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Caracol de Viento Culturans Pavillion I

- architecture -


Caracol de Viento is a place where art, history and ecology come together and are presented in a joyful way: as a medium for play in public space. Inspired by cosmological ideas of the pre-Columbian Mesoamerica, the pavillion is a contemporary temple for environmental creativity.

The ‘shell’ is a recycled PET bottle-based rain water harvesting mesh. This also functions as a perceptual ambience of coloured light (LED lighting) and sound (attached pinwheels resonate with the wind).

Superstructure: Compound bamboo structure with recycled structural steel joints. Native bamboo species involved: Guadua angustifolia and Phyllostachys bambusoides
2. Tensile steel structure with volcanic rocks as counterweight.
3. Understructure: Bamboo tie rod truss structure and recycled wood flooring.
Water harvesting system

4. Recycled PET bottle & PVC hose conductive mesh formed by catenary structural geometry.5. Temporal PVC-based lightweight membrane.6. Helium-filled ballons (for lifting).
7. Plastic containers for Mexico City’s water analysis and treatment.
Landscape / energy generation

8. Solar Panels for interior LED lighting
9. Wind turbine for interior LED lighting
10. Graphic communication system.
11. Pedal generator for exterior LED lighting

12. Interiorly, the pavillion housed 5 sensorial mechanisms/kinetic sculptures for play. ‘5’ was an underlying symbol for the Mesoamerican set of time/space regarding cultural products. The mechanisms were meant to share those ideas via perceptual stimuli: audible, visible and haptic.


The Pavillion sheltered 5 mechanisms or kinetic sculptures for playful interaction. The number 5 is a symbol in mesoamerican space-time conception; from which cultural products are derived. The mechanisms conveyed in a perceptible way this ideas.
A. Mito

A kaleidoscope of traslucid and reflective effects, activated through a small wheel.
B. Ciclo
The 'watch' of the pavilion, beginning with counterweighs in balance, some pulleys move a crank with connecting rods that provoke the activation of a gyroscope.
C. Forma
A 'cocoon' that opens up to project on its inside lights in every direction.
D. Rito
A sound and percussion station that aims to create collective harmony. 6 bamboo flutes and 18 'teponaztli'; all designed to provoke different notes.
E. Ceiba Central
A wind propulsory, the 'wings' and helix are activated though the collaboration of 4 people peddling.

If you wish to see blueprints and other technical information of the project, click here.

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