The urban unit of measure for an array of auditoriums and music halls at the Portof Buenos Aires is critically heightened by means of the creation of a “newhorizon” in a historically charged site, a former shipyard adjacent to theMuseum of immigration.
Thecharacter of the project stems from a poetic condition of the urban waterfrontand it sets to construct a new line of augmented horizon, slightly set-off fromthe coast to activate a number of programmatic and aesthetic conditions. It isat the same time a circulatory system that absorbs all sorts of accessconditions and re-introduces a sectional distribution of circulation via theintricacy of its components at an urban scale.
ThePerforming Arts Center presents a linear succession of halls and publicassembly spaces along the main body of the ensemble, arriving at it through anintricate network of pedestrian ways from Antartida Argentina Avenue, animportant artery along the waterfront; this network filters the relation of theproject with the city, providing a transitional experience from the uniformityof the coastal skyline, and offering in contrast a predominantly horizontalorganization characterized by oblique connections between public programs,activated by spatial trajectories along gradient surfaces of urban mediation.It is meant to consolidate a series of auditoriums and large public venues formusic performances, operating to articulate the internal relationships ofrhythmic massing proliferations, providing a shift of attention towardshorizontal, public, coastal developments. This new rhythm performs ascounterpoint to the very predictable skyline of Buenos Aires, which ispunctuated by vertical icons that are rather disengaged from the public realm.
Aftertraversing the first layer of urban connectivity, the central swath of culturalprograms alternates a sequence of public foyers and great halls with multipleopportunities to access a large roof-plaza where the project reaches its mostsublime character in direct relation with the river.
Theoutermost layer of program contains the rehearsal rooms and workshop areas aswell as a boardwalk with restaurants, retail and various leisure programs wovenby a pattern of spatial modules that aggregate and morph along an attenuated scalarmotion along the water’s edge.
Theproject is grafted onto the figure of an old shipyard, taking advantage of theinlets and indentations of the land; it is absorbing existent relationships andre-introducing new scalar features by means of the effect of its supple andpliant geometry, which accepts the vicissitudes of existent networks on thesite and internalizes them as productive constraints and triggers to produceinternal differentiation of the proposed spatial system.
Thereare important historical and functional issues operating at an urban scale ofthis magnitude; the base material consists of the existent network of urbanrelations at the site itself so that the new Performing Arts Center operatesdirectly from within the landscape conditions to activate new three-dimensionalrelationships, integrating and re-invigorating existent ones in order to form anetwork of built form that pulsates with particular scalar rhythms andsequences. The site as generative material is de-objectified and re-mixed touncover latent local relationships that can help to anchor what could otherwisebe perceived as alien forms. The robust network of relationships seeks toarticulate the project with the site, and to produce a significant shift in therhythmic perception of the waterfront which is a trademark of the historicalskyline of Buenos Aires.Architecture2011
A memorial for the Victims of the Tsunami in Thailand represents an idealopportunity to assess the status of aggregation and modularity in contemporarydesign. Memorials are machines of remembrance, operated by the fleetingpolyrhythm of collective memory.
Thisproject explores the sublime character of memorials in their capacity to affecta heightened awareness of the ‘liquidity’ of time; a sense of metamorphoses ofperceptual states via the celebration of rituals and propagation offaux-eidetic memory as trigger for the unconscious sensory experience of spacesfor remembrance, in the landscape. The design is infused with a positiveattitude about the remembrance of life, and the absorption of death as afundamental cyclic energy, a phenomena based on periodicity and the dialecticmontage of pulsating moods and atmospheres. The design strategies of thememorial bring to the fore the metaphysicsof presence by stressing the space of difference, the interstitial voids,the folds of the soul and the erotic sublimation of death.
Theproject’s three-dimensionality is resolved by adopting strategies ofaggregation of courtyard-like components which produce qualitative thresholdsfor the perception of the body in space. The system subdivides progressivelyinto sub-components or chunks which are hinged and articulated smoothly, andthese so-called chunks are actually courtyards for remembrance at the scale oftwo or three families.
The scalar break-downeffect of the deployment of aggregate rhythms is achieved by an adaptablechain-system that enhances an existent drainage channel. This dry channelcommunicates the entire system of interconnected courtyards, stressing thejoinery between courtyard clusters (meta-components) or ‘chunks’.
The spatialorganization provides never ending circuitry communicating the two ends of theproject whereby you could walk on the upper edges of all the spaces ofremembrance and descend into the courtyards which eventually get flooded.
The project distributes effects of “memory” as an exteriorsystem of periodicity organized through supple, pliant vectorial links ofcirculation which register the specific, variegated types of connections of asuccession of courtyards as a means of 'local effects' which lend specificspatial and tectonic identity to each courtyard or subset of affiliatedcourtyards as the whole system cascades down the mountain towards the beach,all along following and expanding the path of the enhanced drainage channelwhich can periodically and seasonally get flooded and provide access to theinterior of the courtyards.
It is all about exploiting theambiguous distinctions between what is interior and what is exterior literallyby establishing partial enclosure or shelter via further detailed connectivitybetween the floating canopies edges and subdivisions with the edges andcirculatory devices of the courtyards.
Detail means intensified, concentrated joinery at specific moments of thecourtyards geometry, moving up and diagonally to connect with the correspondingopportunities at the aerial geometry of the canopies framing system,transcending the excessive horizontal layering that exists between the groundroad-roots system and the aerial beam-roots system.
Detail here means introducing the characteristic connections that exist on themacro level of the systemic project but at a micro level that addresses thescale of the motion of the human body and seeing their capacity to evolve intoan extended repertoire of connections and transitions accepting vicissitude andcircumstance as design factors and drivers.
On another conceptual plane, 'interior' refers to the internal logic of theassemblage as systemic aggregation versus 'exterior' which has to do with thevicissitudes of the existing landscape that influence the internal distributionof parts and spaces of the macro behavior of the system.
What the project does is tonegotiate interior and exterior both on the literal sense and the conceptualrealm; the interesting thing is that the macro-geometry of the project itselfconstructs its own landscape as it progresses through the terrain so it becomesa terrain filled with vicissitudes that generate a constant need of adaptationfor the joinery that connects paths, courtyards, ramps, beams, canopies.
Being a memorial anddue to its grandiose scale, this is a project that can cultivate all sorts ofmicro-events and micro-environments throughout thus the ecological effect ispowered and coupled by the potential to capture and distribute solar energy, toharness winds and rain via the geometrical disposition of canopies which arestructured by bundles of cables and which can serve as capacitors to feed therhythmic network of courtyards in a concerted synchrony of vital, poeticthrust.Architecture, Landscape Design2011
The theatrics of the city life find are manifested enthusiastically in Miami withthis proposal for Lincoln Road, a pedestrian artery which traverses from Eastto West linking Miami Beach with Alton Road, and mostly activated by publicparticipation and engagement with the structures of multiple architecturalsystems, sustaining dialectic notions of urban landscape and ‘window-shopping’.To address this view of urbanity, the design of an all-inclusive canopy andamphitheater basically attempts at the “construction of horizons” understood asthe constant generation of connective tissue via the instrumentality ofinfrastructure design.
Thisconnective tissue operates at multiple scales and it is materialized withmembranes to support events, separating and connecting the openness of thepublic realm with the transient status of contemporary individual life stylesotherwise known as privacy. Programmatically, the project is organized as anaxial sequence of amphitheater-gallery-food court-vestibule with multipleentrances that unify the internal circulation with the exterior commercial flowof pedestrians, seamlessly.
Thearchitecture of this event-space in Lincoln Road aims at ‘pulsation’, afundamental animate capacity of living forms. Pulsation thrives onhyper-charged, syncopated rhythms and vital drive.
Rhythmicproliferation and deployment of adaptive modularity operate as perceptual toolsfor the transmission of viscous aggregates. Such rhythmic activity of animateforms is translated to architectural systems as ‘pulsation’, a fundamentalanimate capacity of living forms.
MONADStudio’s design for this busy touristic and commercial area is predicated onthe incorporation of the flow of public throughout cavities that both attractand dissipate the crowds, in a choreograph-free dance that constantly indexestime, decay and regeneration of urban tissue as manifested by the shiftingrhythms of expansion and contraction of the main axial spaces.
Thecrowd is said to have a soul, a thrust, a capacity to encapsulate latent energyand release it through space and time; the Lincoln Road Capacitors projectseeks to harness this energy, as well as transform it into ornamental,distributive systems.
Thenotion of ‘interiority’ is challenged by the openness of the structural system,which consolidates a sheltered space for restaurant expansions, art exhibits,video projections, and is supplemented by the exterior amphitheater thatlatches onto the existent canopy-stage designed by Morris Lapidus, an integralsolution to the larger urban alignment of fountains, awnings and landscapethroughout Lincoln Road. The new addition to the urban sequence contributes asa catalyst, a renewed energy for an environment of public events that can onlybe defined as vibrant, funky and sensual.Architecture, Landscape Design2011
Exhibition: Digital Nouveau 1910 - 2010 / A continuum of pulsating geometries
Ornament, rhythm and new modes of craft trigger the concept of “Digital Nouveau 1910-2010”, an exhibition that brings together design sensibilities of two different, but intricately connected eras. The focus of Digital Nouveau will be to highlight the shifting terrain of craft and ornament, as it has evolved from the 1900s until the present time by displaying Art Nouveau design artifacts from the museum’s collection as well as contemporary, digitally designed and manufactured artifacts and architecture projects by contemporary designers.
The exhibition will seek a critical analysis and integration of a continuum of design production of two intense periods of approximately 15 years each, both of which articulated important transitions spanning 100 years, connecting the early 20th century with the early 21st century. The perfect form -that which is found in nature- the same one humans have constantly imitated, emulated both consciously and unconsciously, was the source of inspiration for those who set themselves apart from the eclectic Beaux Arts principles, and who generated a unique aesthetic movement deriving on the manipulation of form beyond the ornament for the sake of ornament; a movement uniting technique, formal complexity and the sinuous pleasure for the visual: The organic form allows for nature to become architecture. This is the heritage rescued from the eclipse of Art Nouveau under the dogmas of the International Style…If today we cannot plainly ‘reproduce’ the process of Art Nouveau –given that industrialism killed the craftsmanship in which it relied so heavily; we can again establish the links between that moment of creation and a new moment of post-industrial and post-production aesthetics: The one generated by a unique object which can be reproduced at specific instances through digitally driven techniques.
MONAD Studio’s design for this busy touristic and commercial area is predicated on the incorporation of the flow of public throughout cavities that both attract and dissipate the crowds, in a choreograph-free dance that constantly indexes time, decay and regeneration of urban tissue as manifested by the shifting rhythms of expansion and contraction of the main axial spaces.
The crowd is said to have a soul, a thrust, a capacity to encapsulate latent energy and release it through space and time; the Lincoln Road Capacitors project seeks to harness this energy, as well as transform it into ornamental, distributive systems.
The notion of ‘interiority’ is challenged by the openness of the structural system, which consolidates a sheltered space for restaurant expansions, art exhibits, video projections, and is supplemented by the exterior amphitheater that latches onto the existent canopy-stage designed by Morris Lapidus, an integral solution to the larger urban alignment of fountains, awnings and landscape throughout Lincoln Road. The new addition to the urban sequence contributes as a catalyst, a renewed energy for an environment of public events that can only be defined as vibrant, funky and sensual.
Another important characteristic of this assemblage is the capacity to retrieve, store and distribute energy throughout the massing and structure of the canopies. The towers at the West end are clad with photovoltaic cell areas as well as porous surfaces that absorb rain water; these energy sources are then distributed throughout a web of tubes that run down the columns and spread through the frames of the canopies, returning to the ground arteries which will feed the shops at both sides of the event-spaces. This system functions on a closed loop of constant renewal, generating a productive feedback of energetic production and conservation, all which finds an expressive appearance via the corset of vein-like tubes which fuse and diffuse the columns, beams and frames of the structure, in a holistic ornamental system.Architecture, Installation Design2011
The chuppah is developed according to the Jewish tradition whereby the canopy structure represents the future home of the newlyweds. As a spectacle, a wedding ceremony has the chuppah as the center of attention, where optimized visual networks drive the intensity of the occasion; the angular geometry facilitates the simultaneous perception of all participants, while setting the stage for the celebratory character of the event.
The geometric qualities of the first iteration evoked the disposition and effects of ‘butterfly wings’ laying out a series of beams with supple connections, and shooting down support columns that balance the openness of the frame facing the audience/crowd. The actual canopy frames views of the sky regulating diverse scales of aperture, seamlessly unified by tzzhe oblique vectorial configuration.
This prototype is meant to be used in multiple occasions thus portability, joinery, and weight are determining factors of the design and materilaity.The final version of the chuppah results from an iterative translation of the original subdivision surface into a system of pleated plates and planar, triangulated facets that emulate the smoothness of the transitional effects of connection between linear components, obtaining an unprecedented rhythm of geometrical transference. The folding surfaces are fabricated with perforated aluminum panels and structured internally with galvanized steel tubes that track the main folds of the gazebo. The reflectivity of the pleats turns the skin of this monolithic pavilion into a generator of multiple refracted images, absorbing its surrounding and devolving a magnified spectacle which enhances the ambiance of the celebratory function.Architecture, Installation Design2011
MONAD’sproposal for PS1 reinterprets the brutal insertion of infrastructural featuresin New York City. Taking its scalar cues from the landing of the bridges thatproduce the suture between Manhattan and Brooklyn/Queens and disturb the grid,the project introduces the monstrous dimension as a performance measured by thedestabilizing effect of this new creature at PS1, via its negotiated thresholdsand attachments within the spaces of the courtyard.
Thescale is simultaneously attenuated, modulated and invigorated by a series ofsynchronized rhythms of interconnected folds that transmit the materialcondition of shelter and its degrees of permeability across the surfaces. Thisalso accomplishes a set of spatially characterized spaces, which start with themain gallery running parallel to the longest edge of the courtyard, andfunneling/inviting a fluid relationship between street life and theinstitution; this wall receives at night the projection of multiple images fromthe canopy, which display live-capture moments of the party, de-territorializingthe sensation of being-in-the-crowd and yielding a voyeuristic set ofwallpapered situations of the party.
Thenext layer running parallel to the main public gallery is the spine of ‘privaterooms’ that accommodate sitting, reclining and lounge atmospheres for smallergroups, serving as transition from inside the pavilion-like monster to theexterior leg-pools. The latter articulate and bring down the scale of thecanopy to the ground as mediated landscape, as well as serving to disperse andslow down the rhythm of the main circulatory spine and breaking it down intospatial units of wet sensations.
Thespatial modules aggregate smoothly to produce the whole, and yet the individualperception is always in reference to the singular component of space and theirnext in kind, left and right. The connection between these lobster-likearticulated carapaces is manifested by intensely colored L.E.D. lit foldedcoves that ultimately transmit the loads of the canopy to the wall; these beamsdescend on ‘z’ patterns, ending on benches that are available from the maingallery.
Bigcutouts are operated on the canopy, balancing a void to solid relationship andeconomy, whereby whatever portion is subtracted is then folded to arrive at theground and -on one single stroke- produce the veiled ‘see-thru’ surface thatseparates the private rooms and yet makes them available via sensualperforation patterns.
Thecanopy drapes over the wall and hits the floor of the annex rectangularcourtyard named ‘pincitas lounge’, where the accumulated folds of the drapesmutate into a series of bench-like array of pincers echoing the possibledismembering and dissemination of the components of this organism, as if swayedby the energy of its brutal insertion, a trace/index of the presence of theinstallation at PS1. These draped planes produce a threshold, as the guests cantake advantage of cascading water and wet t-shirt scenarios of architecturaltransition into a lounge area away from the dance floor.
Theproject is supported by a slender and yet dense/robust network of galvanizedsteel tubes, which support and articulate the PVC compressed foam panels. The panels derive fromthe type of board favored by butchers to chop meat; the panels are thenattached to the tubes via discrete plastic connectors, which perform tonegotiate all transitional angles.Architecture, Installation Design2011
The overall purpose of this project is to generate a catalyst for the development of the site adjacent to the Epic Hotel, providing the necessary landscape and infrastructure to host multiple events.
First Phase - Epic Event Space: The first phase of the project will organize a general layout and landscape, evolving the site to a better aesthetic and spatial waterfront condition and providing an array of seating and possible amphitheater for outdoor events. Accessibility, movement through the site and relationship to the existing building will be important drivers for the preparation of the site to hold events, performances and exhibitions immersed in the landscape topography.
This first phase is also understood as the creation of a base condition for the future use of the site as the location for the Miami Young Architects Challenge. The designs produced by the competition will enhance the infrastructure for the events and will change every year.
Second Phase - Miami Young Architects Challenge (YAC): The objective of the 2nd phase is the implementation of a competition of national importance to bring sophisticated, provoking, emerging architects to design a project for specific events to take place on the site. The precedent for this competition will be the annual Young Architects Program organized by MoMA to design an installation for the courtyard of PS1, formerly called “Urban Beach”. The counterpart in Miami will seek to enhance the waterfront use by incorporating a barge that can extend the event to the river and use the site both as departure and final destination of the events.
MONAD Studio’s design for the EPICenter Park connects the drop-off area of the Epic Hotel with the park and a new amphitheater by means of a ramp along the water edge, flanked by a rhythmic, pleated structure that envelopes existing mechanical spaces of the hotel.
The project is activated by the rhythmic sequence of arrival to the event space, and once inside the park the waterfront edge is fully open to the views of Biscayne Bay, climaxing on the amphitheater placed to controls street access as well as to appreciate the park from a high viewpoint.
The edges of the park are lined up with a rhythmic chain of mounds that are simultaneously disjointed and smoothly articulated to form and undulating topology with multiple possibilities of adaptive use. The geometry of this rhythmic proliferation is derived from the iconic logo of the Epic Hotel and morphed to generate tectonic potential and instances of ultiple joints and seams that translate as linear benches when bringing the mounds in contact with the ground.
The project combines the flicker perceptual effect of the panels along the ‘artificial mound’ with the rhythm of ‘natural mounds’ tightly articulated as expanded, programmatic urban edges. The counterpoint geometries come alive at night, highligting selective edge conditions as well as producing gradient light effects along the oblique motion on the waterfront ramp.Architecture, Installation Design2011
San Martin Park Infrastructure operates at the edge of the park, mediating a busy office district of Buenos AIres with the ecologies and organizational patterns of public city life. The installation is organized following principles of tectonic aggregation of cells, allowing for an economy of component design as well as for the exhuberant suppleness of the whole. Spatial jpoints are created between cells to distribute the aggregation of platforms and canopies, producing a fluctuating beat, a heavy rhythm and ponderous pulsation.
The infrastructural approach of the design optimizes circulation across the grain of the repetition, allowing for the independent flow of public above the shells, and giving aerial access to the service platforms. The program is deliberately vague to allow for the emergence of adaptive use over time
according to the feedback of users who will activate the programmatic potential of crevices and bridge-like circulation devices. The rhythm of the platforms is challenged and overlapped by the pulse of the overarching canopies, which in turn tend to fuse with the fofliage of the existing trees.Architecture2011
Kristiansand Performing Arts Center resolves a complex urban crossroads, linking the new cultural attractor to the old city fabric via a bundle of pedestrian and vehicular connections over the Kristiansand Port access channel. These circulatory devices compress and dilate to include conditions of interiority and to anticipate a pulsation of high spatial drama and sophisticated, smooth transitions of levels. The main program includes a lyrical theater and ballet, an opera house and two smaller experimental theater halls; these disparate functions are resolved through a linear foyer, a social condenser for all visual networks participating bof the spectacle. The day-to-day life of the complex is organized with a series of compressed bands that serialize changing rooms and workshops for the theaters. The project also offers a full-access roofscape that results from its convoluted, exuberant geometries which articulate infrastructural potentials. This new proposed landscape presents the public -both ticketed and non ticketed- with the opportunity to mingle and discove rthe city sipping through the meadows and grooves of the folded shells of the roof. Smooth and atriated, topological surfaces double up a sintegral part of the spectacle of the interior halls and foyers, becoming a new territory for urban performances.Architecture2011
This vertical structure is situated in Palermo Nuevo, a prime real estate area of Buenos Aires where a dense, existing fabric of mid-rise residential buildings weaves together retail and offices with a large parking and car services structure, right across the site. The corner lot office tower proposal articulates the large scale of the neighboring structure with the thinner grain pattern of preexisting layers of urban life, latching on to the consolidated urban mass. Located in a small site of 36ft. x 52ft. footprint, the project is developed as a prototype for the implementation of a structural envelope which combines the technological advantages of modular, precast concrete bands that organize both the language of the facade and the actual distribution of loads, eliminating any need for columns. Simultaneously, these vertical components are sub-articulated into micro-pleats that perform as “aireateurs” and ornamental features of the skin of the building, doubling up as L.E.D. light coves at night. The macro-pleats provide bay-windows.
The tower prototype is offered as a unique structural solution for a particular site condiiton, yet it contains the DNA of rhythmic, modular, and performative capacities that turn it into a pro-active model of investigation for the perceptual impact of rhythmic affect in a dense urban environment.Architecture2011
MONAD’s proposal for the Holmenkollen Olympic Ski Jump sets up a new type of iconic landscape, establishing transitions from the artificial to the natural across the terrain and towards the sky. The project develops a gradient of geometrical adaptations from the vertical to the horizontal, mediated by oblique transference. Such configuration resembles the geometries of ski jumping trajectories, performing “V” formations in order to generate structural strength and minimize mass, producing a slender profile. The structural principles are integral to the aesthetic valure of the artifact; the skin is articulated to absorb the vectors of load transmission as well as to perform seamlessly as wind screens on the sides of the inrun. The integration of skin and structure is afforded by a combination of smooth and striated folding techniques, allowing for differential structural solutions for the inrun, the knoll, and the outrun and at the same time articulating a natural transformation of the tower down the sides; this allows to absorb functions such as the trainers stand, judges tower and press booths by “thickening” the surface of the wind screen, which wraps the linear volumes along its path.Architecture2011
Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg | All works © Monad Studio 2011 | Please do not reproduce without the expressed written consent of Monad Studio.