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Architectural facade from Luvata brings Latvian culture to life

Perforated copper creation sheds light on Latvian tradition

(17 December 2008:)

Global metals-manufacturing and technology company, Luvata, has been awarded a contract for its perforated ‘Nordic System’ façade in a unique project that will pay tribute to the heritage of Latvian literary culture. INDIA Architects, an up-and-coming architectural firm in Latvia has selected Luvata to provide a façade for the Parventa new city library on the west coast of Latvia that will proudly recreate the handwriting of Latvian’s father of folk songs, Krišjānis Barons.

The perforated creation will cover 700m2 of the outside of the new building, combining modern design with traditional, durable copper, and re-creating the text from the Latvian “daina” (folk song). The copper façade will sit in front of a light-coloured concrete fiberboard, engulfing the building in handwriting and the lyrics of the famous folk-song.

The exterior of the new city library is primarily concrete, glass and copper and is round in shape, while the interior design of the library delivers a compatible modern, minimalist impression. The total area is 1500m2 on three levels and construction began in April 2008 with completion planned for the summer of 2009. 

“Copper has been seen on some of the oldest churches, museums and other buildings of important use in Europe for centuries and therefore it was a logical choice in designing the new Parventa library, states Ivars Kalvāns, Project Architect with INDIA Architects the first prize winning architecture firm.  “Our vision incorporated the heritage and tradition of Latvia into a modern design. Working in partnership with Luvata, we were able to develop a solution that brought our vision to life.”

“Architects, engineers and designers now have the unique opportunity to incorporate script, text or images into their designs using Luvata’s advanced technology that strategically places small holes or perforations in the copper to create works of art”, states Juha-Pekka Susi, Sales Engineer for Luvata’s Nordic Systems. “This creative flexibility can add significantly to a building’s architectural appeal.”

The text reads, “Venta nesa pa vilnīti / Zelta krēslu līgodama / Sit vilnīti maliņā / Būs manai māsiņai” which translates to “Venta brought on its waves / The Golden Chair / Beat a wave to a shore / Will be for my little sister”. Although the exact origin of the daina is not known, the handwriting is easily distinguishable to Latvians as that of Krišjānis Barons, the Father of folk songs.  Barons dedicated his life to compiling 217,996 folk-song texts and he is credited for the 19th century Latvian national awakening.  The handwritten folk songs are kept in the well-known Dainu skapis, a filing cabinet for all the folk songs that were documented by Barons himself.

Ivars Kalvāns explains why Luvata won the contract: “Luvata’s breadth of experience, wide spectrum of products and their unique use of perforated façade was very appealing to us initially however, when Luvata made the perforation sample in scale of 1:1, we knew Luvata was the obvious choice.”

Luvata’s Nordic System façade delivers the complete package including panels, cassettes and fasteners measured to exact specifications for simplified installation. The copper metal offers durability, low maintenance and has lower life cycles costs when compared with alternative materials.  In addition, environmental research into the use of copper as a façade considers several factors including run-off from the copper surface and concludes quite favorably for the use of copper.

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About Luvata

Luvata is the leading international metals supplier of solutions, services, components and materials for manufacturing and construction. Luvata’s solutions are used in industries such as power generation, architecture, automotive, transport, medicine, air-conditioning, industrial refrigeration, consumer products and construction. The company’s continued success is attributed to its longevity, technological excellence and strategy of building partnerships beyond metals. Employing over 8,000 staff in 18 countries, Luvata works in partnership with customers such as Siemens, Toyota, CERN, Shaaz, and DWD International.


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