Organic forms conveys dark history

Sleuk Rith Institute in Phnom Penh, Cambodia by Zaha Hadid

LIKE SOME CASTLE from Game of Thrones, the geometric shapes and wooden towers will be reflected in the surrounding ponds. Work on building the Sleuk Rith Institute began in January 2015 and there is no official date for its opening. The institute will be a memorial repository of archive material from the time of the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s, when around 1.7 million Cambodians were killed or died during forced labour. A library, a research centre and a school specialising in human rights will also be moving in, once it is completed.

Zaha Hadid Architects wanted to create an organic building with space for thinking, meetings and reflection. The institute is being built in five wooden modules that will be positioned as separate volumes at the base that are linked across the different levels. The five towers, three to five storeys high, create light and space. The geometric shapes and the supporting structures have been inspired by Cambodian temple traditions.«


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