Arvo Pärt Center
Fuensanta Nieto, Enrique Sobejano, Luhse&Tuhal (local partner), Arau Acústica (acoustic consultant)
PIKE OÜ, HEVAC OÜ
Competition & awards
Open, 2014, 1st Prize
Kellasalu tee 3, Laulasmaa 76702, Harju County
Arvo Pärt Center Foundation
In 2018, as part of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, the Arvo Pärt Center in Laulasmaa was opened. The center was designed as a place for concentration and study, and to keep the creative legacy of the great Estonian composer alive. The architects of the new Centre building are Fuensanta Nieto and Enrique Sobejano from the Spanish architecture firm Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos, who won the international architectural design competition with their entry Tabula in 2014. The construction project was prepared jointly with the Estonian architectural office Luhse & Tuhal. The construction was financed by the Estonian government.
According to the architects, their design was inspired by the silence and geometry of Arvo Pärt’s music, creating a balance between the modern architectural form and the natural environment. Besides the archive and employees’ workspaces, the building with several courtyards and no right angles also accommodates a library, a 150-seat chamber hall, an exhibition area, a video hall, and classrooms.
The center is situated in the costal forest of Laulasmaa amidst a dense forest of tall pines. The design originates from a geometric pattern formed by pentagonal patios. Variations of the size and position of the small courtyards generate spatial sequences that configure the different areas of the plan. In the exterior, the part of the structure that ties the entire project together is the large roof. It has been conceived as a folded platform to adapt to the different heights required in the interior. The facades are treated as a filter defined by a series of thin circular columns that make up the supporting structure of the roof. The greater or lesser density in the arrangement of the pillars allows for alternate areas of great transparency with others more protected from the natural light. A slender helical observation tower and a small chapel inserted in one of the patios, complete a project in which music, landscape and architecture come into resonance.