KONSTANTINIDOU

ELENA KONSTANTINIDOU
(Nicosia, Cipro 1967) nel 1991 si è laureata all’Università Tecnica di Atene, dove nel 2004 ha conseguito il Master in Architettura, design, spazio e cultura. Dal 2000 è Lecturer alla Scuola di architettura NTUA, presso il Laboratorio di Forme e ordini architettonici del Dipartimento di Disegno architettonico.
È stata Visiting Professor presso numerose università straniere.
I suoi interessi accademici si focalizzano sui temi del progetto in rapporto alla tradizione architettonica. Il suo insegnamento verte sui temi dell’eredità architettonica e degli interventi contemporanei in contesti storici (in corsi come “Analisi degli edifici e complessi tradizionali”, “Analisi morfologica dell’architettura contemporanea”, “Introduzione al progetto architettonico”, ecc.).
I suoi progetti, frutto di una ventennale esperienza professionale, includono complessi residenziali, edifici direzionali, hotel, progetti per aree costiere, di interior design, restauri, ecc.
Ha partecipato a numerosi programmi relativi alla conservazione delle città antiche, alla protezione e al recupero di siti archeologici, alla ricostruzione di aree colpite da cataclismi naturali.
Ha svolto ricerche sul riutilizzo e la riconfigurazione di edifici esistenti, con la messa a punto di nuovi programmi funzionali. Le sue pubblicazioni vertono sull’insegnamento del progetto di architettura, sulle metodologie di recupero delle tradizioni e identità culturali, sulla reinterpretazione dei linguaggi nei contesti storici. Ha partecipato a numerosi seminari internazionali, a conferenze e concorsi, ottenendo diversi riconoscimenti.

REINTERPRETATION OF SPACE AND CONVERSION TO RESIDENTIAL AREA
Venezia, San Francesco della Vigna (ex gasometri)

ELENA KONSTANTINIDOU
Tutor: Michail Georgiou
Collaboratori: Theresa Kwok, Stefano Tornieri

Il workshop lavorerà sul tema della progettazione in luoghi fortemente connotati dal punto di vista storico.
L’integrazione di storia e necessità funzionali contemporanee, include le nozioni di interpretazione del sito e di correlazione tra il progetto di architettura e il suo intorno, naturale ed edificato. Venezia e il suo peculiare carattere influiscono molto sulle possibili espressioni architettoniche dei nuovi edifici; le funzioni e le loro relazioni con il contesto giocano un ruolo altrettanto significativo. L’integrazione pone quindi problemi complessi: dovremo cercare una strada per connettere passato e presente, non attraverso l’imitazione ma grazie allo sviluppo di relazioni dialettiche con il sito.
L’architettura contemporanea deve rispondere a necessità nuove, così come dovrebbe rispettare la morfologia dei luoghi, sapendo che una riuscita integrazione non dipende solo dall’adeguarsi alle “regole” e che un collegamento diretto tra passato e presente non esiste. La riuscita del progetto è al contrario relativa alla qualità della proposta architettonica.
Il laboratorio sarà diviso in due parti: la prima verterà sul processo di comprensione e analisi dell’area; la seconda sull’elaborazione del progetto.
Ricordando che il nostro scopo è la salvaguardia dell’eredità architettonica del passato, senza dimenticare tuttavia che il luogo in cui si opera è vivo e vitale.

Il workshop si terrà in lingua inglese

Al workshop parteciperanno anche i seguenti studenti dalla Faculdade de Arquitetura da Universidade do Porto (FAUP):
CAMILA CAVALHEIRO RIBEIRO DA SILVA, JOAO GUILHERME VIARO CORREA, ANA CAROLINA CORREIA DE LIMA

Workshop brief
The workshop aims to introduce students to the concept of new architectural creation within a region of particular historic and architectural character, The course, on an educational level, deals with intervention issues, while at the same time resolving contemporary functional needs.
Integration is directly linked to the recognition of the place and includes the notion of its interpretation, that is, one’s understanding of the region and an attempt to describe it through their design proposal. The questions raised on integration, that is, the correlation between the architectural creation and its environment, natural and man-made, constitute a fundamental and essential matter of architecture. The region and its architectural characteristics lies in the core of design procedure.
Venice, the place involved in the intervention, its historic and architectural value, the necessary degree of protection and its particular character define to a large extent the architectural expression of the new buildings. The types of proposed uses and the relationship with the immediate environment also play a key role in this issue. One could say that they define the ‘framework’ in which one designs.
Integration poses a difficult and complex problem. The new construction must be expressive of its time, contemporary needs, uses, materials have their own ways of expression. At the same time, the environment is extremely sensitive, every change place off balance the whole, disturbs the character of a place accepted years ago, and nowadays respected within the common conscience and aesthetics.
What we are looking for is a way to connect the past to the present, not through imitation, but through collaboration, oppositional correlation and the development of a dialectic relationship with the place. Contemporary architecture is entitled to be and should be present. It needs to cover the special needs of the served function, to renew the region, to enrich its forms. At the same time, it should respect the architectural character and the physiognomy of the place in which it belongs and preserve its cohesion.
On the other hand, contemporary thinking as well as architectural examples, prove that the effective integration of the contemporary architectural creation does not depend on loyally adhering to ‘rules’ and direct links between past and present don’t exist. It is mainly related to the quality of the architectural proposal and it finally is a matter of ‘good’ architecture.

Structure of teaching
The workshop will be divided in two parts: the first concerns the identification of the broader area and its immediate surroundings. The second part includes the composition of design principles and highlights the elaboration and materiality of the building and its immediate surroundings.
In regards to the first part, the procedure of delving into the subject presupposes the understanding of the architectural character of its historic surroundings, the analysis of its features and the identification of the rules governing its composition.
Space identification involves the landscape’s natural facts and elements (ground morphology, relief, topography, view, visual flight, orientation, materiality). It also involves the typological and the morphological, structure elements of the immediate environment (scale, volumes, analogies, sizes, heights of buildings, shapes, relation between void and occupied space, etc) as well as the particularity of the urban tissue (relations of buildings within space, their disposition in relation to the building plot and the street, the relation between built and free space, between private and public space, etc). Moreover, one should also take into account the building’s ‘fifth’ view and the way in which this view participates in forming the image of the settlement.
In regards to the second part, the process forming design principles as well as the main idea of the proposal includes a group of parameters, facts, relations and necessities. Form is born through this synergy. The other factors forming the architectural work come into play through the reinterpretation of the elements of space, which are also part of the design process. Among these factors, one can find the functions of the buildings, their relation to the streets, points of access, movement, the collaboration between interior and exterior, the use of materials, the texture of surfaces, the elaboration of façades, the formation of openings, color, etc.
One could argue that the methodology of ‘inscribing’ the new architectural proposal within any context is similar, irrespectively of the context to which it refers. In reality, the intentions and goals of integration actually diverse according to the importance of the place and its particular character. The priorities vary, depending for example on whether the intervention regards the natural environment, an urban tissue, a traditional settlement, etc. Therefore, the analysis and design parameters are differentiated and adjusted accordingly.
In regards to the historic environment of Venice, the issue of integration is posed dynamically and urgently. The environment imposes its terms on the design. The primary goal and the challenge are the protection and preservation of architectural heritage. At the same time, the place is alive; it must develop and be enriched. The element dominating this procedure is the way in which ‘new’ architecture will interpret the elements generating space, the manner in which it will refer to and be based on the design principles governing this space.

Educational Content
Visiting and experiencing the area of the project is very important. The understanding of its particular characteristics is of substantial importance for the organization of the course. Additionally, traditional and contemporary architectural examples of Venice will be visited and discussed.
The workshop will be supported by lectures, notes and a relevant literature. The texts on integration as well as the study of examples having taken place in different regions throughout the world, constitute a basic source of information on the ways that such problems can be resolved. Moreover, they offer the necessary cognitive foundation for the development of critical thinking, which is a fundamental tool and is directly linked to the design process.
The workshop time will be allocated and shared between tutoring, pin-ups, presentations and discussions. The final schedule as well as the exact brief, including deliverables will be provided in by next week.

Work organization
The means of representation for this exercise are, among others, texts, sketches, perspective collages, mixed techniques, pictures. We will also use plans (topographical plans, ground plans, faces, sections at a scale of 1:200, 1:100 etc) as well as working models (at a scale of 1:500, 1:100 etc).
Particular emphasis will be given to the use of Digital Tools as the means of research, analysis and experimentation and students are expected to use their own computers. No previous computer knowledge is required and assistance can be offered in software such as rhino/grasshopper, microstation/Generative components.

The students can work in groups of two or three and they are expected to visit the area prior the workshop and acquire basic knowledge of the regulations and restrictions applied. All teams must have the CTR drawing of the site.

Konstantinidou Workshop blog

Download the Final Schedule

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