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Cinema of the future in Lodz. Honorable mention for a student of the Wrocław University of Technology.

Dobrawa Bies
15 of April '21

What form will the cinema of the future take? Will we still watch screenings in movie theaters, sitting in chairs? Or will we be able to immerse ourselves in the image? These are the questions Maria Opłatek tried to answer, creating a project called Non Gramme - a cinema that could be built on Piotrkowska Street in Lodz. Her futuristic work was awarded in the Cinema Futurismo competition.

The goal of the Cinema Futurismo competition organized by UNI Competitions was to design a cinema of the future that could seat about seventy-five people. The design had to take into account all the contemporary trends emerging in cinemas and at the same time look to the future. It had to be a premise that represents the future of cinema, is cost-effective, public, expressive and accessible. The submissions were judged by an international jury of experienced architects: Jeffrey L. Day, Manuelle Gautrand, Oleg Shapiro, Martin Ostermann, Lena Kleinheinz. Among the submitted projects, the jury singled out the work of a student from the Wroclaw University of Technology.

Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi, widok po otworzeniu dachu

view after opening the roof

© Maria Opłatek

Non Gramme with honorable mention

Non Gramme by Maria Opłatek is at the same time an engineering thesis done under the direction of Anna Bać, Ph.D., arch professor at the university's Department of Architecture and Visual Arts.

As the author says about the project:

The work was considered in three aspects: the future of cinema, sociology and sustainability. The main idea was to increase the level of immersion of the viewer with the film ("immersion") related, among other things, to technological advances. The concept draws attention to the dependence of the viewer's feelings on the way of watching the film, and the form of the building is to use the panorama of Piotrkowska Street as an element of the film scenery, which will allow the complete coupling of the function of the cinema with the surrounding area.

Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi,

The building is a complementary piece of architecture in the downtown area of Lodz

© Maria Opłatek

Designed by Maria Opłatek, the building would be a complementary infill to the development in Lodz's downtown area - in the place where the parking lot is today. The cinema would seat 75 viewers and allow people to experience films on multiple levels. Inspired by the construction of a film frame (consisting of multiple frames), the young architect created a design analogous to it, so that the user, upon entering the building, would find himself deeper and deeper into the film structure. In the zones where the greatest contact between the viewer and the film would occur, the author envisioned a projection in the form of a smoke hologram.

Przestrzeń wystawowa
na parterze Rzut parteru

On the first floor there is a space designated for exhibitions, an information desk and changing rooms

© Maria Opłatek

cinema as film sets

The center of the cinema is a sphere around which the author has planned spaces corresponding to the sets of a movie frame. In the space described as "Plan I", the film would be viewed as a foreground character. The viewer is in the center of the room, between the holograms in the middle of the action. "PlanII" is where the film is viewed as a secondary character. The viewer is moved away from the center of the room, however, he or she is still within range of the film's action and holograms, which would provide him or her with a view of elements belonging to the second plane of the film frame. In the next space, he would watch the film as a tertiary character, excluded from active participation in the action by being removed from the space with the holograms. Thus, he would watch the film in the traditional form we know from today's movie theaters.

A i oś planów kinowych Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi, schemat widowni kinowej

The center of the cinema is the sphere, around which the author has planned spaces corresponding to the plans of the film frame

© Maria Opłatek

"Plan IV" the student reserved for the closest surroundings of the film characters, reducing it to interiors and small open spaces. In the Lodz cinema of the future, it would be located outside the screening room. The audience would watch the interior of the building, walking through the concentric set. In the film, the fifth plan is made up of large open spaces. This plane is located on the balconies of the building, from which the panorama of Piotrkowska Street and Zamenhofa Street can be seen, which, according to the author, allows the object's surroundings to be incorporated directly into the immersion process.

Film jako hologram

projection in the form of a smoke hologram

© Maria Opłatek

An additional, sixth plan is to merge the surroundings with the projected building by allowing outsiders to see inside and film. In practice, those passing by on Piotrkowska Street would view the film inside the building thanks to a translucent double façade. The author also envisaged the possibility of opening this sphere during the screening of the film.

Double façade and five floors

The cinema building has five floors, including one underground, and measures just under 18 meters. The designer proposed a flat roof, a raised first floor and an entrance in an arcade. The building's floor plan is divided into two zones: a closed administrative and technical part and an open cinema and exhibition part. An important element is the building's double façade, which consists of a system of glass panels and a translucent mesh with piezoelectric turbines.

This solution allows blurring the boundary between the interior and exterior. In addition, the facade is a "sign" of the time in which it was designed, analogous to other buildings on Piotrkowska Street. In order to make a symbolic reference to the surroundings, the triangular divisions of the exterior façade result from the horizontal divisions of the nearest neighboring building to the south, the author adds.

Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi, fasada Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi, schemat konstrukcji

The translucent facade is built of a system of glass panels and mesh with piezoelectric turbines

© Maria Opłatek

The underground floor is intended for a technical zone and a multipurpose space for relaxation with a bar, with no fixed elements, so that it is easy to transform. The ground and first floors are intended for exhibition spaces, accessible from Piotrkowska Street, as well as an information desk and changing rooms. The second floor houses the cinema space proper, from which one can enter the screening room through two pairs of doors located in the sphere. In front of the auditorium is a self-service snack bar. The third floor is a relaxation space, with seating for about 20 people. An important feature of each floor is an opening in the ceiling in the middle of the building, which not only shows the cinema halls (spheres) in their entirety, but also allows for better visibility of the space in the building.

Kino przyszłości
w Łodzi, rzut 2. piętra Kino widoczne od ulicy

The cinema building has five floors, including one underground, and measures just under 18 meters

© Maria Opłatek

eco-friendly cinema

The building is energy-efficient and equipped with ecological installations. Rainwater is collected on the roof with gullies and directed through a gutter to an underground reservoir, where it would then be collected and used to irrigate greenery. Additional sources of electricity are photovoltaic panels on the roof and piezoelectric turbines of the exterior facade. Energy from the photovoltaics would be used to partially power the electrical system and mechanical ventilation.

A team of students from the Cracow University of Technology also took part in the competition, winning the audience award for their ECO CUBE project.


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