Morphosis, Artspark Performing Arts Pavilion, (1992)
“The challenge in the Los Angeles Artspark Performing Arts Pavilion competition was to formulate a methodology for placing a dense cluster of cultural facilities in a peripheral, suburban area of Los Angeles, as opposed to the typical integration into the urban core. Our proposal for the performing arts pavilion focused on setting man-made objects in a suburban park. The site is one of the last large regional park facilities in the area. We believed that a subterranean solution was critical for achieving contextual compatibility and questioning how one perceives buildings that house the arts.
Articulated elements of the structure are visible to passersby, and thus invite further exploration. Because the power of the arts is subliminal — it is about what happens inside the place that houses them and what occurs at a deeper, even hidden level — the elements are treated as sculptural, kinetic pieces emerging from the earth to begin to reveal what lies below. Buildings set within this two-hundred-acre park become functional sculptures embodying the overall concept of the Artspark.
The orthogonal order of the building complex directly relates to that of the surrounding suburbs. The x-y axis generated from their Jeffersonian grid extends into the park as an organizational device for pedestrian access, vehicular passage, and parking. With the majority of the main proscenium theater underground, we could consider the entire site as a field punctuated by solids and voids. The public section of the complex reveals itself as a procession. We conceived of the landscape as an overlay that would extend the character, but not the form, of the architecture, throughout the remainder of the site. This allowed us to design objects small enough to blur the boundaries between landscape and architecture.
A tower and the roof of the larger theater protrude above ground as transitional objects in the park. A public outdoor “room” carved out of the slope acts as a human-scale intermediary before the entry into a subterranean foyer that services two theaters. As part of the earth, the theater complex has historical roots in Delphi. The foyer connects an eighteen-hundred-seat proscenium theater with a five-hundred-seat, multiuse black-box theater. It extends to the backstage and performance support areas, providing public access to the inner workings of the theater. This unmasking charges the design with a psychological energy to challenge the status quo.
Coop Himmelbau collaborated with us on this project. They balanced our carved-out, below-grade complex with a sweeping arc cutting diagonally across the top and creating a dialogue between ground and sky. Their calculated intervention, a sky-walk, provides an overflow foyer and atrium for public events. Views from this structure reveal both the separation and the connection between the order of the park and that of the suburbs at its periphery.”
La vista hacia el norte de la ciudad. A la izquierda se aprecia la avenida Insurgentes Norte, y del lado derecho, la estación del ferrocarril de Buenavista; en el fondo destacan la Torre Insignia y los edificios de Tlatelolco.
Estacion Buenavista (hoy, Estación para el Tren Suburbano de los Ferrocarriles Suburbanos), Cuauhtémoc, México, DF 1961 Arq. Jorge L. Medellín
Ciudad Habitacional Nonoalco-Tlatelolco y el Banco Nacional Hipotecario (Torre Banobras), Cuauhtémoc, México, DF 1963 Arq. Mario Pani en Colaboración Con Luis Ramos
Foto. Bob Schalkwijk
Looking to the north of the city. On the left is Insurgentes Norte and on the right the train station Buenavista. In the backgorun is the Torre Insignia (or Torre Banobras) and the housing development Nonoallco-Tlatelolco.
1958 Walton Residence | Architect: E. Fay Jones | Bentonville, Arkansas | Photos: (1961) Maynard L. Parker | Residence won AIA Honor Award
Euine Fay Jones was an American architect and designer. He was an apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright. Jones is also the only one of Wright’s disciples to have received the AIA Gold Medal (1990), the highest honor awarded by the American Institute of Architects. - Via