JRM(1) 01 - 19 - 2010

The Herzog and DeMeuron building diagramed below is an example of using materiality and daylighting effects as means to address the ground and the sky. Its highly reflective glazing (top) matches the color of the sky exactly. Its location along the edge of the upper portion of the mass allows it to meet the sky seamlessly. The "subtractive" cut-outs along with glazing along the bottom of the mass create deep shadows on the building which allow the mass to flow into the ground. When these two methods are repeated across the facades, a "push-pull" effect is created which grips and suspends the box in mid-air while allowing it to address the ground and sky. The Avignon TGV train station takes a much different approach at addressing its surroundings by using form and perspective. From the exterior, one can see the form arching from the ground. It does this in a similar fashion to the hill on which it is sitting as it curves up toward the sky (from left to right in section drawing). From the interior, there is a constant play with lines of sight and skewed perspectives as the lines within the building seem to curve back and forth from the ground to the sky--constantly changing as one moves throughout the building. The two buildings are very modern examples of addressing the ground and sky. While the two approaches are extremely different, they both create visual and experiential effects that contribute to the buildings' contextuality.

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