In the middle of Araucanía region, 15 kilometres from Cañete, is Lake Lanalhue; a land that was chosen years ago by Pedro Durán to welcome tourists who want to enjoy the lake landscape. The Trawëln Center is one of the early interventions completed by Factoria, in which the congruence of the architecture and the warmth of its interiors evoke the Mapuche culture of the area. The project was carried out jointly with the office of architecture and design Factoría Design, of the architects José Miguel Heras and Susana Herrera. “It is important to clarify that far from pretending to appropriate Mapuche symbolism, we are interested in understanding their view of the cosmos and life. From that, we tried to study and propose a reinterpretation of elements of the place and its culture. Thus, in a playful way, we celebrate its symbolism and relations with nature that have built the history of this beautiful place, “explain the architects. Sounds, colours, aromas and textures offer an incentive to the senses through the use of noble materials, such as wood and concrete in their natural state, and the relationship with vegetation around it.
We embrace the task of “constructing ideas”. Although for years, Pedro has worked wood very rigorously in construction, this project meant a new way of treating it, in terms of possibilities, colours and details. For architects, meanwhile, the challenge was raised by the investigation of this context and its political implications. It is well known, that in recent years the área has been in the midst of a strong tension for the Mapuche legitimate claims; Thus this project aims to grant recognition to the cultural influence of this people, a task that seemed urgent.
It is a mixed construction, bathed by the shore of the lake, which makes it look like floating. That is why the base is composed of concrete piles; while the upper part is made by cypress wood, capable to resist the high humidity of the place. The access is determined by a concrete ramp with symbolic paintings on the floor. Its interiors are characterized by three clearly differentiated spaces: a circular one that evokes a Ruka, another central one attached to the hill that acts as a retaining wall and, finally, a square block that accommodates the bathrooms. The circular volume, more content and intimate, recalls the Mapuche Ruka, formed by a wooden cylinder in the ceiling and a fire vessel that does not saturate the atmosphere. A concrete bar and a couch-kadiforo (rib) complement the circumference. In the centre, the kütral or fire seems suspended within a conical artefact, conforming the sensation of a place for the development of a ritual between man and nature. The central, more social space expands towards the lake through terraced platforms up to the ground level. The tables in a row, in lacquered wood in polyurethane, and the plates of the walls, of acrylics with indirect lights and pieces of metals, constitute an abstract work of tonalities. “These greens are somehow related to the vegetation of the hillside, from which you can observe quilts and bamboos, projecting the landscape into the interior,”
To the front a kultrum like wooden form, characterized by a wooden timbale form a stage for singers, it is divided into four elements that seem to be born of this native like an instrument. Bordering the central space, the table filu (snake-like) stands out, which, like a large piece of Meccano, adapts to the place and to the different uses; extending or compressing according to needs.
In the background, the square volume is destined to the toilets, whose views allow to appreciate the Lanalhue in its great extension. While you wash your hands, you have the lake in its great extension.
An integral project, in which all the furniture was designed by Factoría Design, in order to maintain the original meaning of the organic architecture and with a congruent aesthetic inspired by the lacustrine landscape in which it is immersed.
The atmosphere of the cylindrical área reminds the Mapuche Ruka. In the centre the kütral or fire seems to be suspended within a conical device in the air, balancing on a base resting on a point. The lighting was worked with spotlights and penumbras.
On one side, accompanying the circular movement, a concrete bar allows a wide view of the lake. While the circumference completes a couch-kadiforo (rib), designed from 82 pieces of plywood, cut by hand and joined by metal bars that cross them.
The central space is formed by a row of folding tables located under an upper opening that faces the hill. Acrylics, metals and woods painted with polyurethane varnish of different shades of green, propose a game with the colours of the vegetation.
Bordering the central space highlights the table filu (snake or snake), completely mobile and contorts in all its sections. Anchored to the slab by a fixed leg at one end, the rest are metallic wheels.