B1_#005 // The Director’s Office // Georgi Belyanov:
In my previous school, Alison and Peter Smithson positioned the director’s office, rather awkwardly, in a tiny room right in front of the main staircase.As it was too small, its functions always spilled into the corridor space in front of the stairwell.This created a peculiar case of no man’s land at the heart of the building, at once used by the director, the visitors to his office, and the entirety of the floor’s occupants. And precisely in this lay its success: it was not a discrete room bound by four walls and a door, but a functional extrapolation of the building’s arterial system in which everyone was wittingly or unwittingly a participant.
This proposal takes on the idea of the director’s office as an integrated rather than an isolated space within the total space of the community it operates in. The cube is divided in three bands: an innermost cell, an intermediary space and a circulation route. While separated by a wall, the cell is devoid of a door; the privacy of the office is implied by a glass curtain, which creates an informal precinct linking it to the circulation route. The openings and a mirror inside the cell are positioned so that one can sense the presence of the director without intruding on their privacy, while at the same time the director remains aware of the movement in the building without an intrusive gaze. The formal stratification of the cube produces a functional one: the cell is the director’s space for work and private conversations; the precinct for less private ones; and the corridor for informal exchanges and impromptu encounters.
Georgi Belyanov is a Diploma student at the Architectural Association