Madrid, Spain

A shelter is a place to look for protection and security, a refuge from outside’s hostility.
We propose to transform this forgotten transit area by changing its meaning using color and typography.
The word REFUGIO (SHELTER) surrounds the crossing pedestrians under the shadow of this bus station on their way to the plaza above.


We deal with a very complex space made up of many walls, windows, and a ceiling that darkens the entire area.
This civil engineer structure also has several pillars and beams, which take away any trace of identity from the space. But at the same time, they are the differential aspect from any other type of workspace.


We work by tripling the word "REFUGIO" and overlapping its three colors. The transparency combinations create six color shades that rhythmically repeat thanks to the vertical proportions of Sudtipos type foundry's Fixture typeface.

The rhythm is broken by each characters' singularities, such as the R leg, the G crossbar, or the F or E arms.


We intend to create an abstract color space that comes straight from something specific as a word. Then, we try to wrap and clean the station for the pedestrians to immerse in the work. For this purpose, we unfold the structure and omit the tridimensionality, reducing it to a single flat canvas where we write the word. Then we "fold it" back again. When analyzed separately, the ceiling and the walls become one abstract skin based on color stripes which provide light and color to the area. By working with the unfolded architecture, we can work on walls and ceiling by applying the word literally: to create a shelter using the word shelter.

Information and credits
  • Total intervention: approximately 2.250 m2
  • Plastic paint on concrete and granite tiles
  • Project developed thanks to Concejalía de Desarrollo Urbano Sostenible and Distrito Centro de Ayuntamiento de Fuenlabrada
  • Thanks to Marta Nieto Varela and Eva María Vega Sevilla for trusting in our work
  • Studio support: María Corrales
  • Execution team: Irene García, Javier Ballesteros, Mark Zimmerman, Pablo Velasco, Darío Ariso and Miguel Cabrales
  • Photography by Boa Mistura
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