Los Angeles, California / 2013

Dark Involutions

Featured in the MoCA’s 2013 exhibition, A New Sculpturalism, this inhabitable pavilion considers near-figuration as an alternative to the inherent dichotomy of figure-field. Like a fist punching into a rubber sheet, chunky jacks are pressed into exterior surfaces resulting in illusions of deep, dark involutions on the exterior and heavy mass on the interior. Angular silhouettes disappear into flat surfaces. Black materiality falls off into total darkness, creating a sense of ambiguity and opacity.

The razor-thin perimeter edges of the three components produce visual tension between the realms of 2D/flat and 3D/massive. By arranging the three components into a triangular plan, the pavilion also appears as a series of objects floating inside an implied enclosure, like an aquarium.

Velvety Composites

The pavilion’s construction system is composite monocoque with variable-depth honeycomb core material. What seemingly appears to be a single thin surface is in fact two surfaces that laminate and delaminate creating an indeterminately thick poché space. This depth conveniently to provides structural capacity, although that is not its primary raison d'etre. The material matrix is an advanced water-based polymer with Kevlar textile reinforcement, which is commonly used by the aerospace industry in the construction of 1:1 prototypes due to its lightness, strength, and its specification as a ‘green’ composite system. Like the skin of a manta ray, pavilion components are finished with an ultra-matte rubber-like coating that is soft and velvety to the touch.

Location: Los Angeles, California
Client: Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) Curators: Thom Mayne/ Christopher Mount
Fabrication: Barnacle Bros., Asteriskos
Structural: NOUS
Photography: Monica Nouwens