Architecture for culture


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Headquarters of the Giner de los Ríos Foundation


Description Technical file

This project seeks at the same time to install itself within the sentimental geography of the Foundation and within the institutionalist ethos, carefully weaving the threads of relations between people and their material and intellectual legacy to build an evocation of the institution’s spirit.

The legendary Free Teaching Institution was both an experimental lab school and a group of people bent on profoundly regenerating society through education. Based on radical and lay teaching, it educated the most brilliant generation of thinkers, scientists and artists in modern Spain.
The project seeks to reflect the vision of nature and landscape of Francisco Giner de los Ríos, who considered landscape to be one of the major educational tools. The central garden of the historical headquarters, which was lost after the Civil War, was a key element in its educational ethos. The project seeks to recreate the original spatial organisation, a series of pieces raised off the floor and
“surrounded by a belt of greenery” sought by the Institution’s initial ideal.
The inner garden becomes the main space, while the new building of the enlargement, together with the existing pavilions once restored, become simply a tool for configuring it. The enlargement building is elusive, impossible to perceive in its entirety, covered by a radically abstract metallic lattice. There is a series of rooms around a gar- den, linked up by a vertical communications system and subsidiary spaces extending to the limits of the site. It is fragmented to the point that nowhere can its size and scape be perceived; rather, it looks like a series of pavilions, spaces and corners that adapt to the scale of the Giner de los Ríos house and the Macpherson pavilion, the two existing restored constructions.
The classrooms are multifocal spaces without a predominant direction, surrounded by a glass enclosure and flexible hanging systems for intentionally modifying its acoustic and lighting conditions in a simple way. Its geometry replicates the garden’s system of plantations and allows for different configurations that can also be tried out with the space as an educational tool. The external shell is both a lattice giving on to the garden and a façade towards the classrooms that varies its density depending on sunlight exposure and vistas. It is comprised of a superposition of darkening systems, glass, load-bearing structure situated on the outside and a lattice of three superposed layers of steel rods overlaying the internal rooms to form a geometric kaleidoscope of surfaces that perceptively widens the size of the garden. This lattice fragmented into endless planes forms a backdrop of radical abstraction on a reduced scale to emphasise the garden’s principal role.

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Localización Location: Madrid. Spain. Arquitectos Architects: amid.cero9 | Cristina Díaz Moreno & Efrén Ga Grinda. Aparejador Quantity surveyor: Luis Calvo Hurtado. Colaboradores Collaborators: concurso | Ana Belén Franco, Iñigo González-Haba, David Marsinyach, Jorge Martín Sainz de los Terreros, proyecto básico | Jaime Bartolomé, Íñigo González-Haba, Jesús Isla, Mireia Luzárraga, Alex Muiño, Asa Nakano, José Quintanar, Jorge Saz, Rebeca Vallecillo, proyecto de ejecución y dirección de obra | Javier Casado, Chienchuan Chen, Maria Díaz Simal, Paula Ferruz, Paula Ibarrondo, Angela Juarranz, Ma Luisa León, Laura Miguelañez, José Quintanar, Elena Rivas, Meritxell Rocafull, Bárbara Rodriguez Pando, Cristina Sanz, Jorge Saz, Vicente Soler y Eva Urquijo. Estructuras Structures: BOMA Brufau, Obiol, Moya, Asociados | Xavier Aguiló, Raquel Álvarez. Instalaciones Facilities: Úrculo Ing- enieros. Jardín Yard: Teresa Galí | Arquitectura y Agronomía, Cristina Díaz Moreno, Efrén García Grinda | amid.cero9. Fecha de finalización de la obra Completion date of the works: 2015. Fotografía Photography: José Hevia.



José Hevia