Friday, August 3, 2012

Pavilions for Berlin

My summer study class has been in Berlin now for 3 1/2 weeks and in that time, we've toured a lot, tasted a lot, and worked a decent amount as well.  The goal of our work is to design a pavilion to be located at Tempelhof Airport, which has been a public park since the airport shut down in 2008.  At the east end of the runway, there is a community garden and we are designing our pavilion with the hope that the gardeners will want to incorporate our structure into their garden.  We had a meeting with a few of the gardeners 2 days ago, which went decently well, and we are carrying on with our final plans, which I will write more about at a later date.   In the meantime, I wanted to show you some of the designs that I've gone through on the way to a 20-student collaboration.
Our first assignment was to each design a pavilion by ourselves with the maximum dimensions of 10X10 meters, and going up to 5 meters high.  We could either build one structure filling this space, or divide the space up into smaller structures, which is what I chose to do.  I used the basic form of the Operation Airlift memorial, which is in front of the Tempelhof Airport terminal, but designed it to be a trellis.
From there, I changed the shape to curve down, creating five different spaces with different degrees of enclosure, each for a different use.

My hope with the repetition of form was to create a sense of cohesion across the garden, which is quite large and varied, as it is a hodge-podge of materials put together by each of the gardeners themselves.  The idea of the trellis is that they would eventually become part of the garden, over time becoming less of a foreign element and more of a unifying structure.
my cardboard models of the trellis system.

After presenting each of our designs, we were split up into 4 groups of 5 to come up with a new collaborative design.  My group focused on the found objects that we had noticed on the site visit.  There were a few spots in the garden where people had repurposed doors and we decided to take that element as a jumping-off point, using it in a few new ways, or taking off from the typology of a door (as entrance) or the movement of a door (open vs. closed) to give us different design elements.
My friend Sam designed a comically large door, that reached our maximum 5 meter height, to be an iconic entrance to the garden, and a message board to inform visitors about the garden community.

I designed a few different-sized kiosks to be placed around the garden to provide shelter or shade, depending on if they are open or closed.  At each end, a traditional door would open (to the side) to allow access to the building.  On each side, a larger door, more like an old garage door, could open (up) to allow for shade.

What both of these designs have in common is that they are each part of a unifying theme.  As we move forward with our entire class design, we are again utilizing separate structures with a strong part to whole relationship.  But more on that later!

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