Pitágoras Architects have designed a Platform of Arts And Creativity at the Jose de Guimarães International Centre for the Arts in Guimarães, Portugal. Located on a square the grounds of the old municipal market, the building stands in a privileged and very central location with excellent access, very close to the historic center.
The transformation of the old marketplace into a multifunctional space dedicated to artistic, economic, cultural and social activities within the scope of Guimarães, a city which this year is the European Capital of Culture, allowed for physical and functional reintegration into the urban fabric. The design also extended to adjacent plots, enabling the regeneration of space which was previously uncharacterized.
Three major program areas were defined: First, an Art Center, which houses the permanent collection of José Guimarães, a temporary exhibition area, a multipurpose space for additional activities, performances and shows, and a series of complementary services. Secondly, there are Creative Labs (business support offices) for the reception and installation of activities related to creative industries, allowing the development of business projects. Thirdly, there are Workshops to Support Emerging Creativity, consisting of workspaces and creative vocation for young creators hoping to develop projects on a temporary basis.
The new building takes a radically different language, in contrast to its surroundings, both from the standpoint of their language, discrete and repetitive, as well as by the succession of volumes, marked by the juxtaposition of contrasting surfaces. The coatings, a grid of brass profiles and chromatised glass surfaces, accentuate a range of textures. They are more dense and opaque in the majority of the strucutre, and transparent when it comes to the glass surfaces that conceal the few openings that the building comprises.
For the square, the architects formulated a proposal with large concrete slabs as a counterpart to the surrounding buildings. This is characterized as a large reception and a multifunctional meeting area, translated into a physical platform, and highlighting its role as public space by nature. The large trees to the east were preserved and some elements of vegetation along the north building are introduced. In addition, most of the free space is kept, allowing for numerous spontaneously or organized activities. The urban furniture used in the square consists of moveable elements, allowing for versatile use.
Pitágoras Arquitectos: Platform of Arts And Creativity at the Jose de Guimarães International Centre for the Arts, Guimarães, Portugal
Foundations and Structures: Projegui, Lda.
H.V.A.C and Thermal Study: G.E.T. Lda.
Electrical and Data Network, Integrated Security and Centralized Technical Management: Feris, Lda.
Work and Signage: João Andias Carvalho, Arq.
Supervision: Câmara Municipal de Guimarães
Constructor: Casais – Engenharia Construção, S.A.