Chapel St. Fire Stair

Project Description

This project heightens one's experience of the Paul Rudolph stairwell by both contrasting and emphasizing the existing characteristics of the space.  The step runs are irregular and the stair defies gravity through the brute force of monolithic concrete walls.  This installation creates an ephemeral continuous shaft which contrasts with the materiality of the structure and the uneven cadence of the steps.  Its light and airy structure is constructed out of layers of trace paper which demonstrate the effects of gravity as they stretch towards the ground.  The installation reacts to these gravitational forces by displaying more structure at the top, where the tensile forces are the greatest. It was produced through a rapid digital fabrication technique in which stacks of trace paper were glued together and cut on the laser cutter.  These parts were glued together and then unfurled to fill the open core of the stairwell.