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Project was centered around an abandoned lighthouse located in Syracuse on Capo Murro di Porco. The aim of the competition was to challenge designers to let the beauty of the remote location fascinate them, allowing one to propose a new future for the abandoned lighthouse that would transform the area into a world renowned tourism facility. For our design we chose the program of an Artist Retreat and Art Hotel. 

The light house is a navigational aid, a tower structure that emits light. It is an archetypal built intervention in a coastal landscape. Our proposal, Ludo, is a series of structures that negotiate archetypal built interventions within a coastal landscape. It is a manifestation of interactions/play between structure and landscape; the synergy between the built and the natural. Programmatically Ludo consists of 3 artist residences, a hotel, a gallery and a welcome/info centre, a grand total of 22,401 sqf all accessible to users with reduced mobility . The structures are strategically arrayed across the landscape much like a constellation, the pattern of which is illustrative of a light beam passing through the lighthouse and refracting across the site. Each structure’s unique location gives rise to the nature of its play with the landscape and eventual archetypal form. The material palette for the proposal is a mixture of glass, hardy teak wood and exposed aggregate concrete - which is at times perforated to increase transperency between the built and the natural. This particular concrete finish is reminiscent of the Capo Murro di Porco terrain -  rugged with raw edges weathered over time.

The Revet is a gateway and port of entry to the site. Embedded in the landscape it represents an Omni-directional magnet, drawing in visitors and focussing them towards the light house. The auspicious cant of its occupiable rooftop elegantly descends towards the ground, allowing it to meld seamlessly into the landscape while providing panoramic views of the site.  The Revet is a welcome centre providing administrative support and amenities for visitors. 
The Plank is the immediate focal point once visitors arrive at the Light House, a point of departure and a point of reflection, the equilibrium. The structure is a bar balanced atop boulders , teetering  over the cliff’s edge. It is a gallery that celebrates both the axial views of the lighthouse and the mediterranean sea as well as the work being produced by resident artists.

The artist residences are designed to house 6-8 artists every year, culminating in an art show to be displayed annually.  The Island is located in a natural depression on the site. This unique quality gave rise to the notion of a solitary structure – an island floating in the natural pool. The Cliffhanger is located at the precipice, overlooking the sea, anchored to the bedrock face. It is clad in mirrors to reflect the cliffside and create a bunker like sense of camouflage.The Causeway is located within a cleft along the coast. This unique location inspired a bridge-like structure aiming to traverse the cleft. The Boardwalk is a hotel with a restaurant and lounge providing 8 rooms for guests to the Lighthouse and art patrons. It is comprised of a series of buildings arranged along the path of the boardwalk resting on stilts, culminating at an infinity pool by the sea.

The goal of this proposal is to treat the nuances within the landscape as opportunities to play with archetypal structures privy to the coast. Each moment of play generates spaces capable of inspiring creativity – artist studios equipped with intimate views of how the landscape interacts with the sea. In addition, the treatment of the site is a catalyst for celebrating the creative production of resident artists, exemplified best by the formal play of the gallery. Ludo is a game of negotiating the formal tropes of coastal architectures - reorienting built form to find unexpected allegiances between landscape and structure. In doing so, we have stumbled upon spatial arrangements ripe for artistic breeding - both studio spaces and exhibition venues that celebrate the making and sharing of art in the most picturesque of settings.


Hospitality & Recreation


Syracuse, Italy








studiovol & Studio Alibai

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