This project was something really special for all of us in our class, since the most suitable project was selected to be built in real life. We were to each design a project that we believed was suitable for a site and the image and needs of an art gallery. But it wasn't as simple as that. We were given a maximum of 110 abandoned sleepers to work with (the wooden elements that are placed under railroad tracks). With these sleepers, we had the freedom to design as we wished, as long as it was a realistically buildable structure.

Now in order to understand my personal concept for the site, first, I have to explain the condition of the sleepers. The condition of the sleepers was one that showed great decay. They had been used for railways, and were even somewhat soaked in diesel fuel, which is one of the reasons for their dark colour. With the gallery being absolutely white on the interior, I thought that the sleepers as they were would create a great contrast between the interior and exterior. Furthermore, this frontside of the gallery was rarely used, due to a lack of space for human interaction, and two front doors, that unfortunately were unconnected. I decided to solve both these problems by creating a rather simple, yet very flexible and practical terrace, that connects both doors, creates a space for interaction (where chairs and others can be placed as needed) and also creates an abstract extension of the gallery, in an outdoor space that contrasts the interior, while still preserving the industrial area feel to the area. 

Also, like the minimalistic and minimal interior of the gallery (as seen above) that forces focus on the displayed artworks, my exterior space is kept low so that the human interactions on the terrace are the true focus, with the surroundings remaining as they are. During the entire process, I had hundreds of ideas for the site and couldn't make up my mind until about 24 hours till the final presentation, so some details in my project were unfortunately left out. The result of my simple concept is the rendering bellow:

My project seemed to grab the attention of the gallery owner (especially due to the contrasting effect), but unfortunately wasn't chosen for construction. The honour went to my good classmate, Helge, who designed a project that was an abstraction of roots crawling out of the ground, forming benches and other inviting shapes. No doubt a project worthy of construction if you ask me! Helge may have the honour of having his first built project, but as a class, the experience of building it together has been just as exciting for us. Check out the links bellow, they show all the other projects, Helge's winning project and furthermore, the works of the gallery are really interesting, so check them out!

Further reading: (official site/blog) (winning project) (other projects - mine's the first one here)

- Andy Minchev