Yesterday, we featured a concrete box with a surprising series of yellow ceiling cones. The colorful interior volumes are a surprise because the exterior of the project is finished in austere and raw concrete. Today, we’re featuring another project where the interior doesn’t quite meet exterior expectations. The project here is the escola bressol in Barcelona designed by Batlle I Roig Arquitectes. Literally translated as “cradle school” if this school were a cradle it would be a rough and concrete one. Aside from the concrete faces, what makes the exterior look even more imposing is the massive and weighty cantilever that hovers over the entrance.
But inside, the story changes. Here the color unfolds across the floors and walls like a clean and multi-hued blanket laid out for the kids to enjoy. This exuberance is only reflected in surface finishes, and does not affect the restrained form that these colors veneer. There are nice child-sized details like the doors with windows for lower halves. There are also details designed to stay out of reach for small hands: things like the high door handles on the same doors as the child-centric windows. Overall, the inside is as clean and precise as the exterior, just rendered in more vibrant hues. It’s a nice surprise for kids, but also a nice surprise for people who like surprises.