Fragile and Delicate Inspiration
Pavel Kultyshev, Danilo Vukosavljevic and Olga Poletkina
Chelyabinsk city in South Ural in Russia is a unique and distinctive territory that requires a special attitude towards it, and our project solution is committed to this idea. On the site is an architectural monument — a historic building, the scale of which is small in comparison with the planned integrated development, but this does not reduce the value of the object for us. Our project allows us to write a monument into a new structure. The system of dividing the complex into freestanding buildings and reducing the scale to the river makes it a more co-scale historically developed environment, and the old building simply “becomes” another object of the complex, while adding a historical charm. The silhouette of the dominant of ce and hotel complex is an allusion to the historical environment of Chelyabinsk, resembling the pitched roofs of the old town’s houses. Thus, we emphasize the identity of the place and strive to contextualize a new large-scale development.
Urban dominant — the physical and mental
The office tower of the new complex, 150 meters high, will become the main urban dominant. The dynamic shape of the tower is changing the perception of volume, from different points of the city, ensure the disclosure of species characteristics to the territory, and historical connotations will make the building a symbol of continuity and identity.
For an organic existence, the urban environment needs public pedestrian spaces — places designated for recreation, social events and other activities. We propose to create not just a new building and a new urban space consisting of a complex of separately standing blocks and a well-organized public environment around. Several buildings, with the dominant block of the of ce and hotel complex, will create a new urban environment, saturated with diverse open spaces — the central square and a few smaller areas around, as well as a pedestrian well-maintained exit onto the embankment of the Miass River. Media-center is on the opposite side of the river in relation to the main volume of structures and connected it with a bridge to the main building, which will make pedestrian communications across the river. In addition to the bridge, we propose to create a small platform connected to the bridge and slightly recessed with respect to the water level. This site will become a unique object, which in winter can be skating rink, and in summertime, it can be a favourite recreation area for citizens. By creating a complex of buildings with a landscaped surrounding area, the city will provide an opportunity for a new level of public life for citizens, a humane and creative living environment for residents of all ages and social groups.
The projected complex, like the city, organized on the basis, of a clear orthogonal grid, which in this case receives a new interpretation. In it appear fills, allowing creating a more complex and interesting environment. The scale of the building complex reduced to the river and the historical part of the city. From the north-west to the south-east of the site are buildings of the office and hotel centre, administrative block, congress centre and media centre, located on the opposite bank of the Miass River. The scale of the existing historical building supported by a small pavilion located on the southern part of the territory.
Who influences you graphically?
Inspiration is something fragile and delicate, a unique state of mind. It can overtake at any time and affect you from completely different areas of art. I’m always in search of resources for inspiration for my work. It can be traditional art, architectural photography or cinematography.
As for architectural drawings, I could not pass by the Soviet avant-garde, those ideas of constructivism, the manual drawings, that it’s no secret influenced the giants like Rem Koolhaas and Zaha Hadid.
I’m also fascinated by works of the studio Tom Emerson and OPEN Architecture. In their representation, they work perfectly with the perspective and linear graphics.
As for architectural visualization, the Norwegian studio MIR has become for me a basis for visualization inspiration. I adore them, I think that they are the best in the field of creating and selling emotions.
What dictated the book as format? What book references influenced you?
In recent projects, I almost completely switched to presenting my ideas in the form of a booklet. Each new project is an experiment, a polygraphic work with a simple and clear typography and which would be nice to hold. Each booklet is the result of your activity, a combination of text and pictures, as a tool for understanding the idea.
As of today, there are many printed publications, famous for their high quality. For example, I really like the German publisher Taschen or such architectural magazines as Clog and San Rocco. The latter is famous for its supergraphic — axonometric drawings to the titles of articles.
If you love books, you can’t pass by the Rem Koolhaas “S, M, L, XL” with a lot of thoughts, graphs and illustrations. In that connection, I cannot fail to mention one Russian book called “Hypercube”, which tells the story of the first building in Skolkovo Innovation Center in Moscow. This book is a reference product, a publication with outstanding design and excellent print.
How could the essence of the project and the orthogonal grid have been taken as parameters to design the book?
Of course, the interpretation of the orthogonal grid, on which the complex is organized, influenced the design of the booklet. But when choosing this format, it is important to understand that the modular grid is only a confirmation of the previously accepted composition. To ensure that your layout does not look artificial, you need to highlight the main thing, emphasize the blocks and group the material. Otherwise, it will go to the background and the meaning will be lost.
What is your take on the monochromatic palette?
The choice of a monochrome palette for architectural graphics is not accidental here. I believe that this is suitable for my hometown. Chelyabinsk is an industrial city, a large metropolis well known for its monumentality and severity. Monochrome palette does not distract and allows you to focus on your thoughts. It may seem very old-school, but I adore the black flood fill typical for the era of constructivism.
What dictated the choice of the two views?
The first view is a view from the Troitsky bridge, the oldest bridge across the river. This is the main transport artery that possesses stunning panoramic views of the whole complex. From here you can clearly see the silhouette of the congress centre — an allusion to the historical environment of Chelyabinsk, reminiscent of the pitched roofs of the old town’s houses.
The second view through the glass with raindrops represents more digital art rather than detailed and understandable architectural visualization. The bet was made on the atmosphere of the place, to convey the scale and monumentality of the high-rise part of the complex.