Status: Design Competition
Location: Évora, Portugal
Program: Cafe, Administration, Wine Cellar, Meeting Room, Exhibition, Galleries, Gift Shop, Garden
Team: Jessie Andjelic, Philip Vandermey, Justin Loucks
At the outset of the Neolithic Age, permanent settlement and the agricultural cultivation of the surface led to a fundamental redefinition of the landscape as territory and the emergence of private space. With this shift, nature, which was previously a limitless and shared expanse, was transformed into a measurable quantity - an economy. Requiring limits to exist, it was only after the definition of private space, and the concurrent need to determine common space, that the concept of public space could emerge as an object or symbol in an otherwise infinite productive field. In the monumental architecture of the Neolithic we can find the inception of urbanism. These two developments began the period of the so-called Anthropocene: the epoch in which humanity has significantly altered our surroundings, and in which the relation between culture and landscape is continuously evolving.
The Golden Ring is a strategic extension of the ensemble of the Cromeleque dos Almendres that marks the moment of a major transformation, or possibly even end, of the Anthropocene. The new visitor center joins the ensemble of the site as a subtle, mysterious object that reflects the light and enhances the East-West axis to complement the existing East-facing “stage to the rising heavens” - the megalithic enclosure faces the rising spring full moon and the rising sun at equinox - with a complementing West-facing stage that frames the sunset and the setting moon.
The form and location of the new Visitor Center recalls the history of addition on the site over time
Exploded Axonometric showing orientation towards the sunrise and sunset
View along the Entrance Ramp
View of sunset framed by Golden Ring
Section through center of Megalithic Enclosure and Golden Ring, facing South
View of the Megalithic Enclosure with Golden Ring beyond