One of the finalists, ArtCloud. (Courtesy Figment)
Take a ferry over to Governors Island in New York Harbor before September 22 and you’ll stumble across a massive white cloud made up of thousands of reused milk jugs. Venture inside that cloud, and you’ll be mesmerized by thousands more plastic soda bottles partially filled with blue liquid that creates an otherworldly gradient of filtered light overhead. The so-called Head in the Clouds pavilion, plopped in a grassy field on the island, is part of the annual FIGMENT festival, a celebration of arts and culture that brings a series of imaginative installations, including an unorthodox miniature golf course.
In partnership with AIANY’s Emerging New York Architect (ENYA) committee and the Structural Engineers Association of New York, the “City of Dreams” competition selects a pavilion designed by a young designer or practice to be built the following summer, and this year’s shortlist has just been announced.
ManifoldArchitectureStudio (Brooklyn, NY)
Project team: Kit von Dalwig, R.A., AIA; Philipp von Dalwig, Dipl. Ing., Assoc. AIA, LEED AP; Andreea Toca; Jane Chua
From the Figment Project: “Dreamcatcher, a pavilion where imaginations are lifted, elevating your dreams, captures dreams at the idyllic meeting point of Governors Island, where people from all parts of New York can gather and encounter an experience unlike any other. We are proposing a simple, circular, lightweight structure that captures a changing collection of balloons. Why balloons? Because they’re joyful, uplifting and downright dreamy. Choose your shade, let your balloon go, and dream a little dream.”
CDR Studio (New York, NY) with Sustainable Engineering Services
Project team: Lea H. Cloud, AIA, LEED AP BD + C; Jonathan Dreyfous, AIA, LEED AP; Victoria A. Rospond, AIA; Katya Zavyalova; Michael Baskett, AIA; Trevor Messinger; Tiffany Jin; and Yelena Rayster
From the Figment Project: “The Governor’s Cup Pavilion hovers in a cluster of trees on the northern side of the Parade Ground. Recycled plastic cups, sourced and discarded throughout the city, are supported by zip-ties from overhead cables, forming a dense knitted structure unspooling from the branches. Strapping and turn-buckled cabling leave the trees unscathed. Crocheted repurposed cups infill areas between the undulated tape structure and branches, creating an airborne topography and shadow play. The configuration forms an outdoor room, shimmering in the sun and echoing with breeze-driven sound. The Greenpoint non-profit Arts@Renaissance will claim the Pavilion for their courtyard gallery space.”
MÖBI water tower pavilion.
MÖBI water tower pavilion
STUDIO V Architecture (New York, NY) with FTL Design Engineering Studio and Plaxall
Project team: Jay Valgora, AIA; Nic Goldsmith, FAIA; Andrew Kirby; James Andrew Scott; Karen Zabarsky; Lucas Lind; Laurie Mendez; Zhongtian Lin; Dilpreet Gil; Natasha Amladi
From the Figment Project: “Inspired by the infinite surfaces and curves of a Möbius strip, MÖBI water tower pavilion expresses the potential of adaptation, life cycle, and reuse of materials in the urban landscape. New York City’s ubiquitous and iconic water towers are transformed through STUDIO V’s design into a gathering space that celebrates Governors Island. Constructed from recycled redwood and cedar planks rescued from decommissioned water tanks, MÖBI offers a pre-fabricated, ecological construction process and multi-use environment that will afterwards be repurposed yet again—as wooden deck and furniture for our design for the LIC Biergarten. Much like Governors Island, MÖBI is designed for continuous adaptation and interpretation to serve the NYC community.”
afoam (New York, NY)
Project team: Lina Bondarenko, Xiao Chen, Sunchung Min, Mario Mohan, Marvin Nardo, Michael Nartey, Wei-Yi Tseng, Tanawat Vichaiwatanapanich, Yaya Wang, Andrew Weigand, Wanjing Xiao, Ye Zhang
From the Figment Project: “Our present city is overrun by private buildings, limiting access to public space. Urban Accordion is a microcosm of an alternate urban condition: a City of Dreams. Four fabric ‘blocks’ expand and contract, creating different levels of enclosure to suit a range of programming, while the space contained by the structures forms a larger communal area for events and chance encounters between the juxtaposed programs. Urban Accordionis a new urban condition: a flexible assembly for serendipity and public events that fluctuates to meet users’ demands.”
IKAR (Warsaw, Poland)
Project team: Igor Bialorucki; Konrad Kedzierski; Anna Granacka; Rafal Boguszewski
From the Figment Project: “The future of the city will be determined by a creative mix of technology and culture, and an even more creative reuse of materials. As cities are an amazingly rich source of materials the ArtCloud Pavilion reuses clapboards and transforms them to a free-form structure that is composed for 99% with modules. The system allows visitors to choose and personalize their own piece of ArtCloud. Modular architecture makes people more carefully consider issues of optimization and prefabrication, and saves time and energy during construction. Without a doubt ArtCloud is a direct path to wiser thinking about sustainable living.”