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Perruqueria Barcelona

Part 1 Project 2010
Steven Mccloy
Leeds Beckett University Leeds UK
The project is a development of a small square adjacent to the Mercat de la Boqueria in Barcelona's gothic quarter- providing services to the square and adjacent market that has started to overflow with fruit and vegetable stalls. Included is a perruqueria (hairdresser's), a florist and a small laundrette. The day starts early for people working in the market, as a result it is traditional to take a two or three hour siesta break; currently there is no space offered for the market workers and many travel home, sleep on park benches or skip siesta altogether. The proposal offers a siesta lounge- including quiet pods, book sharing and washing facilities.

The building contains three flats of different sizes to accommodate a cross section of the community; these feature interesting split floor levels that create high ceilings in main living spaces. Balconies make reference to local vernacular, and a decorative screen shades the building from the Mediterranean sun. The screen cascades down the facade and folds to form a canopy over the square, with the intension of creating a shower of light that delights the viewer. The canopy design is influenced by Spanish lace and fans, it is made of a wire lattice draped with a weather proof fabric, there are also responsive fan-like sunshades that can be opened or closed directly by the stallholders in the market.

The project celebrates the everyday roles and rituals of Barcelona women, the perruqueria improves the community self-esteem and this is reflected in the strong identity of the architecture. Perhaps there is room for design to draw upon women's history and allow skills to be transferred into the built environment.

I delved into the time consuming techniques and iterative process of stitching lace patterns and tried to translate them into CAD software, with the intention of scaling-up textile art into crafted architectural ornament. The rapid prototyped models help communicate the delicacies of the proposed ornament and are indictive of the digital fabrication processes required to accurately realise the project.

Steven Mccloy

This year the unit was pre-occupied with exploring the every day in an urban environment. A series of adjustments were proposed after close observation of the ‘as found’. This was understood as a cross cultural exercise with the original observations being undertaken in Leeds before moving on to similar observations in Barcelona. Steven identified ideas of shade and shelter which could be modified to the need of a particular cultural and climatic situation, shelter in England and shade in Barcelona.
Within the extraordinary and frenetic pace of Mercat de la Boqueria in Barcelona we studied the everyday life of the stall holder and neighbouring residents over 24 hours. Steven identified a small sub square to the north and on the periphery of the main market. He felt that this square offered many new opportunities for urban invigoration.
Steven’s preoccupation with the ornament helped determine the design process which fluctuated between physical models and prototypes, hand drawing and computer aided design models, and culminated in 3D printed models; these blurred the boundaries between digital and physical modelling and are indicative of the digital fabrication processes required during construction.
The models captured the essence of Steven’s design intentions, to remodel and up date the square, not only conveying the sense of the light and space of the whole but also the materiality and tactility of the part. The geometric modelling also reflected the intention of revitalising the environment and the dynamic forms were developed to enhance this intention. It was possible to imagine the (re) inhabitation of this area of the market and to delight in the sensation.

Sarah Mills
Dennis Burr


Mr Steven Morant
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