A partnership between Grace Arts Florida and FIU, inspiration for the project stemmed from the idea of re-imagining the Spanish Pavilion of 1937 for the 21st century.
In 1937, the pavilion became a platform for activism through poetry, paintings, sculpture and literature. The students’ designs revisited the idea of the pavilion as a platform to demonstrate the value of art and innovation in contemporary life. Senior Instructor and Founding Principal of Berenblum Busch Architects, Claudia Busch, led seven student teams from her Graduate Architecture Studio 9 to envision what the future pavilion might hold. Of the seven proposals, one concept was selected: Art Stage.
“Adaptability and mobility were significant aspects in the design proposals, and Art Stage offers both,” said Claudia Busch. “The 315 square-foot pavilion is a representation of innovation within the community.”
A dome-like structure, Art Stage consists of three layers that aid each other in providing full, partial, or minimal coverage. The outer shell, made from a rigid metal frame, serves as an umbrella protecting the inside of the structure from the elements. The middle layer provides support for the outer layer in enclosing the structure. Last, the innermost layer provides a smooth surface to display art and directly responds to the user’s needs through its ability to rotate and collapse as needed.
The students’ design of the structure will also be weatherproof to address sustainability in terms of energy usage, renewable energy resources, and sustainable materials. The fabric envelope features ETFE solar coating to help reflect and diffuse direct solar radiation, optimizing temperature comfort inside. The pavilion will serve as an art display and performance venue showcasing popular short plays, pop-up events, and full-length dramas.
“The challenge was to imagine a pavilion that is a piece of art but also functional and innovative,” said Claudia Busch. “The pavilion can be used at art fairs and public places installed either indoors or outdoors. Our goal was to create a structure that offers plenty of versatility.”
“I was happy to sponsor and participate in the studio, which was led by Claudia Busch,” said Grace Arts Florida Director, Clare Vickery. “Several of the region’s leading architects and contractors poured into the students and this project and we are very grateful for their input.”
Students worked with FIU’s Robotics and Digital Fabrication Lab to integrate robotics and advanced manufacturing technologies into their designs. The selected concept will be fabricated at the RDF Lab and will be on display in South Florida communities in summer 2020. We can’t wait to check it out!
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