DIA Center for the Arts
In the first phase of this project we renovated the core, shell, and facade of this 6 story loft building into rentable gallery space for the Dia Art Foundation. Throughout the process we sought to update the building's functional elements while maintaining Dia's concept of the building as a simple, muted backdrop for the display of art. We worked carefully with the clients to create an efficient new core consisting of elevators, egress stair, pantries and mechanical rooms which would allow for flexible and open use of the space. We specified the renovation of the masonry facade, installation of new windows and roof, and designed a new entrance canopy. During Phase 2 we designed offices for the Dia Art Foundation on the 4th and 5th floors. In order to allow light to penetrate into the center of the space and to maintain the openness of the loft, we designed a translucent sliding panel system for the perimeter offices and kept all the walls from hitting the ceiling. A continuous soffit runs around the 4th floor, providing a termination for the sliding panels, concealing ductwork, lighting, and wiring while also providing a human scale to the height of the space. The library is the centerpiece of the scheme, providing a gathering place for both visitors and employees, a representation of Dia's role as facilitator for the arts community. Its wall system of steel angles simultaneously provides structure for the wall panels and a shelving system for books on both sides of the library. The 5th Floor design featured offices for a video archive center, a workshop and a gallery facing 22nd Street.