Archiprix Chile
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The place of the disaster: Ralco Reservoir, Alto Biobío, Chile
The place of the disaster: Ralco Reservoir, Alto Biobío, Chile

Design strategy sketch and basics.
Design strategy sketch and basics.

Emplacement: over the water and the flooded cemetery.
Emplacement: over the water and the flooded cemetery.

Main view of the project: meeting point between the living and the dead.
Main view of the project: meeting point between the living and the dead.

Exploited isometric of the memorial.
Exploited isometric of the memorial.

Views of the memorial.
Views of the memorial.

Sections A-A' / B-B'.
Sections A-A' / B-B'.

1st level plan.
1st level plan.




ÍNDICE DE PROYECTOS
MENCIÓN DE HONOR
FLOATING CEMETERY
Universidad de Chile
ARCHITECTURE

Meeting point between the living and the dead
In 2004 the Ralco Reservoir in the Biobío Region (Chile) was unexpectedly flooded, inundating the cemetery of the Pehuenche community in the valley. After years of trying to recover the bodies, researchers demonstrated the unviability of this rescue, leaving the inhabitants staring at millions of cubic metres of water separating them from their ancestors.
From this tragedy was born the idea of reparation, bounding and communication, in order to create a space for the memory of a sacred place that was damaged and rendered impossible to be recovered, bringing the community closer to its dead.
The Pehuenche cosmos vision considers our world as part of a sequence of overlapping square platforms connected vertically by an axis, which allows us to understand their vertical relation. Based on these beliefs, the project was designed as a meeting point between the living and the dead, and it places itself over the water and over the flooded cemetery. It was conceived as a single concrete element that establishes vertical communication between them, generating a threshold through a simple and pure volume, lacking all symbolism but loaded in content in its spatiality, perpetuating the task of remembering and gathering the community indefinitely.
This is how we can attempt to make visible something that wanted to be hidden, to raise a truth again over the water, projecting a work whose complexity is not found in its formal or material characteristics, but rather in its sensibility to approach a problem that seems impossible to solve. All this inside a culture that has a very particular way of understanding the cosmos and the communication between its different planes, a task that will only be possible to materialize when we realize that the connection is mainly on a spiritual plane.