Condominium Trnovski Pristan

Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2004


project commission

Begrad, Novo Mesto

Trnovski Pristan, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Site area
4.640 m2

Building area
1.365 m2

Total floor area
4.010 m2

basement + gf + 2

residential apartment building, 15 units

reinforced concrete

ventilated façade, ceramic tiles on alu plates, alu double glazing

SADAR+VUGA (Jurij Sadar, Boštjan Vuga, Tina Hočevar, Miha Pešec, Tadej Žaucer, Mojca Kocbek)

Hisao Suzuki, Ramon Prat

Condominium is a two-floor apartment building with fifteen individualized apartments, common entrance lobby, interior winter garden and exterior summer atrium.

Its basic volume is agitated, partitioned and non-monolithic, which allows for optimal illumination of all apartments and a connection of interior area with the exterior through greater greened terraces, consoled balconies and winter gardens. The partitioning of the basic volume continues to the irregular rhythm of the balconies volume. The balconies extend far away from the building, towards the circumferential garden. The partitioning reaches its peak by the composition of façade surfaces made of pixels of multi-coloured ceramic tiles, and pre-dimensioned black metal frames, which link Blown-up Windows and balconies of orange wood.

The desired final effect of the façade at the apartment block known as Condominium Trnovski Pristan was developed through a technique of pixelization: namely, we were aiming to achieve something which at first glance might seem like something beyond the imagination. We shift the perception of the size of the building in the eyes of the observer (that is why from the outset the building seems unfamiliar) and at the same time we try to establish a completely new generative relationship between the building and its immediate surroundings.

The large window openings with their wide black frames interconnect between themselves, thus creating what appears to be a heavy structure for the building’s framework. The interconnecting window openings seem to fragment the volume of the building as if they were supporting part of the building, which of course is nonsense. Between this heavy structure of the window frames we stretch a light membrane made of ceramic tiles, in such a way that pixelization softens the edges between the dark windows and the bright, light ceramic membrane.

By day, when because of the sunlight reflecting on the windows, the glass surfaces of this heavy structure seem dark, the black pixels of the ceramic tiles soften the edges binding them to the light ceramic membrane. A distant view of the building enhances the effect.

The brighter pixels (mostly yellow) of the ceramic tiles start re-establishing a dialogue with the “natural pixels” made of willow leaves and the rest of greenery along the quay. This way the so-called “Salamander House” adapts and generates a new context in its surroundings.