Trandafirul Sweetshop

Location – in the historical center of Timi[oara, the fortified town, in a massive building dating from the 18th century: the Dejan palace. Superimposed and with a facade altered in the early 19th century, the palace has fully preserved its «anatomy»: an inner yard with arches, symmetrical façade pierced by a vaulted gallery, two large vaulted spaces on the ground floor, on both sides of the gallery, segmented by a large structural wall. The confectionery has been occupying the space on the left of the entrance for several decades.
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Trandafirul Sweetshop

Location – in the historical center of Timi[oara, the fortified town, in a massive building dating from the 18th century: the Dejan palace. Superimposed and with a facade altered in the early 19th century, the palace has fully preserved its «anatomy»: an inner yard with arches, symmetrical façade pierced by a vaulted gallery, two large vaulted spaces on the ground floor, on both sides of the gallery, segmented by a large structural wall. The confectionery has been occupying the space on the left of the entrance for several decades.

The principle of the approach – the refurbishment of this confectionery – within the limits of a very small budget– relied on two intervention levels:
– consolidating and «concentrating» the presence of the
historical space as a major element;
– superimposing subtle contemporaneous elements which
strengthen the spatial definition.

1. The interior space has been approached as a double reality:
– as a geometrical abstraction, released from all additions, partitions, decorations and improvements, reduced to its cleanest expression, uniformly coated and painted in white, thus unveiling all the force of its powerful definition–vault, piercings.
– as a materiality, the flesh concealed behind the abstraction. To this end, cut-outs were made in the
plaster, the background wall (the wall of the gallery) and several walls of recesses were completely exposed, and a violent cut was made in the ceiling. The brick was carefully cleaned to gain a «flesh-like» appearance.

2. The interventions limited themselves to several anatomic pieces, capable of «playing» both geometrical and organic roles:
– screens with metal lamellas on the edges, filtering the light, or the perception of the rugged wall with its wounds set off by occasional spots;
– a light «bar» like the piece of a strange skeleton, abstract but at the same time natural in its organic references (to ribs, spikes etc.) – a directional, as well as rhythmical element;
– black uniform flooring;
– small contemporaneous, sophisticated images of the historical area, framed in metal.

Unfortunately, the proposed furniture– essential and dematerialized – could not be made. The existing conventional furniture was uniformly covered in white varnish, like the walls, becoming an abstraction in its turn. Throughout the entire operation, any «stylistic», «historical» or «memorable» references have been carefully avoided.

TEAM

Architect: Ioan Andreescu

Colaborator: Marius Miclaus, Beatrice Lucaci

Location: Timisoara, Romania

Client: Cofetaria «Trandafirul» S.R.L.

Building period: 1993 - 1993

Photography: Ioan Andreescu