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Steven Holl Architects

Steven Holl Architects

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Published by Renae Lewis

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Published by: Renae Lewis on Jan 13, 2013
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Steven Holl Architects Bellevue Art Museum

Photo: Lara Swimmer

The Bellevue Art Museum, already called "The Art Barn" because of its barn-red stain, is a bold statement in the midst of sterile towers, downtown shopping and traffic. In good weather the cafe, that seats fifty, open onto Bellevue Way and the pedestrian walk that links the transit center and The Bon Marche in Bellevue Square.

Photo: Lara Swimmer

The aim of the design for the new Bellevue Art Museum was to "provide opportunities for active participation in museum life by individuals and groups representing the entire community." Ambitious programs focused on education and outreach, include studio classes for adults and children, an artist-inresidency connected to the Explore Gallery, The Pacific Northwest Arts Fair, workshops, demonstrations, screenings, performances, and readings. The museum's motto, "See, Explore, Make Art," led Holl to the design concept of "tripleness". A non-dialectic openness of experience, thought and contact give character to space on three levels, in three galleries, each with its own personality and unique quality, with three different light conditions and three circulation options.

other times abstractions. Sometimes he paints building spaces. his assistants poured rubber cement in latex gloves. . he paints every day starting in the morning when his mind is uncluttered and continues in the office. There will also be three tiers. explore and learn about art). Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Visitors will walk through three narrow. chopped off tips and played with the shapes. often bizarre models with stumpy digits. on airplanes. They made a series of small. Eventually. While Holl painted. hand-sanded aluminum panels and the glass of its huge windows and skylights. curving galleries that stretch across the rooftop like fingers. three distinct uses (to create. The building is clad in three basic elements: red-stained concrete. Then they cut off three fingers. the fingers molded into what became Holl's ultimate concept: "tripleness". and three types of natural light. and in hotel rooms.Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Architects Holl always carries a 5-by-7-inch notebook.

The galleries define sequences of movement as well as the main public spaces. Cyclic Time has its parallel in the arc of south light gallery. Fragmented or Gnostic Time is reflected in the east-west skylights of the studios lofts. Linear Ongoing Time is expressed in the evenness of the light in the north loft. called the Hubbell Terrace. another has a lighting system that changes with the presence of visitors. The three distinct lighting conditions of the three gallery lofts are analogous to three different concepts of time.Model photo courtesy Steven Holl Architects The east and west elevations add a vertical character to the three-story horizontal building. another terrace is a shallow pool. one. . will project images from space. Its plan geometry corresponds roughly to the arc of the sun at 48° north latitude. On the top level. Photo: Kirsten Kiser The top Gallery under construction The spirit of openness is further expressed in the three main lofts which are each slightly warped and gripped by the end wall structures. the open attitude of tripleness is realized in a semi-permanent exhibition program for each of the terraces. where terraces will accommodate outdoor classes as well as exhibition and events on summer evenings.

a stepped ramp up to the galleries pauses in a landing which double functions as a stage. which can be used for numerous events such as opening receptions and special dinner events. an oval two-story atrium space. the stepped ramp leads to the top level at the main loft galleries. Passing by the overlook to the Forum.Photo: Lara Swimmer Stairways leading from the Forum to the galleries Flanking the main entry between an outdoor cafe and museum shop is the Forum. From this grand space. a double-height skylit space with an adjacent artist-in-residence studio. . Photo: Lara Swimmer The Explore Gallery space Ascending to the next level one arrives at the Explore Gallery. and Lobby space. A large window looks out on Bellevue Way.

cafe. the "Court of Light". classrooms. NY Project Architects : Tim Bade and Martin Cox Associate Architect: Sclater Partners Architects. Seattle.000 square feet Steven Holl Architects arcspace features . New York. has already received the regional AIA Honor Award. which opened in December 2000. an elliptically shaped outdoor terrace where visitors can track the movement of the sun at the winter solstice. Total floor area: 36.Photo: Kirsten Kiser The "Court of Light" under construction A "floating" stairway winds upward through the center of the structure arriving at the third floor outdoor courtyard. Seattle. WA Contractor: Sellen Construction Company. and a 90-seat auditorium. Client: Bellevue Art Museum Architect: Steven Holl Architects. The Museum. Holl calls the top floor the "fifth facade". WA Program: Galleries.

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