The Green Theatre at VDNH
Abandoned for over 30 years, the Green Theatre located at the VDNH complex was once one of the city’s most popular venues. Now, it succeeded in coming back to live at maximum speed and with very modest means. With a capacity of 4000 seats, the Green Theatre is now Moscow’s largest open-air platform.

Assignment:
To renew the area as fast and careful as possible for open-air events, making it one of the landmarks of VDNH’s larger transformation.

Solution:
A new wooden amphitheatre, created without touching the space’s layout and without distracting attention from the monument, turns the ruins of the theatre building into the city’s biggest open-air park space. The second phase of the project will see stalls and kiosks arise at the theatre entrance, creating an open-air summer version of the traditional theatre foyer that will make the Green Theatre a worthy alternative to the city’s conventional theatres, cinemas and concert halls.
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The Green Theatre at VDNH was built in 1939, together with the first buildings of the VSHV complex, and was one of the most important sites of the city. Here, the Utesov ensemble performed, as did the aspiring singer Joseph Kobzon, and plays were performed. The theatre could fit up to 5000 visitors and was usually packed. But over the past 30 years it was barely used, also because it was located far away from VDNH’s main centres of activity, located along and on the right of the main avenue, where the amusement park is found. The commencing reconstruction of the complex envisages a more uniform and effective use of its space; the Green Theatre has to become popular once again.
The renovation of the square is part of the celebrations marking VDNH’s 75th anniversary, which are dedicated to both the history of the complex and its nascent renovation. Moreover, the renovation needs to be fast and accurate, in order not to hinder possible more extensive future construction works (complex restoration for instance).

The Green Theatre exists of two parts. Firstly, the theatre building itself, a round semicircular, neo-classical pavilion that surrounds the stage; secondly, a sloping amphitheatre, separated from the park by a balustrade. The VDNH administration took care of the theatre building, and our offices were invited to do the same for the amphitheatre and its surrounding.

When our work started, the amphitheatre was still equipped with its old theatre chairs, the bigger part of which was broken and through some of which weeds had even started to grow.
The contours of the old theatre were taken as the base for the design. New concrete steps were built on top, and then new seats for the spectators were installed. No chairs this time, but rather wooden benches covered in silver. At this moment they are still yellow, but with time the wood will gain a noble and romantic shade. In the second construction phase, the rows will be marked, which will complete the conceived appearance of the amphitheatre.

On the floor, tiles in brown tones will be laid. They protect the foundation of the amphitheater and look like earth or rock to maintain the space’s overall feeling of authenticity and simplicity, and its open nature.

The balustrade around the perimeter was renovated and modest lights were installed that do not interfere with the theatre’s natural, simple character.
To make sure that the theatre will be up for its new tasks, a sound-management platform was built in the centre. Furthermore, a cinema booth is in the plans, which will make VDNH the biggest of Moscow’s summer cinema’s, able to fit about 4000 people.

However, this is only the beginning. Implementation of the project’s second phase - entailing the creation of the theatre entrance, a complex of stalls, shops and a landscaped space - has yet to start.

Opposite to the ticket office and a cafe that will be located here, guests can find benches and lanterns, on which theatre posters can be stuck. Thus, the open air theatre gets its very own lobby, a place where dates can meet, guests can wait for their concert or film screening, or friends can have a bite before or after the performance.

Data:
Design object: the Green Theatre
Address: 119c545 Prospect Mira, VDNH, Moscow
Workshop leader: Dmitri Likin, Oleg Shapiro
GAP: Eduard Rusenko
Architects: Vladimir Gusev, Ivan Korenkov, Evgeniya Sidorova, Bella Filatova
Photographs: Ilya Ivanov



CDL restaurant
Since 1934, the CDL restaurant occupies reception rooms of the mansion on Povarskaya street in Moscow, the building dating back to 1887. Having served as a venue for freemasons gatherings before the Revolution of 1917, both the building and the restaurant are related to the contradictory history of the Soviet literati class, as in the 1930s the building was passed to the USSR Writers Union.

The main hall has been a restaurant for 80 years and new management of the CDL restaurant, together with “new Russian cuisine” pioneer Alexey Zimin were determined to respect the age-old tradition. The brief was to redesign the restaurant interior to clearly state its new era and to preserve all historical and listed elements. The result is a vibrant, bold design, which nonetheless respectfully accentuates original interior fragments. A new audience, made up of 25 to 45-year-olds from creative industries, was the main target group.

Goal: To redesign the interior while at the same time preserving the historical neo-gothic decor and creating a light, casual atmosphere that corresponds to the cuisine being served.
Since no scientific research for the purpose of the building restoration has been held so far, any major intervention could have caused a loss to the historic integrity of the building. However, the restaurant needed an urgent revamp before the lengthy research procedures could be finished.

Solution: It was decided to apply the methods and logic of an art-intervention by superimposing a new layer – which could be easily removed or changed – onto the old interior. It is meant to switch the attention of visitors and alter the ambience of the halls.
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The interior bears the mark of multiple changes. While oak ceilings, wall panels and frets in the main mall date back to the late XIX century, the grand chandelier was made in the 1930s – the legend has it that it was Josef Stalin’s gift to Soviet writers.

Decorative wall panels in the main hall brush away the atmosphere of a pompous pseudo-gothic interior, the pattern being based around almost childish interpretation of heraldic “golden shields on azure field”.

White panels perforated by a metric row of circles add another layer. Functionally varying, the circle is reproduced almost in every room – the fireplace hall has circle reflective lamps, at the entrance circles hide utility wires that could not be build into walls of the listed building.

Partitions in the main hall and the rest of the furniture (except chairs) and lamps are produced specially according to the studio’s drawings.

A portal leading to the main hall is created by back-lit frames.

The staircase leading to the cloakroom and the patterned wallpaper match with main hall panels.

Cloakroom

Bar
The rack occupies the entire wall becoming the main accent of the room. Glasses are lit with LED lights built into the mirrored shelves.

Fireplace rooms

Information:

Design Object: Central House of Literature restaurant
Address: Povarskaya Street, 50/53, Moscow, Russia
Project leaders: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architect: Anna Rodionova
Pictures: Ilya Ivanov



Summer Cinema At Fili Park
The success of Pioneer, the summer cinema at Gorky Park, is triggering a wave of interest from Moscow’s other major parks, as memories of this once hugely popular form of outdoor entertainment revive.
A summer cinema opened in Fili Park (one of the city’s biggest public parks, stretching over 200 hectares along the Moscow River) in spring 2014. Uniquely, its design is fit for use in other places: the cinema has a ‘kit’ design that can be adapted to the needs of any particular park.

Task:
— design a summer cinema for Fili Park
— create a summer cinema ‘kit’ for parks: a set of ready-to-use solutions for both separate elements and the entire cinema complex to be selected depending on the needs of the park.

Solution:
Like in Gorky Park, the most basic solution was chosen for Fili Park, a solution that lets the open-air element add even more joy to the movie-watching experience at this venue. The white lightweight roof gives the cinema a recognisable shape and shields visitors from bad weather. A cafe and a recreational area were added to the cinema complex in Fili Park.
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The solution used in Gorky Park served as the basis for this project. It is the most elementary interpretation of cinema: an amphitheatre and a screen. However, an analysis of the specific requirements of Fili and other parks allowed for an even more tailored solution in this case. On top of that, the requirements of different parks were put in a scheme that lets architects pick and choose elements for a new summer cinema.

At Fili Park, the task was not just to design a cinema, but to create an ultimately multi-functional space. Movies only play at night, and many other activities can take place at daytime.

The roof became the cinema’s most eye-catching feature: a lightweight construction consisting of a white tent on a timber support that fits with the park’s atmosphere. For those taking a stroll in the park, the energetic silhouette will be a new reference point, making the cinema a local landmark.

The roof is light and tall. In good weather visitors will still feel as if they are in a summer cinema, in a park, in nature. And when rain does come, there is no need to interrupt any lecture, movie showing, or children’s party.

For other happenings such as master classes or celebrations the area in front of the screen has been enlarged, turning the amphitheater with its broad steps (that are also equipped with sockets) into a large space suitable for any kind of activity.

The low platform in front of the screen can be used as a stage for theatre performances or lectures.

Anticipating other types of activity taking place at the cinema, its premises have also been equipped with facilities such as a make-up room for theatre performances and ample space to store materials - for instance for a children’s party.

For Fili Park yet another element was added: the complex is built on a wooden platform, on the other side of which a cafe and a recreational area can be found.

The bevel of the roof matches the tilt of the support structure of the tent.

Furthermore, a new type of fencing was created for Fili Park’s open-air cinema. Like in Gorky Park, the fence doesn’t impede relaxing in the surrounding nature, but otherwise the designs are different. On the one hand, it serves to emphasise the cinema’s oblique lines; on the other, it protects the cinema even better from unauthorised movie showings or trespassing.

Info:
Object Design: Summer park cinema
Address: Bolshaya Filyovskaya, 22, Moscow, Russia
Workshop leaders: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architect: Olga Rokal
Photos: Ilya Ivanov



HARMAN
After opening shops in New York, Seoul and Shanghai, HARMAN is now offering premium audio and video equipment in their new flagship store on Kuznetsky Most street in Moscow.

Objective:
To turn the premises of the historical building, previously used as a café, into a venue that would resemble the HARMAN store in New York in its design while imbuing it with its own unique feel. .

Solution:
We decided to get rid of the café design completely and to decorate the premises neutrally, without changing the historical walls wherever possible. We accentuated the brand’s recognizable features and used HARMAN's own ultramodern equipment.
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The historical façade was completely renovated. The big shop windows were equipped with holographic displays and built-in multimedia screens showing continuously moving images. The layered design of the café was completely remodeled: the mezzanine, the partition walls and the floor were taken apart. The walls were restored as much as possible, and the old floors were replaced with oak hardwood flooring.
The design decisions were based on the idea of separating the sales venue and the back rooms. The two open venues are equipped with headphones, multimedia technology, home electronics and luxury multi channel home theatres.

Upon entering the store, customers find themselves in a space dedicated to small-size electronics, which we decided to accentuate with color and lighting. The plaster graphite-colored walls serve as a backdrop for the products. The historical details – the arches and columns – are painted white. The main wall features the company’s logo surrounded by decorative “sound waves”. In the center there are built-in dynamic speakers and headphones displayed in light boxes. The white lacquered panels on the other wall are made of medium density fiberboard and are similar to the ones in the New York shop.

The products are displayed on racks along the walls of the venue and on white “islands” – separate irregularly shaped stands, where customers can view multimedia entertainment systems. The furniture was made after our sketches: the snow white lacquered surfaces perfectly match the veneer front panels.

The second venue, dedicated to home electronics and acoustics, is designed differently: here the walls are painted white and the main decor feature are the glossy patterned panels. We wanted to emphasize and demonstrate the possibilities of the HARMAN products, we made a lounge area with chairs and sofas.
The multimedia screen in the center of the wall is not just used for advertising; it also separates the lounge area from the entrance and makes browsing and  listening more pleasant. Two glowing rings in the center of the ceiling make it seem lower, making the room more comfortable.
The lighting and projection mapping are especially important in these venues.
All equipment is installed at the top of the ceiling and the lighting and projection mapping are remote-controlled.

When designing the two closed venues dedicated to stereo systems and luxury multi channel home theatres, the main challenge we faced was to provide ideal sound conditions. The bigger room was used for displaying the home theater systems and the smaller one became an acoustic room. The venues do not have high ceilings and their design is similar: they both have perforated acoustic panels, natural veneer sheets and carpets.

Info:

Object: HARMAN store
Address: Kuznetsky most street, 3; Moscow, Russia
Supervisors of the workshop: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architect: Anastasia Maslova
Photos: Dmitry Chebanenko



Krymskaya embankment
A once unappealing Krymskaya embankment, only recently separated from the Muzeon park and the Central House of Artists, has been transformed beyond recognition: what once was a road has turned into a lane for pedestrians and bicycles. Fountains have been set up, wave-shaped artist pavilions have replaced a chaotic exhibition area and small hills with benches scattered about have become part of the landscape park thus extending a green strip from Gorky park on the other side of the Krymsky bridge.

Objective:
To turn a quiet four-lane road into a new city landmark, thereby bringing life to the deserted area of Muzeon park between the Central House of Artists and the Moskva river.

Solution:
To link the Krymskaya embankment to a 10 km pedestrian and cycling route that starts at Vorobievy gori and to replace the road with a landscape park with distinct transit and sport features while preserving the artists’ exhibition zone.
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The transformed Krymskaya embankment is the first year-round landscape park in the centre of Moscow. In Summer the wave-shaped multilevel layout can be used for walking, cycling or roller-skating while in Winter it is a perfect setup for sledding, skating or skiing

The central design element of the embankment is the wave: wave-shaped benches, pedestrian and cycling waves create an artificial landscape.

The park zone was divided into four parts: an area in front of the bridge, an artists’ zone around a "Vernisage" pavilion, the Fountain Square and "Green Hills". When planning each zone, the view from the other bank was also considered.

Under the Krymsky Bridge

A transit zone connecting Gorky Park with the Krymsky embankment has become a popular spot and also provides shelter from the rain now that a stage, and two wooden amphitheatres have been built. 28 artificial rock and metal benches illuminated from the inside are scattered along the way as an amenity for pedestrians and cyclists from Muzeon to Gorky park.

Vernissage zone

The entrance of Muzeon is a 210 meter wooden vernissage with a wave-shaped roof (the pavilion was designed by ASSE ARCHITECTS).

Fountain zone

The fountain zone which is the central element of the new park, faces the Central House of Artists and is separated from the river by a linden alley.

A fountain jet, 60 metres long and 14 metres wide, is one of the options of the so called ''dry'' fountains when the edge of the water is level with the paving.

The fountain has an internal system of dynamic lighting that allows various lighting patterns.

49 lindens were planted in a classic French park order to the north-east of the fountain on the embankment. A special planting technology, used in Russia for the first time, allows walking and cycling on these lanes without causing damage to the trees.

"Green Hills"

When planning this part of the pedestrian route special attention was paid to the artificial landscape and plantation.

Hills designed for walking and resting were furnished mainly with steppe plants. Trees and bushes with decorative crowns like lindens, hawthorns, rowan trees and ornamental apple trees were planted on hills from where one can contemplate and admire the scenery.

The artificial relief is accentuated by wave-shaped wooden benches and beach beds that are "cut" into hills between walking lanes.

There is also an artificial pond in this part of the park.

Pavilions

In accordance with the bureau's project there are three pavilions on the Krymskaya embankment, the fourth one will be completed by the end of 2013 and will replace a gas station. Pavilions will be used as cafes, stores and bike rentals.

Pavilion near the Fountain square. Designed by Darya Melnik

Cafe-pavilion in the ''Green Hills'' zone. Designed by Anna Proshkuratova

The bike rental pavilion closest to the 3rd Folutvinsky lane is equipped with a concrete roof ramp for bikes or skateboards. Designed by Roman Kuchukov.

All pavilions feature an extensive use of glass, some of them even use structural glass shapes - U-shaped toughened glass with high bearing capacity.

Lighting solutions

To make the park accessible and attractive for guests 24 hours a day, planning takes into account night time illumination, especially the point lighting of certain landscape elements.

Ornamental lamps that are installed in groups among plants on the hills illuminate the area and create a striking visual. All the lanes are illuminated as well so that pedestrians and cyclists do not get lost.

On the Fountain Square the "dry" fountain together with the linden alley make up a lighting composition that combines the dynamic colour lighting of the fountain jets with the softer warm-white illumination of the regular rows of the linden alley.

Every pavilion on the Krymskaya embankment is illuminated from the inside, making it a safe place while also serving as a lighting element of the park.

STATISTICS:

Area of the Krymskaya embankment — 45 000 m2
Length of the embankment — 1 km
Area of planting — 10 700 m2
Planting: 44 726 perennial and ornamental plants, 96475 bulbous plants, 485 trees and bushes.
Number of flowerbeds and hills: 34, 3 of which are breast walls
Area of paving: 24 318 m2
Length of bicycle lanes: 4684 m2
Light: 1419 light fixtures
Fountain info: fountain dimensions - 12m х 60 m, 203 sprayers
Area of pavilions: pavilion on the Fountain Square – total area 275 m2, pavilion on "Green Hills" – total area 35 m2, bike rental pavilion: total area 200 m2.

TEAM:

Bureau partners: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Leading project architect: Mikhail Kozlov
Architects: Maria Gulida, Alena Zaytseva, Roman Kuchukov, Darya Melnik, Tatyana Polyakova, Anna Proshkuratova, Anastasia Rychkova, Tatiana Skibo, Yarmarkina; with the participation of Yuriy Belov, Anna Karneeva, Olga Lebedeva, Anastasia Maslova
Senior project engineers: Dmitry Belostotsky, Ivan Mikhalchuk
Planting: Anna Andreeva
Lighting: Anna Kharchenkova
Constructors of pavilions: Nussli (consulting), Werner Sobek
Artificial landscape consulting: LDA Design
Fountain and electricity engineering: Adline
Chief design contractor: MAHPI
Photos: Olga Alekseenko, Yuriy Brazhnikov/Village, Nikolay Vasiliev, Olga Voznesenskaya, Elizaveta Gracheva, Darya Osmanova





Documentary Film Centre
Movie

In the summer of 2013 Moscow saw the opening of the Documentary Film Centre in one of the buildings of the former Provision warehouses. Not only is this the first cinema in Russia that exclusively screens non-fiction films it is also a multimedia library that holds a collection of the best documentaries by both Russian and foreign directors. The Centre emerged as a part of the Museum of Moscow and is the first step for the museum to develop into an open platform.

Objective:
To furnish a small area of the Centre with all necessary facilities: an auditorium for screenings, discussions and lectures for 90 people, a multimedia library with access to video archives, and a small cafe – all while preserving the historic building wherever possible.
Solution:
In order to make the historic building fit for the new services an independent construction was created for the auditorium – an ''egg'' in a shell. Open planning coupled with spatial planning made it possible to fit all facilities quite compactly.
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To set up the Documentary Film Centre the Museum of Moscow provided a historic building in the former Provision warehouse with a separate entrance from the Zubov boulevard.

To preserve the historic site we suggested a special construction that would not be attached to the interior walls and that would create the ''core'' of the hall. The other facilities that enliven the space would be set up around it: a cafe and a multimedia library as well as office spaces near them; the area is designed to be adaptable.

The hall resembles an ellipse that is diagonally inscribed into the trapezium of the warehouse. New walls embody a metal frame panelled with wood. Lights, ventilation and air-conditioning all are attached to a ceiling grid which rests on the walls. To mitigate interaction of the building with the new structure the foundation was covered with reinforced concrete lining.

Entrance

Mirrors on the wall behind the entry door make the narrow entrance seem wider. The entrance is also equipped with screens displaying various non-fiction videos.

Cafe

To the right of the entrance there is a small cafe which doubles as a place for informal presentations. There is a media-cafe on the raised floor that can be separated from the main part of the cafe with a projection screen, thereby creating an independent space. The furniture emphasizes the different functions of the area: wooden practical furniture is in the bar zone and soft chairs are in the media zone. Behind the cafe stairs lead to work spaces and restrooms on the second floor. Here a more dynamic use of colour prevails.

Auditorium

The size of the auditorium was determined by the distance between the two arched walls of the Provision warehouse. One of them is concealed behind the screen and the other one functions as an elegant framing for the upper row. The client intends to also use the auditorium for discussions, therefore we designed the seats with unusually wide gaps between them so visitors can move around more easily. Since the walls of an ''egg'' lean to the outside we have additional room for a film projector on the second floor.

Multimedia library

A multimedia library behind the auditorium allows visitors to watch non-fiction films and work with the archives. There is a separate zone containing special seats with screens together with a small auditorium for 10 people.

The office of the Documentary Film Centre is behind glass walls on the mezzanine floor.

Info:
Object: Documentary Film Centre
Period: 2012-2013
Address: Zubov boulevard, 2
Supervisors of the workshop: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Leading architects: Victoria Kudryavtseva, Anna Rodionova
Architect: Maria Gulida
Photos: Maria Gulida, Oleg Maidakov



Vorobyovskaya embankment
Vorobyovskaya embankment was joined with Gorky park in late 2012 and in the summer of 2013 the first pavilions were set up. They became new points of interest on an uninterrupted 6,7 km pedestrian route where you can now rent bicycles, grab a bite or buy tickets for a boat trip on the Moskva river.

Objective:
To create a comfortable environment for park visitors along the Vorobyovskaya embankment by connecting natural and cultural elements and to develop an infrastructure while making use of the unique river scenery.
Solution:
Five points have been marked out along the embankment to build units of a similar design which have different functions: ticket kiosks, bicycle rentals, security posts, food stands and toilets. During the day they attract attention due to their bright colour and in the night due to luminescent light directing pedestrians in the dark.
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We proposed a complex solution that concurs with the historic planning of the embankment which consists of two levels: an upper level that is a walking alley and a lower one that goes along the bank of the river.

In order to solve the infrastructure problem and to create a common feel for the embankment we came up with a special construction set combining pavilion units that have different functions, shapes and colours: the bicycle rentals are bright red with metal grids, the toilets are white, food stands are yellow, in addition to that there are ticket stands, security posts and vending machines. During the night illumination improves orientation and adds to general safety. We proposed 6 units altogether which can be moved around depending on where the are needed. Objects are made of waterproof material, do not require major construction and can be easily stored in winter time.

A pavilion of the operating pier and small architectural elements of the concrete embankment that were designed individually fit in with the common style of a "construction set".

Five key points have been marked out:
- The Western entrance from the Setun' river (non-operating pier)
- Vorobyovy gori pier (operating pier)
- The concrete embankment
- Leninsky beach
- The non-operating pier by the Andreevsky monastery

Western entrance from the Setun' riverside

A non-operating pier is an entrance to the park zone and contains five units (without ticket stands)

Operating Vorobyovy Gori Pier

Looking for an optimum solution that would correspond to the needs of both those who walk along the embankment and those who want to use river boats we suggested to use different levels of the embankment for different functions.

On the upper level there is a pavilion that comprises a toilet, a bicycle rental and a ticket stand aimed at the visitors of the park.

On the lower level a pergola is set up. It is a light wooden construction with a mini river port in the middle that has ticket offices of three river transport operators. A recreation area on the sides provides shelter from rain or sun to passengers waiting for a boat or can be used simply for sitting and contemplating the river.

What makes this complex stand out are the six beacons on the roof which glow in the dark and add to the scale of the new embankment, thereby becoming its new symbol. Non-capital constructions without a foundation make it possible to add new elements, e.g. to build a cafe on the second floor or to expand the ticketing area.

Leninsky beach

The central part of the route is Leninsky beach. On the upper level of the embankment there are all 6 pavilion units arranged in one line.

Leninsky beach

The resurfacing of the territory did not only imply the construction of the pavilions. We suggested adding a bit of playfulness in the process: a green slope of Leninsky beach was furnished with unusual benches of various colour, almost like an art-piece, and the stairs connecting the upper and lower embankments were vividly decorated.
The place itself suggested this idea: under mown grass practically along the entire slope there is a ferroconcrete base plate with square 35x35 cm orifices which provide air for grass and drain water. The benches "grow" from these orifices in various combinations.
The main inspiration for the project was "Tetris" which also has Russian origins. Benches are scattered along the slope according to a pattern from the game. Visitors are free to either lay on the grass or sit on a bench.
Glulam was picked as the most appropriate material as it is resistant to drops in temperature. First a beam is coloured, then laminated and finally put in the ground.

Embankment by the Andreevsky monastery

Three units have been set up on a non-operating pier (without cafes, ticket offices or rentals).

Info:
Object: Vorobyovskaya embankment
Period: 2013
Address: Vorobyovskaya embankment, Moscow, Russia
Supervisors of the workshop: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architects: Evgeniya Sidorova ("Vorobyovy gori" pier), Vladimir Gusev ("Tetris"), Anastasia Richkova (Pavilion unit)
Photos: Ilya Ivanov, Vladimir Gusev



Ice Rink
Brief:
- to create a modern ice rink with artificial ice, capable of withstanding the challenging winter conditions in Moscow;
- to build structures in the vicinity of the ice rink that can be used by all visitors to the park (whether skaters or not).

Solution: 
Gorky Park has always been famous for its large ice rink and ice-covered alleyways, but in recent years the unreliable winter weather has often made skating difficult (the ice has tended to melt and break up). We built an artificial ice rink, acknowledged to be the largest in Europe. As before, the rink follows the shape of the main alleys, but we decided to build in the capacity to change its layout every season. For the convenience of visitors to the rink we created a proper infrastructure, including heated pavilions containing cafes and changing rooms. For pedestrians and viewers we built a bridge – a 300-metre promenade above the central alley.
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Plan of the ice rink (2011-2012 season)

We proposed constructing three entrance complexes for the skating rink – at the central entrance to the park, from the embankment, and from the direction of Neskuchny Garden. Here visitors can buy entrance tickets, hire skates, and spend time in cafés.

Apart from the main skating zone, there are a number of specialized zones: a dancing rink, a rink for children, and a professional hockey pitch. We also provided several public toilets, a medical centre, and separate smoking zones.

Ice-skating zone

In designing the central entrance, we highlighted the park’s main visual axis. On both sides of the entrance are pavilions with skate hire, cash desks, and cafes, and at the very end of the central alley is Club Medeo with its dance rink.

In addition to the main alley, other pathways and alleys were also covered with ice; these slightly isolated paths created a quiet and romantic atmosphere for skating.

Since it gets dark very early in the winter, we paid particular attention to the lighting. We equipped the entire rink with dynamic lighting, and the pavilions have brightly luminous facades. In realizing the lighting concept for the rink we were helped by Ulrike Brandi Licht (Germany).

Wooden bridge

Alongside the central alley, which is covered in ice, we proposed creating a wooden bridge (constructed in such a way as to be easily assembled / dismantled). For visitors without skates this is a convenient promenade and simultaneously a viewing platform.

Pavilions

The pavilions contain heated cafes where visitors may relax and have a bite to eat. They can also, without entering the cafes, grab a hot drink to take with them at one of the kiosks.

The Frost and Sun pavilion café is open to all visitors to the park.

Club Medeo is the rink’s central pavilion and a venue for ice parties. The ground floor contains the café and an open-air bar; above is a DJ’s window, allowing DJs to observe how the audience is reacting to their music.

Interiors

Inside the pavilions are skate-hire facilities equipped with spacious changing rooms, benches, and lockers.

The interior of the Frost and Sun café is dedicated to the theme of figure skating.

The interior of Café Bulka is in the style of a city café. This is the perfect place to treat yourself to hot chocolate and fresh pastries – without having to take your skates off.

2012-2013 season

For the opening of the second season we took into account lessons we had learned from the past as well as the wishes of our visitors. The ice rink has slightly changed its configuration and moved closer to the main entrance of the park. The skate-rental area at the main entrance has doubled in size, and new public-catering spots and recreational zones have appeared. The wooden bridge, a big hit with visitors, is now much longer.

The fountain square, which was not part of the ice rink last year, is this year the main feature. The area around the fountain is now covered with ice and people can skate around it in circles.

This season’s main design theme, suggested by Gorky Park’s management, is the Kingdom of Distorting Mirrors. A light-and-mirror installation in the middle of the fountain’s basin is the highlight of the square. A three-dimensional arch frames the central axis of the rink, opening up a view of the last pavilion at the end of the central alley. The arch has been assembled from mirror plates which in even the faintest of breezes sparkle and glisten, creating a festive atmosphere.

Mirror screens stand at the corners of the fountain’s basin. They constitute a kind of fairground attraction for the skaters: the screens are positioned in such a way that people can be photographed with their own reflections.

Facts:

Object designed: ice rink with an artificial ice surface and adjacent infrastructure
Address: Gorky Park, Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Design work: September 2011 - November 2011
Construction work: October 2011 – December 2011
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architects: Dmitry Zadorin, Anastasiya Izmakova, Sergey Kolosovsky, Olga Rokal, Yevgeniya Sidorova, Galina Serebryakova, Mariya Khokhlova, Olga Khokhlova, Mariya Yarmarkina
Co-authors: AST (Austria; the technology for the ice), 4a Architekten (Germany; initial concept for the rink); Ulrike Brandi Licht (lighting concept)
Café interiors: Igor Gurovich and Asya Samokhina (Café Frost and Sun), JBRH (Café Bulka) Kira Grishina (Café Medeo)
Photos: Artur Dugin, Kseniya Kornilova



Brasserie МОСТ
The owners of the pompous restaurant The Most decided to transform it into a French brasserie, a lively café with a welcoming bar and conversations lasting until morning under lamplight.

Brief:
To change the format of the establishment and thus attract a fresh clientele, but without losing old friends.

Solution:
The new interior of the restaurant is a postmodernist exercise in creating a ‘brasserie’. We wanted to preserve the main generic characteristics and traditional decorative forms of a Parisian grand café; however, numerous markers, such as the elaborate play of light and mirrors and the colour range, make it clear to an enlightened gourmet that this is a very modern and, at the same time, somewhat ironic place with its own character and without bling.
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During reconstruction all the walls were preserved, the arch entrances to the large room were straightened and reinforced, and a separate smoking room was built.
No trace of the gilding of the old The Most remains: all walls are now a neutral grey. Coral was chosen as the bright accent colour and used for the arches, sofas, and other pieces of furniture.

Both the large and small rooms have a special zone for guests visiting the bar. To ensure that guests at the bar and at the tables do not get in each other’s way, the large room is separated by a low partition from the zone with sofas. The bar counters themselves have not been replaced.

The new interior is full of Art Deco elements, including numerous mirrors, crystal glass with intricate patterns, and many details made from nickel-plated metal. We took great care in thinking through each element: most of the décor and interior objects were made to order.

The lighting played a key role in creating a style for the entire place. The shades for the new lamps were hand-carved by master glassmakers to designs created by the architects, while the nickel stands were ordered from a specialized factory. The large crystal-glass chandeliers in the large room are the only lighting that has survived from the old restaurant.

The abundance of mirrors in the new interior makes the space more intricate, enhancing the play of light. The columns are decorated with mirrors with glass prisms, while the arches house faceted mirrors. Due to the fact that this is an old building and every arch differs in size from the others, each set of mirrors had to be made separately.

The mirror panels in the entrance area of the small room are embedded in the walls at different angles. This gives additional volume to the premises. The zigzag line in the small room is echoed by a screen with ornamented glass panels; the screen separates this room from the kitchen; its reverse side simultaneously serves as a cupboard.

Facts:

Object designed: The Most Restaurant
Address: ul. Kuznetsky most, 6/3, Moscow, Russia
Design work: December 2011 – November 2012
Construction work: April 2012 – November 2012
Principal architect: Galina Serebryakova
Architect: Mariya Gulida
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Photographs: Sergey Leontiev for Wowhaus



Pavilion 1
A recent addition to the Pushkinskaya Embankment in Moscow is a TV pavilion where people can observe television’s inner workings. Russia’s First Channel will begin filming in this unconventional pavilion with a panoramic view of the River Moskva in spring 2013.

Brief:
to accommodate 500 sq. m. of technical space for TV filming on Pushkinskaya Embankment.

Solution:
We tried to disturb the life of Pushkinskaya Embankment as little as possible – by locating the entire main structure on an already existing concrete platform. All the technical spaces (and there are a good many of these) are situated under a wooden amphitheatre which offers a good view of the ‘dancers’.
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The pavilion was created for filming daytime programmes for the First Channel. One of the most important elements in this design is the panoramic windows, a feature which makes it possible to open up the television set towards the water, capturing a view of the river. At the same time, people outside can observe the filming process. When seen from above (from the bridge), the structure resembles a drop of mercury. It consists of two parts: a transparent volume with panoramic windows, topped by a translucent volume which conceals the ventilation pipes and numerous pieces of TV lighting equipment.

The high-tech image of modern television is underlined by the various parts which make up this structure: the metal frame of the pavilion, the unbroken panoramic fenestration, the vigorous bridge leading from the upper embankment to the entrance to the pavilion.

The pavilion is made from materials such as metal, wood, glass, matt polycarbonate, and composites, whose bringing together in a single structure serves to convey the vivacious modernity of the TV studio.

Facts:

Object designed: TV pavilion
Address: Gorky Park, Pushkinskaya Embankment; Moscow, Russia
Design work: August 2012
Construction work: November 2012
Principal architects: Darya Listopad, Artem Ukropov
Architect: Dmitry Zadorin
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro



FOTT
In autumn 2012 the men’s fashion store FOTT moved to new premises, having already previously changed two locations. From being merely an Internet store it had grown into something bigger – a kind of headquarters of the FOTT community. It already had its own image and culture of consumption, representing an urban style which is individual, free, and in places brutal. We came up with a way to convey this character in the new premises on Dmitrovsky pereulok while at the same time preserving the atmosphere of the old shop.

Brief:
to design the new premises of the multibrand fashion store FOTT, bringing together a showroom, photo studio, office, retail space, and warehouse under one roof.

Solution:
We designed a multifunctional space on three levels linked by a light staircase. The layout is such that the distance between staff and clients is minimal, making this something like a community. Following the concept of a multibrand store, the retail areas were divided up into several transformable zones. We paid special attention to detail. Most of the furniture and décor were specially made for FOTT.
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The challenge was to accommodate a large number of different brands without the shop feeling ‘cluttered’. In order to give customers an unobstructed view of the whole store and a comprehensible trajectory of movement, we highlighted the different zones by using different finishes, retail equipment, and lighting, and by raising or dropping the floor level.

In the retail area we created a number of zones which are anchored to fixed positions. These include the fitting rooms and an island cash desk. Everything else is mobile and can be used for new brands or events.

For the finishes we used natural and long-lasting materials which are associated with the style of today’s big cities: concrete, metal, reinforced glass, and dark wood. We cleaned the existing concrete floor and walls and covered them with a protective layer; we kept the utilities systems as they were.

Most of the display and retail equipment was especially constructed for this interior and was made at our factory, including the large lamp made from reinforced glass which hangs above the cash desk area. The vintage lamps and other specialized equipment came from Germany, while several pieces of furniture were bought at a flea market in order to build up FOTT’s image as part of an established tradition.

The delicate metal staircase is an important focus for the shop, allowing us to put the entire space to rational use by connecting the retail halls on the basement level and ground floor with the showroom on the 2nd floor and the warehouse in the basement. The showroom is located in an open office, so FOTT’s staff and buyers of clothing are separated from one another only perfunctorily.

Facts:

Object designed: FOTT shop
Address: Dmitrovsky pereulok, 7, Moscow, Russia
Principal architects: Anna Rodionova, Olga Khokhlova
Architects: Viktoriya Kudryavtseva, Tatyana Polyakova
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Photographs: FOTT



Playground
When we look back on our childhoods, we often recall ourselves standing at the top of a tree or on a shed roof, so naturally we can’t help wondering whether today’s children aren’t bored playing in their standard playgrounds. Now, however, a playground of a different kind has appeared in the Bauman Garden – one so unusual that it may remind you of several things at the same time: an American rollercoaster, a pirate ship, or perhaps a training ground for astronauts. It is accessible to all children, without any limit on age, physical ability, or creativity.

Brief:
- to design an original playground for the Bauman Garden and create an accessible play area for dynamic activities for kids of all ages and abilities, keeping in mind the principle of inclusivity.

Solution:
We designed a bright playground made from strong and long-lasting materials and equipped it with swings, pull-up bars, and climbing vines. To ensure that every child feels at home in the playground, we divided it into zones for children of different ages. We built a split-level ramp based on the idea of the rollercoaster; this can be climbed onto, run up, and even explored on a wheelchair.
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In the vicinity of the Bauman Garden, where our playground is located, are three schools and one kindergarten – so we tried to invent entertainments for kids of all ages. The playground is divided into three zones: one for the very small children, one for children aged 7-10, and one for children aged 10-14. The zone for small children is more private and secure, while the older kids have more space in which to release their boundless energy.

When designing the project, we paid particular attention to children with limited abilities and tried to equip the playground with the most interesting equipment for children’s development and games. We were guided by the work of the Danish firm KOMPAN, which designs special equipment for children. One of the pieces of equipment on our playground is a hand ‘bicycle’ used for development exercises. For visually impaired children we provided brightly coloured zoning and facilities for tactile exercises. Most of the equipment is designed for games involving both healthy kids and kids with limited abilities.

Multiparks, a company that specializes in rope parks, helped us build safe structures for climbing. Some of the suspended creeper cables have been set up in such a way that a child in a wheelchair can grab them and use them to move forwards.

In spring 2013 we plan to embark on the second stage of creating surfaces for the playground. We have come up with the idea of bumps on the ground that form a zigzag route for wheelchairs and coordination exercises.

Ramp

In order to make our playground as accessible as possible to all children without exception, we built a split-level ramp along the perimeter of the playground. The gradient of the slope allows even children in wheelchairs to ride onto it easily. The surface of the ramp consists of wide planks with a small gap between them so as not to impede the movement of the wheels.

The ramp’s inner railings are posts, while the outer wall consists of inclined solid panels with openings in which observation binoculars have been mounted. This creates an illusion of openness – something which is especially important for little children who are very curious, but still need to feel protected. On one section of the ramp a wall with tunnels has been built under the supports; children can climb into the tunnels so as to look with interest at the people around them.

It is extremely important for playgrounds to be made of strong materials and to be structurally safe. Our ramp is of larch – a very hard-wearing natural material. The metal-framed structures are able to withstand not only children, but even a small tank. The equipment, the heights of the slides, and all materials (including a special type of plastic) conform to Russian official standards for playgrounds.

Details

Another part of the ramp is an amphitheatre. This is intended for audiences attending the children’s theatre, but can also be used as a play area. We came up with the idea of creating a wall for taking photographs alongside the amphitheatre; the design is inspired by Malevich’s Athletes and Woman with Rake. This is only a part of what will be a large play complex (construction is scheduled for spring 2013).

In order to make our playground dramatic and memorable, we incorporated bright details and a multi-coloured surface in the ramp’s design. And our efforts have been rewarded: children walking past cannot take their eyes off of our ‘big bright ship’ for little explorers!

For us this project has been a true return to childhood. In search of new ideas we frequently revisited our past, remembering how we used to love climbing trees. Meetings with contractors and clients sometimes took place in the playground, with us sitting on swings or the ramp (just try not smiling when holding a meeting in such a setting!). After examining research carried out by pediatric psychologists, we made a decision to build a playground that would be safe for our little explorers, but at the same time would not limit their curiosity. At all stages of construction we tried to get kids to give their ‘expert opinions’, and all of them willingly agreed to test the swings and pull-up bars for us.

Facts:

Object designed: Children’s playground
Address: Bauman Garden, ul. Staraya Basmannaya, 15, Moscow, Russia
Client: Bauman Garden
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architect: Olga Rokal



Sales Office
In the Krasnaya Roza office building we created an office for a company which sells suburban real estate. Here we brought to life the ‘office of the future’, producing the prototype for a ‘smart building’ whose discreet elegance conceals a high-tech filling.

Brief:
- to invent an impressive space for presentations, utilizing all the latest multimedia devices;
- to create a ‘warm’ and comfortable interior without it feeling like a high-tech office.

Solution:
We decided to demolish the existing stereotype whereby ‘high-tech’ necessarily means a combination of ‘cold’ materials such as glass, metal, and concrete. To decorate this client-oriented space we used mostly natural materials, including brick and wood; however, every element has been designed to be interactive. For instance, we created a universal space for project presentations; this can be transformed by changes to its geometry and lighting programmes. We added a capability for video presentations. And for the company’s designers and other office staff we constructed special furniture.
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Diagram of functions

We incorporated into our design for this sales office all the necessary functional zones. These are: a universal space for presentations, showrooms for showing models, conference rooms, a designers’ zone, private offices for employees, and even a small bar. Almost all the furniture and other elements in the interior - from the ceiling and wall panels to lamps, tables, cupboards, and couches, etc. - were specially designed by us for this project:

The universal space

A space-transformation technique has been employed in the office’s central room, a place where buyers of houses can discuss and commission interior-design projects. One of the walls consists entirely of revolving elements fitted with remote-controlled electric motors. Behind the wooden slats are rooms containing models of housing developments; during presentations the wall can slide open in a dramatic way.

For the central space we came up with the idea of a complex perforated ceiling. Each shape of ceiling section has a corresponding function: behind the section with long apertures are direct-light sources; the section with small perforations conceals acoustic equipment; and so on.

The lighting elements, hidden behind the perforated ceiling, create various effects. There is a plasma screen for project presentations. The special lighting regimes, like the opening of the wall panels, are remote-controlled by iPad.

Entrance area

The partition behind the reception desk does more than just divide the space into zones, separating off the entrance area. Embedded in it are joint-free plasma panels which face towards the presentations room. We used special welding techniques and two kinds of notches to create a semi-transparent partition with a moiré effect.

Conference room

Designers’ zone

In this room clients can discuss the design of their future home with the company’s designers, examine architectural drawings, and flick through catalogues; for this we gave the space a long, wide table and a functional cupboard.

We placed the designers’ zone in the spot with the most natural light, and for additional illumination suspended bright lamps over the table.

Private offices

In the personal offices for company employees we decided to open up the ceiling to give extra height: we took down the old plaster and conserved the surfaces that were thus exposed.

Bathrooms

Unlike in all other parts of the office, for the bathrooms we used bright colours.

Facts:

Object designed: Interior of the sales office of a company selling rural real estate
Address: ul. Timura Frunze, 11, Moscow, Russia
Design work: January 2011 - February 2011
Construction work: February 2011 – May 2011
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architects: Darya Listopad, Artem Ukropov
Architect: Galina Serebryakova
Photos: Ilya Ivanov



Summer Cinema
Brief:
- to build a modern summer cinema to represent the ‘new face’ of Gorky Park;
- to integrate the new structure into the park’s green environment in such a way that it may be transformed to suit visitors’ various needs while preserving the permeability of the park.

Solution:
We decided to make the cinema as understated as possible. The main idea was to take the functional layout of a cinema and strip it of all superfluous details – in our case, of the walls and ceiling. Thus we were able to dissolve the new building in the landscape of the park. We proposed constructing the auditorium in the form of an amphitheater that would be open to visitors almost round the clock.
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Overall layout:

The Pioneer Cinema is always ready to receive guests. During the daytime the cinema area is accessible for relaxation and diverse activities ranging from yoga lessons to public lectures. And during the hours of darkness it is a venue for film screenings.

The screen

To preserve the permeability of the space, the screen is not a smooth and aperture-less wall, but a light and open set of shelves. The individual cells are made from metal rods and contain bay trees in pots and acoustic apparatus.

Entrance area

The principle of "transparency" is maintained by the entrance area to the cinema, which consists of a series of slats.

Amphitheatre

The role of walls is played by the high trees that surround the structure. The back rows of the cinema afford glimpses of Golitsyn Pond and a panoramic view of the park.

When the film screenings begin, the audience sits or reclines on pillows directly on the amphitheatre steps. There are additional places in the space in front of the steps.

The wide steps of the auditorium are slightly ‘broken’ in outline in order to avoid having even lines of rows; they are faced with wood.

The lightened structure of the amphitheatre has made it possible to leave a substantial part of the lawn open and use the space under the seating area as ancillary rooms.

3D-model of the structure

The cinema has capacity for 350 persons – 310 in the amphitheatre and 40 on the horizontal structures.
The summer cinema complex also contains enclosed rooms – a projection room, a café, the ticket office, and an ancillary room in the space under the seating.

Facts

Object designed: Pioneer Summer Cinema
Address: Gorky Park, Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Design work: May 2011 - August 2011
Construction work: August 2011 – October 2011
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architect: Anastasiya Rychkova
Photos: Ilya Ivanov
Awards: was shortlisted for World Architecture Awards 2012



Praktika Theatre
PRAKTIKA is a new-generation theatre, a theatre of new texts involving characters from contemporary life. Currently, this is one of the leading independent theatres in Russia. As well as plays, the theatre puts on film showings, exhibitions, yoga lessons, training sessions, debates and discussions, and poetry evenings. The theatre was originally opened by Eduard Boyakov in a basement of a residential building in the region of the Patriarch’s Ponds in 2005. Within a few years it had far outgrown its initial scale.

Brief:
- To expand the theatre’s limited space by using the building’s courtyard and facade without impinging upon the interests of the residents of the house;
- To link the courtyard space around the theatre with the theatre itself, while emphasizing the innovational quality and relevance of what is one of the most popular cultural venues in Moscow.

Solution:
We decided to use the courtyard space as a kind of vestibule for the theatre. We put a ‘news ticker’ announcing the theatre’s programme on the building façade and entrance arch; we used the courtyard fence as a space for posters. The effect was to create, within the already existing space, a contemporary and convenient spot where residents of the house can sit down for a rest on benches and where theatre-goers can wait for their play to begin in this secluded Moscow courtyard.
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Faсade

The faсade is made from rusty metal sheets with perforations and reflective inserts. The LED ‘news ticker’ carrying the theatre’s programme of coming events is mounted in the building’s faсade and ‘streams’ towards the illuminated archway, attracting the attention of passers-by and inviting them inside to visit the theatre. For the arch/tunnel through which theatre-goers enter the courtyard we have used bright-red lighting. The glass of different colours in the faсade windows is illuminated from within.

The budget for this project was insufficient to pay for fashionable materials such as artificial rust, so we simply took sheets of metal and left them in the grounds of our foreman’s dacha. During the summer that elapsed while we were waiting for a building permit for the faсade of the house, the metal sheets acquired an ideal rusty ‘tan’. They were then coated with a protective layer of varnish, making it possible for them to be used safely on the house faсade.

Vestibule/courtyard

During work on this project the house’s small Moscow courtyard was turned into the theatre vestibule, a convenient and pleasant place where people can wait for performances to begin. We planted the space with greenery and constructed a new fence from deep horizontal boards, thus defining the territory of the theatre and providing a structure on which theatre posters can be displayed. None of this has stopped residents of other houses in the neighborhood from crossing the courtyard whenever they wish; for them, what used to be an ordinary courtyard passageway has become the smart entrance to their houses.

Around the perimeter of the courtyard we placed wide benches/loungers with built-in lighting. In front of the entrance to the theatre, in the center of the courtyard, where theatre-goers emerge after a performance, we created a circle defined by LED lights. This is like a second theatre stage, only for the use of the theatre audience.

Details

In the decoration of the interior and the theatre entrance, we used wooden strips and lighting in the same style as the decoration of the courtyard. This has united the space inside and outside the theatre, creating a unified ensemble.

Facts:

Object designed: Praktika Theatre
Address: Bolshoy Kozikhinsky pereulok, 30, Moscow, Russia
Design work: April 2008 – May 2008
Construction work: May 2008 - September 2008
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architect: Galina Serebyakova
Photos: Konstantin Bagaev



Pergola
Brief:
- to create a new relaxation area on Fountain Square in Gorky Park;
- to zone the enormous asphalted space opposite the main entrance to the park.

Solution:
In order to give the square beside the fountain a distinct function, we built a white pergola perpendicular to the central axis. In the shade cast by this structure we created flowerbeds and installed benches.
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The pergola gives Fountain Square an elegant border, transforming the amorphous space of the park’s ‘endlessly pompous entrance’. Thus we separated the square itself from the transit area and concert stage.

The pergola’s demountable structure in the form of an ‘aerial wave’ imparts harmony and lightness to the spacious park alleys. In order to underline this effect, we made the wave shape slightly asymmetrical at the juncture of its two rows.

The components of the arched sections create different thicknesses of shade, inviting visitors to plunge into a play with space and light.

In this way desolate Fountain Square has gained a new public space where on a sunny day you can relax on benches or wooden chaises longues. The tubs containing the plants ‘animate’ the public area of the pergola.

Light from streetlamps is refracted in the undulating pergola roof. This means that during the hours of darkness the play of light and shade continues.

Facts:

Object designed: pergola
Address: Gorky Park, Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Design work: May 2012
Construction work: June – July 2012
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architect: Anna Rodionova
Photos: Ilya Ivanov, Artur Dugin, Kseniya Kornilova



Pavilions
Brief:
- to design demountable multifunctional pavilions of non-standard construction in Gorky Park for use in all seasons regardless of the caprices of the weather.

Solution:
We designed pavilions which can serve the skating rink during the winter and be re-programmed to suit the needs of the park during the summer. Rejecting the use of standard demountable metal structures, we made the pavilions from wood, a traditional park material.
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Medeo: co-working space and Shardam Children’s Theatre

When the skating rink opened in Gorky Park in 2011, one of the pavilions right at the end of the rink was Club Medeo, a venue for ice parties. In the summer of 2012 Medeo was dismantled and relocated to Neskuchny Garden, where it currently houses a co-working space and the Shardam Children’s Theatre.

In the winter the ground floor of the pavilion included a cafe with an open-air bar where visitors could order hot tea or mulled wine while standing outside. The second floor was a space for the DJ. To create visual emphases, we made the facades bright and luminous.

Sports pavilions

In the winter the sports pavilions serve the skating rink. They contain skate hire, a spacious changing room, and lockers.

In the summer the pavilions become sports halls.

Cafés and Green School

In the summer one of the pavilions contains a children’s summer school and an Italian restaurant (with a terrace) called Osteria nel Parco. The other pavilions are home to Café Bulka and Café Mercato. The pavilions were built in time for the opening of the skating rink in 2011. They moved to a different location for the summer of 2012. For the coming winter they will return to their original location to once again serve users of the rink.

Details

In order to marry the structures with the park’s landscape, we placed trees in wooden tubs next to the pavilions.

For the summer we dressed the pavilions in bright décor, using trendy colours and facing made of wood. During the hot days of summer the reprogrammed pavilions welcome visitors just as hospitably as they did in the cold of winter.

Facts:

Object designed: pavilions
Address: Gorky Park, Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architects: Anastasiya Izmakova, Olga Khokhlova
Architect: Mariya Kokhlova
Photos: Artur Dugin



Golitsynsky Pond
Brief:
to develop the banks of Golitsyn Pond and make it a local centre of attraction for visitors to Gorky Park;
to create new infrastructure beside the pond and reconstruct the old boat station to take modern vessels.

Solution:
Opposite the boat station on the pond’s bank we brought to life the idea of an 'outside living room' – by creating a wooden embankment with sun loungers and a Wi-Fi zone. We installed outside standing lamps, which create a cozy living room atmosphere in the evenings (2011). We turned the existing boat station into a new dock and reorganized its infrastructure (2012).
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Outside living room, 2011

During the first stage of the project we built a wooden terrace with sun loungers opposite the old quay. The terrace is equipped with electric sockets for charging portable devices; this enables visitors to use the Wi-Fi zone to the full, putting them at their ease in this 'outside living room'.

The addition of wooden deckchairs for sun-worshippers has turned the embankment into a comfortable place for relaxing by the water’s edge on the sunny side of Golitsyn Pond.

During the hours of darkness the 'outside living room' is illuminated by the warm light given off by outside standing lamps. The low illumination along the perimeter of the terrace creates an unusual visual accent, attracting not only visitors to the park but also the aquatic inhabitants of Golitsyn Pond.

The dock. 2012

The project’s second stage involved reconstructing the old dock, adapting it for use by modern boats, and improving its infrastructure.

A new public place was created alongside the dock; this is the Kiosk summer café, designed by the creators of the well-known Moscow club Solyanka. This is an ideal setting in which to eat ice cream or enjoy a glass of freshly squeezed juice. The legendary sculpture of a girl with an oar greets visitors to the cafe at the entrance to the shaded veranda.

The ticket office has been moved out of the dock zone and is now structurally part of the pavilion housing the new cafe, thus expanding the public area beside Golitsyn Pond.

Facts:

Object designed: Golitsyn Pond in Gorky Park
Address: Gorky Park, Krimsky val 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Outside living room:
Design work: May 2011
Construction work: July 2011
The dock:
Design work: 2012
Construction work: 2012
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architects: Olga Rokal, Marina Yarmakina
Photographs: Olga Alekseyenko, Artur Dugin, Ilya Ivanov, Marina Yarmarkina



Olive Beach
Brief:
- To mark the ‘unofficial’ entrance to Gorky Park from the direction of Neskuchny Garden, making it more friendly and just as popular as the main entrance;
- To create an accessible recreation area by the water in the center of Moscow.

Solution:
We came up with an idea for how to create an alternative to the main entrance to Gorky Park. By way of contrast with the granite and marble that are the dominant presence at the front entrance, we have used wood for the ‘welcome zone’ leading from Pushkin (Andreevsky) Bridge. On the desolate embankment of the River Moskva we have created a proper leisure zone with a beach, showers, and a bar. The wooden beach is a symbol of the renewed Gorky Park.
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The solarium

The diversely angled surface of the solarium does the same job as myriad deck loungers, resulting in a great saving of space on the river embankment.

The solarium has been constructed in such a way that visitors can sit or lie down on almost any of the wooden surfaces which meet each other at different angles and descend to the water’s edge.

On a hot summer’s day this democratic spot is extremely popular with sunbathers.

All kinds of activities and events are held here.

Since swimming in the River Moskva is not advisable, we came up with the idea of a water feature for visitors. The shower consoles stand outside the solarium area, above the surface of the river. Water from the showers collects in trays underneath and drains into the sewerage system.

Canopy

Next to the solarium is another universal recreational space – under a canopy which offers protection from the blazing sun. This canopy takes the form of a complex pergola and has space for a DJ.

Bar

Under the bridge we have designed two bars with wooden terraces and canopies in an original shape.

Model of the solarium

Model of the canopy

Facts

Object designed: Olive Beach recreational area
Address: Gorky Park, Krymsky Val, 9, Moscow, Russia
Client: Gorky Park
Design work: May 2011-July 2011
Construction work: July 2011
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Architects: Darya Listopad, Artem Ukropov
Photos: Ilya Ivanov, Dmitry Karpov, Yogastan



Pioneer Cinema
The interior of the Pioneer Cinema is an ode to the ‘grand style’ of this Stalinist house, which was built on Kutuzovsky prospekt in Moscow in 1953.

Brief:
To breathe new life into an unpopular cinema by reviving its historical style of interior decoration and creating a café and bookshop.

Solution:
To strip off later additions to the fabric and return to the architect’s initial intentions; and at the same time to radically redesign the layout, proposing an unusual solution for the ancillary rooms.
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Photographs of the interior

The lobby

Cinema hall

Cinema hall

Perforations on the staircase

Café Pion. First floor.

Café Pion. Second floor.

Café Pion.

The ladies’ and gentlemen’s lavatories

The ladies’ and gentlemen’s lavatories

Floor plans

Plan of the first floor
1. ticket hall
2. hall
3. cinema №1
4. cinema №2
5. Café Pion

Plan of the mezzanine
1. Respublika bookshop
2. Café Pion

Plan of the basement
1. gentlemen’s lavatory
2. ladies’ lavatory
3. kitchen

Facts:

Object designed: Pioneer Cinema
Address: Kutuzovsky pr., 21, Moscow, Russia
Client: Centromobile Pioneer
Design work: May 2008 – October 2008
Construction work: October 2008 – October 2009
Heads of Wowhaus: Dmitry Likin, Oleg Shapiro
Principal architects: Anastasiya Rychkova, Alexey Shapovalov
Photographs: Ilya Ivanov



Strelka
This unique public space was constructed by Wowhaus Bureau to replace the garages of the Red October confectionery factory on the intersection of the Bolotnaya Island. In this location, where the Institute for architects and designers, a bar with a popular summer terrace and an open–air hall naturally co-exist, lectures, film screenings, yoga classes, parties and many other events take place.

The task:
to create a space of a new typology, a ‘third space’ that is a mixture between home and work/study.

The solution:
A cosy square, with a courtyard atmosphere, consisting of two combined amphitheatres. One facing the water that people can sit on to relax, and one for the guests of events at the newly established piazza.
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Functional plan

Auditoriums Inhabited fence Bar
Terrace Public area

Public area

View of Strelka from Patriarch Bridge.

The main visual dominant in the Strelka courtyard’s space is a wooden amphitheatre on a metal frame.

In the evenings, the courtyard is transformed into a popular open-air cinema.

The lobby at Strelka: on the left is the institute’s information centre and ticket office, in the centre is the staircase to the terrace, and on the right is the entrance to the bar.

Inhabited fence

Plan

To define the courtyard and expand its functional possibilities, a new construction tentatively called the ‘inhabited fence’ was built along one of its walls. The bulk of this multifunctional building, which houses the information centre, public lavatories, a summer kiosk with food and drinks, a plasma screen, and subsidiary rooms, is made from sandwich panels. This is the most comfortable and least expensive material for foundation-less framed structures. In order to maintain the courtyard’s general theme, the top of the building appears to be wearing a collection of wooden slats.

View of the front of the ‘fence’

The information centre is located at the end of the building, behind a glass wall. This is the place to get information on events, sign up for public seminars and lectures, and buy tickets.

Auditoriums

The institute’s auditoriums and studios are located where the factory garages used to be. For several years these were artists’ studios with a mezzanine. Our main goal was to adapt the premises to the needs of an institute of learning by providing as much natural light as possible, a comfortable layout of furniture for studying, and customized office equipment.

In some auditoriums, skylights were constructed. In order to take full advantage of the available area, a large amount of customized furniture was designed, and lights were also used along the busducts.

Bar

Bar Strelka is a comfortable urban space and platform for relaxed socialising built on the frames of the Strelka Institute of architecture and design. The bar is located in a building of the former Red October chocolate factory and partly in some former art galleries.

Many details of the interior were predetermined by the building itself. For example, the combination of metal channels and wooden bracing on the ceiling arose from the need to strengthen its structure for the construction of the roof terrace. In order to increase the height of the ceiling, the builders decided to leave them open. The same applies to the metal construction on the walls.

The interior was designed so that a feeling of history would be present in the bar – as if it had always been there. A preference was accordingly given to points of interest, Italian and Scandinavian lights from the 1960s and 1970s, and natural materials that are aging beautifully.

Many objects were found at flea markets or at second-hand furniture auctions, and what was impossible to find we designed ourselves.

Terrace

The summer terrace at Strelka is located on the roof of a former sweet shop. Our designers and builders did a great job with this. Because of the building’s old age and position on an unstable river bank, there was a serious limitation to how big a load it could bear. The designers came up with a way to replace the rafter system with a more modern one, and the load of the wall even decreased as a result. In addition, the whole building received an elegant sheath made of channels that serve to reinforce the structure.

Right after opening, 2010

The terrace, three levels away from the river and the amphitheatre combined with the courtyard.

Summer 2011

The following season, it was decided to re-furnish the terrace. Bright furniture, coloured countertops and light fittings were set up.

The chairs were ordered from Italy and Belgium and we devised and produced the tables, floor lighting and lampshades ourselves.

The terrace in 2011. Nighttime view from Patriarch Bridge.


Floor plans

Plan of the ground-floor

Plan of the terrace level

Information:
Object of design: The Strelka Institute of Media, Architecture and Design
Address: 11 ulitsa Timur Frunze, Moscow, Russia
Client: Strelka NPO; Strelka LLC
Design period: June 2009 – May 2010
Construction period: August 2009 – May 2010
Heads of construction: Dmitry Lakin and Oleg Shapiro
Lead architects: Olga Rokal, Anastasia Rychkova, Galina Serebryakova
Photographers: Sergey Leontev, Ilya Ivanov
Awards:
- Laureate of Arch Biennale 2010 in the ‘Best New Place’ category
- Laureate ARCHIWOOD 2011 in the ‘Design of the Urban Environment’ category

Almost all furniture was designed in-house especially for Strelka, such as the striped tables and lamps.