VOLTOLINI architectures

VOLTOLINI architectures

Montreux, CH



The chronicle of a disappearance

Located at the foot of the Alps of the Valais, the house is staged as an artefact in nature, the sign of an installation in a territory. It plays an active part in the landscape by initiating a dialogue with its environment and thus becomes an element of the site. 

A primitive icon of a home, it looks as if it had been folded and shaped under the pressure of the surrounding geology. Its volumes have been cut according to the main directions of the mountains. It is therefore the local geology that shapes the edifice. 
It is perceived differently according to time and seasons. The skin of its envelope, a shell of standard elements of roofing, reacts to the climate. The structure of its materials is revealed in alternating rhythms, its colour changes with the intensity of light, as well as with differences in humidity and temperature.

It owes its presence to what is not seen in matter and makes it a vibration in the landscape, a mere shadow cast on the mountains of what exists. The edifice records the flight of time and acquires fragility by getting rid of its material weight. The fact that it disappears from sight questions its perenniality. 

The terracing of the slope of the land has permitted to deposit the edifice as lightly as possible and also to determine three levels, one for each function. They follow the natural slope of the ground, generating spaces which are oriented towards the plain, and determining the section-drawing. As the basis of the scenography is given by the landscape, it is the natural play of light which draws the volumes and stretches them towards the sky. Each window perforates the edifice and is an event in itself. The openings are determined by identified perspectives which impose them and govern the plan. Obeying the landscape, blurring the limits of perception, refusing the grandiloquence of the neighbouring constructions, such was the
logic of this “disappearance”. So that the architecture should allow us to forget the architect and fill it with history.

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Status: Built
Location: Vouvry, CH