Skip to content

interview with concéntrico founder javier peña ibáñez as festival opens calls for submissions


concentrico is an international architecture and design festival taking place in logrono, spain. founded by architect, curator and researcher javier peña ibáñez, the festival invites visitors to explore the city through installations, encounters, activitiesand exhibitions that discuss public space and places of coexistence. several architecture studios, artists and designers have participated with site-specific installations over the past seven years, including PALMAwho, together with HANGHAR, inserted a temporary brick pavilion in an old factory’s narrow passage; plastic fantasticwho put a gigantic inflatable gold ring on the institute esudios riojanos headquarters; and benedetto bufalinowho inserted a wooden terrace directly above three vehicles that were parked on the street.

concentrico will celebrate it eighth edition from September 1 to 6, 2022and has now extended an open call for three international competitionswhose deadline for submission is March 11, 2022. the first competition focuses on the pavilion in the plaza de escuelas trevijano, which will mark the starting point for the routes and activities; the second is a competition for installations with a double location that makes visible a similar reality in neighboring countries, spain and portugal; and the third focuses on an installation in calle obispo bustamantewhich asks us to rethink the street as a central element of community life in cities. we spoke with javier peña ibáñez to find out more about the festival’s history, key moments and ongoing open calls. read the interview in full and explore some key projects from previous years below.

interview with concéntrico founder javier peña ibáñez as festival opens calls for submissionsplastique fantastique’s RINGdeLUXE during concéntrico 04 | read more about the project here

header image: 1973 – 2021 by LANZA atelier during concéntrico 07

INTERVIEW WITH FOUNDER javier peña ibáñez

designboom (DB): how did you come up with the idea of ​​concéntrico, and what is the main purpose of the festival?

javier peña ibáñez (JPI): I always had the city very much in mind in my training as an architect. how we citizens made use of them and the feeling of belonging to a place. that’s why I thought that architecture and design had a lot to say about it, that we could create a closer relationship with public spaces and make them true places of coexistence. the idea of ​​community was always very present from the beginning. in addition, the project has many implicit ideas: dissemination, urbanity, the annual temporality as a festival, all aimed at creating a constant rhythm of knowledge.

interview with concéntrico founder javier peña ibáñez as festival opens calls for submissions
a topographic-landscape-painted by 44 flavors during concéntrico 07

DB: what are some key moments in concéntrico’s history so far?

JPI: the first edition took place in 2015 but it was based on a previous knowledge of your own projects working in the same urban context. I realized that this idea of ​​a common and shared city could not be achieved from an individual point of view, which is why we proposed this collective project that includes more than 30 entities and that not only structures its economic scope, but also the shared and multiple philosophy.

interview with concéntrico founder javier peña ibáñez as festival opens calls for submissions
types of spaces by PALMA + hanghar during concéntrico 07 | read more about the project here

DB: how has the festival evolved over the years?

JPI: the initial objective was always that international base, many perspectives on the same element: the city. and not only a specific city, such as logroño, but also issues such as the way we live, how we relate to each other, how we establish rituals, festivals, monuments. these are facts that make up the cohesion of a place and they are a response in all cultures, which is why this growth with teams from so many parts of the world is a value in itself.

interview with concéntrico founder javier peña ibáñez as festival opens calls for submissions
the wooden deck over the cars by benedetto bufalino during concéntrico 05

DB: besides the architectural installations, what are some other activities taking place during the festival?

JPI: we propose many activities that bring these urban practices closer to the public who experience and visit the festival. from conferences on international architectural contexts, to guided tours, exhibitions and meetings that reveal what lies behind each proposal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *