Advanced Design Studio: Berke
This project creates a dual reading of form that floats between iconicity and contextual muteness. Adopting the scale and rectilinear footprint of the nearby buildings, it is sited directly across the street from the Museum of Contemporary Art, which requires pedestrians and drivers to approach the building on the oblique. The rectilinear footprint is extruded as opaque walls at the building’s corners to maintain the building’s scalar and contextual reading at a distance; however, as one approaches the building its complexity is exposed. Requiring movement and exploration to be understood and gradually revealed, the building becomes increasingly transparent and fluid toward its center.
While the form is completely contained within the boundary’s four corners, the form subtly absorbs circulation flows from outside the boundary. Upon approach, the loose, horizontal formwork of the concrete comes into focus, which gives the forms a subtle and imperfect texture that moves with the form’s directional flow. Toward the center of the facades, the concrete strips away to become a louvered veil over the apertures reinforcing a transparency gradient from the building’s boundary to its center. As the flowing forms pull back and overlap one another, exterior spaces are formed at all levels creating an intense depth to the facades. At the heart of the building, the surfaces become completely transparent.