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Typologies for a new Academy.
by José María Baquero

Typologies for a new Academy analyses my own metaphorical use of a formalist language assigned to certain typoligical elements. The new academy«s aim is to look for an architectural answer to the way grants given to artists are managed in our contemporary Spanish society.
Removed from the standard concept of architectural production,that is to say, to resolve a specific program in a specific location, Typologies can be described as a study open to experimentation in the process of my drawings and the construction of ideas.
This proposal resolves two independent pieces concerning the needs of an Academic Fellow. On the one hand an individual space in which to develop work and on the other an exhibition space where work can be shown to the community.

Element #1 is defined as "The Academy headquarters".
The building contains the fellows' private studios as well as common spaces for services.
The studios, cubicles of different sizes and shapes, are gravitating around a tubular element which generates both physically and symbolically the building. This "gallery" of services, which includes common spaces such as the library, works as an umbilical cord for all of the studios, symbolising the specific time flow of a fellow's life-span in Rome.

Element #2 is defined as "The exhibition space".
It is conceived as an interpretation of Bramante's Tempietto actually located in a cloister nearby what is today the Spanish Academy. The exhibition space is the place where the fellow's work is shown.
It is an isolated architectural element with a strong symbolic meaning. It works as a "milestone" representing the contribution of the Spanish Academy to Rome's cultural scene.

The theoretical location of both elements in the city's suburbs reestablishes the urban concept of fuori le mura. It provides an understanding of the coexistence between pieces of new architecture and the existing urban grid. It is, in my opinion, a sense of shaping the language of the future by incorporating into its syntax references of the past.

Both elements placed in this location establish a dialogue between their iconographic and formal language and the suburban amalgam of a speculative cityscape.

The proposal has developed in its design process a system which includes painting and sculpture. The sketches and models work together during the first stage of the transferal of ideas into architectural forms. The paintings reveal aspects of the subconscious only visible through expressionist gestures poured onto a large scale canvas.
The collages where the new typologies are superimposed onto urban images use the city as a laboratory in which one can experiment and employ this process of work to create an architectural result. Proposed as a fragmented reading the system demonstrates an interaction of all of these pieces. A second stage with a specific program could be used to verify the formal adaptation of those typologies.

(Research as a Fellow in Architecture 1995/1996 of the Spanish Academy of Fine Arts in Rome)

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