I was honored to work with Sabina Ott and I realized that architects understand three dimensions, especially the section, in ways that others, including artists, do not. Artists have other distinct skills and, we architects can collaborate, learn from and help an artist turn an spatial idea into a built reality. The plan sketch was very provocative and sexual, I thought. The mountain was like a pair of breasts. The elevation she drew did not correspond with the plan and the concept of elevation. Elevating the mountain and designing it for a staircase highlights the schism between the disciplines of art and architecture but also, in the end, the schism between drawing, modeling and materiality. The final exhibit maintained the geometry of the model–you have to be able to climb a winding stair with similar height risers–but the final forms that Sabina Ott modeled had a roughness about them that was transformative, wonderful and was all hers.
Who cares for the sky?
Hyde Park Art Center
How do artists and architects visualize ideas?
The Guggenheim-fellow Sabina Ott hired us to help her create the mountain for her exhibit at the Hyde Park Art Center