Our proposal for a new generation Po-valley building in an agricultural landscape, is a blend between the future and heritage, in an extraordinary space with great potential. The main focus are the visual dynamics of the new 9000 sqm "house", on which we concentrate through an unprecedented and iconic architectural mark, generating an actual food campus.
The first thing we intended to re-generate is a fragment of the horizontal Po-valley landscape, reminding to the ancient marks of a land that is amazing in the relationship among nature, landscape and craftsmanship, a land dating back to the transit of Julius Caesar and to the arrangement of the crops according to the noble spotted orthogonal lines and the calculated exceptions built by the memory of the Roman Centuriatio, still present in the weft, the draft and the texture of the fields.
This is the first strategy we intend to target: a dense distribution of orthogonal green areas, easily accessible from the pavilion, as to determine a real educational museum both for the Barilla employees and the visitors, who will be therefore guided in a big vegetable garden.
In this garden there will be the seven cultivation flowerbeds, divided into four rotation areas each, with 72 different kinds of cereal and ancient wheats, representing a highly visual and chromatic impact source. There will be both an on-site classification with a flexible labelling standard, and educational opportunities in the studying spaces inside the new "house". It is all about the establishment of a new concept of vegetable garden mixed with tree essences coming from the sixteenth century "Po valley cropping", characterised by rows of elms, field maples, willow and poplar trees arranged in lines along the field edges according to the traditional juxtaposition of these plants with vines. The horizontal space will also have some areas designed for standing spaces with lightweight shelters and for paths that will easily lead the visitors to the "all- encompassing Barilla food Theatre". An outdoor area will be available for meetings and plays.
Two big East-West oriented walls emerge as parallel fragments of a Roman aqueduct from this centuriatio, with bench segments as surfacing relics from a new archaeological site dominating the "Po valley cropping". Following this North-South orientation, at some point the walls and the benches of the big park solidify into two mighty spines, covered, as for the body of the Pilotta, in blond bricks, dialoguing with the Parma ochre, and constituting the spinal cord of the new all-encompassing Barilla food Theatre. A triple-height central space is thus created, fully covered in rough recycled fire-proof wood, alluding to the Farnese Theatre in Parma. This big free space, surrounded by balconies becoming suspended bridges between the South and the North side, allude, other than to the Farnese arena, also to the powerful tradition of the Royal Theatre, giving back a grandiose but also intimate aura. At the centre of the rooftop there's the focus of the composition: a white cement mast that hides in itself some security stairs. This mast, as a modern Trajan column, is decorated and could be lighten up in the night. This sign becomes a powerful and unmistakeable territorial symbol.