Chekharda is a Moscow-based architectural bureau specialised in building playgrounds made of raw materials, founded in 2014 by Russian architects Daria Bychkova and Maria Pomelova. They have built numerous playgrounds in Russia and have completed their first project in Europe, in Collserola park near Barcelona in 2019. Founder Daria Bychkova, chief architect in the Shell of the Big Water Era and the Creating Stumps projects answered to L’Architecture d’Aujourd’hui.
What is Chekharda ?
Bureau Chekharda designs and builds artistic raw nature playgrounds. Our team counts architects, engineers, production developers, technical, production and building specialists – all together about 25 people. Our tasks in both the Shell of the Big Water Era and the Creaking Stumps projects were to design from scratch a playground, then manufacture playful elements and assemble them on site. That is why the full team of the Bureau was involved in both projects.
Why raw materials?
We believe in the excellence and wisdom of nature. That is why we do our best to bring nature untouched into the urban environment. To bring the beauty of nature to the people’s eyes and minds through a specific artistic approach. We believe that a kid’s play in a wild forest or on an open countryside field with unpredictable natural shapes and raw materials gives more for the development of children’s body, mind and spirit than any other human made environment. There is a lack of pure nature in cities. We create natural playgrounds to compensate for this deficit.
What do you see for the collective in the future?
We plan to go more international in the coming couple of years. We truly believe in our idea and its benefits for people worldwide and dream to make nature a bigger part of each citizen’s life. We’ve already started a collaboration with IAAC (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia), Spain, on developing a fully sustainable prototype of playful structure. In November 2019 we built a climbing playground in Collserola park using only material located in the park and following wise principles of cultivating the trees from the woods to maintain wood’s overall health.
By means of our project we plan to go further in developing a sustainable construction concept implying usage of unaltered tree geometry and other raw materials. Relating the aim to broaden our subjects to other things than playgrounds, we’re already heading there. Recently we started to get some requests to design and build art object without playful function. And with the further development of the outdoor park culture we believe this demand will rise up and we are glad to answer it!
To learn more about Bureau Chekharda : www.chekharda.com
By Margaux Racanière