ROMAN BAUER ARQUITECTOS
Arq. José Bauer , Arq. Augusto Román
Ing. Jorge Avendaño, Arq. Luis Takahashi, Enrique Aldana, Lucero Silva Buse, Arq. Ailed Tejada
Hildebrando Castro Pozo, Dirección Ejecutiva. Proyecto Especial Bicentenario de la Independencia del Perú
Arq. Augusto Román
The physical exhibition had several challenges of its own: how to provide a suitable space for the appreciation of visual arts and sound recordings, in an urban setting usually filled with noise and distracting elements; how to stand out without being intimidating or becoming a nuisance, and on the contrary, being inviting to the passersby; once in, how to provide an interactive experience for the non-digital native; and finally, how to replicate all this in many cities around the country.
The project called for a very minimalist proposal given the schedule and budget. The less material and complexity, the easier it would be to build, transport and assemble the exhibition. All pieces should fit in a medium size truck and be light enough to be moved by a small crew of people, without a crane or other mechanical means.
An inclined plane was devised instead of a wall and roof as the main element to create an interior space, protected from street traffic and weather, but open to the plaza. This created the biggest impact with the least material, in an unfamiliar shape that was not threatening. It provided a large area for the communication of the exhibition on the opaque face, while offering a glimpse of the contents through the transparent face. The interior shape of the space also called for alternative methods of display, allowing for text, floating images and sound recordings to interact with the visitors in a nonlinear way.
On the bicentennial of the independence of Peru, the Ministry of Culture commissioned a digital exhibition that would reflect the multicultural and multiethnic base of the nation called “El Desafío del Nosotros” (The Challenge of Us). The public was invited to make their own connections through cultural objects, changing the canonical reading of a national art history into a more diverse take on culture and nation. This was achieved through a fairly successful web page exhibition, but the challenge to make the exhibition accessible to people without an internet connection—i.e. more than half of Peruvian population—, or people that do not usually go to museums or so-called art spaces, remained.
Given the role of main plazas as active civic spaces for urban and rural populations alike, the decision was to hold a physical exhibition in several town squares, and we were invited to work on a design proposal.
It took 1 month to design it, 2 weeks to build it, 3 days and 4 workers to assemble it in place.
It cost 8,000 USD to build, excluding transport and assembly.
The exhibition stayed 2 months in Ayacucho and 1 month in Huancayo. The program was interrupted by a change of government, but it will travel to 2 more cities this year.
800 daily visitors on weekdays and 1000 daily visitors on weekends, were recorded.
Ease of transport and assembly proved to be key: all pieces fit in a medium sized truck and can be assembled by 4 people with spanners.