Check out the concert hall that thinks it's a castle

Mies van der Rohe Award given to Barcelona duo Barozzi Veiga's new fortress-like Philharmonic Hall
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Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com

The pitched roofing of a Polish concert hall have helped a Barcelonan duo win the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award 2015. 

Barozzi Veiga is the firm behind the prize-winning Szczecin Philharmonic Hall, whose roof structure mimics that of a nearby castle. The gables sit atop a large rectangular complex which houses two venues, a café and admin space.

 

Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com

In Szczecin itself, residents liken the building with its ribbed exterior of aluminium and opaque glass and its zig-zag roof to an iceberg. We actually think it looks like the Christo-wrapped Reichstag in Berlin, circa 1995. “Its slender body and glass facade supplemented by light illuminations catch the eye of each person who comes nearby,” gushes the local tourist board.

 

Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com

The idea to replace the former 400-seater Konzerthaus with a bigger more appropriate venue was conceived in 2004, the year Fabrizio Barozzi and Alberto Veiga founded their practice. Three years later, they were commissioned to design the building.

It stands on a corner site in the capital of West Pomeranian Voivodeship, made vacant by Allied bombing in WWII. Inside much is white, with creamy Spanish marble on the floor, a lofty atrium and an outsized spiral staircase.

 

Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com

The smaller chamber hall has fewer than 200 seats and is a black, intimate space. Meanwhile, the symphony hall seats nearly 1000 and has a ceiling and walls clad in triangles of gold-leafed timber, which aparently serve acoustic purposes.

 

Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com

The van der Rohe jury said of the hall: “This winning project finds a convincing formal and spatial strategy for a city which strives for a better future in a fast-changing economy and social patterns, delivering a dignity to urban life and the same time enhancing the city's specific historical identity with a contemporary monument." Nicely put we think you'll agree, and you'll find more nicely put observations and investigations into Mies van der Rohe's work in Detlef Martins' magisterial book Mies which you'll find in the store here. And you can seem more great photos of this project at photographer Iñigo Bujedo Aguirre's website.

 

Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com
Szczecin Philharmonic - Estudio Barozzi Veiga - photo by Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre - www.inigobujedo.com


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