In Portugal the production of virgin olive oil has been an agricultural activity for centuries. However, since the industrialization of this activity, architecture has not been essential to commercial success, while expressing the landscape in a way that was appropriate to the rural setting.
The Oliveira da Serra olive mill was designed to appear in the middle of olive groves as if it had emerged from the trees ready to process the precious “sap.” Olive oil is produced during the season when the climate is most inhospitable and unfavourable for work. Whatever the weather, intense activity continues day and night for three months.
The aim of this building is to efficiently synthesize the complex production process. Large roofs with lighting cover external work areas that function like beacons in the plain of the Alentejo, providing a permanent new interpretation of rural work.