A Cantina, the traditional canteen reinterpreted through a modern filter

A Cantina-Estudio Nomada-Santos-Diez-architecture-arquitectura-more-with-less-design (01)The City of Culture of Galicia (the Cidade da Cultura de Galicia or simply Cidade da Cultura) is a cultural center in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, designed by a group of architects led by Peter Eisenman. The debate and controversy surrounding the construction of this architectural complex does not obscure the fact that the ensemble of cultural facilities includes notable projects and interventions. A Cantina, a project by Spanish architects Estudio Nómada, is certainly one of them.

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Located in two annexe buildings in the Archive of Galicia – one of the buildings within the Cidade da Cultura -, A Cantina alludes, throughout a contemporary design, to popular culture in Galicia. The two premises – a cafeteria and a museum shop respectively -, are linked by two apertures carved into the dividing wall. This allows using each side of the wall simultaneously as done traditionally on canteens at Galician villages.

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A long counter runs through the wall unifying the two spaces that make up A Cantina. Over this element, geometric and colorful tiles recall traditional Galician folk art demonstrations.

The sum of the references used in A Cantina subliminally alludes to ordinary sensations of Galician cultural identity

The tables in the canteen area are arranged in parallel under tree-like sculptures, meant to evoke the gatherings of people during rural summer festivities. The schematic trees have an aluminium frame beneath its oak exterior and can incorporate additional lightning.

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The museum shop next door features bookshelves and counters with different dimensions and heights distributed randomly. This wooden shelving can be adjusted to accommodate all potential products on sale.

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Photography is by Héctor Santos-Díez

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