6.9.2009

Museu da Geira in Gerês, Portugal

La primera visita que hicimos al sitio fue una mañana fría y nublada. Se percibía una atmósfera de silencioso equilibrio. Los grandes árboles, las paredes de piedra, la morfología del terreno que desciende suavemente hacia el río. Hemos querido mantener el silencio del lugar. La idea para el establecimiento del museo resultó de un concepto simple, un principio tan básico como la señalización de las rutas de Cardus y el Decumanus, de crear una estructura que organice el terreno e incorpore los elementos existentes. El edificio se une a una pared, dando continuidad a la plataforma existente que soporta el "Museo Etnográfico de Vilarinho das Furnas / PNPG" y algunos graneros. Este despliegue permite la resolución de algunas situaciones importantes para el lugar. Por un lado, define los límites de la entrada y reorganiza los caminos de acceso al museo. A su vez, mantiene la permeabilidad visual hacia el norte, hasta el valle.

Place; Intentions
The first visit we made to the site was in a cold and cloudy morning. A silent atmosphere existed there in balance. The big trees, the stone walls, the morphology of the land descending smoothly to the river. We wanted to maintain the silence of the place. In a certain way we found in the thematic of the contest, related with the Roman Roads, the expression of what we intended for that place. A gesture. A marking in the land to promote an organization for new developments. A road to travel in the landscape towards the river. The museum should be integrated subtly in that concept, without harming the balance of the place, being the main door for the new road.
The idea for the establishment of the museum came in a way so simple, a principle as basic as the marking of routes Cardus and Decumanus, creating a structure of the ground, organizing and incorporating existing elements.

The project
The building joins up to a wall, giving continuity to the existing platform that supports the «Ethnographic Museum of Vilarinho das Furnas / PNPG» and some granaries. This deployment enables the resolution of some situations that are important to the place. On one hand it defines the entry limits and reorganises the routes of access to both museums, making them clearer. But it also maintains a visual permeability that develops to the north, to the valley, allowing the place to have a wide visual range.
It turns to the river, taking advantage of the light from north , more suitable for preservating archaeological items and providing a quality light, without major contrasts. This deployment also creates a support to a new area of development, which is structured by a road that runs through the building, developing towards the river (as a Roman road). This road is of extreme importance because it unites the whole complex in a simple and effective way, with a strong scenic and symbolic expression.

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Layout
The museum has a clear structure and flexibility of spaces, allowing different uses. For example, the auditorium can be opened to a toy library and the cyber-cafe, allowing the increase of its capacity, turning the toy library into a stage. The building is divided by the road in two areas, that can work independently.
In the west area are located the cyber-cafe, toy library, auditorium and the service area. In the east area are located the expositon rooms, separated by courtyards that divide the rooms and allow entry-light areas more pleasant in the interior of the museum. The main lobby is located at the intersection of the road with the building, and it has a system that allows its closure, maintaining however the movement on the road.

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