The singularity of the Film Theatre of Catalonia
The Film Theatre of Catalonia is situated in the historic neighbourhood of El Raval, in Barcelona. In recent years this area has been immersed in a major process of transformation and modernization though it retains the popular, built-up, even oppressive nature of a port district.
Its relation with the setting was determinant in defining the volume of the building. The project works with scale, allowing the building to relate formally with neighbouring constructions and prompting the decision to underground the cinemas. The ground floor is designed as a passageway for users of the film theatre, connecting the street on one side to the plaza on the other.
The structure is generated by two planes that correspond to the two outer longitudinal walls. The parts of the walls below grade are given a more conventional treatment, as they are retaining walls, whereas the parts that emerge above are “sculpted” by the demands of the spaces they form.
The structure organizes the whole building: the main façades are two screen walls that free up the ground and second floors of pillars, as each is suspended from the floor above by metal ties. The end walls are cantilevered to create more space in the streets they delimit.
Between each pair of walls are ranged cross beams that have been post-tensioned to reduce their depth. These beams also support conventional solid slab floors.
The basalt stone covering Plaça de Salvador Seguí, arranged in the style of Portuguese pavements, makes its way into the foyer of the film theatre, connecting the exterior with the inside. The spacious foyer is lit via panoramic openings that frame the immediate urban landscape, like CinemaScope screens. The Filmoteca is designed as a series of filters and screens positioned in the façades that mediate between inside and out, laterally and top to bottom.
The building is envisaged as a series of filters and screens, exterior as well as interior. Its relation with the exterior is mediated by a series of patterns made of wire and perforated metal sheet that filter daylight and give the occupants privacy, allowing them to look without being seen. Inside, the use of filters continues on the upper floors; coloured glass screens divide the space and, like the filters and diaphragms used in film cameras, control the intensity and the colour of natural light.
Il progetto è stato concepito come qualcosa a metà tra un edificio industriale e una struttura in costruzione; “pura tecnica quasi senza ultimazione”.
La nuova cineteca sorge nella piazza Salvador Seguí, uno spazio pubblico che funge da luogo di ritrovo per eventi di grande rilievo.
All’interno troveranno spazio, su una superficie complessiva di 6mila metri quadrati, due cinema, una biblioteca, 12 cabine di proiezione e sale espositive.
L’edificio si sviluppa su sei piani, di cui due interrati. Nei due piani interrati troveranno spazio le due sale cinematografiche con rispettivamente 400 e 200 posti a sedere.
Al piano terra sono previsti l’ingresso, una caffetteria ed un deposito materiali; al livello superiore troveranno spazio un archivio grafico ed una piccola sala espositiva. Il secondo piano accoglierà una sala espositiva permanente ed una biblioteca, mentre all’ultimo piano saranno sistemati gli uffici ed alcune cabine di proiezione a disposizione dei visitatori.