Restricted Competition, 2008 (Finalist)
Projects for the Kunsthaus Zürich extension and for a public art garden
We were to continue constructing the front that is the plaza, as the empty space currently there makes the city disappear too quickly. But Heimplatz is small and taken up with traffic, a situation that is not expected to change.
So, widening the existing pavement beneath our building gives rise to a new public plaza: where it meets the ground, a system of spaces (some interior, others exterior) appears with urban intention. This is also a way of increasing the depth of the plaza and ensuring diagonal views of Heimplatz.
For reasons of energy, museography and context, we operated with the idea of constructing a low, compact, flexible building, with a large floor plan. We organized this mass by means of structural walls that follow the compositional and constructive logics of the Kunsthaus and Kantonschule. Our building, then, has an internal logic which, though not always obvious, relates them. On the other side of Heimplatz, our suspended building strikes up a volumetric dialogue with the old one. Ours, floating. The other one on the ground. From Heimplatz and from a distance, our building will be a platform, a base for the Kantonschule behind it.
On the slope of the site, we excavate and construct planes. The roof immediately appears as a new topography, a new façade of crucial importance in formal and constructive terms.
Formally, the line of the roof finishes off in deliberately different ways each of the planes that form the façade. Technically, the roof is a mechanism that controls the entrance of daylight, supports the array of photovoltaic panels, collects water and channels it to the garden behind. It is, then, a filter that relates actively with cosmic energies and will emerge at the foot of the Kantonschule as a technological landscape that relates easily with its sister roofs of the existing Kunsthaus.