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Due to construction in the area, please allow extra travel time when visiting Harbourfront Centre. Details here.
July 20 - September 16, 2012
After years or decades of service, there comes a moment of disuse when a building may no longer serve its purpose. The question is raised: “Should the structure be demolished or renewed?” Purpose-built buildings often become architectural dinosaurs due to obsolete technologies or altered economic contexts, leaving behind structures that no one knows what to do with. This built-in obsolescence marks the end of an era, but also opportunity to imagine new uses for its future.
We look at a building’s regeneration with the belief that we can do much more with less. Like an archeological dig, reviving abandoned buildings requires dexterity in uncovering the hidden and the mystery within its walls. This residue left behind from former users not only attests to the history of a site, but serves as the building blocks for its revival, often leading to unconventional yet complementary juxtapositions between the former and new use. In this conversation between the two, we can challenge typology and convention in the process towards revealing dormant potential and crafting exciting opportunities in architecture.
Referencing the history of Toronto’s harbour right outside our doors, we aim to transform the gallery space using an abandoned by-product of industry – the wooden shipping pallet. By deconstructing and manipulating these pallets we seek to reformat the gallery space, creating a new landscape out of abandoned material.
unit a architecture inc. was founded in 2002 by Stewart Adams and Francesca Piccaluga in order to pursue a shared passion for enhancing the collective quality of life by developing thoughtful, comfortable and functional built environments.
In his book Six Memos for the Next Millennium, Italo Calvino identified themes which he regarded as vital virtues for the 21st century. These were lightness, quickness, exactitude, visibility and multiplicity. We believe these virtues apply to architectural design and the design process. We strive to deliver environments that are elegant, accessible and functional.
Project team: Stewart Adams, Francesca Piccaluga, Ewa Rudzik, Alexandria Kusiak, Eric Cheung, Demitri Delean, Scott F. Cairns, Angie Michail
Material for this installation supplied in part by: Just Skids Recycling Inc.