In 1973, Spanish architect Ricardo Bofill stumbled across a cement factory that stretched over four kilometres of underground tunnels and silos. He was first seduced by the contradictions and ambiguity of the space, and over the next forty years he and his team dedicated their time to creating La Fabrica — a space where work and recreation combine.
The original structure was retained and has been sculpted like a work of art ever since, in a constantly evolving project which he never sees as being complete. The estate is comprised of lush green gardens, a cathedral, a work space for his architecture firm — spread over four floors in the factory’s silos that are draped in vines — and a residence. Bofill says of his greatest architectural adventure, “the factory is a magic place which strange atmosphere is difficult to be perceived by a profane eye. I like the life to be perfectly programmed here, ritualised, in total contrast with my turbulent nomad life”.
The exhibition space and gardens are open to the public, so if you find yourself roaming the Iberian Peninsula, La Fabrica wouldn’t go amiss.