Glass Facade with the Sound of Water
Foto: Corinne Cuendet / Chiché Architectes
The EPCL vocational school in Lausanne, which was built in the early 1970s, has been given a new glass facade as part of an energy renovation project. So-called Piezo metal discs are integrated into the facade, and these, like the membranes of a loudspeaker, make the building sound like running water. The idea is the result of a cooperation between the architects Chiché and the artist Rudy Decelière, who wanted the building to serve as a reminder of the underground canalised river Flon in
the same district.
The round Piezos are sandwiched between two layers of Swisslamex Colordesign laminated safety glass from Glas Trösch and are wired in such a way that they can be controlled via amplifiers with the sound composed by Decelière. The approx. 13,000 parts have different sizes and together appear as a stylised wave that extends over the entire surface of the facade. Between the glass panes, additionally-inserted colour foils with a black tint emphasize the golden shimmer of the Piezos in the sunlight. The colour-stable glass ensures privacy on the inside while at the same time allowing daylight to enter.