In the neighborhood of Villa Crespo, occupying four lots of land, this building with double frontage and a covered surface of nearly 5200 sqm displays an atypical size in the neighborhood. Created by the renowned Argentine photographer Gaby Herbstein, and designed by architect Ramiro Zubeldia, the complex was conceived as a creative factory, a workplace where diverse areas of art and design may coexist, interact and foster each other; a flexible and dynamic space allowing adaptation to different settings for the making of events.
This work unifies three existing constructions: an old perfume factory, a hangar and a mechanical workshop. The project maintained an industrial language and preserved the dimensions of the neighborhood, creating courtyards that dialogue with the fabric of the block while breaking ground with a dialectic between belonging and innovation that sought a positive transformation of the area.
“During the planning process the focus was set on developing the space requirements list. By drafting it and incorporating functions that allowed the project to come to life, a venue was created that had multiple uses for the merging and exchange of disciplines, with a space where photography and shooting studios coexist with studios to rent, which are intended for companies dedicated to design, advertising, architecture, fashion, production of events and showrooms” stated the architect Ramiro Zubeldia.
The multiplicity and flexibility of both common and private spaces, together with their available uses, make Bubble a unique building for the making of events. The complex is divided into two functional areas, the audiovisual studios (on Cucha Cucha street) and the studios for rent (on Repetto street). Both are united inside by the heart of the project: a courtyard that lets the building breathe, assembling its activities and becoming the meeting point of all different areas.Audiovisual StudiosThe project sews the structures of two existing buildings together: a hangar with a parabolic roof blends with a mechanical workshop which used to sit under a slab of reinforced concrete, freed from the party wall between them through a new sequence of columns that dilutes all limits while producing partial see-through visuals.At the ground level, at the back of the plots, sits the Studio 01.
The studio can accommodate corporate events with a capacity for 1,500 people and contains all complementary facilities necessary for an audiovisual studio (such as hair and makeup facilities, dressing rooms, a bar, a dining room and a lounge). As its most outstanding attribute, the venue contains an underwater studio which unfolds on its floor, with a dry area that allows taking underwater photographs with no need to plunge in.
At the second level sits the Studio 02, with an independent access and its own hair and makeup facilities, dressing rooms, dining room, lounge and kitchen, for which it can be used in productions simultaneously. One special feature of this studio is the convertible roof, which allows taking pictures with natural zenithal lighting.
At the third level Gaby Herbstein’s offices are located, with a post-production area and private offices. The Courtyard The central courtyard brings the complex together both functionally and formally. Over the old factory’s original
façade, a new gallery stands at the ground level and second level, connecting the existing constructions and displaying a clear linear circulation, over which a new envelope for the offices is incorporated.
This envelope consists of a system of columns replicating in different areas of the building, which provides it with a true identity. At the ground level sits the dining room with its own kitchen, which is used for the offices during the week and is further used for the making of events.
Under the courtyard there is a lower level that can be accessed through a new stairway. Originally conceived as an art gallery, the lower level is currently used as a disco, an exhibition room and an auditorium.
In the courtyard, a stepped set of new volumes was built which offsets the impact of the main studio’s 16-meter height, providing a transition to the scales of the building.
Professional StudiosOn Repetto Street, with a surface of nearly 3500sqm, sits the main building of the complex with spaces for rent. With an independent access, the project takes an old factory as a basis and organizes 23 studios over a linear circulation structure. To improve airflow and lighting, internal courtyards were introduced over the main line of circulation, thereby changing the perception of the route as these suggest sequences with different lighting intensities, emphasized by the system of columns that step up the pace and provide constant dynamism to the building.
On this building there are two terraces which work as an open-air photography studio (Terraza 01), an extension of the office’s sector and an access to the outdoor events area (Terraza 02). The latter has a 20-meter long bar which enfolds an internal courtyard, and is equipped with a kitchen and separate toilets, all of which make this spot a distinctive space, with an open view of the city.
The project offers a palette of uniform materials which maintain and enhance the industrial character of the former buildings, the prevailing ones being fair-faced concrete, polished cement, painted exposed brick and iron.
All materials have a rustic, resistant finish, with low-cost maintenance and a neutral appearance that make it a perfect place to undertake diverse programmatical activities without aesthetic conditionings..