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Galicia in northern Spain has been historically characterised by its location at ‘the edge of the world’ and the resulting close relationship between the inhabited and the natural worlds, by the intense dialogue between people and nature, which is the basis of the man-made landscape. Architect Cesar Portela starts from that reality – to build an architecture whose success lies in the harmony and accord that he is able to establish with the place on which his work stands. All this through strategies such as ‘invisibility’, letting the spotlight fall on the natural elements, and having the human intervention limited to a work of counterpoint against the natural environment. As with architects Sverre Fehn in Norway or Luis Barragain in Meixico, identification with the land itself (in this case Galicia) is an active factor in each of the architectural projects undertaken by Cesar Portela.
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