Articles, Blog

Texsa News – International Cultural Center, Oscar Niemeyer (Avilés, Spain) – January 2011


After much expectation, the new Niemeyer
centre was recently inaugurated in Avilés in the north of Spain. The sensuous curves which
characterise the building carry the unmistakable
stamp of Niemeyer. This modern complex occupying
40.000m2 is the only example of the Brazilian architect’s
work in Spain. It was a big flat, open piece
of land measuring 200x100m. It felt natural to build
an open square With an auditorium on one side
and a museum on the other. I wanted the space to be left open,
and to just have the two buildings so that the architecture
itself would stand out. Surprise is a vital element
in architecture. To make something different. That was my aim here. Ideal architecture doesn’t
exist nowadays. Ideal architecture would
be monotonous. Each architect has their
own ideas and I have mine. The local architects Javier Blanco,
Roberto Alonso and Almudena Menéndez have directed the technical
part of the project. One of the biggest
challanges they faced was to remain true to
Niemeyer’s design. We needed to understand
what he wanted, how he envisaged the project. We had to familiarise ourselves
with his way of thinking. That’s the only way you can
solve any problems that crop up. The new cultural centre is the first
step of a major urban development project which will completely transform
the landscape surrounding the estuary. This project has brought a much
needed boost of optimism to the town. It’s a gift that we’re
all grateful for. More than 25.000m2 of Texsa’s
waterproofing membranes have been used in the
construction of the centre.

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