Marcelo Gardinetti

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    Eye Bank Foundation, Emilio Ambasz

    Marcelo Gardinetti
    Aug 26, '23 4:37 PM EST

    Banca degli occhi foundation

    The Fondazione Banca degli Occhi carries out various activities related to eye research and transplantation. The 5,000 square metre medical centre houses surgical facilities, stem cell research laboratories, an eye treatment centre, the EIDON Foundation's educational centre, as well as a 450-seat auditorium and administrative and service facilities.

    The site of the foundation is flat, very close to a main road and a branch of the local railway. The triangular-shaped building is defined by a series of individual design decisions that combine to form its architecture. These formal definitions are clearly identified and formulated independently of each other.

    The walls of the triangular layout

    The building is set in a triangular-shaped architectural body. It is contained in its two sides visible from the road by two 12-metre high trapezoidal walls. These blind planes are arranged at right angles to each other, with sloping lateral sides. The walls are finished with green pre-patinated copper sheeting.

    Ambasz's arrangement of the planes offers a façade without openings, where the greenish tones of the cladding match the grass of the plain. On the front, an imposing triangular opening created by the trapezoids provides access to the foundation.

    The allegory

    At the high corners, the trapezoidal walls seem to touch each other due to the proximity of the corners, which are only a few centimetres apart. In this encounter, Ambasz produces an allegory for one of the most symbolic images in Michelangelo's fresco on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, the Creation of Adam.

    The iconic image depicts the moment when God stretches out his hand to Adam to give him life, thus conveying the human soul. In the powerful gesture of the hands Michelangelo depicts the connection between the divine and the human. Ambasz transfers the gesture to the walls of the foundation, to place the building behind a mask with a highly symbolic content. 

    Marcelo Gardinetti

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About this Blog

Entendemos la arquitectura como un hecho cultural que se expresa mediante operaciones de representación formal. Por tal motivo, encarna un tipo de producción que no necesariamente requiere de la técnica constructiva, sino que expresa su intención a través de ideas y símbolos.

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