Selected Bibliography | Bibliografia Seleccionada 1972-2019


Living Geographies

Afonso, João; Milheiro, Ana Vaz; Nunes, Jorge (eds.); Gonçalo Byrne: Geografias Vivas. Living Geographies. Lisboa: Caleidoscópio, Ordem dos Arquitectos, 2006 (Catalogue of the homonyms exhibition at the VI Architecture Biennial of São Paulo). Click on the image.

They [Byrne’s works] thus reflect, irrespective of their respective particular conditions, the will to re-centre the architectural discourse on the city and to exercise its capacity of intervention in it, proposing new relationships and enabling new readings on the context, using it as material in itself and thus reinforcing its territorial character.
— Marco Buinhas

Casabella 798

Dal Co, Francesco (ed.); Casabella 798. Milano: Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, anno LXXV, Febbraio 2011. Click on the image.

Byrne’s intervention is hidden precisely at the junction between the internal elevations of the courtyard and the new roof. In the volume once occupied by the pitched roof, he has created a fourth level that reflects the layout scheme of those below. Its presence is skillfully disguised from outside, and from the interior of the courtyard.
— Alberto Muffato

Casabella 821

Dal Co, Francesco (ed.); Casabella 821. Milano: Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, anno LXXVI, Gennaio 2013. Click on the image.

The 19th-century theater was an organism composed of clearly defined parts, juxtaposed or grafted together: the portico, the foyer, the stage, and the seating. Instead of an impossible (or at least improbable) restoration of the original situation - with the exception of the fragment of the external portico, which has been accurately restored - the new project sets out to re-create what might be called the «spatial footprint» of the building.
— Marco Mulazzani

Casabella 830

Dal Co, Francesco (ed.); Casabella 830. Milano: Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, anno LXXVII, Ottobre 2013. Click on the image.

The edge of the castle walls with the volumes of the seven towers arranged along the way welcome the new architectural presences that enhance, with contemporary aplomb, the renewed history of the construction of the castle. The gestures of Gonçalo Byrne are the expression of a quiet, tactful way of working based on measure and balance; aided by the small scale of the project, they provide a response to the needs of the site in an appropriate, contemporary way avoiding any attempts at imitation or camouflage.
— Giovanna Crespi

Casabella 839-840

Dal Co, Francesco (ed.); Casabella 839-840. Milano: Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, anno LXXVIII, Luglio-Agosto 2014. Click on the image.

Byrne and Falcão de Campos have revived the Pombalino fabric almost by means of an analogy with what Aldo Rossi designates as a machine of memory, when he writes that “places are stronger than persons, the fixed scene stronger than human events.” Contrary to what one might normally expect, the transformation of what exists does not imply a restriction, but becomes a stimulus: discovering and associating, prolonging and revealing internal and external spaces, the architects have interpreted the simultaneously public and private vocation of the Pombalino project.
— Ana Tostões

Oris 89

Grimmer, Vera (ed.); Oris 89. Zagreb: Oris, year XVI, 2014. Click on the image.

Among the extensive portfolio of Gonçalo Byrne, a substantial part is dedicated to heritage. Given the maieutic nature of his work, using design as a mode of inquiry to unravel factors of reality, this should not be regarded as a surprise. Heritage requires a careful assessment of synchronic data, related to the current condition of a preexistent structure. But it also imposes the mandate of probing diachronic traces from the origins of a material artifact and its subsequent layers.
— Diogo Seixas Lopes

700+25 Architecture at the UniverCity

Bandeirinha, José António; Grande, Nuno; Pedro, Désirée (eds.); 700+25 Architecture at the UniverCity. Coimbra: Anozero, Edições Almedina, December 2015 (Catalogue of the homonyms exhibition at Coimbra Biennial of Contemporary Art Anozero’15). Click on the image.

In this framework, the consolidation of urbanity(ies) potentially occurs at various scales. While the verticality of the towers assumes a singular profile in the distant landscape, the horizontality of the volume that articulates them consolidate the image of Campus II in the city, over the Mondego River valley. In a closer look, the building seeks inclusion in the plan, whose lot boundaries and terrain topography have particular implications in the design solutions.
— Carolina Coelho

Oris 97

Grimmer, Vera (ed.) Oris 97. Zagreb: Oris, year XVIII, 2016. Click on the image.

The urban element in Byrne’s work has a geographical connotation, a vast reading of the territory; the architectonic element is related to the language of the buildings, which is more effective in a particular circumstance. Byrne thus manages to combine perennial and ephemeral values, achieving a high degree of consistency and some universal balance. According to a certain tradition of Portuguese architecture, the pre-existing and the modern, the archaic and the new, can engage in a dialogue without theoretical contradiction.
— Jorge Figueira

Seven Circles

Byrne, Gonçalo; “A circunvalação dissolvida / The dissolved ring”. In Costa, Pedro Campos; Pinto, Eduardo Costa (eds.); Sete Círculos / Seven Circles. Porto: Circo de Ideias, 2016. Click on the image.

What has always fascinated me about Lisbon is the way the city always draws attention to the transformations it’s gone through over a period of over two thousand years. It is a showcase of cities with a little bit of everything. Starting with a strong pattern of Arabian city spreading through the slopes of the primitive alcazaba, the medina that superimposes itself on the Roman city fragments which, in Lisbon, found strong resistance against their Hippodamian plan in the form of the city’s pronounced topography.
— Gonçalo Byrne

Public without Rhetoric

Costa, Nuno Brandão; Mah, Sérgio (eds.); Public without Rhetoric. Maia: Monade, DGArtes, 2018 (Catalogue of the Portuguese Pavilion at the 16th International Architecture Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia). Click on the image.

The proposed transformation of the Thalia Theatre thus exhibits a formal and conceptual complexity that is unprecedented among standard approaches to intervening in heritage buildings.
— Nuno Brandão Costa