Since Roman times, thermal baths have represented a “public” space where the care of the body and mind – or wellness – come together in their optimum balance, as the motto mens sana in corpore sano points out.
Through the harmonic reiteration of basic geometric forms – cross vault span – an urban, aquatic, seemingly suspended “silhouette” or outline is defined. The building cuts through that ambiguous area of research situated between “tradition” and “modernity”, in an attempt to imagine today’s thermae.
A groin vault is produced by the intersection at right angles of two barrel vaults.
In comparison with a barrel vault, a groin vault provides good economies of material and labour. The thrust is concentrated along the groins or arrises (the four diagonal edges formed along the points where the barrel vaults intersect), so the vault need only be abutted at its four corners.