2017 Best of Design Award for Temporary Installation: Living Picture

Architect: T+E+A+M
Location: Lake Forest, Illinois

Living Picture wraps a playful array of lightweight aluminum frames with digital imagery on vinyl to produce an immersive outdoor theater on the grounds of the Ragdale Foundation. The project digitally re-creates elements from Howard Van Doren Shaw’s 1912 design for the original Ragdale estate: low limestone walls, columns topped with fruit baskets, and a lush landscape of trees and hedges that once formed the proscenium, wings, and backdrop. By reinserting images of these historic elements among the trees and buildings of the current Ragdale estate, the project blurs the boundaries between past and present, stage and proscenium, reality and artifice.

“This project translates some of the most forward-looking ideas about the post-internet and digital images and applies them to a larger scale environment. It is good to see people thinking about how we react to and perceive images (and architecture) in the 21st century.”- Matt Shaw, Senior Editor, The Architect’s Newspaper (juror)

Structural Consultation:
Brian McElhatten and Jorge Cobo, Arup

Acoustical Consultation:
Ryan Biziorek, David Etlinger, and Rosa Lin of Arup

Fabrication Consultation:
Shane Darwent

Project Manager:
Reid Mauti

Project Manager:
Tim McDonough

Honorable Mention 

Project: Big Will and Friends
Designer: Architecture Office 
Location: Syracuse, New York and Eindhoven, the Netherlands 

Big Will and Friends, Architecture Office (Iona Turcan)

This installation redraws the popular Morris and Co. wallpaper “Thistle” (designed by John Henry Dearle) into an inhabitable visual environment. The designers suggest that wallpaper’s collapse of illusion and material are a problem where multiple forms of knowledge must meet. Live performances bridge the installation with its surroundings.

Honorable Mention 

Project: Parallax Gap
Architect: FreelandBuck
Location: Washington D.C

Parallax Gap, Freeland Buck (Kevin Kunstadt)

If most ceilings imply shelter, defining the limits of the room, others suggest the opposite: extension beyond concrete limits. This winning proposal for the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s “ABOVE the Renwick” competition curates a historical catalog of notable American architectural styles and renders them through 21st-century technology and visual culture—a dose of trompe l’oeil.

Related Stories