"The Democratic Republic of Georgia welcomes you!" announces this giant white amoeba of a building, the first thing one sees when crossing into the country from Turkey. The Sarpi Border Checkpoint is just one of a dozen striking infrastructure projects that the young republic has commissioned from German architect Jürgen Mayer-Hermann in an effort to rebrand itself while checking much-needed developments off the list. In an interview with Dezeen, the man behind J. Mayer H. Architects compared this recent push for eye-catching design to that of post-war Germany, "when a town hall had to be built, a bus station had to be built, just to make the country work, and that resulted in some great contemporary architecture."
It's a funny thing that something like, say, a truck stop would win an Architizer A+ award this year—as was the case for another similarly convention-defying of Mayer-Hermann's designs—but such is the building environment that Georgian government has engendered over the past decade. Given Georgia's status as an oft-necessary transit route between East and West, the route from Azerbaijan to Turkey has become something of a driving tour of unrestrained postmodern weirdness. According to Mayer-Hermann, "architecture along those transportation routes is maybe the only thing that you see when you drive through the country." Might as well make it memorable, so the reasoning seems to go.
Undoubtedly the strangest in Dezeen's roundup, the tower pictured above houses a number of elevated terraces in those extended folds. The press release accompanying the project calls it representative of "the progressive upsurge in the country." Head over to Dezeen for the full interview with Mayer-Hermann, as well as a visual tour of some of his other work around Georgia.