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Most people, if they came across a dilapidated cement factory in the middle of nowhere, would keep walking and think nothing of it. But Ricardo Bofill isn’t like most people. Where most people would have seen an eyesore he saw a unique opportunity.
Now, almost forty-five years after he stumbled across the ruined property, he has transformed this abandoned and ugly building in the home and work space of his dreams.
Man creates his dream home in dilapidated cement factory
The factory, which is located on the outskirts of the Spanish city of Barcelona, was built during the Second World War but didn’t last very long. The factory closed down during the Franco period and was essentially left to nature. This meant that when Bofill purchased the property and the surrounding land, there was a huge amount of work to be done before they could begin to realize his unique architectural vision. None of the rooms are the same, and there are a number of highly creative areas in both the interior and the exterior which can be used for relaxation. In addition to that, Bofill also works from the factory part of which has been modified to create an artistic studio.
Perhaps the most striking aspect of the incredibly unique property is the work on the industrial chimneys which pumped foul smelling smoke into the air during the period of the Second World War. Now, these chimneys are filled with lush vegetation that spills over the sides of the incredible complex, giving it the appearance of an enchanted fairy tale palace. Indeed, it would be difficult to discern that this building was once used for manufacturing cement.
The building, which Bofill calls ‘la Fabrica,’ is clearly deeply meaningful to his current owner. He said that it had become something of a metaphor for his own life as he can use the space to imprint his visions of the future. “I have the impression of living… in a closed universe which protects me from the outside and everyday life” Bofill wrote about his astonishingly artful home. He also wrote that he would always have additional work to do on the building, but he considered that part of its charm as space constantly pushes him to greater creative endeavors.
One this is definitely for sure, la fabrica is a testament to the power of the human imagination to transform even the roughest spaces into areas of true beauty.