“La Canzone delle Scale”


Architecture is experiential- what better way to express this than through the introduction of stairs? “La Canzone Delle Scale” (The Song of Stairs) takes advantage of the recessions and subtle transitions of rooms that stairs allow to create a meaningful journey throughout the space, holistically embodying a poetic and unique way of experiencing a building.

As a building built by the harbour, its design incorporates water and the tides. A change in tides stimulate new interpretations and experiences each visit to the building, with the fluctuation of water levels influencing the sailing activities and lessons to take place on a particular day. The recessions on each isolated pavilion are at various heights to allow individuals to physically measure the tides at any given time.

Beginning with a written manifesto that details the interchangeable relationship between architecture and experience, the parti which stems from this subsequently informs the foundations of the boat building and sailing school design.  

a call to architecture.

Words and paper recall
The memories of places of those who wander —
An obsession with the visual,
The aesthetic,
The form.

When was the last time a place was remembered for its affect?

Our fixation with sight
Has led to the creation of alluring spaces for the eyes,
Yet seldom are these spaces
Enriching for all of the senses.

Here is a call for architecture to
Act as an apparatus,
Inaugurating —
And documenting —
A profound experiential landscape.
For structures to form layers upon layers
Of meaning —
Of visibility and invisibility,
Vastness and suffocation,
Lightness and weight.

From this,
A sensual journey
Of cognitive and sensory experience
Is created,
Echoing the rhythmic beauty
And construction of the building.

Goethe proposes architecture to be “frozen music”,
A string of melodious elements,
Merged into one;
A never ending symphony of space
Elucidating what it wants us to feel —
Not only to see,
But to smell,
To taste and to hear.

For is it not through cavernous spaces
That the whispers of breath transform into eerie hypnotism?
Through voids that break a standardised journey,
Fashioning spaces of serenity and calmness?
Or upon emerging into the heart of the building,
Finding it ends in a tactile cacophony?

This systematic arrangement —
A harmonious performance of the building —
Remains to be a constant reminder
For us to keep our senses open;
In a visually dominated world,
Where a holistic experience is all too easily forgotten.