Yale School of Architecture
Critic: Emily Abruzzo
Concrete is monolithic, opaque, and heavy. It is exactly these qualities that we wanted to challenge throughout the course. We explored a wide variety of aggregates to lighten and add texture and porosity to the concrete block. Due to the constraints of the site, we resolved to the conical shape for structural integrity, material economy, and transportability. Various ways of stacking the cones resulted in different visual and lighting effects on all sides. The nature of hand casting 220 cones produced unique characteristics in each.
We installed the cones at the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning. We chose a 10’ x 8’ glass wall flanked by white painted gypsum walls so that the lightness and porosity of the concretewall assembly could be experienced from both sides. Air pockets, sawdust, cracks, and chips are evidence of the process, adding life and character to a sterile space.