Weathers Permitting: A Field Guide to Transitional Environments

MoMA PS1, Queens, New York, 2010

Animation of proposal

Weathers Permitting—a proposal for the 2010 MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program—aspires to broaden affiliations between natural processes and cultural practices. It seeks to sponsor a renewed curiosity in spatial, temporal, and conditional patterns of environmental transition to which we may have grown accustomed.

The installation is conceptualized as a terrain—a continuous and varied landscape—that resists rigid typological classification. Rather, through formal and compositional metamorphosis, the terrain enfolds a spectrum of diverse, yet correlated landscape characteristics. It is designed as an elevated boardwalk with unconventional properties including malleability and water retention. Conceived as a flexible construct, the design makes use of the common-directionality and inherent material-flexibility of parallel planks of wood in order to guide the locations of folds in its surface. Transitions between two-dimensional surface and three-dimensional volume offer multiple littoral zones which mimic the variety of aquatic conditions typically associated with coastlines. Participating in the repetitive cycles of time and the indeterminate patterns of weather, depressions in the terrain collect and evaporate water intermittently, registering the oscillation of environmental conditions.

Project Team:
Cecilia Ho
Sunnie Lau
George X. Lin
Alex Marshall
Travis Williams

Visualization: Neoscape, Inc.

Animation Music: Dave Eggar