The logical, mathematical, geometric and physical implications of Maurits Cornelis Escher's works are subtle and often difficult to grasp: tessellations of two- and three-dimensional spaces with repeated tiles in all possible variations of shape and size; processes that recur such as perpetual motion according to which a perceptual-perspective trick allows the water of a waterfall to operate a mill and return to feed the waterfall itself, or the Droste effect: an image that has a another small image of itself, which in turn contains another smaller one, and so on ad infinitum. His art stems from the ability to be amazed, amazed by reality and nature, seen through the distorting and rigorous lens of geometry and irony, present in his works more than it appears.
Movement and rotation thanks to geometric theorems
Based on the client's request, the new façade designed following the expansion of the Microtec headquarters (a company active in the market of scanning and optimization systems for the woodworking industry) in Bressanone, was conceived on the basis of precise theorems geometric, i.e. the combination of the three Escher hexagons with a network of triangles. Just like the artist in his metamorphosis, the facade of the building also conveys the impression of movement. The result is a light structure that envelops the architectural volume. The triangles in the shades of Microtec's Corporate Design give the matrix a sense of movement and rotation. Some red triangles recall Napoleon's theorem (if on the sides of any triangle we build three equilateral triangles external to the given one and join their centers, we obtain an equilateral triangle) who, like Escher, was a genius mathematician by passion.
Wood, a source of well-being
The massive use of exposed wood was also used for the interiors. The result is a series of modern environments with a particular atmosphere of well-being, which only this natural material is able to create: "The design choice of wood derives from the search for declining traditional materials in a contemporary architectural language, with the aim of environmental sustainability of the intervention and making the visual perception of the building elements more pleasant thanks to the chromatic vibrations characteristic of natural materials and wood in particular ", explains Marco Sari who oversaw the architectural project. “I chose a mixed construction technique with a wooden structure for the ceiling and roof as well as for part of the walls. The building is embellished with an artistic facade, conceived on the basis of geometric theorems ", he concludes.
5,542 battens, 3,818 joining elements
LignoAlp created the attic above the ground floor with an exposed structure, the flat roof and part of the perimeter walls. All in laminated wood and cross-layered panels. In addition, the front artistic façade was created, the realization of which was a challenge in terms of precision and logistics. As many as 5,542 battens with 78 different geometries and 3,818 joining elements have been designed and cut with millimeter precision, to be assembled with the largest elements. On the corners of the façade, which measures 60 meters at the front, a tolerance of less than one centimeter was allowed during assembly. Equally complex proved to be the logistics, which had to guarantee the availability of the necessary parts at every stage of the prefabrication.
Photos: LignoAlp® - Davide Perbellini