RUNNER UP, 2017 Van Alen Institute Flatiron Plaza Competition
Flatiron Moon is a participatory architectural installation for the Flatiron Plaza that draws on the celestial figure of the moon and the crossroads of the city grid to embody the plurality of seasonal celebrations and traditions clustered around the winter solstice. A large “moon” form appears from afar to be a pure and singular sphere, but is revealed to be an unexpected and playful sequence of overlaid moon forms and spaces as visitors draw closer, circulate through the plaza, and shift onto the Broadway grid. A simple stainless steel frame is clad in off-the-shelf perforated and expanded mesh steel surfaces and finished selectively with color and reflectivity to produce dynamic, moire effects. Full, half, and crescent moon forms appear to wane and wax as pedestrians move around the plaza; these optical effects are enhanced by daytime shadows and nighttime illumination. The cycles of fluctuating shapes and effects reflect the multiplicity of seasonal holidays and beliefs and amplify the intersection of the city grid.