Against the mastodonic architecture of visitor centers

Camouflaged in the landscape, Ben Gitai's Landroom Observatory is a contemplative pavilion in the Negev desert, Israel, that encourages a fusion experience with nature and a relief of social tensions within the community.

At the edge of Makhtesh Ramon, an immense crater with Martian charm that stands out as one of the main landmarks of Negev desert, Ben Gitai has conceived a small stone building with an inclusively hypergeometric plan that envelops the visitor and induces him to observe the landscape and the sky. In a privileged position facing the great slope, the Landroom Observatory is an invitation that, in the intentions of the French-Israeli architect, transcends however the mere communion with nature.

“Territory today, from my point of view, shall be inclusive of recent dynamical environmental expressions in order to help overcome social tension in Israel. This project may help that by investigating territorial substance, process, grammar, and form to its immediate environment of architecture to the people that use it". Designed as a device, solitary yet holistic, that helps increase empathy with the surrounding environment, the platform becomes an opportunity to conflate topography and anthropology, supplanting the architectural genre of visitor centers built in Israel the pre-pandemic era.

Makhtesh Ramon, israel
Ben Gitai

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