DEREK PIROZZI DESIGN WORKSHOP LLC
LOCATION : HELSINKI FINLAND
TYPE : OPEN INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION
YEAR : 2014
A KNOT IN THE GLOBAL GRAIN
Standing at the very intersection of East and West… A knot is formed in the grain of an international community. Progressive and steadfast, the concept of a new global icon in Helsinki becomes juxtaposed between traditions explored and innovations uncharted; civic opportunity and ecological responsibility; regional adulation and universal identity - all of which deeply rooted in a culture defined by vision. In a dynamic landscape, situated between park, harbor and an historical urban edge, the architecture is composed as an exceedingly clear gesture founded through the represented spirit of a culture and a nation.
Lying on the coast like a piece of drift wood washed ashore, our proposal begins to uncurl and recede into the context acting as a carved branch giving away to time. What is intended to become known as the Helsinki effect, the proposal synchronously established as an economical generator but also a representation of place through the implementation of traditional craftsmanship through construction methodology – proposing a form of iconic critical regionalism.
Instantly symbolic, the proposals radiating vertical elements become redolent of the growth process of wood, the very product that even today begins to define a Finnish culture. Authentic and enduring, the bold gesture acts as a series of rings, each consecutive wall member encapsulating or celebrating the functional aspects housed within the institution. Designed to achieve unlimited flexibility, the versatile nature of the hand crafted exterior façades and the kinetic interior curtain walls allows for an architectural experience never encountered twice by the seasonal visitor.
Driven by exploiting infinite opportunity for the curator and artist, the museums exhibition spaces are composed of endless possibilities through the dynamic and fluid movement of the wooden curtains, which define the space. Manipulating and enhancing the experience of our journey, each wall system becomes a filter of movement, sound and light– the resulting space becoming responsive and receptive to the artwork itself. Establishing an artistic laboratory where innovation towards the visitor’s experience of art is key in creating a museum of the future.
Consciously composed with a strong connection to the urban domain, the sequencing of program and its response to the immediate context establishes a seamlessly integrated central gathering place. Enhancing the experience, the program is arranged to create a provocative dialogue between museum and city. The large open sculpture park situated to the north allows for the pouring of pedestrian traffic from Market Hall and Old Market Square into the museums powerful embrace.
Provide unobstructed views of the city, the dining amenities hug the sculpture yard to the east becoming the counterpoint between courtyard and harbor, generating views both day and night. At the core, the performance hall acts as the unraveling heart, an eternal form fabricated through the genuine craftsmanship of a Finnish wood working culture. Embodying regional tradition and innovation impending, the fluid yet tectonic gesture of this proposal becomes synonymous with time and age – past and future, creating an iconic symbol of an historic city, deeply rooted in the forthcoming.
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