Wine and Brandy Distillery Museum & Warehouse for Alliance-1892

This complex, located in an old German town in the Kaliningrad region, which was severely damaged during World War II has turned into a modern brandy distillery for our times instead.

Dec 02, 2017 | By Andrea Sim

A Distillery Museum & Warehouse for Alliance-1892

This Distillery Museum & Warehouse is built on an empty lot next to a railroad in 2016. Constructed by Lead architects, Levon Ayrapetov, Valeriya Preobrazhenskaya, Diana Grekova and Yegor Legkov for Alliance-1892, the team was tasked to create something that is symbolic to creation and rebirth. The architects explored all the possible architectural elements and the plan they came up with was to demonstrate the role of the distillery in the life of the city.

“Based on the fact that brandy ultimately comes from grapevines, rich in Christian symbolism from the Tree of Life to the Blood of Christ,” the architects incorporated several literary symbols into the design. The project quickly evolved into the creation of a highly symbolic architectural ensemble, with the main function of the warehouse to store brandy barrels. Part of the complex is to serve both public functions and receptions.

The architects proceeded with the idea to conceptualise the lower part of the warehouse building symbolic to a Yin sign, which exudes the traits of deep, cool, low and internal. Like Mother Earth as a nurturing and childbearing woman, it is tightly bound to the earth, grows into and from it, protects and preserves the life within.

Literary symbols were used in the design to conjure up images of harmonious interaction among different symbols and signs

A lot of wood and metal are some of the paired symbols that formed the shape of The Distillery Museum and Warehouse buildings. Some of the symbols formed are the opposites such as internal and external, male and female, low and high and closed and open.

Pictured above, the other end of the wooden block was deliberately constructed to look like a high-volume triangle, which means the elements of both wood and metal, according to the works of the architects, they are meant to generate space between and inside themselves, jointly organising the space around them.

For example,  the architect approach the terms ‘preservation’ and ‘nurturing’ in the form of male and female. So, based on the feminine principle, ‘preservation’ and ‘nurturing’ embody a lot of “depth, darkness, naturalness, earth, heaviness and fullness, in contrast to the masculine ideas of presentation, show, productivity, rigidity and emptiness.”

Another interesting notion was ‘He’ and ‘She’ become mates who give birth to architectural form in space. “Moving around and between, far and near, one can see how these two forms move closer, merge, stand motionless for a fraction of an instant, then disconnect to play their part in a fascinating dance.”

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