While numerous blogs are competing to be the first ones to release the winning projects of every year’s Evolo skyscraper competition -when it’s been a while  now that the most interesting projects are not winning anymore- it seems interesting to observe the “refused” to the prize list…

Totem War is one of them and it has been designed, or should I say narrated, by my good friends Martial Marquet (you can visit his new website), Nicolas Polaert and Louisa Gouesnard helped by Pierre Bregeon. This project introduces a narrative in a small town lost in Siberia’s Taiga, Sliznevo. This narrative involves a local tradition that can be compared to one that was developed in San Gimignano (Tuscany) during the Renaissance, the erection by each family of a tower competing with the others. The totems drawn by the French team are made out of wood and use all the same system of joinery (see the diagram below) but are all built according to a different scheme that allow such a competition.

Here is the text written by this project’s authors for more details:

Sliznevo is a small Russian village located in the middle of the giant Siberian Taiga forest. In this village The family who built the highest totem would be recognized as the
most prestigious and powerful family of Sliznevo. Thanks to their past and cultural heritage, what they build adopts a very genuine typology and because each clan is different, each totem represents it through it’s own architecture.
This village is a micro-utopia, a modern San Gimignano, which represents at a small scale what is happening since more than a hundred years in our cities : the quest of the highest tower. This is one of our society syndromes, and there is no need of a Babel ending to understand the vanity of this phenomenom. Whatever it is today, everyone wants to be part of it, with a full commitment. It has become a fashionable religion.