Party Wall by CODA
at MoMA PS1

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Ithaca design studio CODA has installed a wall that squirts water and is clad with skateboard offcuts in the courtyard of MoMA PS1 in New York.

Party Wall was the winning entry of this year's Young Architects Program, an annual contest organised by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) for a temporary installation offering seating, shade and water during the outdoor events of the MoMA PS1 contemporary art gallery.

Party Wall by CODA opens at MoMA PS1

CODA's installation is a steel-framed structure that functions as a giant aqueduct. Water travels alongs the top of the wall and is forced by a pressure tank to form a fountain, feeding a misting station and a series of paddling pools.

The cladding is made from interlocking wooden panels, recognisable as the offcuts from a skateboard manufacturer. There are also 120 removable elements that can function as benches or tables.

Party Wall by CODA opens at MoMA PS1

Water-filled plastic pillows are suspended inside the structure and help weight it down. At night, these inflatable elements are illuminated and glow through the gaps in the facade.

Party Wall will remain in place until the end of August and will be used during the annual Warm Up event - a showcase of experimental music and sound.

Party Wall by CODA opens at MoMA PS1

CODA fended off a shortlist of five architects to win the competition in January, becoming the fourteenth studio to participate in the programme. Last year's installation was a blue spiky air-cleaning sculpture by HWKN, while previous editions have been completed by SO-IL, Interboro Partners and Ball-Nogues.

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Photography is by Charles Roussel.

Here's some more information from MoMA:


The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 Present Party Wall by CODA, winner of the 2013 Young Architects Program, at MoMA PS1 in New York

The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 announce the opening of Party Wall, the CODA (Caroline O'Donnell, Ithaca, NY)–designed winner of the annual Young Architects Program (YAP) in New York. Now in its 14th edition, the Young Architects Program at MoMA and MoMA PS1 is committed to offering emerging architectural talent the opportunity to design and present innovative projects, challenging each year's winners to develop creative designs for a temporary, outdoor installation at MoMA PS1 that provides shade, seating, and water. The architects must also work within guidelines that address environmental issues, including sustainability and recycling. CODA, drawn from among five finalists, designed a temporary urban landscape for the 2013 Warm Up summer music series in MoMA PS1's outdoor courtyard.

Party Wall is a pavilion and flexible experimental space that uses its large-scale, linear form to provide shade for the Warm Up crowds, in addition to other functions.

The porous facade is affixed to a tall self-supporting steel frame that is balanced in place with large fabric containers filled with water, and clad with a screen of interlocking wooden elements comprised of donated from Comet, an Ithaca-based manufacturer of eco-friendly skateboards.

The lower portion of the Party Wall's facade is capable of shedding its "exterior," as 120 panels can be detached from the structure and used as benches and communal tables during Warm Up and other diverse events and programs such as lectures, classes, performances, and film screenings.

A shallow stage of reclaimed wood weaves around Party Wall's base to create a series of micro-stages for performances of varying types and scales. At various locations under the structure, pools of water serve as refreshing cooling stations that can also be covered to provide additional staging space or a shaded area from the direct sunlight.

Party Wall's steel-angle structure is ballasted by water-filled "pillows" made of polyester base fabric that will be lit at night to produce a luminous effect. Party Wall acts as an aqueduct by carrying a stream of water along the top of the structure. The water is projected from the structure, via a pressure-tank, into a fountain that feeds a misting station and a series of pools.

"CODA's proposal was selected because of its clever identification and use of locally available resources—the waste products of skateboard-making—to make an impactful and poetic architectural statement within MoMA PS1's courtyard," said Pedro Gadanho, Curator in MoMA's Department of Architecture and Design. "Party Wall arches over the various available spaces, activating them for different purposes, while making evident that even the most unexpected materials can always be reinvented to originate architectural form and its ability to communicate with the public."

"CODA developed an outstanding, iconic design that will support the many social functions of our large-scale group exhibition EXPO 1: New York, while creating a unique and stunning object for our outdoor galleries," added Klaus Biesenbach, Director of MoMA PS1 and Chief Curator at Large at MoMA.

The other finalists for this year's MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program were LEONG LEONG (New York, NY, Dominic Leong, Chris Leong); Moorhead & Moorhead (New York, NY, Granger Moorhead, Robert Moorehead); TempAgency (Charlottesville, VA, and Brooklyn, NY, Leena Cho, Rychlee Espinosa, Matthew Jull, Seth McDowell); and French 2D (Boston, MA, and Syracuse, NY, Anda French, Jenny French).

  • Chris

    If this is New York’s attempt at rivalling London’s Serpentine Pavilion, then they’ve made an awful mess of it.

    • Sam

      It is an annual summer event, but the focus is on reused/reusable materials, and the courtyard is used for dance parties, so it’s usually less fussy and stuck-up than the Serpentine projects. It is, after all, YAP, Young Architects’ Program, so relative unknowns get to make their mark in the city.

    • Per

      And MoMA PS1’s Young Architects’ Program has actually been around longer than London’s Serpentine Pavilions.

    • DTF

      VASTLY different budgets and programatic requirements.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Tron?

  • fon

    Love the facade and the removeable benches!

  • David

    The PS1 Young Architects Program is in its 13th year and it focuses on up and coming architects, unlike the Serpentine Pavilion program.

  • boooo

    This is an amazing project in very many ways. I have been looking forward to it ever since they published those (uslessly shiny) renders.

  • cyril

    Predictably disappointing.

  • PS1

    It seems very superficial, even though the idea of using recycled material is interesting. Also, hard to understand relationship between overall form and programs.

    ‘Superficiality’ is the problem of not only this project, but most of previous winners of this competition, except SHoP’s project.

  • pipo

    Why skateboards? Is it supposed to make this project appeal to young people? I don’t really understand, even if it is a locally available rescource.

  • sirG

    They should’ve picked a better time to photograph it. Show more of the crowd engaged with the Wall. Kind of like in the competition renderings ;)

    • Concerned Citizen

      Maybe the crowds choose not to engage with it at all.