FROM MoMA PS1:
The Museum of Modern Art and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center announced today the selection of Los Angeles-based Xefirotarch as the winner of the sixth annual MoMA/P.S.1 Young Architects Program, a competition that invites emerging architects to propose a building project for the courtyard of P.S.1 in Long Island City, Queens. The objective of the Young Architects Program is to identify and provide an outlet for emerging young talent in architecture, an ongoing mission of both MoMA and P.S.1. This year, five finalists selected from seventeen portfolio submissions were instructed to transform P.S.1’s outdoor courtyard with the allotted project budget of $60,000.
Xefirotarch, the winning finalist, will realize SUR, a playful, elegant installation resembling a reconfigured skeletal form that will undulate and sprawl throughout the courtyard. As in past years, the project will serve as the venue for Warm Up, the popular music series held annually in P.S.1’s courtyard. A press preview will be held prior SUR’s unveiling; the installation will be on view through September 2005. The proposed designs by the five 2005 Young Architects Program finalists will be presented at The Museum of Modern Art in The Louise Reinhardt Smith Gallery from June 22 – August 22, 2005.
Terence Riley, Philip Johnson Chief Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, The Museum of Modern Art comments, “Hernan Diaz Alonso’s proposal is a bold one which poses unique challenges. The team will need to devote all their energies to the creation of a tectonic language for a formal system that has heretofore been largely theoretical.”
“SUR is futuristic and organic, sophisticated and exhilarating. Visitors will feel as if they’ve landed on another planet for the afternoon,” remarks P.S.1 Executive Director Alanna Heiss.
SUR consists of a red and white base cast with composite fiberglass and rubber, and a corresponding freestanding aluminum armature covered with latex and polyurethane-sprayed spandex. Scattered between undulating, fluid surfaces are benches for listening and respite. The canopy overhead will be silver in appearance and conceal artificial lighting. Combined with the suspended, tiered shards of fabric, the artificial lighting and the summer breeze will dapple visitors beneath with a range of shadows and light densities as they savor the summer afternoon.
Xefirotarch Principal, Hernan Diaz Alonso describes the installation: “With the flair of a circus and the ambience of a playground, SUR functions as a game: there is no narrative, only active rules and emergent behavior. Prescriptive mappings are turned inside-out.”