Personal Info

Name: Aitor Frías-Sánchez

Nationality: Spain

Instagram: @afabstudio


Name: Joaquin Perailes-Santiago

Nationality: Spain

Instagram: @afabstudio


-FINALIST of Non Architecture Award Competition | Category: Aspatial


This project arises in the context of an architectural competition organized by the Madrid City Council to create a new library that completes the city’s library network, but we never sent it because it ended up being too experimental. 

Everything started from raising this question: Is it possible to imagine a different public building, beyond the iconic architecture pattern in which contemporary architecture seems to have stagnated?

Instead, we imagined a secret garden in Madrid city, hidden behind its four walls. A contemporary paradise conceived exclusively as a space where you can read calmly.

The only way to access this space is by using the code that the books, borrowed in any library of the city, carry. The book is the key. It is not a metaphor. It is necessary to take it with you, to transport it around the city and to scan the code in the only door on the big wall.

Likewise, the only way to locate the exact place where the garden is located is through the map that is delivered with the borrowed book in the source library.

In this project, we imagined a totally accessible building, but at the same time, secret, only for people with enough curiosity to find it. Like the “for crazy people only” door that Harry Haller finds by chance in the middle of the city in the book “The Steppen Wolf”; or like the rabbit hole that discovers our beloved Alice and that leads to a wonderful secret world.



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