With AFF Architekten and Tiago Borges
Berlin, Germany

International Competition

J. D. Durand teached architects and engineers until 1830, throug the lens of his tipology of a modular system based on a squared grid. As a purely rational system that frees itself from artistic whims and architectural decoration, this architecture must be valid for all people at all times. Durand aknowleges the architectonic fundamental goal for its upmost economy and practicality. He was, in that sense, a pioneer of modern achitecture, by understanding the modular system as the basis of industrial prefabrication.
K. F. Schinkel erected the Berlin Bauakademie in 1836 in reference to the early British industrial buildings. The construction was determined by a multitude of repetitive elements and four identical façade views. Its modular layout not only gave room to the academy teaching spaces and its library (aside shops and an official residence), but also made possible in the following years to convert it into the State Image Archive Center and the College of Politics.
O.M. Ungers built, in 1995, the House without Qualities which he dedicated to the rules of geometry. In a limited space, the modules and elements are gathered to which one is “existentially connected”, as writes Ungers in an essay in 1999. The house entry is via a pergola corridor.
Our design for the three-part Modular Elementary School is committed to the approaches of these 3 architects and teachers. However, with the consistent application of contemporary tried-and-tested industrial production techniques, it offers an internal flexibility that can be followed by temporary and future changes in use and teaching programs.
Let us mirror the principle of Rousseau from his "Emile", that we are influenced by three teachers: 1. Nature; it develops abilities and crafts, 2.the people; they teach the use of those abilities and crafts and 3., things; they teach through experience and intuition. In that sense, our architecture is committed to the world of things. The tectonic logic, the inner flexibility, and the differentiated material allocation of concrete robustness in the outside and wood heat in the interior are part of our architectural concept.

Technical Information
Architecture: depA Architects + AFF Architekten + Tiago Borges
Images: Fusão