suckerPUNCH: describe your project.
jesus BANUELOS: This thesis is an investigation of velvet and its qualities in an effort to forge new possibilities for liminal space. This investigation started by looking at contemporary architectural projects and a large part of them had building skins that stopped on the second level and introduced a new system to deal with the ground plane and threshold.
These building skins were concerned with solving the problem of a surface rather than a problem of entry sequence. In the case studies, the entry became difficult to solve by properly addressing an opening and most relied on simply puncturing a hole on the skin. The skin creates a democratic entry sequence and creates an equality in all thresholds.
The theater curtain is used because it epitomizes the hierarchy of thresholds. With its scale and materiality it defines spaces, creates zones, and hierarchically organizes the space of the theater. Similar to how it captures the attention of the audience when it opens, this thesis aims to activate thresholds with this intensity.
What this means is that it sets up an opportunity for discrete entrances. A velvet skin became the facade on the north facing sunset where the materiality, folds, and draping qualities were used to blur the public/private boundary. In addition to facilitating the dialogue between the ground and the skin, the velvet facade also dissolves and degenerates the existing spaces and structural grid by going from a 2D thin curtain to a 3D inhabitable space. Programmatic spaces through its folds become apertures and vertical transparent ribbons allow a peek into the circulation within.
sP: what or who influenced this project?
jB: Elena Manferdini, Petra Blaisse, Matsys, Jason Payne, Herzog and De Meuron
sP: what were you reading/listening to/watching while developing this project?
jB: Listening to Jorge Drexler, Gustavo Cerati, Radiohead, and Gregory Isaacs. Reading Jeff Kipnis’ Cunning of Cosmetics, Venturi’s Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture, Alejandro Zaera Polo’s Politics of the Envelope
sP: whose work is currently on your radar?
jB: morphosis, herzog and de meuron, toyo ito, ball and nogues and BIG