Seven architects from around the globe have teamed up to give one small Austrian town a de facto architectural bus tour, each designing one bus stop shelter for a project called (wait for it) BUS:STOP. Models for this septuplicated design bonanza were released last fall, and boy, oh, boy, did forest-obsessed Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto's entry (↑) draw out the classic "I can't believe these so-called architects can get away with designing things that are so functionless" response. Incredulous philistines take heart; the rest of the shelters are in fact shelters in the traditional sense of keeping the elements at bay. That being said, they still up the "WOW! Factor" of the roadsides in the rural enclave of Krumbach quite a bit. Did Fujimoto and co. just turn this place into the Marfa, Texas of Central Europe?
↑ The Ensamble Studio entry was once described as a "Flintstones bus shelter" lacking only a "brontosaurus pulling up and saying something like 'it's a living.'" In actuality, it's based on the dry-stacked wood plank technique used to build barns in the region, "resulting in a low-res construction process that can crystallize in many forms, ambiguous between the sculptural and the inhabitable," and that role could also be filled by a stegosaurus.
↑ This neat little thing by Chilean architect Smiljan Radic was designed to express the "domesticity" of the fact that the urban exteriors of Krumbach "seem to be the natural extension of small, protected interior spaces" while also creating the "feeling of familiar estrangement." Also, it has a birdhouse!
↑ In coming up with this piece of origami, the designers at Architecten de Vylder Vinck Taillieu hope to answer the question of "how it is possible that a simple idea of a roof originates from a constantly re-occurring vision of a Sol Lewitt drawing and how that drawing was once positioned between doorbells and a light switch and how then, at one moment in the month of April, between winter and spring, white and colour made that drawing appear completely different and how then a bus stop had to be invented in that month of April." How indeed! Design Boom has the full set of entries.
· Sou Fujimoto among architects for bus stop designs in Krumbach, Austria [Design Boom]
· An Austrian Town May Get This Fujimoto-Designed Bus Stop [Curbed National]