04 July 2016 / Architecture & Design

Contemporary Locus' industrial cathedral

A gem of industrial archaeology lives again in a contemporary spirt hthanks to Contemporary Locus, a non-profit organisation dedicated to territorial regeneration through artistic projects that redevelop brownstone areas, rescue them from neglect and give them back to citizens and to art.

The latest Contemporary Locusproject - its Xth edition - has regenerated the former thermal power station area in via Daste e Spalenga, Bergamo.
This imposing and elegant structure was built in the early 1920s to house the power station and the Albinicotton mill.

This area, crossed by the Roggia Morlana artificial canal, was full of cotton and silk mills and factories that the power station provided energy to. In the 1960s, the cotton mill moved and the power station was dismantled. In the year 2000, a regeneration project was launched, but it was later abandoned.

The task of giving light and energy to the complexwas entrusted to the Innowatio group who - in line with a site specificproject designed by the Roman artist, Alfredo Pirri - has designed a demand side management system using an energy saving battery, photovoltaic panels and remote control systems to adjust light variation.

The result is a sophisticated and complex work that is worthy of a firsthand experience, as it is designed for the location that hosts it with the aim of reproducing the relationship between light, energy and control. There are light reflections and optical and sound effects within the structure, and an outdoor light show during nighttime hours that will fascinate visitors.

This tribute to energy entitled “Passi” or Steps will be open from July 24th.
«None of the energy that enters the structure is wasted.» The light penetrates during the day and is created by a controlled lighting system that transforms the former power station into a luminous “cathedral”.

Even visitors' energy is conserved with the “Your steps” APP that shows each visitor the way around the structure thanks to the mirrored surface that cover the former power station floor.

This innovative work weaves together different languages - industrial archaeology, technology and art -in a process similar to the way Leonardo EvolutionsTile creates its products. It takes the best from past and contemporary technology to give life and excellence to products that offer real experiences.

Contemporary Locus 10 - curated by Paola Tognon - also shows how energy can be used «to produce beauty – commented the Innowatio CEO, Fabio Leoncini - and some locations, like the Daste e Spalenga former power station, were designed as real cathedrals, enchanted castles where energy is fashioned for the service of the human race.»


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