Hayes Hall Lobby, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY, Apr 08 – Aug 08 [ design + fabrication ]
In collaboration with Michael-John Bailie & Dan Stripp
The design and fabrication of this bench was inspired by the works of Peter Zumthor. An independent study, conducted to learn about Zumthor’s architecture, includes the ‘Topography of Terror’, an unfinished project in Berlin, Germany. This bench explores this unrealized design in a different context and scale. Utilizing repetitive components with minimum customization, the fabrication process aspired to be a highly precise operation using minimum woodworking skills.
Inspired by the construction system and relentless logic of the ‘Topography of Terror’, the structure of the bench is a system of repetitive wooden components that are stitched/clamped using stock steel sections. Most evident in the side elevation, the steel sections connect and lock each slotted wood piece in place. Exploiting the surface tension between steel and wood, this locking system produces a rigid structure that is held with only 16 countersunk screws.