The urban center of Córdoba is made up of dense blocks drilled by infinity of patios that give to this place the character of a space never fully known. When we go inside we find an amalgam of constructions from different eras where mass and emptiness alternate giving light, air and privacy to the inside.

Project Name: Office within a blog
Architect Name: Sol89

©Sol89

This territory of light and shadow is articulated throughout the collection of intermediate spaces that nourish the Mediterranean architectural heritage. Alleyways, open hallways, passages, corridors, courtyards, galleries, solariums and, finally, the fragmented landscape of the rooftops, make up a network of empty spaces that are interspersed in urban density providing continuity to the public space inside the block.

©Sol89

In this context, we have to project the expansion of an office located in a three-dwelling house plants by the incorporation of three new properties, two on the ground floor and one on the top floor. We believe the extension should happen without perceiving the transit between one area and another, thus guaranteeing the final cohesion of the resulting workspace. We propose the intervention trying to draw without raising the paper pencil, defining a continuous space that from the original offices penetrates through the inside the block, going through courtyards, entering the built density, hollowing out when it is demanded and peering into the existing courtyards until reaching the rooftop.

©Sol89

Floor, ceiling and cladding exterior are prolonged throughout the intervention to underline this continuous condition of the space. A elevated and heating concrete floor crosses interior and exterior spaces; the roof is solved with an acoustic panel of wooden slats inserted between the original concrete structure that acquires a new expressiveness when framed by it; finally, the volume of the new workspace is coated with galvanized steel sheets when meets the courtyards and is placed as volumes without supports, underlining its status as an autonomous device inserted in the gaps existing. The pieces of furniture, the areas defined by the acoustic ceiling and the ventilation provided by the courtyards delimit workplaces without divisions, nuancing the open plan.

©Sol89

The intervention seeks to profit the concepts of transparency, sequence and gradient typical of traditional articulations of the vast centers of the historic cities of the south of Spain, without lose sight of the willingness to sew the spaces available for enlargement. The space penetrates the mass in form of air and light as a continuous matter that belongs to the entire city ​​and is domesticated inside the block.


María & Juanjo

María (Huelva, 1975) and Juanjo (Sevilla, 1974) graduated from the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura of Seville, Spain, in 2000 and Master degrees in Architecture and Sustainable Cities in 2008. In 2001, they established their own office Sol89, a practice in which they strive to accommodate research, teaching and professional practice. Over the years, SOL89 has had the chance to build projects of many different scales related to the public programs, as the Congress Center from Huelva, the Andalusian Institute of Biotechnology, the Cooking School in a former Slaughterhouse, different art spaces as the CICUS Contemporary art Space or education centers as the Day-care Center in Ayamonte or the Training Center of the Cabildo. This work has been widely published in national and international magazines and has received several awards, most recently: Silver Medal of the Fassa Bortolo Prize (Italy, 2013), the Wienerberger 1st Prize (Austria, 2014), Silver Medal of the Fritz-Höger Preis (Germany, 2014), the Grand Prix Philippe Rotthier of European Architecture (Belgium, 2014), 1st prize in the X Enor Young Architecture Award (Spain, 2014) , the 40under40 prize 2014 of the Chicago Athenaeum for Young European architects (USA, 2015) or the FAD Opinion Award in 2019. They have been nominated for the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture-Mies van der Rohe Award 2015 and chosen for representing Spain in the XV Biennale di Venezia 2016, winner of the Golden Lion. They are Associate Professors at the Department of Design of the Architecture School in Seville since 2005 and have been Guest professors at the University of Notre Dame of Beirut, Polytechnic University of Bratislava, Kingston University of London, Catholic University of Santiago de Chile, Hochschule Luzern Technik & Architektur of Lucerne, University of Beira Interior from Portugal and most of the Spanish School of Architecture. Their professional and academic career also spans the field of architectural thought; they have directed seminar and meetings, such as the annual seminars Acciones Comunes since 2013 for the Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo about artistic and architectural strategies. They are authors of Proyectos Encontrados (Recolectores Urbanos, 2012) as well as El dibujo del mundo (Lampreave, 2014). In this order, these books are reflections about research in architectural design, the debris of contemporary architectural culture and the idea of journey and drawing in the work of the Norwegian architect Sverre Fehn. Recently, Sol89 with Woodrock Architects won the competition of the Senior Citizens and Disabled People Center, in Paju, South Korea.

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