Architecture and Design

ARCO space with trees and benches

Architecture and Design at ARCOmadrid 2022


Burgos & Garrido Arquitectos

Architects: Paco Burgos, Ginés Garrido

Managing Architect: Daniel Guerra

The construction of a small city

This year completes a cycle of four in which BGA has designed ARCO’s exhibition space. It has been an enriching challenge, journeying from the known to the new, that has enabled us to work with a model that is perfected with experience, is reconstructed each year and adapts to the circumstances of each given moment.

ARCO is a large public space, that retains the personality of a bazaar, but follows the layout of a graticule. As the designers of this instantaneous metropolis, we have endeavoured to add order to the set of streets and avenues to create a more legible space where orientation and encounter are rendered easy. We have sought to imbue the fair with a recognisable identity, using the variations allowed by its fleeting nature to build a repertoire of resources rich in nuances, while maintaining and refining certain strategies such as the use of colour, spatial rules and certain geometries that facilitate flow, rhythm and noise control. The biggest success of these strategies has perhaps been to carve out large common areas, so necessary to balance the intensity of the gallery visit with spaces to foster a casual chat, a stroll and exchange. 

On this edition ARCO celebrates itself. The Fair turns 40 (+1) and this anniversary coincides with a stronger and more enthusiastic need to meet than any of the previous editions, reasserting the idea that the fair is fundamentally a great space for the collective encounter. This new situation will once again transform the main axis, the natural meeting space, that links the halls and streets of this little city that is ARCO.


Pedro Pitarch.

The ARCO 40 (+1) section is conceived as an imaginary museum. An intervention that proposes an inversion of the spatial logics usually applied to art fairs.

Unlike a traditional distribution in which each galleries’ space is usually perceived as an external façade accessible from an aisle; the ARCO 40 (+1) section is conceived as a purely interior experience, a sequence of connected rooms that import the museum context to the fair.

The entire interior is content. Each gallery has an identical space but each one adjusts to the requirements of the pieces exhibited. Almost as if we were crossing the rooms of a museum, the section obviates any circulation spaces, allowing the visitor to drift instead from room to room.

This migration from the fair to museum architecture is intensified by a change in the rhythm of circulation. For this, the grid plan of the project is rotated 9º, breaking the orthogonality of the rest of the fair distribution and generating a deceleration of the visitor’s passage.

It is precisely this gesture, this rotation of the matrix, that creates an unexpected architectural element. An outer skin that acts as an archive. A space left between grid and perimeter. A thick skin, fitted with a programme, that fleshes out and serves not only as a support for the exhibition of the historic archive of the 40th Anniversary, but also incorporates architectural content: a work zone, a projection room, a meeting area and the ARCO archive.

Lastly, the section is split in two by the fair’s central aisle, which drastically cuts through the grid, placing the visitor directly inside this museum interior.

The project for the ARCO (+1) section lacks an architectural elevation because its elevation lies precisely in its content, the works exhibited by the galleries and artists, the very history of the fair’s forty years.


Burgos & Garrido Arquitectos

Architects: Paco Burgos, Ginés Garrido

Managing architect: Daniel Guerra

With the collaboration of AMRE Foro de Marcas Renombradas Españolas: Actiu, Cosentino, Estiluz, Fama, Joquer, Lladró, LZF, Naturtex, Ondarreta y Sancal.. And Naturpiedra y Consentino.

Natural ruins

The lounge contains a mise-en-scène in which intuitively incompatible spatial experiences overlap, within an artificial landscape that directs the eye to nature’s beauty through the exhibition of elements representative of its primitive composition.

A set of rocks that creates an unusual and ephemeral topography which, nonetheless, is presented almost as a monument to disappearance. Its presence triggers the memory of another landscape.

This small territory follows its own logic, presenting certain tensions, to be resolved or explored by the visitor. The layout of its elements enables passage through its interior, delving deep into the realm of physical experimentation, allowing social and personal interaction, immersed in the material form of nature in an artificial atmosphere.

Las Dos Mercedes

Las 2 Mercedes is a studio founded in 2012 by Mercedes Peralta and Mercedes Valdenebro. Its main activity is interior architecture and decoration. We seek to create projects with good taste, warmth and a unique identity. We are a dynamic and professional team, and are focused mainly on the development of hotels, restaurants and private homes. The studio of Las 2 Mercedes is responsible for designing and decorating the Fundación Lounge for the upcoming edition of ARCOmadrid 2022. This collaboration project will include works from the Fundación ARCO collection.

Isimar + Hempe

Outdoor terrace measuring 170 m2, between halls 7 and 9, that will house different actions during the fair, and will serve as a meeting-point for those attending private visits. The space is decorated with furnishings by Isimar and Hempe.