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Designed by Marco Casagrande, Ultra-Ruin is a wooden architectural organism that is growing from the ruins of an abandoned red brick farmhouse. It follows the principles of Open Form and is improvised on the site based on the presence of jungle, ruin and local knowledge.
Located on the Yangming Mountain, near Taipei (Taiwan), the complex Ultra-Ruin has a variety of multi-functional spaces and platforms that can be activated for different living functions and for meditation.
The spatial continuity between interior and exterior spaces is flexible – also the inside is out and the jungle is in the house. The Ultra-Ruin is an architectural instrument played by nature including human. The main user is a private family, but the space is occasionally opened up for wider meetings.
Ultra-Ruin is more of an organic accident, than based on industrial control. Accident is greater than architectural control. Architectural control has been opened up in order to let nature to step in and human error to take place. In order to understand the dynamics of an accident one must be present. To be present is the key of all art.
Architecture is not an independent language and architecture is not talking alone. Architecture needs nature to become part of nature. Ultra-Ruin is a post-ruin condition, where human has come back to the house / ruin and share the same space with jungle.
This design would not have had happened without and constructive dialog with the client, local people and nature. Ultra-Ruin is an architectural response to the knowledge building that was reached through this dialog.
The first model of the Ultra-Ruin was realized by the Finnish architect Marco Casagrande for the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, 2009. The now realized villa / ruin in Taiwan has grown out of this seed.