Friday, March 9, 2012

Tough Elegance in the Raval

 My article on Josep Lluís Mateo's Filmoteca de Catalunya in Barcelona appears in the March issue of The Architectural Review.  
"The Film Archive ... is a cultural beachhead in the ongoing battle for Barcelona's Raval.... The urban strategy and material texture of [the building] are well-attuned to the Raval's tough character. While Richard Meier's gleaming Neo-Purist composition, located a few blocks north, couldn't be more alien, Mateo's building is built of board-formed concrete, whose rough texture he compares to nearby peeling walls...."

Screen Play
The Architectural Review
March 2012, pages 50 - 59

Photos:  © Adrià Goula
Courtesy of MateoArquitectura

True to my take on previous works by Mateo, I express some reservations about this project, notwithstanding its adroit urban pose: chiefly, the structural gymnastics employed for a raltively simple program of lobby, offices and library (the movie theaters are underground).
View from Filmoteca office floor towards plaza.

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