"Located just outside of Fishtail, Montana, in the shadow of the Beartooth Mountains, Tippet Rise Montana -with an extension of four million acres of wilderness- will be home to a set of experiential programs aiming at the inextricable linkage between art and nature. Music, land art and land architecture here work together to imagine possible hybridizations able to immerse the visitor into an unprecedented experience.
How the current local fauna and ranching activity can coexist with the new artistic and architectural additions is a challenge that the project needs to embrace. This challenge has fueled the research that started with our early experiences in the quarry and continued with The Truffle, advancing the knowledge and appreciation of what preexisting natural conditions can bring to us, as architects and as users of architecture.
Once again we go back to primary elements to configure site-specific architectures in harmony with nature: the matter of the place is reorganized to create inhabitable spaces where the new programs can take place and fully relate to the environment they are inserted in. Working with earth and stones, interpreting their formation logic, different techniques and processes are studied to manipulate the structural, acoustical and thermal properties of these local materials at different scales; and natural transformation processes –sedimentation, erosion, explosion- emulated to create landscapes within landscapes that will eventually return to their natural state with no negative impact.
Much more than imposing new conditions on the site, we listen to what this privileged untouched landscape offers to situate our actions in an ambiguous position between nature, architecture, art and landscape engineering and explore new tools for the development of technologies that use available resources to discover architecture in direct conversation with landscape.
Unpredictability becomes part of the architectural process and architecture completely rooted."
Cultivated structures are structures of landscape. Made of landscape, from landscape and of landscape. They understand the logic of the land (geology) and owe their morphology to the emulation of natural processes and their tectonic, to the monolithic petrification remaining after the solidification of fluid mass. A cyclopean mass built with stone, earth and water, binded with concrete, an earthy mortar that removes existing matter and reinforces it to give new meaning and tension, different to those of its previous state of rest. The new forms obtained are twinned with those, taken from the place, that contain and support them during the setting time, and from this temporary linkage they retain their memory and imprint. Hence they are structures of landscape, because they are born from it and give it order, transforming energy into inhabitable space inside matter, which unfolds to house a new program polarized among all the plateaus, ridges, canyons and hills of brutal beauty that belong to the intact nature of the Rocky Mountains in Montana, in the frontier with the Yellowstone Park.
The creative process that helps to imagine these structures before provoking them on site, is not implemented by means of a plan, an idea sketched on paper that progressively takes definition, detail and materiality. As the native Indians who occupied the lands of North America, knowledge is accessed through a vision, an identification of the known world with the sacredness of the place: an interpretation based on the admired contemplation of nature and its ability to create through processes of great architectural beauty and sensitivity: sedimentation, erosion, explosion, fracture. The place as reference to itself. The landscape as palette of material resources, artistic expression and mechanical strength. The project as an act of reflection that learns from natural processes and abstracts them in processes of invention, without previous architecture, without an idea, without relationship or circumstance that denies or stops the urge to create a space within the limits of matter. We control the time, we interpret the visible world and induce a variable of uncertainty in the creative action to seduce the form and provoke sensible interpretation that mediates between what happened - an action- and what resulted. The intersection between perception and physical action creates the object as an abstract structure. This intelligent negotiation between the unconscious and the reason, the two most active poles of our psyche, explains architecturally seemingly unrelated phenomena. It is when introducing scale, place and horizon -denied to the project during the creative ecstasy- that all the architectural truth unfolds and the "space" is revealed. This is the halted time that has been expressed verbally, visually and documented through a dance in which several members of Ensamble Studio became actively involved in the creative ritual. The subsequent decoding, and its interpretation to transform trance into knowledge, is the architectural practice that translates the amulet into intellectual, physical and digital space. This other time is to come.