaulted space and transforms it for the visitor into a unique, permanent and moving image.

The intervention undertaken expands the experience of this space, distorts and subdivides it and transforms the tunnel into a route. At its start, a wooden panel interrupts the view: the depth is concealed to the visitor, offering only the continuity of the stone vault. In the centre a small hole invites visitors to look without being seen and, in the manner of Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window, to seek out the end of the tunnel. However, the space on the other side does not end: it is repeated until it is out of sight.

If visitors, bitten by curiosity, decide to circumvent the wooden panel, they will see their image repeated. They will find themselves between two mirrors which, not having a frame, blend into the depth in a world of confusion in which reflection and reality are difficult to distinguish.



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Localización Location: Logroño. Spain. Autores Authors: João Branco y Paula del Río, arquitectos (Branco-Delrio arquitectos). Colaboradores Collaborators: Félix Bellido Hernanz y Gerson Rei. Coordinador del festival Festival coordinator: Javier Peña Ibáñez. Patrocinadores Sponsors: Cristalerías Vinuesa y Garnica Plywood. Fecha de proyecto Project date: febrero-marzo 2015. Fotografía Photography: ©domalomenos - Eduardo Nascimento, João Fôja.
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