Student Name: Calum Gallogley, JJ Stack, Anthony Scannell Keniry
Awards: Finalist of EU Mies van der Rohe Young Talent Award | Exhibited in Venice Biennale | Shortlisted and Exhibited in the Lisbon Triennale | Award in the GALERNAK Atlantic Architecture Film Festival | Nominated for RIBA Presidents Medal
Excerpt:‘Lost Landscapes’ is an architecture thesis by Calum Gallogley, JJ Stack and Anthony Scannell Keniry, from Cork Centre for Architectural Education – University College Cork, that seeks to improve the islanders’ relationship with their surroundings and offer architectural solutions to the issues faced by them. By fostering a relationship between people and their surroundings, the project seeks to raise awareness of climate-related issues and inspire people to become more involved in their local communities and, by extension, the larger global environment.
Introduction: This architecture thesis is based on the notion that humankind and the natural world must coexist, and that these natural landscapes must be respected and preserved. Using firsthand observations on the island and further investigation, the project also looks into the healing advantages of having a connection to natural environments. The proposal, which consists of five interventions on the island Inis Mór, Ireland, aims to improve the islanders’ relationship with their surroundings while also offering long-term solutions to the issues they face today.
The loss of landscape that erosion is causing on the Aran Islands is the reason for the need for preservation. By using it as a design tool, architecture engages with erosion and interventions are made to deteriorate over time, exposing new materials and features as elements erode. The architecture is of the island and for the island.
In order to take advantage of the environment’s restorative powers, users and visitors to these interventions may initiate a conversation with their own matter and form, their mind and body, through immersive experiences in the island’s matter and form. Since people are more likely to take care of and preserve their environments when they feel a stronger connection to them, this engagement also aims to benefit the landscape.
The architecture thesis is situated on Inis Mór, a karst limestone island off the west coast of Ireland. Located in Galway, Inishmore is the largest of the Aran Islands. It is the most populated of the Aran Islands and the second largest island off the Irish coast, after Achill, with an area of 31 km2 and a population of 820.
The thesis seeks to act as an extension of this landscape and atmosphere, enhancing its emotive qualities to create spaces which highlight the sensorial experience of Inis Mór and the fragility of the island matter.
The development and orientation of the thesis are greatly influenced by the students’ fieldwork and firsthand encounters with Inis Mór, which they conducted by walking, gathering, documenting, and mapping. They started tracing and retracing the landscape at different scales, motivated by Riet Eeckhout’s work, to better comprehend its form and matter.
The ongoing (re)negotiation between the island’s matter (terrain) and colliding elements, like the waves, wind, and rain, became increasingly evident over time. A deeper comprehension of this dynamic landscape’s genesis, writers, and sculptors resulted from the tracing and (re)tracing of its elements.
The authorship of water became a specific driving force for the project, resulting in a greater awareness of the atmospheric forces affecting the landscape. The erosion of the landscape is caused by the acidic rain and the Atlantic Ocean reacting chemically with the basic limestone to form the clints, grykes, and underground caves that are visible all over the island. Time and weather are natural authors acting on the island, while the architects act as co-authors.
The Lost Landscapes proposal aims to foster a connection between people and their natural surroundings, eliciting psychological reactions in the process. The spaces that are created interact with one another; some are quite open, allowing the user to interact with the forces at work on the island, while others are more subdued, lying beneath the surface to create temporal heterotopias that allow the user to interact on a timescale that extends beyond their own existence.
Five interventions have been planned for the island, which are as follows:
Archive: At the foot of the abandoned lighthouse on Inishmore, a monolithic archive will serve as an epigraph to the island’s past. An installation called the “Tree of Life,” a brass casting of a dead tree in a shallow pool of water, raises awareness of the relationship between biodiversity and the environment on the upper level, which is the archive’s original entrance and is still 10 metres below ground level.
Pelagic Research Fragment: Providing academics with a workspace and an opportunity to collaborate with a multidisciplinary team as various research areas converge to provide a more comprehensive understanding of the island and its surroundings. The fragment projects from Inis mór’s western cliff edge, exposed to the power of the Atlantic ocean. The research undertaken here will focus on the cliff face and the forces of erosion it encounters at the hand of the ocean.
Architecture of Decay – Initially the form of the building appears entirely natural, however over time the structure erodes from the bottom up, similar to the undercutting which erodes the cliff face. During this phase the waves will play the biggest role, and fallen pieces will act as breakwaters to ease the irrepressible waves of the Atlantic, acting in solidarity while also operating emblematically as fallen or lost fragments of architecture.
Bath House & Desalination System: Set in a natural setting, the Bath House provides a place where individuals can focus on self-rejuvenation and renewal. The desalination system is connected to the bath house, hanging inside the cave that houses it since the bath house symbolises the purification of the self and the water serves as a metaphor for it.
Atmospheric Sensorium: The atmospheric sensorium is a place where people can experience a greater sense of self-awareness as well as a heightened awareness of their surroundings and the atmospheric qualities they are surrounded by.
The project proposes structures that voluntarily participate in deterioration and disintegration as a response to the state of the island. These structures are intended to be used as design tools to integrate the architecture into the island’s landscape and, in the end, become a part of the island and its surroundings.
Even though contemporary architecture is created and preserved to have an almost timeless quality, the setting of these interventions means that their lifespan and evolution must be fundamental to their design because the very land they are built upon is gradually disappearing into the ocean. This led to the creation of architecture that confronts the themes of loss rather than trying to avoid them.
Conclusion: By fostering a relationship between people and their surroundings, the project seeks to raise awareness of climate-related issues and inspire people to become more involved in their local communities and, by extension, the larger global environment.
[This Academic Project has been published with text submitted by the student]
To submit your academic project for publication at ArchiDiaries, please visit the following link >> Submit