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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
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.

C3A in Córdoba, Spain by realities:united

 
January 10th, 2017 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: realities:united 

The original concept for the building by Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos proposed the integration of a low-resolution light and media façade on the building surface, facing Río Guadalquivir. realities:united was commissioned to further develop the conception and the design for this media skin in close cooperation with the architects.

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

  • Architects: realities:united
  • Project: C3A
  • Location: Centro de Creacion Artistica Contemporánea de Andalucía, Parque de Miraflores, 14009 Córdoba, Spain
  • Photography: Markus Koob, realities-united and Roland-Halbe
  • Models: Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos
  • Work performed: Artistic & technical concept, design, planning, software conception, site management
  • Project team: Marie Banâtre, Johann Christoph Bätz, Christoph von Mach, Daniel Mock, Malte Niedringhaus, Ulrich Pohl, Christian Riekoff, Stefan Tietke, Christoph Wagner, Markus Wiedauer
  • Project collaboration: Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos (architecture & project partnership), FCC Construccion S.A. (general contractor), Iluminación Lledó S.A. (construction of lighting facade system)
  • Year: 2006 (design)/ 2012 (completion)/ 2016 (opening)
  • Status: Completed

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

The Façade was transformed into a light and media display without fundamentally changing its solid appearance as envisioned by Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos. It was designed to deliver a tactile and solid appearance in daytime while it turns into a unique and dynamic communication wall that reacts very specifically to the architecture at night.

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Starting point for the media façade was an analysis of the significant inner structure of the building, which is made up of a tessellated (self-repeating) pattern of polygonal rooms. This inner motif is translated to form a characteristic outer topography on the façade, a system of irregularly shaped, hexagonal indentations of varying density, size and scale.

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

There are 1,319 of these pre-fabricated “bowls” scattered over the 100m long façade made of fiberglass-reinforced cement (GRC). Each of the bowls is serving as a reflector for an integrated artificial light source. By controlling the intensity of each lamp individually, the bowls turn the façade into the envisioned low-resolution grey scale display.

Image Courtesy © Roland-Halbe

Image Courtesy © Roland-Halbe

Image Courtesy © Roland-Halbe

Image Courtesy © Roland-Halbe

Three different scales of bowls are employed and distributed in huge patterns over the total façade, thereby subtly echoing the building’s architectural elements. Additionally, each bowl appears to be unique in shape and size; and their distribution appears to be irregular.

Only the distribution density stays consistent.

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © Markus Koob

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Analogously to the eye’s retina, this composition allows the definition of areas of varying density or “sensitivity” on the façade. This analogy offers a certain artistic freedom: the resolution of the displayed images can stay low, fitting the blown-up scale of the screen, creating a mode of display in which the motifs are hinted at, rather than unambiguously presented.

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

During the day, the façade shows a three-dimensional landscape with no sign of being a media facade. Additionally, this tectonically modulated surface topography is characterized by a playful composition of light and shadow that constantly changes with the movement of the sun.

The thorough immersion of the “pixel-bowls” – like negative impressions – in the volume of the façade turns the architectural scheme itself into a digital information carrier.

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

The interest in the aspect of “visual acuity” stems from earlier projects and extensive research on the process of visual perception (cf. projects BIX, SPOTS). For visualizations with very low resolution, the precognition of the brain determines whether an image or animation can be recognized. A motif that has been displayed at a higher resolution can be shifted to much lower resolution and still preserve its readability (cf. projects AAMP, SPOTS).

Image Courtesy © Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos

Image Courtesy © Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos

Image Courtesy © Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos

Image Courtesy © Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

Image Courtesy © realities:united

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Categories: Art Center, Building, Facade

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