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Anupama Kundoo. Unbound: The Library of Lost Books

As part of the commemoration program, Tricentenari BCN, ‘Unbound: The Library of Lost Books’ was an installation built in Plaça Salvador Seguí beside the Filmoteca de Catalunya in Barcelona, in 2014. A project by Ajuntament de Barcelona, it was curated by Benedetta Tagliabue and Àlex Ollé and produced in collaboration with IaaC Institut d’arquitectura avançada de Catalunya/Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia and University of Queensland, Brisbane. It is a bookless library with a live program of reading, provoking thought about the library of the future in the digital age. The focus is on the content of the book and the act of reading. ‘Unbound’, a term that relates to the description of books, also expresses liberty and the idea of plenty, of limitlessness. ‘Obsolete’ books are recycled as a construction material, to build a canopy shading the square in summer. Liberation is lightness. Light-weight structures for heavy-weight books transcend the sense of ‘weight’ to focus on the perception of the ‘light’ element of the book: content.

As part of the commemoration program, Tricentenari BCN, ‘Unbound: The Library of Lost Books’ was an installation built in Plaça Salvador Seguí beside the Filmoteca de Catalunya in Barcelona, in 2014. A project by Ajuntament de Barcelona, it was curated by Benedetta Tagliabue and Àlex Ollé and produced in collaboration with IaaC Institut d’arquitectura avançada de Catalunya/Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia and University of Queensland, Brisbane.
It is a bookless library with a live program of reading, provoking thought about the library of the future in the digital age. The focus is on the content of the book and the act of reading. ‘Unbound’, a term that relates to the description of books, also expresses liberty and the idea of plenty, of limitlessness. ‘Obsolete’ books are recycled as a construction material, to build a canopy shading the square in summer.
Liberation is lightness. Light-weight structures for heavy-weight books transcend the sense of ‘weight’ to focus on the perception of the ‘light’ element of the book: content.

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Identity Anupama

Liberty Kundoo

Diversity IaaC Unbound:

Democracy TUB The Library of

Memory UQ Lost Books

Europe Plaça

Salvador Seguí

Barcelona


Unbound: The Library of Lost Books

BCN Re.Set Barcelona 2014

A project by

Ajuntament de Barcelona – Tricentenari BCN

Contents

Installation Architect

Anupama Kundoo

Theme

Liberty

Local Institute

IaaC

International partners

TUB, UQ

Political context

“September 11, 2014 is not a celebration of a defeat,

it is the fight for freedom”, Xavier Trias, Mayor of

Barcelona

Physical context

Plaça Salvador Seguí/Filmoteca de Catalunya

Social context

Dense multi-cultural

Organized by Fundació Enric Miralles

Coordination: Beatriz Minguez de Molina

Production: Marta Pérez-Porro

Sponsorship: Nayara Naranjo

Curators: Benedetta Tagliabue and Àlex Ollé

In collaboration with: IaaC Institut d’arquitectura

avançada de Catalunya/Institute for Advanced Architecture

of Catalonia, Barcelona

Project Development: IaaC, Barcelona:

Areti Markopoulou, Silvia Brandi

Project Assistance: IaaC, Barcelona: Stefanos Levidis and

Rodgrigo Aguirre/UQ, Brisbane: Ali Dabirian

Fabricaton: Fab Lab, Barcelona:

Anastasia Pistofidou, Alexandre Dubor

International collaborators: UQ, Brisbane, Australia

and TU Berlin

Structural design concept: Mike Schlaich and Arndt

Goldack, TU Berlin

Local structural designers: Pedelta Barcelona, founded

by Juan Sobrino, engineering team Lara Pellegrini,

Diego Sisí and Joan Agustí

Lighting: Viabizzuno

Film program: Filmoteca de Catalunya

Film curators: Esteban Riambau, Director of the Filmoteca

de Catalunya, and Xavier García Puerto

Sourcing of old books: Carme Fenoll, Director General,

Cap del Servei de Biblioteques, Generalitat de Catalunya

Book exchange: Coque - Bar Freedonia, representative of

Raval Cultural Bar Association

Reading program: Pepe Ros - ViVIM DEL CUENTO

Social integration in Raval: Sergio Ros

Primary School Participation: Marta Rodger, Director,

SEK International School

1 Conceptual Description 3

4 Technical Description 4

3 Associated Mobile Structures:

Seating, Shelves/Carts 6

4 Program 8

5 Time Schedule 8

6 Barcelona Workshop 2013 9

7 Team and Partners 12

© 2014 Anupama Kundoo for the text,

University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia,

photographers and designers for the images


1 Conceptual Description

The Library of Lost Books’ is a bookless library with

a live program of reading. The focus is on the content

of the book and the act of reading. ‘Unbound’, a term

that relates to the description of books, also expresses

liberty and the idea of plenty, of limitlessness.

The theme ‘liberty’ is expressed through creating a

place that celebrates ‘reading’, a place that symbolizes

an expression of freedom, as a place where knowledge

is free. Knowledge is empowerment, and knowledge

will lead to progress and freedom. This is appropriately

expressed as an ‘outdoor’ place under the ‘shade of

trees’ where everybody has a good memory of having

read a good book in the sense of freedom, free from

the confines of walls of buildings.

Yet, books ‘the building blocks’ of society are facing

extinction. Transition/evolution in the ‘form’ of the

book through time has led to books becoming lighter,

losing their materiality, now often only virtual. However

the act of ‘reading’ continues. Books, as beings in

transit, pass through the hands of many readers as in

libraries, rather than sitting on shelves of owners, or

still with publishers. ‘Obsolete’ books locked in storage

about to face their end, are rescued from pulping,

brought back in circulation, and liberated, and are

available for free exchange.

‘Obsolete’ books will be recycled as a construction material,

to build a canopy which will give shade to those

who engage in ‘reading’ and ‘listening to stories told

aloud’ or those engaged in ‘freely exchanging’ books

without exchanging money. After dismantling, the

books used to construct the canopy will be available to

the public as a souvenir commemorating the event.

Liberation is lightness. These are light-weight structures

for heavy-weight books that transcend the sense

of ‘weight’ to focus on the perception of the ‘light’

element of the book: content.

Filmoteca de Catalunya at Plaça Salvador Seguí,

seen from Southeast. Photo: Filmoteca de Catalunya

Books made of paper are at the environmental cost of

trees. Recycled books are used to reconstruct trees as a

symbol of the acknowledgement of these resources to

create an open-air library for ‘reading’.

3 The Context


2 Technical Description

Three canopy structures of different sizes and of varying

heights, called ‘trees’, shade the existing square of

Salvador Seguí through central supports like trunks. The

technical design is a reflection of the symbolic intention

of using knowledge to ‘liberate’ the structure from its

weight and express lightness and effortlessness.

The structure is constructed out of steel tubular profiles

of varying diameters according to the load they carry just

like in branches. Smaller diameter tubes penetrate the

larger diameter ones leaning outwards to progressively

create a large overhang. The penetration of tubes is

enabled through precise laser cut apertures in the larger

diameter tubes. The subsequently smaller diameter tube

penetrates the larger tubes twice to establish a triangulated

geometry in the joints and strength them.

This arrangement of interlocking steel tubes achieve a

large cantilever with little material. Although the trees

have different spans, 10 m, 9 m and 8 m diameter respectively,

the same radial assembly is used in each tree

composed of the same tubular profiles meeting at exactly

the same angles and distances to achieve ease in fabrication

through repetition.

Yet the loads in the different trees differ significantly just

as the span of the canopy does. While keeping the same

profile of the structural component, the proportionate

distribution of load is adjusted by reducing the number

of radial support assemblies. The largest tree has 7 radials,

the medium tree has 6 radials and the small tree has

5 radials. The span of the canopy above remains thus

similar and the identical profile assemblies for different

tree spans are thus justified.

Heavy concrete bases receive the trunks, that are assemblies

of 7, 6 and 5 poles respectively. The different geometries

in the 3 trees resulting out of different number of

repetitions in each case is indicated through the polygonal

design of the bases that are pentagonal, hexagonal

and heptagonal. These varying pentagons symbolise the

diversity of expressions of an idea resulting from similar

units and scales.

The radially placed steel profile assemblies are connected

to each other in the central area through a web of cables

to balance the outward thrust of each through the thrust

of the other in the opposite direction. At the top the ends

of poles are connected through a web of steel cables.

The canopy consists of a fabric made of plastic-wrapped

book modules that are assembled together and attached

to the structure using cable wire. The plastic wrapping is

the same as the vaccum packaging of delicatessen items

like ham and olives and symbolise the attempt to extend

the shelf life of the book and create the association of a

highly valued though familiar object.

4 Technical Description


3 Associated Mobile Structures

Seating

Urban furniture will be created as a temporary seating

that will be a playful expression of outdoor landscape.

This will be made out of ‘obsolete’ books but will show

the materiality and versatility of the object of the book.

While it is sad to treat these obsolete books as redundant,

it is also intended that society can confront the reality

that everyday huge amounts of ‘obsolete’ books are being

burnt, or sent for pulping. Our society is generating large

quantities of books that are eventually destroyed, and

while drawing the attention on the content of the book

and encourage reading, it is also an intention to save

the destruction of these and attempt expressions of its

further reuse.

Shelves/Carts

A mobile vehicle for facilitating ‘free-exchange’ of books

that can be stored in the Filmoteca space where it can

continue as a space of ‘free-exchange’ of books by the

visitors of the Filmoteca so as to secure the furniture and

the books from vandalism.

Seating area, the outcome of the ‘Building Knowledge’ workshop

at Museo ICO Madrid conducted by Anupama Kundoo, April 2014

with Elena Orte, workshop mentor, her daughter Ginebra and a

visitor. Photo: Guillermo Sevillano

6 Technical Description


Drawings: Ali Dabirian


8 Technical Description


4 Programme

5 Time Schedule

1 Reading and listening to stories read out loudly in

many languages including those of the immigrant local

inhabitants of the neighbourhood. These are managed

through recordings of interviews that are played back

through speakers on the tree structures, and through

organised events where actual reading takes place by

volonteers and invited guests, authors, publishers and

those interested. Children will be

at the center of the program that is planned with special

readings organised for them. Children will read to others,

and adults will read to children.

2 Free exchange of books among city inhabitants in the

organised open-market sessions. There will be no money

exchange, just ‘free exchange’ among people strengthening

community.

2014

April 23

San Jordi, ground-breaking, setting out plan on site

May 10

Completion of the detailed drawings and detail

cost-estimates

May 30

Completion of building elements and some

assemblies at Fablab IaaC

June 9

Completion of construction at the Plaça Salvador

Seguí

June 10

Preview for invitees

June 11

Open to public

3 Screening of special films centred around reading

through the involvement of the Filmoteca, such as The

Dead Poets Society or La Tête en Friche (My Afternoons

With Margueritte).

4 Discussions through seminar/panel sessions organised

in the Filmoteca in relation to the films screened.

Vaccum packed open books are assembled into a fabric that serves

as a canopy allowing the view of patches of sky. Photos: Ali Dabirian

9 Programme · Time Schedule


10 Workshop at IaaC Barcelona


6 Workshop at IaaC Barcelona October 28–31, 2013

October 28

Masterclass lecture by Prof. Gerd Fleischmann,

‘What is a book?’ followed by hands-on workshop

introduced by Anupama Kundoo

October 29

Ongoing workshop and ideas with Dr. Anupama

Kundoo, Prof. Gerd Fleischmann, Dr. Arndt

Goldack, TU Berlin

Lecture by Dr. Arndt Goldack, ‘Dynamic Lightweight

Structures’.

October 30

Wrap-up of workshop output, discussion and

evaluation of results, further ideas

October 31

Lecture by Anupama Kundoo, ‘Building Knowledge:

An approach to architecture in response

to socio-economic and environmental concerns’

Demystifying the book as a familiar object. Applying book

assembly experiences to architectural elements. Luis Leon Lopez,

Wen Shan Foo, Remita Thomas with Anupama Kundoo (opposite

page). All photographs from the workshop at IaaC Barcelona:

Mathilde Marengo

Book-tuning exercises, discovery of adhesive properties of

inter-locked pages due to friction: Trinidad Gomez, Wen Shan

Foo, Chung Kai Hsieh.

El Vol de la Llibertat by Alessio Salvatore Verdolino and Giacomo

Fiorani. The open book as a sculpted element symbolises flight

and liberty, Workshop at IaaC. Exercise: Applying book assembly

experiences to architectural elements.

11 Workshop at IaaC Barcelona


8 Team and Partners

Residents of Raval neighbourhood in conversation with

Anupama Kundoo during her visit to the site. In the distance architect

Odile Decq and on her left architect Alfredo Brillemburg,

two of the other five international participating architects.

Photo courtesy Fundació Enric Miralles

Engineers Juan Sobrino and Lara Pellegrini in discussion with

Anupama Kundoo (from left to right)

Anupama Kundoo, Benedetta Tagliabue, curator of the BCN

Reset project and founder of the Fundació Enric Miralles, and Odor

at IaaC (from left). Photos: Ali Dabirian

12 Team and Partners


Anupama Kundoo

Dr. Anupama Kundoo is known for her research-oriented

practice and her practice-oriented teaching. Her

internationally recognized and award-winning architecture

practice demonstrates a strong focus on material

research and experimentation towards an architecture

that has low environmental impact and is appropriate to

the socio-economic context.

Kundoo has built extensively in India and has had the

experience of working, researching and teaching in a

variety of cultural contexts across the world: TU Berlin,

AA London, TU Darmstadt, Parsons New School

of Design, New York, and is currently teaching at UQ,

University of Queensland in Brisbane. At Parsons she

was the Chair for Environmental Technologies and Material

Sciences and in the various schools she has taught

Architectural Design, Urban Management and Environmental

Technologies. She has lectured and exhibited

extensively across international institutions and has conducted

workshops and reviewed student work at several

Universities including Cornell University, University of

Melbourne, Lebanese American University and University

of Limerick.

Her recent contribution to the 13th Venice Architecture

Biennale involved the full-scale facsimile of her Wall

House project. As a runner-up in the 2013, ArcVision

International Prize for ‘Women and Architecture’ she

received an ‘Honorable Mention’ by the jury for “her

dedication when approaching the problem of affordability

of construction

and sustainability in all aspects”. In 2013 she also won

the Dr. Vishnu Joshi award for the best Ferrocement

structure by the Indian Society of Ferrocement.

Anupama Kundoo, Areti Markopoulou, Silvia Brandi, Ali Dabirian

(from left). Photo courtesy IaaC

Her projects as well as writings have been featured in a

wide range of books, international journals and newspapers

such as Phaidon World Atlas of Contemporary Architecture,

AD Architectural Design London, Modulør,

ArchitectureAU, India Today, Bauwelt and Duurzaam

Bowen. She has co-edited the Sustainable Building

Design Manual Vol. 1 and 2 for Institut Catala d’Energia,

2004; produced in partnership with London, Barcelona

and Delhi. In 2009 she authored Roger Anger: Research

on Beauty, about the life and work of a prominent

Parisian architect (1923–2008) of the fifties and sixties,

who was appointed the Chief Architect of Auroville, an

idealistic city project located in South India.

13 Team and Partners


Areti Markopoulou, IaaC

Silvia Brandi, IaaC

Mike Schlaich, TUB

Areti Markopoulou is a Greek architect and educator

whose research and practice design explores new architectural

models where applications of ICT, Energy and

Fabrication allow built and public space to dynamically

adapt to behavioral and environmental changes over

time.

She holds an MArch by IaaC in the field of “Prototypes

of Urbanity: from Bits to Geography” and a Fab Academy

diploma on Digital Fabrication offered by the MIT

Center for Bits and Atoms and the Fab Lab Network.

She is permanent faculty at IaaC with several published

articles internationally. Co-founder of the Mycity-me

non profit organization, her practice includes project

collaborations with multidisciplinary offices and institutions

and she has participated in R+D projects ranging

from Intelligent Cities ( such as “Smart BCN” with City

Council Barcelona, 2013), Self Sufficient Buildings (such

as “Fab Lab House” at Solar Decathlon Europe, 2010),

Digital Fabrication (such as “Fabrication Laboratory” at

DHUB, 2010) and Internet of Things (such as “Hyperhabitat”

at the XI Venice Biennale, 2008).

She is currently the Director of the Masters in Advanced

Architecture at IaaC in Barcelona and initiator and partner

of Fab Lab Athens in Greece.

Silvia Brandi studied architecture at Politecnico di

Milano and ETSAB UPC (Erasmus Program in Barcelona).

In 2004 she graduated with honors (tutor Giovanni

La Varra) with a thesis about the transformation of the

Alps landscape (Paolo Aldeghieri Award 2004) and won

a scholarship to develop an urban project at POSTECH

University in South Korea.

She worked in Milan with Stefano Boeri and from 2006

is settled in Barcelona where she is part of Institute of

advanced architecture of Catalonia staff as the coordinator

of the book Self-Sufficient Housing, ed. ACTAR –

IaaC (2006). From 2006 she works with Josep Miàs in

the international architectural firm MiAS Architects as

Head Architect and Studio Supervisor.

As Project Leader she has lead several built projects,

most notably new iGuzzini Headquarters in Barcelona

(Archdaily Building of the year and WAF2012 Shortlisted),

Market facilities and public space in Rubí, the

Puppet Theater in Tibidabo Amusement Park, the Torrebaró

Apartment Tower. She has been co-editor of various

publications, such as the monographic book about

iGuzzini building ed. ACTAR Birkhäuser (2012), and the

one about Barceloneta Market ed. ACTAR (2010) and

has curated exhibitions about MiAS Architects work in

Barcelona (Collegi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya, 2008;

Tibidabo Amusement Park, 2010) and London (Bartlett

School of Architecture UCL, 2012).

Mike Schlaich is Professor for Civil Engineering chairing

the Department of Conceptual and Structural Design

at Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin) and the

Managing Director of schlaich bergermann und partner,

Consulting Structural Engineers, Germany.

Mike Schlaich worked in Spain for several years as a

structural engineer before joining schlaich bergermann

and partner in Stuttgart which specializes in lightweight

and long-span structures. His research at TU Berlin concentrates

upon active and movable lightweight structures

that can adapt to changing boundary conditions. An

“intelligent” bridge with damping by artificial muscles or

experimental structures that fold away when not needed

was built at the TU Berlin lab.

Mike Schlaich received the German Bridge Design Award

(Deutscher Brückenbaupreis) in 2010 for the Footbridge

Sassnitz.

Since 2006 she also collaborates with Josep Miàs in

architecture academical courses at ETSAB (Barcelona)

and at UNISS (Sassari) and has been invited by various

international Institutions to give lectures about

MiAS Architects works. From 2012 she is back at IaaC

as Academic Coordinator and Faculty at the Master in

Advanced Architecture and Open Thesis Fabrication

programs.

14 Team and Partners


Arndt Goldack, TUB

Arndt Goldack studied civil and structural engineering

at the University of Stuttgart. From 1996 to 2003

he was research assistant with Prof. Jörg Schlaich and

Prof. Werner Sobek at the Institute for Structural Design

at the University of Stuttgart. In 2004 he received a

doctor’s degree with the awarded thesis on the structural

behavior and bracing of High Rise Tubes for Solar

Updraft Towers.

From 2003 to 2011 he was structural engineer with

schlaich bergermann and partner in Stuttgart and Berlin,

where he was in charge of several projects such as an integral

bridge for high speed trains, a cable stayed bridge

in New Dehli and dynamics of pedestrian bridges. Since

July 2011 he is researcher at the Chair of Conceptual

and Structural Design, TU Berlin, working on pedestrian

induced vibration, experimental modal analysis and

structural control as well as lightweight structures and

lightweight concrete.

Pedelta Barcelona Engineering Team

Pedelta is an international independent engineering

firm specialised in the design and conservation of

bridges, civil engineering structures and buildings.

The company approaches its projects with a technical,

human and creative point of view. Pedelta offices are

located in Barcelona, Bogota, Miami, Pittsburgh, Toronto

and Panama.

Juan A. Sobrino founded Pedelta in 1994. A graduate

of Civil Engineering from the Polytechnic University

of Catalonia (UPC) Barcelona, Spain, Juan Sobrino

completed his PhD from the same institute in 1994.

His professional activity has been devoted to the design

of bridges and civil engineering structures as well as

to the assessment and rehabilitation of existing bridges.

His experience includes considerable background with

the structural analysis and design of bridges and other

structures for heavy civil projects and the design of over

65 bridges of high-speed railway bridges and various

cable-stayed and extra-dosed bridges. Several projects

have been internationally awarded.

Lara Pellegrini studied Civil Engineering graduating

from the University of Padua in Italy in 1998, and

completed her Masters in Numerical Methods for the

Calculation and Design Engineering , from the UPC

Barcelona. Having worked for one year at the UPC and

for three years in BOMA, she joined Pedelta in 2003.

Between 2003 and 2010 her activity has been devoted to

structural design, mainly pedestrian bridges and other

structures. She has also collaborated on the design of

several hybrid stainless steel footbridges duplexes and

FRP .

Since 2010 Lara is responsible for R&D and business

developer director of Pedelta in the Spanish territory.

Engineering calculations for ‘Unbound: The Library of

Lost Books’: Diego Sisí and Joan Agustí.

His personal awards include IABSE Prize and the

Award on Innovation of the Board of the Spanish Civil

Engineers.

Juan Sobrino is an adjunct professor at Carnegie-

Mellon University in Pittsburgh and a part-time associate

professor at the UPC in Barcelona.

15 Team and Partners


Anupama

Kundoo

Unbound:.

The Library of

Lost Books

Plaça

Salvador Seguí

Barcelona

Anupama Kundoo

Unbound: The Library of Lost Books

BCN Re.Set Barcelona 2014

Plaça Salvador Seguí

Barcelona

Light-weight structures for heavy-weight books transcend the

sense of ‘weight’ to focus on the perception of the ‘light’ element of

the book : content.

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