Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Architectural Design Competition | The London Periscope By Della Valle Bernheimer

Location: London
Square Footage: 450
Type: Competitions
Year: 2010

Designed to grant a concealed viewer a privileged glimpse of the city beyond, three periscopes mark this Room for London. Oriented to the West towards the London Eye and Parliament, to the North towards Regent Park, and to the South in the direction of the Michael Faraday Memorial, these three viewing devices replace conventional windows and supplant the standard panoramas of typical glassy apertures.
Standing like sentries over the Thames, these optical devices look outward and collect images for those staying within.
Three boxed segments that can be transported and assembled are coated in a mixture of glossy and semi-gloss elastomeric covering, will be assembled into a single object.
This box is enveloped by a thick wall that serves to isolate the occupant, to distance them both visually and aurally from the city which surrounds them.
It also serves as a thick insulating membrane, allowing the structure to modulate temperature passively.
The room is accompanied therefore by a minimal mechanical system. While one might expect a glass box, instead there is an enclosed room of solitude.
It is a room of both displacement and of displaced views, a subversion of normalcy. And while one might move to great heights in order to see the city surrounding them in full view, in this room the views are momentary, isolated, emblematic, and alone.
Ironically, the room that sits at a location fully enveloped by the City of London is hermetic, contained, and opaque.
Completed in collaboration with Guy Nordenson Associates. ......more
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