Describing Architecture


Untitled / PRACTICE


Model & Photographs

Barber, Conway, Lavelle, Swan, Ward + Young

… simple clever design that engages society…proposing and making interventions to expand this philosophy…

Every year, when harvest-time arrives, the village of Moynalty in Co.Meath throws its Annual Steam Threshing Festival, celebrating in particular the traditional art of threshing. In the hustle and bustle of the fair, we made a quiet place – somewhere to catch your breath, sheltered from both sights and sounds. Naturally, we took as our building block the square straw bale. The bales were layered and stitched with rebar – the lowest course tracing a spiral, a form that with each subsequent layer slowly resolved into a pure circle. This drum stood perched by the top of a hill, and turned such that the gentle slope of the ground could sweep people in, the entry leading them downhill through darkness into light – a spatial echo of the ceremonial journeys taken by those who harvested there in years long past.

We exhibit here a physical model of the careful geometries, that we beforehand generated, and a photographic record of the creation and occupation of the structure that was built. We calculated geometries and then tested them for two days in the field, creating a dialogue that we hope to continue the next time fresh bales are cut – when harvest rolls around again.