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Part of the Young Architects Program, an initiative for promoting emerging designers, the Latin America branch was established and launched in 2011 by CONSTRUCTO, in collaboration with MOMA and MOMA PS1. It’s an active platform for creating new opportunities for talented Latin American architects to explore and design within the scope of collective-use spaces and informal live events, with strong emphasis on sustainability issues. In 2011 it was particularly oriented towards young Chilean architects, few of whom are members of the GUN Arquitectos team, a collective whose Water Cathedral Project was chosen as this year’s winning proposal.

The Water Cathedral is an outdoor installation, created primarily for public use. Its large horizontal nave is made up of numerous vertical components which vary in height and density. It is also a facility that generates a water injection system, with rainwater flowing through the stalactites. When filled with small amounts of water, the components act as interfaces out of which water droplets gradually flow and cool visitors below. The dynamic canopy of different density achieves less contrast between sunny areas and darker ones. The stalagmites, rising from the ground, create a cave-like topography of urban furniture which welcomes visitors and provide them with shaded sitting areas.

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