Once upon a time there was a world of liquid lights and solid shadows, a world of dancing geometries and voids full of clouds, a world where fantasy, designs and imagination builds, a world called architecture.

The beautiful fairytales like good architecture are adorned with magic and mystery and supported by a solid structure. Like any great work of art they encapsulate the maximum depth and the maximum simplicity.

My first steps as an architect were visiting the homes and castles of fairytales that as a child made me travel with fantasy. The lighted windows in the dark night that hide secrets and surprises, the objects been transformed and come to life, were for me a prelude to the universe of architecture and design.


In Architales, Federico Babina draws upon fairytales as his architectural inspiration. [Source: Federico Babina]
In Architales, Federico Babina draws upon fairytales as his architectural inspiration. [Source: Federico Babina]

Those drawings of exotic structures belonging to distant countries like chests hiding secrets and spells have represented my first approach to drawing and architecture. When I was a child I wanted to be an architect. Now that I am architect, I would like at times to return to a child.

This illustration series was born as a tribute to fairytale universe where the architectures are reinvented to accommodate the protagonists of the story. The idea is to use architecture and its shapes to take part in stories, transforming the buildings into ‘narrative objects’.


In Architales, 17 fairytales are given their own architectural styles by Federico Babina. [Source: Federico Babina]
In Architales, 17 fairytales are given their own architectural styles by Federico Babina. [Source: Federico Babina]

Seventeen illustrated architectures shown dancing between reality and fantasy in an intuitive and sensory exercise where each architectural detail is a small piece that reveals information about the characters and the story.

“…If I could think what I would do, other than architecture, it would be to write the new fairytale, because from the fairytale came the airplane, and the locomotive and the wonderful instruments of our minds… it all came from wonder.” – Louis Kahn


Check out Federico Babina’s full portfolio of wonderful architectural graphics here.