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Back to the Roots

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‘Back to the Roots’ creates an attractive new meeting place at the Heritage Square located in the heart of the village of Slochteren. Centred around a tree, the terraced landscape becomes a multi-sided podium, tribune, playground and exhibition space all in one. The 30,000 multi-coloured, textured bricks are laid in a way that forms an earthy camouflage-like gradient stepping up towards the tree, and then back down creating seating around its trunk. 

MVRDV’s folly, ‘Back to the Roots’, is one of ten pavilions designed to sit within the landscape of the Fraeylemaborg estate in Slochteren, Netherlands. In 2014 a design contest was organised by the Fraeylemaborg Estate Foundation to create the follies, to be used as public exhibition spaces.

‘Back to the Roots’ creates an attractive new meeting place at the Heritage Square located in the heart of the village. Centred around a tree, the terraced landscape becomes a multi-sided podium, tribune, playground and exhibition space all in one. The 30,000 multi-coloured, textured bricks are laid in a way that forms an earthy camouflage-like gradient stepping up towards the tree, and then back down creating seating around its trunk.

In Early 2016, a group of MVRDV architects and co-founder Nathalie de Vries, with assistance of local students, spent 5 days building the folly layer by layer. The follies all are designed to remain on site for at least five years and will be maintained by volunteers. Throughout this time, the tree in the centre of MVRDV’s folly will continue to grow into its place.

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