Studio: Romera y Ruiz Arquitectos
Authors: Pedro Romera García, Angela Ruíz Martínez
Location: Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain
Video: Yon Bengoechea Peña
General aspects: Until recent years, the geometry of buildings had to rely on water levels. Wall elevations and the verticality of pillars had to be checked with water “levels”. Water hoses were used to replicate a specific elevation mark from one place to another by applying the principle of communicating vessels.
The horizon line has always contrasted with the verticality of humans and man-made constructions. Geometry, as we know it today, originated from the physical nature of water in its many forms. Flat lines in nature can only be found in water, such as the sea surface. So, movement, and therefore time, are integral to this concept of uninterrupted flow that permeates through the architectural design of this unique corner of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Arbitrary organic shapes lead us into the analysis of one of the most prominent trends of the Modern Movement in architecture. Architects such as Fermín Suárez Valido laid down the foundations of this so-called organic architecture, rooted in the formal and material traditions of his ancestors. The renovation and expansion Project aims at promoting a greater integration with nature, from where it emerged.
Why did you choose this category?: The inherent features of the project, sinuosity and subtleness, combine with the conditions of the site (a triangular shaped land plot) to create a meeting point. All paths lead to this strategic spot, and the building embraces them, like a receptacle for individuals in agreement about the indoor-outdoor relationship. This consensus is brought about by the convexities and concavities of an outdoor space that provides cover nonetheless. Furthermore, the interior glazing bends and curves, resisting its own nature and willing to take part in the scene. This feature creates a different type of relationship between those inside and outside the building, as it seems like all of them shared the same space.
As dwellers in this compact city with high population density, this is a place to unwind, and a place where someone can escape the hustle and bustle, sit with friends and just watch from an exceptional vantage point.