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Komorebi pavilion. A way to reuse glass bottles

23 of February '24
Technical data
Name: Komorebi, glass bottle pavilion
Investor: private
Location: Dishes, currently Utzon Center, Aalborg
Designers: Joanna Maria Lesna, Izabella Banaś, Paola Gonzales Marquez
Construction consultants:
Vincenzo Reale and Franchesco Banchini (Arup)
Steel construction:
Tomasz Wesolowski (Konsta SP. ZO. O Steel Structures)
Transportation and construction coordination:
Atibadi Brugnano, Filippo Cartapani, Philippe Chapuy, Alexandar Donov, Thomas Enee, Polina Galantseva, Mathis Gebauer, Andrea Gioachini, Høg, Ioannis Mathioudakis, Vlad-Ilie Necula, Matthew Oravec, Anastasia Papaspyrou, Job Schobre, Migel Rebelo, Antonio Ríos Calderón, Tatiana Watrelot
Photos: Diana Aud, Joanna Maria Lesna, Paola Gonzales Marquez, Joakim Züger (BARSK Projects), Hanna Johansson
Dimensions: 5 × 4,4 × 5 m
Area: 12 m²
Materials: Glass bottles, steel
Realization: 2023

What if discarded everyday objects were transformed into architecture?—Architects Izabella Banaś, Joanna Maria Lesna and Paola Gonzalez Marquez ask. Their Komorebi pavilion is just that, an attempt, to give new life to used objects. Made of glass bottles and interlaced rebar, it made its debut in Copenhagen's historic Charlottenborg during the CHART art fair festival.

Gra świateł nocą Pawilon nocą

pavilion lights up at night

Photo: Joanna Maria Lesna, Izabella Banaś

The featured pavilion was designed as part of a competition held during the contemporary art fair held in Denmark. The fair's main venue is the Kunsthal Charlotenborg, but it also includes other points in Copenhagen, such as Tivoli, art galleries and streets. One of the festival's major initiatives is the aforementioned CHART Architecture competition aimed at young architects, female architects, designers and designers. Its goals are to explore and experiment with the boundaries of architecture. The competition often includes challenges that promote sustainable practices and innovative approaches in design.

Montaż pawilonu

Installation of the pavilion on the square in Charlottenborg

Photo: Joakim Züger (BARSK Projects)

5 pavilions in Copenhagen

The challenge of the latest competition was the New European Bauhaus, with an emphasis on its key principles: sustainability, aesthetics and inclusivity. The competition focused on designing architectural structures to be installed in the two courtyards of Kunsthal Charlottenborg during CHART in August 2023. The designs were to draw on the principles of universal design, meaning that they should be accessible and usable to the widest possible audience regardless of age, ability or disability.

Pawilon Komorebi, rysunek

Komorebi pavilion, drawing

© Izabella Banaś, Joanna Maria Lesna, Paola Gonzalez Marquez

The five finalist projects, from among many submissions, were selected by a jury consisting of: Gert Wingårdh (Wingårdhs), Camilla Ryhl (Universal Design Hub), Anders Lendager (Lendager), Ebbe Stub Wittrup (artist), Lise Gandrup Jørgensen (Dorte Mandrup), Rong Guan (Polestar). Among the selected concepts that lived to see implementation was the Komorebi pavilion by Joanna Maria Lesna, Paola Gonzalez Marquez and Izabella Banaś.

Pawilon Komorebi wnętrze

Komorebi pavilion interior

photo: Joanna Maria Lesna

Each of the awarded teams received 60 thousand Danish kroner to complete the project. You can see all the pavilions created on the festival website. During the event, the jury also selected the main winner of the competition, which was the „Off-The-Shelf” project of the Plannoll team, architects from Stockholm.

Pawilon Komorebi na dziedzińcu Charlottenborgu

Komorebi pavilion reflects the light of the setting sun

Photo: Joanna Maria Lesna

Komorebi pavilion

The pavilion consists of three simple steel modules, allowing transport and assembly on site. These modules are made of reinforcement mesh welded to a steel frame. The structure widens at the base and tapers upward, reaching an open top. The mesh acts as a rack for the bottles, which, stacked systematically, create an effect reminiscent of glass shells. Catching and reflecting light and its surroundings, the pavilion gives the impression of being made of crystal.

In creating the pavilion, we drew inspiration from the delicate dance of sunlight seeping through the trees, called komorebi by the Japanese, the authors explain.

Pawilon Komorebi, podczas montażu

Komorebi pavilion, during installation

photo: Paola Gonzalez Marquez

The Komorebi pavilion was erected at Kunsthal Charlotenborg, and its assembly, thanks to prefabrication and the help of friends, took only a few hours.

More than fifteen people came together and helped us assemble and put on the frame 750 bottles donated by Jan Bender, owner of ISKILDE. We were very keen to be able to reuse the bottles, replace them and encourage passersby to interact with the object we created. All the bottles can be easily removed and reapplied, without damaging them or the entire structure. During the festival we had the pleasure of observing how passersby reacted to the pavilion. Often people couldn't believe, coming closer and closer, that the object was made of ordinary bottles. Sometimes curious passersby took out and reinserted the bottles. In addition, during the festival the bottles were used to serve drinking water, the authors say.

Nakładanie butelek

applying the bottles

Photo: Joakim Züger (BARSK Projects)

Now the pavilion can be seen until the end of March this year at the Utzona Center in Aalborg.

Pawilon Komorebi w Utzon Centre Pawilon Komorebi zimą

The pavilion at the Utzona Center

Photo: Diana Aud

After the exhibition at the Utzona Center, the pavilion will be moved to another location. The location is not yet confirmed, we are currently looking into the possibilities. In the new location, we would like to create a composition, also using colorful bottles," the architects add.

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