Cultural, Civic & Arts, *On the Boards

Constellation Artist Studio Expansion

A renowned printmaking artist seeking to expand her collaboration with other artists, mentor the next generation of artists, and contribute to the vitality of a burgeoning arts district hired BVH to study and visualize her grand vision. Her existing studio, a BVH project, and a former Porsche repair shop bookend a vacant lot owned by the artist. The study contemplates the purchase of the repair shop and developing the empty lot to expand her mission–neither are mutually exclusive.

The 18,000 sf space will include professional artist studios, a retail shop, a classroom, a grand hall that can accommodate large gatherings and performances, a gallery, and a few artist residences. These spaces have been organized around a central, urban courtyard.

BVH derived two options for the artist that allows her to choose a direction based on funding, artist participation, and not being hamstrung by the inability to purchase the Porsche repair shop. The urban infill building is the lynch pin for both options. Purchasing the existing building places a 2-story structure on the open lot. Option two conceptualizes a 4-story structure. Regardless of the selected option the desired program is maintained and organized around a courtyard.

The courtyard offers an amenity space to the facility while also contributing public space to a densifying urban location. Additionally, the courtyard allows natural light to permeate the working studios while simultaneously offering views from the interior and exterior.

The new infill building lifts from the street level accentuated by expanses of glass to garner views of the spaces beyond. Using conventional urban infill tenets the scale of the proposed project responds to the context through familiar rhythms, proportions, and materials. The first floor facade recedes to acknowledge the established adjacent buildings which affords a public green space at a human scale. Adjacent is a portal inviting guests to discover the courtyard which, coincidentally is where the front door can be found.

The project is currently on hold waiting for funding.

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