F'14 Studio: Emma Benintende

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We have created an object that is, paradoxically, both specific and ambiguous. Though each component began with a specific formal referent or functional utility, “playing” with the architectural parameters of scale, proportion, and color obfuscates those origins and renders the resulting object ambiguous.
COLOR: The blue-green color we chose (Mint Majesty) is specific in that it is difficult to define. Not a primary or secondary color, it requires a very precise description. It cannot be accurately communicated through a single word (“red”) or even described as a part of a general category of colors— it is not pastel or vibrant, warm or cool. At the same time, the strangeness of the color makes it ambiguous and allows the viewer to project meaning onto it. While it looks like many things to a degree, it does not look exactly like anything; it has alternately been described by passersby as mint chocolate chip, turquoise, hospital scrubs, copper patina, and 1960s kitchen cabinets.
PATTERN: The OSB pattern on each surface specifically references the face to which it is applied. The stencils were created by tracing shapes formed by wood shards in the OSB. Each trace was then filled with color and scaled 3x. The application of color and increase in size transforms the specific pattern into an ambiguous array of forms that can be read as many things such as an animal print, enlarged OSB, or simply random shapes.
FORM: We chose the shapes of the seesaw for structural stability. An extruded triangle was chosen for the base because it would allow the users to teeter on one edge while providing balance in the transverse direction for the rider on the swinging arm. The triangle is also a strong shape that we could aggregate to form a system of trusses on the interior.
The dimensions and positions of the boards are based upon the result of simple moment calculations that were done to determine how balance could be achieved given the disparate weights of our group members.
While the form was developed for specific structural reasons and calibrated to the specific weights of the members of our group, it can be used by any group of two or three people. Due to its odd configuration, scale, and proportion it is not clear to new users how to operate the structure and where each person must sit in order to achieve balance.

Princeton Art Foundation

This final project proposes a multi-use building in downtown Princeton. The program includes an art foundation with galleries and associates offices and amenities, an architecture office, and four apartments.