Site-specific art is artwork created to exist in a certain place. Typically, the artist takes the location into account while planning and creating the artwork. (Wikipedia) and generally architectural glass art and architectural stained glass are, by default and in different degrees, site specific, just by fitting and acknowledging a given opening or space into which it is installed. As a result they are bespoke, made to order.
Even the most monochrome and minimalist approach to a site and its architectural layout in fact embodies a less obvious multifaceted approach to the notion of the site-specific.
Lattice represents a clear example of a non-intrusive site-specific approach. By leaving the grid-like rhythm of the lattice to recur on all the publicly accessible window openings of this Civic Trust Awarded House, it links and grows naturally within the architectural layout.
Taking a closer look at the project, there are also other aspects that influenced the design and choice of glass technique used.
One of the factors that defined the intensity of the glass etching to be more or less translucent or opaque is the requirement of privacy to some areas at ground level. For this reason, the lattice subtly changes containing interplay of varying white tones that erodes into clear areas in the upper sections, paralleling and complementing the natural movement of light in the building, another site specific factor that influenced the design.
On an unstated functional issue, the ease of cleaning, all work to the glass is confined to the inner surfaces of the double glazed units.
A slightly different approach was adopted for these studio window screens, their site-specifics defined by privacy issues and natural light control. Besides this double screening interplay, the client wished to have a touch of warmth in his studio space, counterbalancing the occasional heavily overcast greyness of some English weeks during wintertime.
Seen from the interior, the screen-printed yellow-gold enamels on the inner side 3 of the double-glaze unit allows a warm light transmission into the living space, whilst applying whites on side 2 towards the exterior, visually connects the glass intervention to the colour of the architectural facade.
Low-light and unappealing views are a common source of trouble in mansion block apartments, where many windows face light wells. Light maximization and screening the view are the two site specific issues taken into consideration in these two projects, for which specific glass qualities have been used to enhance/reflect light. Bridging the functional side of this project to the interior decor, they developed with an Art Nouveau and Art Deco twists.
Whilst for the previous two projects the style was an appendix to the interior flair, there are cases where the Building itself and its history define the design content. Site-specifics often develop within a Glorious Historical Content, in many ways acknowledging the Past.
The next post will be Site-Specific? Space/Place