Designer Jürgen Mayer H.

Metropol Parasol
Design: J. Mayer H. (Jürgen Mayer H.), Germany
Client: Ayuntamiento de Sevilla, Spain; SACYR, S.A.U., Grupo Sacyr Vallehermoso, S.A., Spain

Special: red dot best practice

Jürgen Mayer H., Germany

While manufacturers and designers around the world are being invited to register their works for the “red dot award: product design 2013”, we are presenting you with a selection of the award-winning works from last year’s competition in this special publication. The regular registration period ends on 18 January 2013.

In 2012, Jürgen Mayer H. received the “red dot: best of the best” for the outstanding design of “Metropol Parasol”.

“The architecture of the Metropol Parasol impresses with its sensuous expressiveness: a combination of an innovative wooden structure with high-tech materials that turns into a multifunctional urban meeting space”, stated the renowned experts of the red dot jury.


A new icon

The medieval Plaza de la Encarnación, located in the city centre of Seville in the south of Spain, is of particular historic significance. The place used to be the centre of city life and a vibrant market. The fascinating wooden structure of the Metropol Parasol serves as a distinctive icon by highlighting the historic significance of the medieval city centre. This architecture aimed at redefining the place as a new and contemporary urban centre.

The organic structures of the Metropol Parasol both convey openness and serve an integrative function, since they allow for a great variety of activities for tourists and locals of the city of Seville alike. Both inside the parasols and underneath its protective structures, the Metropol Parasol houses multiple bars and restaurants, a farmers market as well as the archaeological museum, complemented by a panorama terrace on the very top of the Parasol as an outstanding attraction.

The Metropol Parasol is the expression of a highly sophisticated understanding of architecture. Realised as an innovative bonded-timber construction with a polyurethane coating, these parasols seem to grow out of the archaeological excavation site and serve as both an integrative symbol in the city of Seville and a visual landmark. Thus they establish a vivid relationship between the historical and the contemporary city.

red dot: Is there a motive that is of significance to your work?
Jürgen Mayer H.: Our works are concerned with issues of technology and space, with their relation to nature and to the human body.

What are the greatest challenges that you currently see in your branch of industry?
It really is very hard to balance courage and risk-taking when conceptualising and realising architecture.

Which developments have a particularly strong influence on the design of today?
Architecture is commentary on our society and a kind of political and social statement – in terms of how it influences the interdependencies within society.