Evolver by students from ALICE studio at EPFL

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Students of the ALICE studio at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne have built a wooden structure for viewing the surroundings next to a lake in Zermatt, Switzerland.

Called Evolver, the structure consists of 24 wooden frames arranged to form a tube that visitors can move through, travelling 720 degrees around the structure's axis before arriving back to the start again.

Views of the surrounding landscape are framed by slits between the supports.

Here's some more information from the students:

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EVOLVER

Evolver is an architectural artefact intervening on the panorama surrounding Zermatt.

It was designed and executed by a team of 2nd year students from the ALICE studio at the EPFL in Lausanne, Switzerland. In an effort to take full advantage of the site’s extensive and astounding views, the project sits strategically next to the lake Stelli at an altitude of 2536m.

Its structure mainly consists of a succession of 24 rotating frames supporting an enclosed space that visitors are encouraged to enter. As he or she progresses through the space, a concealed but uninterrupted 720° movement is unravelling along a transformed panorama.

This transformation occurs while inside a person is moving along a selective string of openings only to be caught peeling off a sequence of unexpected views from the original landscape.

Wobbling below and above a distant horizon, ground and sky have been reorchestrated into an orbiting panorama by a journey that has already culminated to where it started: A loophole on the skyline.

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Posted on Thursday, September 17th, 2009 at 2:40 pm by . See our copyright policy. Before commenting, please read our comments policy.

  • quinton

    This thing is just wonderful… an elegant weave of soft materials. I particularly love the fourth image down because it looks like a wild horses rectum and makes you just want to jump in and play about.

    Wonderful

  • http://nad0rp.deviantart.com/ Alex Prodan

    very nice…
    very talented students…

  • junihaoni

    stunning.

  • http://www.fashion-in-bag.com replica designer handbags

    How many people it can hold??
    i am afraid it is broken when many people stay there together.

  • Michael

    This structure seems entirely appropriate for the site. Should look fantastic in the winter and in a year when the wood has weathered. The form connects lovely to Alpine Horns. The photographer should have made a 720 degree panorama showing the progression of views. Fanatastic student work!

  • tanya telford – T

    aesthetically very lovely ( inclusive of surrounding landscape etc) and conceptually very interesting, – from these pictures i kind of feel they have managed to include and portray a playfulness & delight which is really nice. The structure does remind me a little bit of one of the serpentine pavilions a couple of years ago. Really like these kind of structures, would like to visit this one especially in such beautiful landscape. I don’t know how permanent it is.

  • adam

    Its just beautiful

  • louis

    Niiiiiiice…would love to see some diagrams/axo’s though!!

  • Jambo

    Another fantastic student project.

    I do hope we at the Portsmouth Womens Architectural Institute can come up with something as brilliant this coming academic year.

    C’est Tres Tres Belle

    A famous tutor once told us, beauty is in the eye of the blind man when it comes to student work.

  • gray

    Why not just stand outside or walk around. Seems like it should have some other purpose. Nice form and aesthetic.

  • thierry

    wonderful work! wish I can pay a visit there.

  • Hubert

    Its is just superb in such a beautiful landscape
    Very very talentuous students…..

  • christopher

    gorgeous…the second image down is stunning!

  • martin

    to see more:

    studio website:
    http://alice.epfl.ch

    zermatt project blog:
    http://arpc167.epfl.ch/alice/WP_09/?p=6

    thanks

  • Chris

    as the father of one of the brave and energetic students involved, my decision is taken: I’m impatient and excited to go there for inauguration !

  • Ruth

    smooth edges instead of facets – but great anyway!

  • Pietro

    site shmite this thing could be in the middle of Manhattan or on this alpine lake… none the less, still pretty cool and probably a fun project to be a part of.

  • tommi

    dont wake up the sleeping beauty

  • Tom

    beautiful.

  • plopp

    Looks good, but I question the function, it really doesn’t give you much more wiew than you already have from the spot…
    (I like structures that look good and is functional…)

  • I.Anantha

    stunning…

  • http://www.session23design.com Michael

    plopp,

    it controls the viewing experience…

  • pipe
  • Vincent#1

    At first I have to say that this is one of the most poethic and sensual looking objects have seen in time.

    After that, I think the argumentation of the transforming panorama is quite weak. Seeing the landscape through shades, can’t be that surprising. And it is said before, why did they build it in the first place, the location doesn’t need a viewingplatform. This is just a romantic addition to the landscape and there is nothing wrong with that, on the contrary I love that. But don’t come up with such a story.

    The page pipe^^^ links to shows a similar structure, but with seatings. Thats actually very nice after a walk: sit down, relax and let the mountains affect you :)

  • steve

    Well done. Maybe the students could travel to London and teach some RCA students how to be humble and how to design. Great student group success.

  • bodkin

    i think i’m really missing something here. as a sculptural object of itself it is a nice form and i’m not going to argue the aesthetic value. but to land it in this most stunning of natural areas is ludicrous and almost criminal. why would you want to ‘control’ views of such a stunning area? what is the point of ‘controlling’ them after you’ve been looking at the m on the way to the structure? why ‘spoil’ the natural landscape with such an artificial looking pavillion? why does it have to grab the attention so much with the red stripes on the framework? it can’t possibly hope to compete with the landscape but still tries. or at least the students are immaturely thinking they can compete.

    if i’d spent a lot of effort getting to this viewpoint to find this object in my view of the alps i’d be furious. it would be like having a grain of sand under your eyelid.

    i can only hope that it has a very temporary lifespan and it is removed to somewhere more appropriate, such as a park or other man-made landscape where it would be much more appropriate (like the stepped pavillion at last years venice biennale) and from where it could control and direct views that could not otherwise be seen

  • cpcp

    exquisite

  • Adrian
  • _tp

    Why would you want to ‘control’ views of such a stunning area, Bodkin? Because sometimes framing a view is a way to emphasize or intensify it, to point out a new relationship, to suggest new ways of looking, or to create an optical, visual effect that wouldn’t occur otherwise. (Rear Window, Diller Scofidio’s Slow House, Steven Holl’s Y-House, or LeCorbusier’s Beistegui apartment, for example)
    Nothing was destroyed, the “uncontrolled” view still exists, but a linear view that rotates up, over, and around an intertwined promende is, in fact, a new phenomena that is produced by this installation and can only be experienced from inside of it.

  • http://www.charliebroadway.blogspot.com Charles Broadway

    Not very appealling. Reminds me of a snake’s skeleton with flesh ripped off to expose the ribs.

  • http://www.goodmoldings.com Joel Linn

    SPIRAL of goodness & wooden DESIGN complexity! This CREATION makes you want to hang out — and IN.

    From Page: “Evolver is an architectural artefact intervening on the panorama surrounding Zermatt. It was designed and executed by a team of 2nd year students from the ALICE Studio at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland. In an effort to take full advantage of the site’s extensive and astounding views, the project sits strategically next to the lake Stelli at an altitude of 2,536 m (8,320 feet).

    Evolver’s structure mainly consists of a succession of 24 rotating frames supporting an enclosed space that visitors are encouraged to enter. As he or she progresses through the space, a concealed but uninterrupted 720° movement is unraveling along a transformed panorama.

    This transformation occurs while inside a person is moving along a selective string of openings only to be caught peeling off a sequence of unexpected views from the original landscape.

    Wobbling below and above a distant horizon, ground and sky have been reorchestrated into an orbiting panorama by a journey that has already culminated to where it started: A loophole on the skyline.”

  • Davide