Arte-Sella Open-Air Museum, Italy
2019, Competition Entry
What does a modern imprint on the land look like? Michelangelo Pistoletto made his mark on the land of Malga Costa by tracing the origins of creation and excavating the symbol of infinity, thus forming the trench of peace and imagining a harmonious relationship between civilization and nature. Yet, once nature strikes, it can dramatically transform these relations. In the face of calamity, can we re-imagine a new imprint on the wounded land?
Taking inspiration from the Via Alpina trails, the Rejuvenation Trail offers a pedestrian scenic- route of pilgrimage along with the remains of the mountain forest. The trail both commemorates all that has been damaged or destroyed and celebrates the future regeneration of the forest and of the Arte Sella open-air museum.
We embark on the remarkable Villa Strobel and thus ascend north, following the mountain slope. At our feet, the 0.5km-long trail hovers over fallen trees and cutoff trunks; it winds gently amongst the surviving trees, so to make a minimal impact on the natural landscape. On our way through the forest, we discover a system of small structures accompanying the trail. These are artists’ ateliers - places of creating art and mediating artistic creation to the visitors, as well as being artistic landmarks in themselves. In between the ateliers, we find outdoor workshops and an open auditorium, where we can meet and interact with the artists and architects and even follow their creative process. Several relaxation points provide us with scenic views of the forest’s devastation and rejuvenation before we reach the high point of our pilgrimage – the museum.
The museum of the disappeared works preserves the memory of the artworks which were destroyed by the storm. With its sculptural linear design, the museum performs as the indoor sequence of our trail, encompassing an inner courtyard that houses the remains of damaged artworks. Once passing through the linear galleries, we eventually come out back to the former ArteNatura trail, and thus our journey comes to an end.
All of these experiences together form the Rejuvenation Trail – a place of cultural-artistic gathering embedded in and indebted to its unique environment.
Museum of the disappeared works
Inspired by the image of Arte Sella’s works disrupted by fallen trees, the museum’s morphology is articulated by two separate tectonic elements. Superimposed together they create a whole and complete the linear circulation of the trail. The intersections between the two elements are nodes of disruption, where a new morphology is discovered.
Inspired by Rainer Gross’s geometric shapes emerging from the ground amongst the trees, the ateliers are conceived as scattered angular elements rising from the mountain slope, comprising separate accommodation and work units. The irregularity of each shape corresponds with the three locations, so as not to disrupt the natural rhythm of trees. The forms are extruded in relation to the topography.
© 2022 Erez Shani Architecture