The warehouse 17c has been the first intervention made in the Matadero complex and, as such, could be considered as a pilot trial. The project was born with two well-defined clients. On the one hand, the Council itself by means of its Arts City Council and on the other hand, by means of Intermediae and its programmatic constraints as the warehouse’s future tenant.
From the very beginning, we assumed the intervention as an opportunity to explore the possibilities of refurbishment. The point was to contribute with a new attitude in face of the public realm of historical patrimony, a radical posture, an experience about limits, the limits of non–intervention, reducing such intervention to a bare minimum.
In this project, the traditional insecurity and theoretical vagueness that persistently affects actual interventions on patrimonial legacy with results halfway in-between what to do and what not to do, disappeared from the very beginning. We decided to choose an idea and to explore it to the very end, without fears, with no inferiority complexes. We decided to intervene in a radical manner without intervening, taking the idea to the ultimate consequences.
We made no concessions concerning refurbishment, respecting the ruin, boosting its values with minimum intervention. A constant dialog has been established between the new and the old, without mixing them up, together but not blended. These two languages look close to each other. The new boosts the value of the old and vice versa. Two viewpoints face to face, both revealed with maximum rawness. In a voluntary manner, we chose to preserve the cuts on the walls, the same kind of cuts a radial saw does. Exposed, PVC drain pipes are more interesting. With the withdrawal of revoke, marks made by the backhoe originate unexpected textures. Here, cork isolations appear like a witness of its cooling history, with no inferiority complexes. Thus, the past reveals itself, the work reveals itself. Any witness of the process remains intact. The powder blue of levels, the retrieval and consolidation of columns, signs, wrinkles, wounds still open, like the existence of an old man with no oddities, where its immoderate personality seems to be beyond anything.
Its condition of transformable space led us to consider its reutilisation, its relocation, its constant manipulation and in its high wear resistance. For this, we have used materials coming directly from industrialization, with no transformation at all, using standard dimensions.