For Casadecor 2015, a Madrid-based design event, Spanish architect Carolina González Vives installed her Clouds Observatory on the rooftop of the fair’s building. In the ambitious project Carolina González and her studio team were looking for ways to cool the venue with the least power consumption possible. They examined the spontaneous and natural mechanisms of oases in arid geographies, where the right combination of shade, vegetation, and water cools the air. This is due to evaporation, which involves the movement of particles leading to the dissipation of 70% of solar radiation.
Maintaining the cloud and sky theme, the space has been decorated with the printed cloud tiles and mirrors. Decoratively interesting, the pods are more sustainable and cheaper in comparison to air conditioning and also act as subtle space dividers while providing shade. The lightweight constructions were conceived of through the exploration of air, water and evaporation and are able to float due to the air density.
Vives’s solution includes a minimal toolkit. She used three low “clouds”, PVC inflatable pods that withhold dense and fresh air under them. The other elements of the terrace, including the shapes, surfaces, artificial hills, tiled roofs are all geometrically calculated to reproduce organic physical conditions.
The Casadecor rooftop, set above the urban concrete/stone jungle of Madrid, seems to be an ideal venue for putting the concept into work. While being a public and urban space, it is also open to the landscape with its view to the sky, making the ambitions fulfilled by the Observatory even more effective and compelling.
Title: Clouds Observatory
Architect: Carolina González Vives, Madrid, Spain
Location: Casadecor 2015, Madrid, Spain
Technical info: Inflatable PVC
Picture credits: Nacho Uribe Salazar
Website: www. gonzalezvives.es