SESC Pompéia

My last post from São Paulo is of SESC Pompéia, Lina Bo Bardi’s final major architectural project, which she started work on in 1977 and was opened in 1982. It was an old industrial site, a drum factory, converted into the Centro de Lazer Fábrica da Pompéia, a very upmarket and much more idealistic version of a British municipal leisure centre, inspired, to an extent, by the Centre Pompidou and much influenced by Bo Bardi’s residual communism. She, like Mendes da Rocha later, sandblasted walls and brought the old buildings back to their original condition:-

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She added a huge great concrete block to the west which contains a swimming pool and, I assume, other facilities above (it’s a big building):-

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It’s a building of spectacular obduracy. To the south is another block which presumably contains more leisure facilities:-

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What makes the project not exactly playful, more Piranesian, are the concrete walkways which crisscross the space in between:-

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It’s like using concrete as line drawing.

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