Punta della Dogana (Venezia)

Center of contemporary art

project by Tadao Ando

Punta della Dogana
drawing art spaces

Tadao Ando's first drawings outline from the outset the main lines of his intervention, choosing to maintain the typical assembling of the storehouses placed side by side and linearly disposed through Canal Grande and Canale della Giudecca banks.

By realizing impressive re-foundation works in the factory to take shelter from moisture and high tide effects and by calculating the reconfiguration of the existing mezzanines, the aim of the project was to equip all the space of the building.

In these interventions there is no mimetic passage but constant combination.

In a position almost barycentric in respect to the complex triangular structure, Ando immediately planned to include a new full-height space, a sort of kingpin placed inside one of the central storehouses, to be built in smooth and polished reinforced concrete, which is now a trait of his constructions. Later this axis, around which show floors rotate and to which the paths lead, has adopted the configuration of a cube vertically crossing the space in which is currently located.

During the constant renovations, aimed at removing the intrusive accretions that over the years had damaged Punta della Dogana complex, the introduction of new partitions, stairs, paths, service spaces appears like sharp occurrences.

Between the ancient factory body and these interventions no mediations or mimetic passages are detectable. You can observe constant combinations, as if Ando had decided to mount volumes and levels that separate the ancient building countless stratifications, presenting them ordered like a delightful show produced by the passage of time.

Finally, he decided to hang some grids on the upper doors overlooking water edges, a clear reference to Carlo Scarpa's work. Made of steel and glass, although designed in a very modern way, they come from fine Venetian craftsmanship.

In Punta della Dogana Tadao Ando has managed to establish a dialogue between new and old elements, creating a connection between the past, the present and the future of this building.