The Catalan architectural firm OAB Ferrater, which has its headquarters in Barcelona, creates dynamic and functional spaces. The emphasis is on aesthetics and a constant dialogue between nature and the urban setting.
Carlos Ferrater, his son-in-law, Xavier Martí, and his two children, Lucía and Borja, are making great strides in international competitions. Where does Spain’s stand in the world ranking?
Spanish architecture, particularly since the economic crisis, has had to become more international, and this has given rise to a number of emblematic works all over the world. Contemporary Spanish architecture, and Catalan architecture in particular, tends to uphold the concept of public space as an extension of the city that is integrated within its surroundings.
With international projects, he prefers to talk about cities rather than countries…
Cities have a greater capacity for transformation and are coping with factors such as speculation, tough market forces and the opportunism supported by short-term policies. Architects are able to develop their work based on the highest standards if they understand the city as a landscape with all its human, social and functional connotations. This means architecture has a dual function: to take social conditions into account and, at the same time, manage to get people to identify with it.
Is the Benidorm promenade your most emblematic project?
Each project is important and represents a unique response to specific circumstances. What is special about the Benidorm promenade is that it created a place that didn’t exist. A transitional space between the sea and the city emerged, creating a homogeneous area with its own personality that brings together construction technology and nature in a single concept.
The light factor seems to run through all your projects like a common thread…
I see light as a project material and a working material. Light should be used to surprise, excite and create different moods. The Roca Barcelona Gallery may be the place that best reflects this idea, as the lighting is part of the structure of the facade.
INTERVIEW BY: CAROLINE ROTT; FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT WWW.FERRATER.COM