Thursday, March 20, 2014


New Boathouse for Community Rowing (CRI) in Boston

This is the first permanent facility for Community Rowing, the largest public rowing organization in the country. The project is composed of two buildings that form a courtyard which overlays two typically incompatible conditions: a public forecourt to the river and a staging terrace for the boats. The small building, a glass-shingled pavilion for single shells, displays the boats to the adjacent parkway. The large building houses longer boats, offices, and training rooms. The unique kinetic cladding system, which regulates natural ventilation and light, literally transforms the shape of the building and its relationship to the surrounding landscape.

Architect: Anmahian Winton Architects
Location: 20 Nonantum Road, Brighton, MA 02135, USA
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, detail of the façade
Photo: Mike Champion
After 20 years in an open-air ice hockey rink, Community Rowing Inc., a nonprofit rowing club, relocated to a 30,000 sq.ft. boathouse on the banks of the Charles River. Sitting at the intersection of the river, an urban park system, bike paths, pedestrian routes, and local roads, the boathouse provides storage space for more than 170 boats, a boat-repair shop, training rooms, locker rooms, a classroom, administrative spaces, and a community meeting room.
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, façade and entrance
Photo: Jane Messinger
The facility’s long, narrow footprint was divided into a main building and a small-boat storage bay to maintain a visual connection to the riverfront. The design explores abstract commonalities between rowing and architecture, and it borrows some of the vocabulary of relevant regional precedents, such as tobacco barns and covered bridges.

The main-building envelope consists of large-scale aluminum frames and high-density composite panels with natural wood veneer that accommodate varying natural-ventilation requirements. The same cladding material was used as louvers to mask locker-room windows and mechanical vents, and to provide shading on the south side of the building. The small-boat storage bay is clad in glass shingles, which both protect and display the boats within. Through different types of cladding, building surfaces also offer different experiences with the sun’s movement during the day.
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, shelf storage for small boats in a glass pavilion
Photo: Peter Vanderwarker
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, shelf storage for small boats in a glass pavilion
Photo: Peter Vanderwarker
In addition to natural ventilation, a green roof was used to reduce air-conditioning costs (and winter heating loads). The boathouse also features a geothermal well and a robust water-management system including a subterranean 15,000-gallon tank that stores excess rainwater for boat rinsing, site irrigation, and gray-water uses.
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, façade
Photo: Jane Messinger
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, façade
Photo: Jane Messinger
The CRI boathouse has received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Award in Architecture.
Jury Comments

  • This building is beautiful not just in aesthetics, but also in operability.
  • The design purpose is clearly conveyed by borrowing from the nomenclature of oars and regattas.
  • Simply done, clean, clear design concept, beautiful siting, and well done from a sustainability standpoint. The moves are limited but impactful, and the result is calm but interesting.
  • The natural ventilation strategy animates the building skin; it is dramatic and well conceived.
Harry Parker Boathouse, Community Rowing, Inc. (CRI) in Boston, façade with cladding system
Photo: Jane Messinger
Project data

Engineer - structural: RSE Associates
Engineer - waterfront structural: Childs Engineering
Engineer - MEP: RW Sullivan
Envelope consultant: Richard Keleher Architect; Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates
Landscape architect/engineer - civil: Stantec


Ruins and Concrete: SCAD Museum of Art

The Evans Center for African American Studies at the Savannah College of Art and Design expands the university’s art museum by resurrecting the ruins of the only surviving antebellum railroad complex in the U.S. With its galleries, art studios, classrooms, theater, public gardens, and vibrant streetscape, the former historic landmark is transformed into a new civic landmark and stands as a center of intellectual exchange, artistic discovery, and urban evolution.

Architects: Sottile & Sottile and Lord Aeck Sargent in association with Dawson Architects
Location: 601 Turner Blvd, Savannah, Georgia 31401, USA
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, jewel boxes encase historic brick arches
Photo: SCAD
The project transformed a series of dilapidated freight warehouses originally built in 1853 by African slaves and incorporated them into a complex that includes galleries, art studios, classrooms, a 250-seat theatre, and public gardens. The 82,0000 sq-ft expansion intentionally links the site’s historical and geographic context with its contemporary purpose. Once part of the underground railroad, the Evans Center now celebrates African American art.

The design process emphasized an artistically manual approach, honoring the humanity and integrity of the site’s heritage. Ruins were integrated within a contemporary concrete structure, preserving and highlighting the historic materials as a fundamental part of the new architecture.
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, entrance and lantern
Photo: SCAD
The Evans Center spans an 800-foot block and is punctuated by a single vertical element, a semi-transparent lantern marking the building’s entrance. The lantern serves as an orienting landmark within the district, which is mostly defined by horizontal lines. On the north-facing sidewalk, frameless glass enclosures at each historic arch open up the gallery to pedestrians. On the south face of the museum, a courtyard provides a key connection to the landmark district. The courtyard mirrors Savannah’s public squares and provides the University with a signature campus green.
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, twilight view of grand courtyard
Photo: SCAD
In addition to thoughtfully integrating salvaged ruins as exterior walls on the north and south elevations, throughout the building salvaged materials are juxtaposed with timeless, durable surfaces and textures, such as brick, concrete and cast glass. Original masonry was recycled for sidewalk pavement and courtyard surfaces, for example, and timber from fallen trusses was reclaimed as interior finishes.
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, historic brick ruin contrasts cast concrete structure
Photo: SCAD
Overall the structure was designed to last centuries, rather than decades, and it was built reusing as much of the original materials as possible. Other sustainable features include the high-thermal performance building envelope, wall systems that reduce loads for cooling and heating, and storm-water management systems that also aid in the efficient maintenance of plants and trees.
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, Pamela Poetter Gallery
Photo: SCAD
The SCAD Museum of Art has received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Awards in Architecture.
Jury Comments
  • The Evans Center is a striking project, a beacon in this industrial area; a strong concept, beautifully and simply executed.
  • The architects salvaged as many materials as they could, and they fit them into the new building without being false to the finished product. Lovely reinvention of a ruin into an art museum; sensitive reuse, yet clean break with the past.
  • You get a sense of a lack of precision in the original materials, which serve as a nice juxtaposition to the new materials. The quality of the concrete is excellent.
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, conceptual design renderings of facade details
Conceptual design renderings of facade details: Sottile & Sottile
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, formal studies of street level experience
Formal studies of street level experience: Sottile & Sottile
SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, formal studies of street level experience
Formal studies of street level experience: Sottile & Sottile

Carved Stone

Carved Stone: Residence “The Pierre”

A secure and unexpected retreat nestled into a rocky outcropping, the residence celebrates the materiality of its Pacific Northwest site and visually and physically merges with nature.

Architect: Olson Kundig Architects
Location: San Juan Island, Washington 98250, USA
Residence “The Pierre”, façade at front
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
The Pierre, French word for “stone,” is a 2,500 sq-ft residence inspired by the owner’s affection for a stone outcropping on her property and the views from the site. Conceived as a bunker nestled into the rock, from certain angles the house – with its rough materials, green roof, and surrounding lush foliage – almost disappears into nature.

To set the house into the site, portions of the rock outcropping were excavated using a combination of machine work and handwork. Excavated rock was reused as crushed aggregate in the concrete flooring throughout the house and as a boulder wall in the carport. Excavation marks were left exposed on all the stonework to serve as a reminder of the building process.
Residence “The Pierre”, view from side
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
Residence “The Pierre”, entrance guest suite
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
While one side of the house is hunkered into the site, the other overlooks the water, balancing the dual desires of prospect and refuge. With the exception of a separate guest suite, the Pierre functions on one main level, with an open-plan kitchen, dining, and living space. Two large bookcases open to provide access to concealed laundry and kitchen storage. Throughout the house, the rock extrudes into the space, providing a sharp contrast to the refined textures of the furnishings.
Residence “The Pierre”, interior, sink
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
Set at a right angle to the main spaces, the master suite features a custom-designed bed in the middle of floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. The master bathroom’s sink consists of water cascading through three polished pools in the existing stone. Off the main space, a powder room is fully carved out of the rock.

Constantly bridging indoors and outdoors, the design features a wood-clad storage box that spans through an exterior wall, occupying both interior and exterior space. Also a large pivoting steel and glass door opens for access to an outdoor terrace. Interior and exterior fireplace hearths were carved out of existing stone; they’re leveled on top, but otherwise raw.
Residence “The Pierre”, dining room
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
The Pierre received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Awards in Architecture.
Jury Comments
  • This is a “wish you had done it” project; great concept, well built, and well executed.
  • The juxtaposition of the built and the natural forms is very well done and well detailed.
  • The excavation of the building inside the living rock on this site is really quite incredible; the drilled stone exposed to the interior is amazing.
  • This is a house that challenges convention and succeeds.
  • This project is a beautiful design response to a beautiful setting. It has a fascinating medieval-modern feel; exquisitely crafted.

Residence “The Pierre”, view from the hill
Photo: Benjamin Benschneider
Project data

Engineer - structural: MCE Structural Consultants
Engineer - geotechnical: Associated Earth Sciences
Engineer - civil: Coughlin Porter Lundeen

Wyoming Airport

Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming

With respect to Teton National Park, the renovation and expansion considers the building as a simple, understated foreground feature intended to merely reside within the landscape. The queen-post trusses reduced beam depths, increasing the volume, allowing for an expansive glass curtain wall that reinforces the connection between interior and exterior. This LEED Silver Certified airport distinguishes itself from the aesthetics of typical airports because of its regional design approach, materiality, and intimate scale.

Architect: Gensler
Location: 1250 E Airport Road, Jackson, WY 83001, USA
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, baggage claim entrance
Photo: Matthew Millman
The Jackson Hole Airport is the only U.S. airport located inside a National Park. It is the gateway to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National parks. The project involved the renovation of an existing baggage-claim area, the expansion of the ticketing lobby and hold rooms, and the addition of a new baggage-screening building. The renovation and expansion nearly doubled the size of the airport to about 116,000 square feet.
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, landscape and mountains
Photo: Tim Griffith
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, baggage claim entrance
Photo: Matthew Millman
To integrate the building into its awe-inspiring surroundings, the concept considered the building as a simple, understated foreground feature within the beautiful landscape. The design addressed an 18-foot height limitation, in place within the National Park since the mid-1900s, through a clear-span queen post truss system that reduced beam depths and increased the volume.
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, ticketing entrance
Photo: Matthew Millman
In contrast to the previous terminal, which had minimal connection to the views, a new glass curtain wall was created to establish a strong connection between the interior and the exterior and to flood the ticketing hall with natural daylight. From the exterior, increased transparency also helps orient travelers and provides a more comforting experience.
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, check-in area with wooden roof
Photo: Matthew Millman
The airport is defined by its wood structure, which was inspired by the humble expression of structures found in barns and sheds throughout the region. Weathered steel and smooth ground-concrete floors provide contrast to the tactile qualities of the wood structure. Interior architecture and design, branding, and public art were used cohesively to create a lodge-like atmosphere in keeping with the region. While the forms and materials of mountain architecture informed the building’s vocabulary, the design lacks any hint of kitsch or historicism.
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, detail of the load-bearing structure
Photo: Matthew Millman
Jackson Hole Airport has received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Award in Architecture.
Jury Comments
  • Unlike any other airport, the Jackson Hole Airport is warm and comfortable. These qualities, rather than security, drive the design.
  • The project embraces the culture of the area in every way. The rusted steel, wood, and stone are great material choices that produced a regionally-inspired solution.
  • We love the fact that they renovated and expanded the existing structure and added a new façade instead of starting over.
  • Modestly elegant and elegantly modest. In the environment, it has an iconic presence.
Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming, access road
Photo: Tim Griffith
Project data

Associate architect: Carney Logan Burke Architects
Engineer – structural: Martin/Martin
Engineer – civil: Jacobs Carter Burgess
Engineer – electrical and mechanical: Swanson Rink
Landscape design: Hershberger Design
Baggage systems: BNP Associates


Silence and Light: Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center

With a minimum of means, this project transforms a non-descript 1950s gymnasium into a Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center serving the entire middle and upper school community at Sidwell Friends School. The building program includes a worship space, visual art and music rooms, and exhibition areas. The essence of Quaker Meeting, and thus the meeting house itself, is silence and light. Architecturally this is achieved by filtering light and sound through architecture, landscape, structure, and systems arranged in successive concentric layers around a central source of illumination, both literal and spiritual.

Architect: KieranTimberlake
Location: Sidwell Friends School, 3825 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016, USA
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, façade and garden in the evening
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, façade in the evening
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
The K-12 Quaker school transformed the building into a contemplative space for worship, with additional facilities for art and music instruction. The former gymnasium had been used as a makeshift worship space for more than a decade. Its location on campus was ideal, its acoustics and architecture were not.

Decisions about space, light, and materials were inspired by the Quaker tradition. Daylight was used to organize the space. The meeting house is focused on a central focal point illuminated from above, with targeted views to the gardens and soft filtered light also coming through on all sides. The materials palette was limited to only wood and plaster. In old meeting houses wood is often used in places where it may be touched. After centuries, it retains its integrity and character. In the new meeting house, oak from long-unused Maryland barns was used to line the lower walls and floor. The exterior, too, is clad with black locust harvested from a single source in New Jersey.
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, entrance to the worship space
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, worship space
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, worship space
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
The site’s nearly cardinal orientation means each elevation faces different environmental factors. Façade treatments respond to such conditions by, for example, moving away from the building on the south side to provide shading, and tucking in close to admit light into the studios on the north side. Systems provide a mixture of passive and active low-energy responses to environmental conditions, which vary from hot and humid to very cold. In addition to the abundant daylight, a photovoltaic array on a southern facing roof covers more than 40% of the building’s energy demands.

Landscape elements spiral out into the site to connect the building to its surroundings. The front façade was modified, too, to extend meetings out into the campus. A porch and garden connect the building to the plaza in front of it, a site-planning move also inspired by Quaker tradition.
Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, access and façade
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
The Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center has received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Awards in Architecture.
Jury comments
  • A beautiful project that is very well detailed and imagined. A remarkable transformation.
  • The obsolete building is thankfully lost in the new one; the new one is open, bright, and engaging.
  • The exterior is masterfully handled with subtle gestures that give it interest and shape. The architect manages to create a landmark building on the site while simultaneously transforming the interior spaces into an effective worship space.
  • Fascinating use of light and molding of space. Beautiful reinterpretation with a sensitive vernacular touch.
  • Great sustainability strategies and results.

Quaker Meeting House and Arts Center, arts studio
Photo: Michael Moran Studio
Project data

Engineer - structural: CVM Engineers
Engineer - MEP: Bruce E. Brooks & Associates
Engineer - civil: VIKA, Inc.
Engineer - geotechnical: GeoConcepts Engineering, Inc.
Landscape architect: Studio Bryan Hanes
Lighting consultant: ARUP
Acoustical consultant: K2 Audio


LOOK: Using only makeup, Russian artists turn models’ faces into incredible optical illusions

deadstate russian artists
Moscow-based photographer Alexander Khokhlov and makeup artist Valeriya Kutsan have teamed up to create an amazing series of portraits, using the natural lines of models’ faces to create illusionary forms.
The series is cleverly called “2D or Not 2D” and is designed to make the faces look like 2D images when viewed in real life.
“Valeriya used different techniques of face painting so you can see a lot of variations – from sketch and graphic arts to water-color and oil-paintings,” Khokhlov said. “This is a combination of interesting make-ups, studio photography experiments and careful retouching.”
See the images below (h/t Bored Panda):

Lakewood Cemetary Garden

Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis

Addressing the intimacy of personal grieving and the shared rituals of commemoration, the design for the new Garden Mausoleum at Lakewood Cemetery revisits an ancient building type whose setting demands contextual sensitivity and attention to materiality. The mausoleum minimizes the visual impact on its historic context by nestling more than three-quarters of the building into an existing south-facing hillside.

Architect: HGA Architects and Engineers
Location: 3600 Hennepin Ave S, Minneapolis, Maine 55408, USA
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, whole ensemble and lake shore
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
The 24,500-square-foot building is anchored by a two-level structure housing a committal chapel and a reception space. The building then unfolds into a series of garden-level chambers for interments. The chapel and reception space are the more active, communal spaces; the garden-level chambers are quiet and contemplative. Still, with light-filled rooms connected to a landscaped garden, this project challenges the paradigm of mausoleums as dark, introverted places. Each burial chamber is different, and each frames a unique view through large windows or skylights.

In each crypt and columbarium room, daylight strengthens the relationship between the spiritual and the earth-bound while offering a serene and healing environment. The material palette –stone, bronze, wood and glass– calls upon visual and experiential senses while recalling centuries of memorial tradition.
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, interior: seating and window
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, interior: seating and skylight
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
With more than three quarters of the Mausoleum nestled into an existing hillside, the building blends seamlessly into its surroundings. A green roof extends the sweep of lawn over the burial chambers; a single bronze-trimmed earthen mound containing a skylight marks each chamber above the ground.
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, façade refection in the lake
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, façade refection in the lake
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
In terms of function, the project required efficient space-planning to address the problem of shrinking acreage for in-ground casket burials. With only 25 acres of undeveloped land remaining in the cemetery (out of 250), the mausoleum used a strategy of higher-density memorialization. While 7 acres are required to accommodate 10,000 in-ground casket burials, in only half an acre the mausoleum houses 4,800 niches for cremated remains and 750 full-body crypts.

In addition to preserving the cemetery’s pastoral landscape, the mausoleum had to acknowledge existing architecture, notably a 1910 chapel with neo-Byzantine mosaic interiors by New York architect Charles Lamb. The mosaics served as springboard for the marble and glass tile mosaics that signal important components of the new Mausoleum. Also granite, marble, and bronze were used to ensure longevity and enduring cultural significance.
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, interor, entrance hall
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum in Minneapolis, interior: seating and skylight
Photo: Paul Crosby Photography
The mausoleum has received the 2014 AIA Institute Honor Award in Architecture.
Jury Comments
  • A beautiful design project, respectful and understated, but elegant and appropriate.
  • The sculpting of natural light in this project is beautiful. The materials are absolutely striking. There is not one false note to this building.
  • This building is sensitive to life and death, and still community-focused.
  • The contrast of the stacked stone with the curved mosaic window jamb details is spectacular.
  • The natural light coming through the skylights into the perfectly crisp interiors is reminiscent of a holy place – a rare combination of contemporary and spiritual.

Landscape architect / masterplan consultant: Halvorson Design Partnership