Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
SUPERNOVA in Bolzano, Italy by Tomas Ghisellini Architects
January 16th, 2015 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: Tomas Ghisellini Architects
A sensitive architectural body absorbs, shuffles and reinterprets some of the characters more intimately tied to the collective image of the city of Bressanone: its beautiful secret courts, arcades and mysterious crossing loggias, the preciousness and the refinement of urban details, the syncopated profiles of architectural scenes, the warmth evoked by the gilded surfaces that cover all the most important symbols of the community.
The new music school in Bressanone is a landscape within the landscape, a kind of environmental extension halfway between city and mountains. Not an insurmountable margin, not a definitive limit or an object in itself concluded or self-referential, but a penetrable body, diaphanous and transparent, inhabiting the urban space and, at the same time, the extraordinary natural context.
The new architectural presence is a continuous but porous body: balconies, porches, patios, terraces, overhangs and suspended volumes capture natural light and spectacular panoramic views, creating spaces for which air quality is called to be a decisive added value.
A thin crystal basement, covered with glass panels at different percentages of translucency, gets in touch with the urban ground. This glossy “pillow”, that multiplies the space of the square in an attractive and evanescent double reflection, embraces a half-open court where the piazza itself seems to expand as a fluid substance. Here, an unexpected and surprising open-air room the visitor realizes on two levels once reached, gives access to the school being however a place for representation, meeting, waiting, contemplation, rest.
The crystal basement, which includes at the ground floor the main common areas for the band and students in addition to administrative offices, ideally extends into underground volumes. These ones are partially exposed at the lower level of the court where a second patio, more intimate and concluded, sets up a kind of secret cloister and an intriguing outdoor foyer which can be used in summer the get into the theater directly from the piazza. The lower patio, where a tree is planted as a symbol of growth and cultural roots, will also serve as a safe room for escape in case of emergency.
A long protected “porch of light”, inside the crystal base as well, draws an unconventional place of transition between the new square and the underground parking and commercial spaces. The non-rectilinear path of the porch leads to a sequence of architectural episodes: the volumes of public toilets, the access to the commercial heated gallery, the balcony overlooking the patio of the tree, the half-open passage to the court of the school, the connection (by elevator) to the higher level of the park and the arrival to the piazza walking through a 8-meter high city gate.
As laid on the evanescent crystal pillow, the architectural body hosting the educational spaces of the music school assumes a radically diverse formal and material attitude. A skin of bronze-oxidized aluminum thin elements surrounds an L-shape folded three-dimensional object placed along north and west borders of the building site. The composition this way prepares a great iridescent and mysterious architectural “scene” that opens the square to the mountains profile, leading people’s sight to incredible panoramic views and building a silent dialogue with the metal body of the Vertikale climbing club.
Behind the golden membrane made of thick vertical elements, similar to a giant and fascinating musical stave, lies a dynamic weaving of protected openings the eye perceives at daytime as a rich subplot of lights and darks, at night as a cloud of changing glare and luminescence.
The new music school, dressed in gold and light, will become an icon for the city, a contemporary image collective identity will be clinging around. The strong, unusual and compelling character of the building will open a new era of regeneration for the city architecture. Bressanone will have a new precious and shining jewel.
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