Herzog & de Meuron
The triangular blue concrete building, conceived as a sponge saturated with water, blends with the sky and the Mediterranean Sea.
The Forum building is situated on a gently sloping site between
the peripheral streets of the city's orthogonal Cerda grid and the
In plan the building is a 180 meter equilateral triangle supported on concrete columns.
By lifting the structure off the ground Herzog & de Meuron created a permeable public space underneath that serve as entrances to the building.
A series of courtyards that intersect the elevated structure
establish a complex interaction between the covered open spaces and
the various levels of the Forum building, constantly creating new
viewing angles and changing light effects.
The courtyards are of many different shapes and sizes, and have
different amounts of reflective material in them - sometimes just a
shard of mirrored glass, and in other places a complete internal
lining of glass or gold steel panels.
/Herzog & de Meuron
Instead of planning the building as an independent object in an open public space, we decided to design a structure that would both generate and articulate this public space. These considerations almost inevitably led to the proposal of an elevated, flat triangular form. Not only does this form correspond ideally to the project perimeter, covering the entire area within, it is also a perfect expression of the specific location of this site.
You enter the building beneath the gently undulating and
shimmering water soffit covered entirely in triangular plates of
patterned stainless steel. The floors, both inside and outside, are
black tarmac. The golden entrance doorway are framed in glass with
the top cut into the blue triangle.
The project came into being when Barcelona in the 1990s, with UNESCO support, decided to organise the first World Cultural Forum. The four-and-a-half month of conferences, dialogues, concerts, exhibitions and other events intended to bring together the world community in celebration of its heritage and in discussion about its future.
Facts about Forum
Herzog & de Meuron
Infrastructures del Llevante de Barcelona S.A.
Last updated: December 19, 2013
Siza, Souto de Moura, Moneo, Calatrava and Barraga,
London, United Kingdom
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