Kiko Arguello Wirtz / Rino Rossi
Clean-cut features and, from some angles outcropping like hard stone from the surface, the Domus Galilaeae in Jerusalem represents an opportunity offered to stone wall cladding to become protagonist. The sumptuous stylistic elements influenced by local tradition and other connotations of a more international flavour, even echoing the Indian experiences of Khan, are kept in dynamic harmony by the connective work of the grey sandstone.
A monument, an articulated object, designed to be contemplated, surrounded by a spacious green area.
The housing complex, tackling the theme of multiple units in a single building, offers itself as an urban system apart; in the recesses and connections we find measured sculptural elements and effective combinations of materials, at times evocative with inlay work, at others, innovative through the use of glass technology.
The architect has chosen to use both polished sandstone and colombino. Attention to detail is outstanding in the overall work. A prime example can be seen in the paving joints at the top of the monumental steps, symmetrical with the walkway just as the joints between the elements forming the treads of the adjacent steps are symmetrical, with emphasis on the top tread of each flight of steps. In these steps, the tripartition of the ashlars is redistributed, gaining the entire dimension of the walkway running between the two containing walls. A second example is the splayed arch: this is composed of seven different planes of depth, to which correspond an equal number of independent stone arches traced on a three-centred geometry, underlining connotations of religious trinity. In addition to the technical skills of design and dressing of the ashlar stone, what also stands out is the way in which the weight of the material is visibly sustained by the fourteen slender columns at the base of the arches.