Adaptable Architecture on the Thames River
Urban Competition | Adaptable Architecture on the Thames River
For this competition, and for the first time, the project to be designed will have a moveable, rather than a fixed, location. The challenge involves the design of a mobile architecture gallery built to contain and distribute – both metaphorically and literally – ideas for the city as whole. This installation will travel along the River Thames, connecting in this way a number of artistic spaces, and picking up visitors along the riverbank, particularly at South Bank. This container vessel should be versatile enough to accommodate a variety of functions through simple modifications to its structure. The exhibition space must be able to adapt itself to the movement of the river and to the requirements of the exhibition and the artists, as well as the climate of London, with the particular demands imposed by summer and winter conditions. This “Floating Container” will consist of a lightweight structure installed upon a floating barge, with a basic area of approximately 500 m2. It should form an object that is easily distinguishable from all the other types of vessels which currently navigate the river, and it should be capable of altering through its “temporary” presence the urban profile of the city, while at the same time being able to incorporate itself into the miscellaneous context of modern‐day London. The route covered by the gallery will be circumscribed by Waterloo Bridge and the Tower Bridge, including Blackfriars Bridge, halfway along the route. The significant buildings along this stretch of the river include Somerset House, the Royal Festival Hall, the National Theatre and Tate Modern – as well as the Design Museum Project and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. London is, at present, the focal point of Europe. It will host the 2012 Olympics, and an “adaptable gallery” navigating the Thames will reflect the city’s ability to constantly reinvent itself. The “Floating Gallery” should be a recognizable object able to make its “temporary” presence felt in the context of the urban profile of the city. Nevertheless, and given that this is a competition about ideas, the contestants will be permitted to produce completely experimental proposals tackling different extremes – from the subordination of the architecture within the context of the urban profile, to the creation of a new system designed to redefine the idea of the “monument” and of “temporariness”.
Ci viene offerta la possibilità di rappresentare l’inafferrabilità della città contemporanea, quale Londra, che attraverso un processo di continuo reinventare se stessa, sottolinea le caratteristiche della nostra società che in un costante cambiamento di stato sembra quasi non avere forma propria ed essere attraversata da una fluidità sfuggente. Abbiamo pensato ad una architettura dinamica dai confini sfumati che sarà capace di dissolversi nell’ambiente per rispondere ai repentini cambiamenti della città contemporanea e che riuscirà a superare il concetto di divisione con lo spazio che la accoglierà. Un percorso continuo e vivace all’interno creerà un susseguirsi di spazi per l’arte e l’architettura al piano terra (acqua) e per il relax al primo piano; attraverso il controllo climatico e della luce e con le variazioni di concentrazione di gruppi di persone e del contenuto informatico, questi (spazi) saranno in grado di aggiungere sempre nuovi luoghi di mutamento come i vortici nel flusso uniforme del fiume Tamigi.
English Text/It’s offered us the possibility to represent the elusive nature of the contemporary city, like London, which, reinventing itself by a continuous process, underlines the characteristics of our society that, by a continual change of its state, appears without its own shape and looks crossed by an elusive fluency. We have thought of a dynamic architecture with shaded borders that will be able to dissolve itself in environment to answer an unexpected change of the contemporary city; this (architecture) will succeed to overcome the division conception to the space that will receive it. A vivacious continuous internal course will create a succession of spaces for art and architecture on the water plane and for relaxation on the first level; these (spaces), by a climate and light control and by the change of both the people groups and the information content, always will be able to create new sceneries of mutations like the eddies in the regular ebb of the river Thames.