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Embracing Brutalist Beauty: The Workshop House by Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

Federico Cairoli

The house created by Agustín Berzero and Manuel González Veglia in the vicinity of Córdoba, Argentina, stands as a bold statement against the prevailing notion of intangible and fleeting architecture that characterizes our modern “liquid” society, as Zygmunt Bauman would put it.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

In a world increasingly dominated by virtual realms and hyper-connectivity, where the substance is replaced by mere imagery, Berzero and González Veglia‘s architectural masterpiece serves as a resolute resistance. Their approach embraces the present moment, unfiltered and raw, rooted in the physicality of architecture itself.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

It champions a stripped-down and utilitarian design, almost primal in its simplicity. Drawing inspiration from the principles of Brutalism, particularly as interpreted by the visionary Lina Bo Bardi, this design methodology embodies an authentic ethos and engages in an intimate dialogue with the surrounding landscape.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

Nestled within a mountainous landscape, surrounded by lush woods and flowing streams, this dwelling harmoniously integrates with its natural surroundings. Situated on a slope with a steep gradient of nearly 45 degrees, the structure embraces its artificial nature, eschewing any attempt to mimic the environment.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

The elongated parallelepiped shape, constructed entirely of exposed rough concrete, stands out boldly amidst the vegetation, appearing as a massive body seemingly suspended on the slope. While the material shell exudes a sense of privacy and introversion, the edges of the monolithic construction dissolve, creating a delicate balance between solidity and ethereality.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

The slender pillars that elevate the structure from the ground and the intricate interplay of pillars and beams on the roof blur the building’s silhouette against the sky, as if seeking a harmonious relationship with the natural context through the deconstruction of materials.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

The meticulously displayed structure of pillars and beams not only showcases a sincere approach to construction but also highlights the choice of raw concrete, left exposed to the elements, symbolizing the passage of time. Accessible from above via a bridge connecting the roof to street level, the dwelling unfolds along a descending path, with an external ramp leading to the lower level where the living area, kitchen, services, and a bedroom are situated.

Workshop House / Agustín Berzero + Manuel Gonzalez Veglia - TECTUM Arquitectura

Between the living level and the accessible roof, a serene and shaded intermediate space, known as the mezzanine, houses a suspended studio within the lofty voids. The strip of windows on the lower floor allows gentle illumination to filter in from below, creating a diffuse lighting that accentuates the almost monastic ambiance of the rooms while seamlessly connecting the domestic space to the surrounding landscape.