art pieces, and house-shaped containers cantilevered past the constraints of the
site, resulting in an extraordinary departure from the context.
Similarly, the Majadas café is open-air with no glass, connecting the project to the
pedestrian walkways, because its exterior consists only of custom operable folding
shutters comprised of steel panels inter-woven with dowels. It skins the existing
commercial center’s facade to create a greater impression of a unified whole when
seen from all three free sides.
“Bringing the outside in” is a popular architectural concept right now, but
Taller KEN embodied it in an unorthodox way on the Zona 14 Canopy. Whereas
some firms accomplish the strategy with glass, transparency, and views outside,
Melitonov almost literally brought the outside in using 1,000 pounds of thread
hanging from the steel structure, allowing the canopy to act as both solar shade
and sound-absorbent surface, making the space cool, intimate, and natural.
More touches from the natural world are found on the Alessa jewelry store project.
Pastel tones are contrasted with organic textures and natural materials such as
plywood, linen, and rope. Jewelry is displayed in custom wood furniture and
with mirrors and textile curtains. The natural softness contrasts with the golden,
It’s this blending of worlds that made Melitonov and his firm a perfect subject
for our People + Places issue.
“As a native New Yorker, I find I can sometimes be cynical about things happening
here,” he said. “But in spending time around the world, it opens things up. It’s very
much about inspiration, experimentation, and widening your perspective.”
And that’s what makes him a true mover and shaker.
TOP TO BOTTOM The Zona 14 House combines
elements of fashion, design, art, objects,
and dining in a way that is playful and
new for the viewer. The building’s facade
takes inspiration from remnants of both Art
Deco and Spanish colonial periods in the
region. The result makes it appear like a
fabric has been stretched over the whole
building. The canopy at Zona 14 evokes
the palpable feeling of being in nature.
Bringing the outside in is something
architects usually try to accomplish with
glass and transparency. However, a variety
of colors, textures, and patterns also
achieves this result and even heightens
one’s sensation of the natural environment.
TOP TO BOTTOM On the
Concepción project, house-shaped containers cantilever
past the constraints of the
site, creating something
extraordinary from the
context. To challenge the
infill typology of the generic
suburban shopping center,
this subversive approach
creates the eye-catching
feeling of an art installation.