Bezalel Arts Academy
Scope: 10,000 m²
Stone to(o) light
The conceptual starting point of the design derives from the action of displacing a piece of stone out of the ground. By displacing the mass from the mid plane and rising it to an upper plane, the excavated negative volume is being exposed to the natural light and gains new spatial qualities.
These qualities are characterized by new viewpoints that overlook the Russian church from below ground. This action reveals hidden layers that now turn into facades. They are made as a double skin system that is composed of two elements – an opaque stone outer layer and a transparent inner layer of studio space. In between these layers, inside and outside are integrated and new viewpoints are created.
The strong materiality of the stone mass is enhanced as it ignores gravity and soars above ground level. On this ground level a uniform mid plane stone surface is laid down within the boundaries of the surrounding buildings on the site.
This platform permits a mutual ground for these buildings and redefines the site as an integral whole, so it becomes a compound rather than a collection of buildings.