Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains, Portugal

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains, Portugal, Architect, Images, Portuguese Architecture

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains

Architecture in Portugal – design by Pedro Dias

15 Dec 2010

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains

2009

Design: Pedro Dias

Location: Portugal

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal
photographs : Pedro Dias

Family Tomb – Açor Mountains

“a tomb is a prison, but also a “monumentum”; that is, an object which keeps the “memory” or the recollection of an absent person alive… and only monuments are architecture… all other buildings are simple constructions for ephemeral beings, technical or artisanal products, not works calling on technique: authentic creations, visionary and inspired…”
Adolf Loos

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal
photographs : Pedro Dias

Concept: Sepulchral Void

The concept behind this small, rather unusual but challenging project was the creation of a simple, restrained and minimalistic architectural object that, apart from containing the basic program presented by the client (capacity for 8 coffins), playing in a dignified way its role as a “tribute to the memory ” and integrating itself in the cemetery, would interact directly with the impressive surrounding mountain landscape (without blocking its view), by literally framing it, in order to use the moment of its quiet contemplation as a “transmission vehicle” for transcendental communication between the “living” and “missing” ones. In the approach to this concept two specific moments of the tomb use where taking into account… During the funeral ceremony, how would this ritual take place and how would a coffin be handled, in other words, how would the “farewell” take place?… And during a sporadic visit of a family member or a friend to the site, how to create the ideal conditions for a comfortable spiritual recollection? The result was the design in the interior of the tomb of an open space, accessible to all, equipped with a bench, which serves both as such as well as a surface for placing the coffin during the mentioned funeral ritual. Ultimately, the creation of a contemplative “spatial void”, which fulfills the “emotional void” caused by a feeling of loss that can be briefly translated into this abstract concept of “Sepulchral Void”… Architectonically speaking, the tomb is a simple volume that appears to levitate quietly over the ground, clladed on the outside by slices of softened black granite stone and on the inside, on all surfaces, by hairline finishing stainless steel panels, in clear contrast and material dichotomy between the “shell” and its “content”. Inside, details like a cross cutted on the ceiling and a flower deposit integrated on the bench reinforce the obvious symbolic meaning of this object.

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal
photographs : Pedro Dias

Constructive Process

The idea behind the construction of this tomb consisted on the full assembling of its pre-fab metal structure in a factory, formed by steel profiles, tubes and rods (as well as all its stainless steel surfaces), in order to assure right from the start a greater precision in its execution. Subsequently, this structure was put into a truck, transported from the factory to the cemetery, and then placed on site by a crane (on a concrete plinth built in-situ). Finally, concrete was poured over this structure (slabs and side walls) and the stone cladding was done.

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains Portugal
images : Pedro Dias

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains – Building Information

Name: Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains
Location: Monte Frio, Arganil / Portugal
Design: 2006
Construction: 2007-09
Client: Familia Duarte
Size: 12.9 m2
Total Cost: 12.000 €
Architecture: Pedro Dias, Arquitecto
Engineering: DX2 Engenharia, Lda
Contractor: Construções Castanheira & Filipe, Lda
Structure / Metal Works: Madeljor – Metalúrgica Saraiva Ribeiro, Lda
Photographs: Pedro Dias, Arquitecto

Pedro Dias

Was born in Lisbon, Portugal in 1975. He graduated in 2000 at the Faculty of Architecture of the Lisbon’s Technical University, having been in 1999 an Erasmus exchange student at the Superior Technical School of Architecture del Vallés, in Barcelona (Spain). From 2000 to 2009 he worked, first as an architectural assistant and then as project designer and manager, in several architecture practices from Lisbon (Portugal) and Amsterdam (Holland), all with international recognized and published work. As an independent architect in 2007 he got his 1st prize in an architecture competition and in 2009 he saw the second of his personal projects to be built. Currently he is working and living as an architect in Macau / China.

Family Tomb in the Açor Mountains images / information from Pedro Dias


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