Philharmonic Hall of Szczecin – Winner of the 2015 Mies van der Rohe Award
The Mies van der Rohe award is one of the most prestigious accolades in European architecture. Awarded every 2 years, it “draws attention to the major contribution by European professionals to the development of new ideas and technologies. “
The 2015 Mies van der Rohe award has been given to the Spanish studio Barozzi Veiga for the Philharmonic Hall of Szczecin beating O’Donnell + Tuomey’s red brick student centre for the London School of Economics, BIG’s Danish Maritime Museum in Helsingør along with the Ravensburg Art Museum in Germany by Lederer Ragnarsdóttir Oei and the Antinori Winery by Archea Associati to win the €60,000 (£45,000) prize.
An iconic building with its translucent ribbed glass facade and zigzag roof profile, the concert hall stands out in a context that mostly comprises of old worn out buildings. Culturally sensitive to the fact that it is going to replace the dilapidated auditorium building reminiscent of the Second World War, the Philharmonic Hall of Szczecin is a symbol of a bright and luminous future.
While the exterior might be simple yet iconic, the interior of the hall could not be any more different.
“In accordance with the central European tradition of the classical concert halls, decoration becomes ornament and function. The hall is composed following a Fibonacci sequence whose fragmentation increases with the distance from the scene, and gives shape to an ornamental space which reminds of the classical tradition through its gold-leaf covering.”
Apart from this, the building predominantly uses passive systems of energy control. The double skin facade provides acoustic insulation and also incorporates within it a natural ventilation system to reduce the load on air conditioning systems. What’s more is that the entire building becomes a glowing mass at night, illuminated by energy saving LEDs.
Contextually sensitive, iconic and with a great understanding and implementation of classical architecture in a modern manner, one can easily say that the Mies van der Rohe Award was well deserved by Studio Barozzi Veiga.
By : Shamita Chaudhry