Patchwork Apertures is theresult of a week’s work in a group of two to create an entry for the New YorkCity AIDS Memorial Park Design Competition.
AIDS is characterized by the unnerving ability to affectunsuspecting people across all spectrums of age, education, and social class,connecting a group of seemingly unrelated individuals in a struggle againstboth the human body and the progression of time. Despite the wide range ofpersonalities affected by the disease, victims, supporters, and activists havecome together to form a support network - a patchwork of individuals unified ina fight against the epidemic. For New York City, St. Vincent’s formed thefabric of this community. While the hospital has since closed, the quilt ofindividuals that came together cannot be forgotten.
Building on the patchwork of the St. Vincent’s community, the memorial takesform as a gridded field of funnels that direct light into a below grade space.Above ground, the field becomes a commemorative area intended to both celebratethe lives of those lost and provide a space where the local community can cometogether. The framework distorts as the park fabric gently lifts up over theentrance at the corner of W. 12th Street and 7th Avenue, creating an irregular,occupiable grid of apertures that illuminate the basement below.
Distorted in density, size, and position, the light wells define spaces forexhibition, education, and contemplation. The central space is populated byinteractive digital display tables and framed with projection surfaces, withseating cubes on either side creating viewing areas for video art andinstallations. Flanking this primary exhibition space, the light funnels drawthe visitor toward two quieter meditative spaces located at either corner ofthe triangle. Each of these areas is centered around a defining element, a treeon one side and a waterfall on the other. Both the tree and the water penetratethe funnelscape, connecting the above grade and subterranean spaces.
The fabric of St. Vincents, re-stitched.
New York City AIDS Memorial Park Design Competition
New York City AIDS Memorial, Architizer, and ArchitecturalRecord
Collaborator: Katie MacDonald