Arvo Pärt Centre
Location: Laulasmaa, Estonia
Client: Arvo Pärt Foundation
Date: 2014 Competition
Total Area: 1,600m2
Budget: €3,5 million
AZPML Team: Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Maider Llaguno-Munitxa, Guillermo Fernandez-Abascal, Manuel Eijo, Iñigo Arrien, Pablo de Sola
Renders: Estudio Berga & Gonzalez
Model: Atelier La Juntana
Consultants: ARUP, HML Project Management OÜ
The Arvo Pärt Centre will be an instrument to make the landscape sing.
The Northern Estonian Forest is full of music: the sorrow of the Southern wind, the crackling of the branches, the whispering of the leaves, the screeching of the swallows, the silence of the snow… Perhaps the remote singing of a Runic tune… The Baltic singing traditions are inevitably linked to the Estonian nature, and the Arvo Pärt Centre should become an opportunity to evidence that relation, to make it physical.
While Arvo Pärt music is undeniably global, both in spirit and clientele, its roots are quintessentially Estonian, based on the Runic songs and the Baltic singing traditions. Pärt’s music blends the rigors of serialism and dodecaphonic composition with traditional Estonian choral music. This project is an effort to thread those two aspects of Arvo Pärt’s work into a piece of architecture that mediates with the local landscape and architectural precedents.
The building is based on the varied repetition of a unit which has been distilled from the traditional Estonian farm, a four-gable pavilion roof, where two gables are extended in order to produce vertical skylights. This basic unit will be scaled and stretched up or down in order to optimize its acoustic or luminic performance to the different functions in the complex. In the upper casquet of the ceiling a mirrored surface will be installed, in order to reflect the light of the sun and the views of the forest at a high level. The clerestory will work both as a light trap and as a periscope, looking at the forest on the ceiling of the rooms.