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An Archive

An Archive

Mailitis Architects
Cēsis, Latvia | View Map
Ansis Starks

An Archive

Mailitis Architects as Architects

Temporary pavilion in town of Cesis, Latvia was designed and built by 12 students and guiding architects from Riga based office Mailitis A.I.I.M. as part of the Riga Technical University International Summer School. It is an archive of recyclable materials and new public space.

Pavilion is located on the edge of desolate historical Cesis Beer Brewery and magnificent park adjoining the ruins of Cesis Medieval Castle. At the moment brewery space is isolated and used only temporarily as an exhibition premises for Cesis Art festival, but it is planned to turn it into an Art and Science Center and reconnect with park. The Archive is one of the first interventions in the site that activates it and acts as a sign of a change for by-passers in park.

The project is about making evident the life behind the objects that this place has collected through time. Bricolage of buildings, materials and construction methods from 19th, 20th and 21st centuries forms the curious beauty of industrial architecture of the brewery. The project strives to continue the process of an architectural assemblage by using locally available materials and features of the place.

Tutor Austris Mailitis: “The first inspiration came from the memories of brewery engineer, who worked there during Soviet period. He is partly responsible of how the brewery looks now. But before he was one of few Latvians who returned alive from Uranium mines of Chukotka labor camp. He used every residues to “raise his head over the roof” and stay alive in camp. We want to make “stair” from offcuts to climb out from the darkest corner of brewery and to put our head in the cloud. ”

The installation takes the visitor on a journey through the dense framework into dark depth of the structure, then up to the stairs, out from below the roof and culminates with a terrace in the kinetic “cloud” that opens views over the Castle Park and the secret overgrown roof.

The Archive is used as shelves for stacking unnecessary offcuts and found materials in the brewery territory. By inviting people to arrange these materials in useful ways, structure becomes a public space for events. Stacks of materials becomes tables, benches and stairs leading to observing platform. Archive can host events, kid's games or it can become a place to see the concerts in Castle park open air stage.

The structure is scaffolding type frame from local sourced timber which is modulated 900 by 900 mm. It is free standing structure that is integrated in the exiting garage and filled with recycled, re-usable brick and wooden materials. The kinetic “cloud” is made from fiberglass mesh and powered by wind.

12 students spend two weeks by researching the site, creating the concept, designing, prototyping the object and build it in four days. Instead of a typical approach where space is created by positioning volumes and objects, the team employed an inverse process through building the complete timber frame, then carving out paths, and stacking materials with various properties.

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