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19 March 2010

Structural elegance and an artist apartment

The images below are of a three thousand square foot duplex apartment renovation in a building on New York’s Upper West Side.

The design solution removed all existing vertical circulation and connected the two floors with a new feature stair, located centrally in the apartment, free from all walls and supported only at the top and bottom.

The clients, two art collectors with a keen interest in supporting emerging artists and designers. The Genetic Stair represents the culmination of a fully integrated generative design process.
The design team used advanced digital design techniques from the earliest conceptual stages, through performative analysis and onwards to fabrication.

Custom code was developed to marry the generative potential of 3D architectural modeling with the analytic power of structural design software.

The result was an automated evolutionary process in which populations of stairs were created in compliance with strict fabrication constraints and then rated for structural performance.
In the end, thousands of configurations were evaluated and modified before the final design was achieved.

Advanced digital fabrication techniques were combined with traditional metalworking expertise to meet the exacting design requirements of the digital model.
The stair embodies a restrained palette of polished stainless steel, white translucent Corian and low-iron glass.

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