Along our path through the trade of architecture, the ARKIHAUS team has found people who believe that with a group of workers and will, property with aesthetic and real estate value can be built. However, we at ARKIHAUS are convinced of the value and contribution that the office of ARCHITECTURE has to positively transform the lives of human beings and generate properties that transcend the lives of their owners and their creative architects. To show it, see the interesting process of transformation of a cement factory made by the Spanish architect Ricardo Bofill.
The renegade of architecture Ricardo Bofill shows us how he transformed the old 5,000 square foot cement factory on the outskirts of Barcelona that he calls his home.
An abandoned cement factory in Sant Just Desvern, a city near Barcelona, is where architect Ricardo Bofill decided to make his home. For many of us, seeing that place in its original state would not be anywhere on our list of desired places to live, considered too ugly to want to live there. Too industrial and impersonal.
But this is not the case for the architect Ricardo Bofill, who with a unique vision of the spaces transformed the brutalist architecture of the factory of the early twentieth century into something beautiful. Now known as La Fabrica, Bofill found the factory in disrepair in 1973.
The abandoned factory consisted of “30 silos, underground galleries and huge machine rooms.” Then Bofill dedicated himself to transforming architecture into a headquarters for his business and his residence.
“The remodeling work lasted two years.” ArchDaily note. “The factory, abandoned and partially in ruins, was a compendium of surreal elements. Stairs that climbed to nowhere, powerful reinforced concrete structures that held nothing, pieces of iron hanging in the air, huge empty spaces filled with magic.”
Part of the process of converting the dilapidated factory into a house was to demolish part of the old structure and reveal hidden parts.
This meant that many of the silos disappeared, but there were eight left and became offices, laboratories, archives, a library, projection room and a large space called La Catedral. This space was used for exhibitions, concerts and cultural events. Around all this there are gardens with a variety of plants that include eucalyptus, palm trees, olive trees and cypresses.
“Originally, the experiment was to find the ugliest thing in the world, this cement factory that is creating pollution, creating dust, a horror story for any type of person with an ecological mindset, and discovering how to transform it,” said Ricardo Bofill. Jr., son of Bofill and also an architect, in an interview with New York magazine in 2011.
Continuing: “What are we going to do here? How are we going to plant trees? Part of the creation is destruction. Like when you make marble sculptures, you take off to find something inside. At first, the entire factory was a hugely industrial architecture studio. Then my family began to inhabit it. My father allowed everyone in the family to choose their favorite hiding place inside the tunnels, stairs and spaces and rehabilitate it. The fun is that it never ends. “