TAB 2013 / Tallinn

NextGen ScrollGallery thumbnailNextGen ScrollGallery thumbnailNextGen ScrollGallery thumbnailNextGen ScrollGallery thumbnailNextGen ScrollGallery thumbnail

Tallinn Architecture Biennale (TAB)

Curators’ Exhibition

Architecture in Translation.

Pavle Stamenovic, Jelena Mitrovic, Davor Eres.


Kalev Sport Hall:

Juhkentali tänav 12, Tallinn

Architects: Peeter Tarvas and Uno Tölpus

designed: 1956 / year of completion: 1962

main area (m): 105 m x 40 m

number of storeys: 2

function: sports, entertainment

number of seats: 4,500 spectators


Architecture in translation

Beyond the bounds of aesthetics, empowered by the new materiality, the modern project truly assumed openness of the plan. From the perspective of today, since first visions of wall free architecture of the 20th century unfolded in reality, transparency was being realized through design. New architecture envisaged disappearing of facade, rendering overlap of nature and technology. But shortly afterwards, this inclusive prospect of modernity was disposed into frameworks for modernist politics. Structural power of modernity was therefore reduced to modern style. In reference to this, we assume that walls and vault of Kalev Sports Hall were never as opaque and dull, as after the ideology they represented broke down.


Exposing openness of Kalev Hall, outside the walls and vault of the building, will hereby embody the open ground in modern project before it was appropriated by politics. We assume that the walls and vault of Kalev Hall that enclosed sport fields in the public park for over a half a century are now transcended and somehow have outrun their initial course. As remnants of the system that broke, they are material evidence of its presence in reality, fading but nevertheless real. The weight and fullness of the shell of Kalev Hall, built in the age that exceeded it, must trigger displeasure as they reveal doubt that reality we live in is never new. But beyond this historical image, the elevated open ground plan of the Hall assures that the object never stayed devoid of parterre (surrounding ground). The distance from the ideological framework in which the building was conceived unlocks its potential to alter. This is an opportunity to literally expose open plan into air. Volume will therefore vanish, leaving elements to float over greenery, appropriating ground and embodying space as a smooth and comprehensive substance. This project, based on few simple cuts, involves disappearing of solid volume so that architectural idea doesn’t vanish.


Crucial interest of Architecture in Translation is to open discussion on reconsidering former architectural concepts from a critical point of contemporaneity. This project will try to locate this particular place inside modern idea by engaging ideals of openness, movement and fluidity.

Comments are closed.