Invisible Buildings: architect Victoria Meyers and hMa collaborate to design buildings that 'disappear' - in plain sight. How do you make the 'slight of hand' work when the object you are trying to 'disappear' is a building?
hMa does this at Won Buddhists through details that mask their buildings, and blend the reading of the buildings into landscape. A series of screens act as camouflage, and make building edges that have the thickness and non-specificity of trees. Trees and plants have very complex edges. By studying the biological edges of plant matter, hMa developed a series of operations that screen their buildings from public view.
In addition to non-specific edges of buildings, hMa's roads are gravel, from the original gravel pits on the site. And the landscape plans for the site include the planting of tall meadow grasses and trees to mask the built areas of the site.
Meyers is in discussion with artist Mary Temple, about possibly painting one of Temple's shadow paintings, on one of the buildings to enhance the aspect of 'invisibility' - by creating false shadows, to further mask the built form on the site. Below: artist Mary Temple produces one of her famous shadow paintings, for Rice University.
Mary Temple, artist, installing 'invisible trees' - through shadows - at Rice University, above.
Won Buddhist Temple: wood column as a tree.
Won Buddhist Retreat: wood column as a tree.
Won Buddhist Retreat: wood buildings sit among trees.
Trees + buildings blend. That blending = invisibility. Invisibility = Infinite Bleed of Edge. Infinite Bleed of Edge increases the perception of the 'space' of the retreat - to an infinite horizon.
It is the 'infinite horizon' that hMa was seeking in their development of the Buddhist project.
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