Observatory House
Stefano Boeri: I am very interested to know more about your work with Tatiana Bilbao, who is the architect who helped you with this project.
Gabriel Orozco: I designed the house. The project is based on the Jantar Mantar Astronomical Observatory, which was built in Delhi in 1724. I first visited that observatory in 1996. It took a little time for me to understand that I wanted a house inspired by that example, so I needed an architect who could help me
with the permits, with the engineering, the construction and of course with the technical drawings.
The main ideas, the whole concept – and also the circulation within, the distribution and the measurement of the rooms – all derive from that initial decision. Tatiana was perfect or the realization of this house. Her office was in charge of drawing up the detailed plans, and then we had a local engineer on site.
He was able to put together the team who built the house.
Some of the stones and material were brought by a donkey called “panchito”, and they gave him a lot of beer so he could keep working.
SB: Was this the first time that you worked with Tatiana?
GO: Yes, it was the first time.
SB: Tell me something more about the inspiration from the Jantar Mantar Astronomical Observatory.
GO: Honestly, it was just a chance thing, which took place when I was visiting India. The first time that I travelled there and saw this complex in New Delhi I was impressed. I really loved it,
but then I walked into one particular construction that is one of the several little buildings that make up the complex and I had this vision of trying to rebuild something inspired by it, because
people were really enjoying the site, walking on top, sitting on the stairs, and going up again. There was something I liked about the whole thing and I had this idea that it could be great.
A building that you can place in nature, from which you could observe nature because it is built so that you can watch the stars.
SB: The genetic code of the original observatory is conser...


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