AGi architects’ proposal submitted to the ideas competition aimed at the realization of a refurbishment and museum project in “El Capricho” Palace, in Madrid city, won the third prize, according to the official announcement made public on July 28 at the headquarters of the Madrid College of Architects (COAM). A total of 52 works were submitted to this announcement.
The purpose of that competition was the rehabilitation of the old Palace of “El Capricho” garden in La Alameda de Osuna and the museum project for the development of a Museum under the authority of Madrid City Council.
An Atlas / Four Maps, the AGi architects’ proposal
“El Capricho” is a palace attached to a garden that, isolated behind its walls, creates a small universe, a sign of something bigger which is outside. So, our proposal is structured as an Atlas to read the project as a whole, activating and updating the conceptual frameworks of the Enlightenment, and leading to a laboratory for producing future developments.
We propose to understand “El Capricho” as a sensitive and intellectual experience linked to the garden and amplified in the Palace. The proposal extends the museum to the whole project, from the idea of a fabricated, measurable and sensitive nature, which is built, lived and enjoyed.
It is easy to find the Enlightenment forms of “being in the world” in “El Capricho”; forms that we propose as a museum strategy through technical, scientific, historical and artistic reading of the whole project that make it a laboratory for experience, research and development on the garden and the garden’s life. Enlightenment believed that science and technology would be elements that would enable knowledge, management, government and enjoyment of all that exists. The project incorporates these idealistic positions in an updated way, while allowing working on their contradictions and controversies from a postcolonial present, allowing discussing how much of that remains in our society.
The project is structured by four ways of doing based on Enlightenment: technique, knowledge, collection and enjoyment, from which lead to a particular “urban planning”. Four maps that activate four interaction’s lines with the garden and palace, aimed at artists, scientists and researchers and the general public, allowing mediation formats among them: an Atlas which is a living and sensitive place from which we better understand ourselves as heirs of the Age of Enlightenment.
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