Architects Superform drew the inspiration for this kindergarten from a nearby learning path running through the Slovenian village of Cerkvenjak. Envisaged as an additional branch of this path, the building features an almost biomorphic plan layout consisting of six individually articulated units strung along an elongated central hallway. Five of the units provide play areas; the sixth accommodates administrative offices and an underground service level. The design concept allows the new facility to conform to the characteristics of the built and natural environment, as the stepped hallway follows the slope of the terrain while the gable-roofed playroom units approximate the geometry and scale of the neighboring residential houses. Intended to enrich the children’s spatial experience, the hallway itself varies in width and each playroom unit boasts a unique, irregular and contorted shape.
The design of the envelope supports this idea. The units are sheathed in a copper-colored Swisspearl paneling that incorporates a series of oblique ceiling-high window slits. Equally tilted, isochromatic timber posts propping up the eaves over the verandas create a mirror image of the façade cladding by inverting the pattern of solid and void elements. Taking advantage of the relative independence of weather skin and substructure, the architects left gaps between the panels to create a perforation-like shadow effect, which evokes the silhouettes of flying birds and gives additional visual interest to the façade.
Solid and void, key opposing concepts for architecture
Cerkvenjak 34 , Slovenia
Superform, Ljubljana (Marjan Poboljšaj, Anton Žižek, Špela Gliha, Meta Žebre, Boris Janje)
Miran Kambič, Radovljica
Gradbeništvo Milan Pintarič, Gornja Radgona
LESAM, Miklavž na Dravskem polju
Swisspearl large size, Carat Topaz 7073