Between earth and sky
A device for crossing, descending and ascending, moving in and out of the perimeter of a void in the urban plot of Camogli.
international competition: 2nd place project - 2010
Camogli, GE (ITALY)
Visiting the place for the first time, one is struck by the emptiness, the lack, the absence that makes the perimeter that defines this space even more interesting. The project promises to fill as little as possible, to preserve the void as the true spatial value of this place.
In shaping and arranging the few square meters requested by the program, it becomes a device for crossing, descending and ascending, moving in and out of the perimeter of this void in the urban plot of Camogli which reveals, at its root, the orography of the territory and its highlights the relationship with fabric built over time. A hole that seems to hold an energy that comes from below, from the earth and from the slope made of overlapping cliffs and terraces of a city that rises, energy enclosed within the perimeter of the surrounding wings and their eaves that define above the limit between earth and sky. The exceptional nature of this place resides first of all in its size and shape, in an urban context made of narrow lines parallel to the sea, enclosed between high houses like via Schiaffino, of vertiginous transversal passages of height or on the contrary of extended spaces like the walk sea, which are confronted only with the infinity of the horizon. The place of the project is surprising for its shape, for being a box and not a path, a center and not a flow, hollowed out and not cut into the fabric, a place of being rather than walking. It is difficult to get lost along the streets of the Camogli fabric, having little choice between right and left, between going up and down; here instead everything changes and becomes less clear and, as entering a large room, many doors open in front of the visitor, one on each side … A further element that has been studied in depth concerns the painted texture of the buildings that wrap like wings drawn of a theater, creating a rich and precious urban scenography, light in colors, lines and geometries but still present and able to define the indelible character of an enveloping space. It is as if the scene to be represented in this space was defined not a priori, but rather starting from this set already present and that now, following the demolition of the existing building until a few years ago, is revealed with all its pictorial and volumetric power. It was therefore imagined that the project should be able to accept this characteristic within itself and transform it into an element of research and innovation but at the same time of continuity. The façade is inspired by the painted facades and freely reproduces the plot and lines transforming them into a design element of the facade. A device was created to be applied to the glazed parts as well as to the masonry, new or existing, which could define without distinction volumes and vertical planes and which could be simultaneously cladding, parapet and protective barrier. It is an element that at the same time protects and reveals what is behind, in the background, hidden. A new extruded leather that works as a brise soleil and plays with light, which repairs and protects.