Entre tarongers: the project for recovery of a historic space through design
07 Dec 2021 /

Entre tarongers: the project for recovery of a historic space through design

“Entre tarongers”, or amidst orange trees, is a project of the City Council of Vila-real and the Escuela de Arte y Superior de Diseño de Valencia y Castellón, promoted in cooperation with World Design Capital Valencia 2022, for the recovery, through spatial design, of the hall of the Espai Jove (Youth Centre) with an area for “bookcrossing” or the exchange of books.  

Vila-real is a land of oranges, ceramics and entrepreneurs, people who have been able to reinvent themselves continually to make themselves known in the world. This was already the case in the nineteenth century when, in the warehouses in front of the railway station, they stored, labelled and distributed oranges across Europe. The way they marked the difference, made themselves known to the world and conveyed the excellence of Valencian citrus fruits, was through the labels and graphic posters for advertising that accompanied them. Labels drawn by artists and designers (at the time they were not called this) secretly at night, so that nobody would recognise them. Few examples remain of those labels that made Valencian oranges famous in the world and which were a reference abroad.

Those posters and labels, as well as the history behind the town’s Youth Centre, one of the warehouses of Vila-real with the most outstanding architecture, was the starting point for the design project by Beatriz Pastor, Laila María Lahmami, Anabel Abargues and María Giner, students of the Escuela de Arte y Superior de Diseño de Valencia y Castellón. The project, coordinated by Marina García-Broch and Edurne Zubiría, was commissioned by the City Council of Vila-real, with the aim of renovating the hall of the Espai Jove as a space for the town’s young people and for other residents.


“Entre tarongers” is a Bookcrossing zone (a point for the exchange of books) which recovers the history of the space, premises for the packaging and distribution of oranges, reapplied to books. Books that anybody can take or leave freely, in a space that has been renovated with an interior design project that reflects the roots of the location. Wood, oranges and books make up this space which also has a collection of labels form the era donated by the collectors and experts Rafael Llop and Oscar Escrig. The boxes were made to measure for the project by Ignacio Renieblas of the company Esdecajón.