Screens, filters, drums, frames, confessionals, expanding geometries – many of the explorations A2 enjoyed making with Artist Niamh McCann this past year. Her exhibition is due to open next month at Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Ludwigshafen, Germany
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The tallest, smallest kitchen is added to the east-facing rear of an end-of-terrace Victorian house, a former corner shop in Portobello, Dublin. Cork flooring, formica on plywood kitchen units, handmade Portuguese tiles, bespoke ironmongery and simple lighting are employed.
A2 Architects are delighted to be selected alongside Peter Cody, Mary Laheen, Joseph Mackey and Elizabeth Hatz to represent Ireland at the forthcoming Venice Architecture Biennale in 2023 that is to be curated by Lesley Lokko.
‘In Search of Hy-Brasil’ derives from an intense engagement with the islands of Ireland and is a direct provocation to all of us to reimagine the vast combined territory of land and ocean we call our home. Geographically remote and mainly peripheral to contemporary discourse, our islands are by necessity robust, resilient and inventive places. They have long been a significant crucible for language, music and song bound up with lived experience and support a rich and unique biodiversity. Their small communities, existing on the margins of viability, have embedded in their social order and cultural memory a deep knowledge and understanding of the ocean, land and resource management and the practice of maintaining sustainable environments. They’ve long thrived successfully and creatively with less while building and nurturing a rich and complex ecology.
We’re an island nation facing an uncertain future. The challenges of climate change, renewable energy, ethical food production and biodiversity must be met quickly, with purpose, renewing the lost equilibrium between ourselves and the natural world. In making this adjustment, our islands’ inventiveness in the face of adversity and creativity in response to having less provides us with the necessary tools and narratives to inspire more sustainable ways of living. Ireland’s national pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2023, puts our islands’ diverse communities, culture and experiences right at the centre of the discourse surrounding our shared future. To the forefront of our imagination. The installation offers an immersive experience that shifts between the local and the territorial, the micro and the macro, to make explicit the implicit intelligence of these most remarkable of places.
A2’s Peter Carroll was delighted to chair two day-long ‘Wood Works’ seminars and to represent the School of Architecture UL at Solstice Arts Centre in Navan Co. Meath. The seminars were only possible with the support of the Irish Architecture Foundation and the Arts Council of Ireland paired with a vibrant and ambitious exhibition from participating Irish + Estonian architects.
A2 close this year with our shortlisted two-stage competition entry for Grangegorman FOCAS Research Hub for TU Dublin.
Compact in form thereby minimising embodied carbon, close attention was paid to space planning to optimise orientation for different uses. The façade was environmentally responsive aimed at reducing energy demand and consumption and by extension operational carbon. Each elevation responded to its environment including solar gain and overshadowing from its surroundings. Daylight was maximised as both beneficial to health and wellbeing as well as energy use. Solar gains were minimised through use of shading for glazed elements and balancing glazed and solid elements in the façade. The planting strategy provided a degree of shading, both acoustic and thermal, as well as natural air cleansing.
The rigour of both plan and cross section enabled differing configurations on each floor, to meet the current and future needs of FOCAS, and presented opportunities for external garden terraces that enhanced the health and well-being of users and softened and animated the architecture as they moved playfully around the form to capitalise on available views. Through passive design measures building services systems were minimised.