Public Art Fund Offices
New York City
The Public Art Fund procures the development, installation, and awareness of art
in the public spaces of the city. As a growing non-profit organization, the
Public Art Fund welcomed contemporary economical sensibilities of space and
material. The eleventh and twelfth floors had great exposures set within a long,
narrow interior space. One of the main challenges of the project was finding a
way to provide for the dense occupancy and necessary private offices while
preserving the strong natural light and oblique views. Design strategies
continually developed to satisfy program requirements until the composition of
spaces could be reduced to a diagram of a few, clear planes.
Plastering beads, which are typically concealed by layers of tape and paint,
were integrated in the partitions as exposed elements that serve to articulate
and sharpen the cellular polycarbonate and metal assemblies. Resin panels
express key areas of passage and entry. The planes follow a grid orthogonal to
the building envelope. Skewed and curvilinear strokes were discarded. The subtle
definitions of the orthogonal order sought clarity and thoughtful juxtaposition
while providing for the gradation of light transmission. The achieved affect was
translucency, and the contrast of light and dark, focus and ambiguity.
For the main conference room table, a bar code system served
as the technique for recording a pivotal date for the Public Art Fund and the
marking of the proportion of public installations completed across the city.