in the mexican jungle, at the heart of the yucatan peninsula, a new arts complex has opened as part of an eco-friendly luxury resort. inspired by the abundant natural environment and the rich heritage of the local mayan culture, AZULIK uh may has been conceived as a multi-faceted and flexible venue that comprises art space, a fashion and design lab, an arts and crafts school, a recording studio, and residencies for creative talents. the project joins the adjacent IK LAB, an arts space previously featured on designboom here.


all images © enchanting transformation, 2018

 

 

founded by social entrepreneur eduardo neira, better known as roth, ‘AZULIK uh may’ will expand upon the vision reflected in his ecologically inspired resort AZULIK tulum. ‘AZULIK uh may will encourage and favor the encounter of the finest spirits of our times committed to exploring new forms of reconnecting as individuals and as a community alike, united by the shared desire to learn from the native tribes to live in harmony with the environment and to help them navigate the challenges of contemporary life under the aegis of art in a myriad of manifestations,’ says roth.


the venue is located in the mexican jungle, at the heart of the yucatan peninsula

 

 

the building itself appears to naturally rise out of the ground as a series of anthropomorphous structures connected through floating bridges and meandering paths. a 16-meter-high concrete and bejuco dome is topped with a cupola crowned by the ‘flower of life’ — a geometrical shape composed of overlapping circles arranged in a flower like pattern. meanwhile, its base unfolds according to the proportions of the fibonacci sequence.


the building appears to naturally rise out of the ground as a series of anthropomorphous structures

 

 

‘AZULIK uh may captures the soul of the location and has been carefully designed to preserve and embrace the local ecosystems,’ explains roth, who has built himself a home as part of the complex. ‘the construction process is mindful of the carbon footprint and not a single tree has been cut to make space for the buildings, instead the structures embrace the existing vegetation.’


floating bridges and meandering paths connect the site

 

 

an on-site school focusing on the universal language of art and craft seeks to bring the community together, while medical facilities combine western medicine and millennia-old mayan healing practices. an opening ceremony on november 30, 2018 will include a charity auction to raise funds for the arts and crafts school supported by enchanting transformation, the foundation created by roth.


the materials used throughout the scheme have been carefully selected

 

 

throughout 2019, AZULIK uh may will continue to develop a program to support its current facilities. the site will evolve and expand to include an art museum composed of pavilions housing site-specific installations, a recycling and sustainability research center, and a hub for new technologies.


not a single tree has been cut to make space for the buildings


the new structures embrace the existing vegetation


the building takes on an organic appearance


the project has been conceived as a multi-faceted and flexible venue


openings provide views of the tree canopy overhead


a concrete and bejuco dome is topped with a cupola crowned by the ‘flower of life’


the building accommodates the site’s existing trees


the design seeks to preserve the jungle ecosystem


the arts complex opens on november 30, 2018

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