Transformation of Wood

Project Status:
young architects competition submission.
Size: NA
Year: 2017
Budget: NA
location: Collodi, Italy

Description: Transformation of Wood

“Once upon a time there was… ‘a king!’ my young readers will instantly exclaim. No, children, you are wrong. Once upon a time there was a piece of wood.”

Matter at heart

The story of Pinocchio is the story of the human spirit inhabiting a piece of wood, no different than that of man's first encounters with architecture. Wood is a transformative substance, nearly alchemical. In Collodi’s world, an ordinary piece of chopped lumber can be transformed into a person – a living boy. Much like a person, wood can be lead towards many fates. Wood can be made into a beam or a sheet of paper, as well as into a building or a book. Wood is endowed with the gifts of DNA, and the ability to live, reproduce and die. Every branch is a bone, every treetop a head full of thoughts, and every root system a bazaar of memories.

By showing how childhood is an age of transformation, Collodi manages to write about children without infantilizing them. It is this project’s aim to apply the same insights by creating a space for children that is not childish. The space harnesses every child’s ability to project its own imagination onto a blank canvas and to become both author and hero of its own experience.

Architectural approach

Pinocchio’s adventure is a journey into the unknown districts of the mind as it tries to negotiate with its wooden host. This dialect between the light and the shadow gave rise to the paper factory’s dark, modern twin, conjoined above ground by a programmatic garden, and underground by the exhibition hall.

The project's cross section is conceptually that of a forest - roots, ground, treetops. The root floor is an underground hall which will contain the auditorium and exhibition space. The ground floor is an open space of omnidirectional walking, and the treetop level is embodied in gallery floors, which allow to a top-down gaze along with ambulation.

We selected the materials as a deconstruction of books and trees. Only materials that originated in trees may enter the interior space - wooden furniture, hardwood floor, wooden columns and beams, and the very paper which is liberated formed by ink.

Team : Shahar glass, Liad sandman, Simon barazin

*The project received an honorable mention from “young architects competition” jury. 

collodi, Italy
Exhibition at the Triennale Di Milano. image courtesy by Young architects competitions.