More designers in Nazareth, Israel / Bergamo, Italy
Elias Khuri, Davide Pagliarini Our work is the result of a dialogue between two cultures, a necessary dialogue, that does not rely on ideas or formal models alien to its worldview. It is a dialogue that, on the one hand, reflects a deep knowledge of each culture, and, on the other, offers a different vision based on a reading of phenomena that are not entirely familiar. Our professional attitudes are different but our sensibility is shared, as is our interest in the relationship between architectural features and people. It is a dialogue that leads to new forms and ways of living, hybrid forms, belonging to two cultures, Oriental and Eastern, a dialogue that is a benchmark for any of our architectural projects. In approaching architecture, we start from the earth, from the ground, the primary sphere in which the building rests, rather than simply the raw materials. Each time we address an architectural project we must understand the specific nature of the soil, as a condition to contend with rather than as an obstacle to be eliminated. We should be aware that any architectural intervention brings with it an alteration of the natural landscape and sometimes a wound to the ground. That requires that we be cautious, limiting as much as possible the loss to the landscape, and pursuing instead an equilibrium with it. The balance between the artificial and the natural ensures the project’s usefulness to the person in respecting nature. Appreciating the particular characteristics of a place, its history, even if it is neglected or of only recent origin, requires that we use techniques that conserve natural resources. Where a project is imposed regardless of its effect on the environment, it destroys the landscape without offering any compensation or bringing any balance. Architecture is the relationship between the inhabitant, the place and the wider community. The attack on the ground is manifested in the foundation of the building, a foundation whose function is to bear the shapes of the building’s forms and to offer its inhabitants the best way to express themselves and give shape to their emotions. These forms should have the ability to change and adapt to new forms and new ways of life, forms that have the ability to grow old. Contextualizing the architecture, then, requires that it become naturalized, meaning the desire to create an appropriate architecture - appropriate to a specific location, its culture and its contradictions. Architecture needs to look both to the present culture of a community - be it solid or lost, perfectly integrated or undefined in outline, conscious of itself or in crisis, refined or popular - and to that stored in memory, a culture belonging to a heritage universal and free from geographical boundaries. The culture without geographical boundaries liberates us from the extremes of the vernacular model (false) and the generic model (trivial).
New Landscapes is an architectural practice based in Nazareth, Israel / Bergamo, Italy.
Email: [email protected] - http://www.newlandscapes.org/