Opusztaszer Visitor Center
Specified IVANKA product: highly customized facade PANELS
Award: Surface Design Award 2017 Winner – Exterior Public Building Surface category
Related services: design and engineering services, project management, research and development, technological innovation, customized factory production, packaging, delivery, installation
Highlighted features: custom colour development, surface development of aggregate revealing extra raw, layered concrete texture, 3+ meters long large format PANELS
Concrete in numbers: 3500 sqm surface area
Architect: István MURKA
Photography: Tibor ZSITVA, IVANKA
OPUSTERRA PANEL was created with a very specific design intent – to create a PANEL that resembles being pulled out from the ground in one, swift move, evoking earthiness, natural aesthetics, and ancient materiality.
This development aimed to create a unique, qualitative architecture with a new and multifunctional visitor center. The architectural work was lead by István MURKA, who reflects to the local traditions in this work. This bipolar building is closely tied to the materials using and the traditional construction solutions of this area. The process involved developing a unique manufacturing process, where the high-tech material of IVANKA is applied by hand into a specialized cast, and the result is a PANEL that is never the same as any other. The PANELS are more than 3 meters long. The resulting surface of the large format is naturally raw, aggregate-revealing, shows ample aggregates, and is reminiscent of the layers of the soil as it emerges from the deep.
On the building area that features solid block walling, an „earth-concrete” facade PANEL was utilized, which reflects on the unique heritage of building with clay and compacted earth, and utilizing manual labour in the architectural traditions of the South-Alföld region. IVANKA was called upon to collaborate on the development of the honed surface of the concrete facade PANELS. The thin concrete slabs feature designed spotting and strands of colour, but the originally material-coloured, raw-surface panel was eventually painted by the contractor.
Concrete’s robustness is accompanied with an active force that expresses the material’s contradictory states of fluidity and cast solidity. Concrete construction projects are antistatic, can be defined as a shot of fluid in motion. Concrete’s plastic characteristics – from fluid to solid, allowing the production of complex forms – combined with its mass and resilience make ’free’ transformations possible while efficiently resolving structural and physical demands.