Transformations of Wood

YAC Competition, Italy


Pinocchio Children’s Library, YAC Young Architects Competition




Shahar Glass, Simon Barazin


Honorable Mention


“Once upon a time there was… ‘a king!’ my young readers will instantly exclaim. No, children, you are wrong. Once upon a time there was a piece of wood.”

Participating projects were required to propose a plan for the new Pinocchio Children’s Library in Collodi, Italy on the site of an old paper factory.

The story of Pinocchio is the story of the human spirit inhabiting a piece of wood, no different than that of man’s first encounter with architecture – dwelling within a wooden shed.

We proposed to renovate the old factory and to construct a counterpoint of the same dimensions next to it – a dark twin. The pages of the books were liberated from their bindings to perform as architecture. Shadows are projected by human figures onto paper walls, like language formed by shady ink.

Much like Pinocchio, visitors may find themselves being watched by spectators, as they become the heroes of their journey.

The Site

The site’s cross-section is conceptually that of a forest – roots, ground, treetops. The root floor is an underground hall which will contain the auditorium and exhibition space. The ground floor is an open space of omnidirectional walking, and the treetop level is embodied in gallery floors, which allow a top-down gaze along with ambulation.

Boxes of Light