Parsons the New School for Design Allied Studio

Instructors: Derek Porter, Andy Bernheimer, Adam Rolston

Collaboration with Jordana Maisie Goot


The project reimagines the Anthology Film Archives through a spatio-temporal exploration of the procession to the theater.

As part of the initial analysis, the site was approached from four major transportation hubs - a photograph taken every 30 steps. These images were then combined using a digital technique of isolating pixel ranges. The images that emerged from this process resulted in the conceptual framework of stacking and layering.  Throughout the project, stacking and layering were employed spatially, materially, and photonically.


Programmatically, the public cafe, amphitheater and exhibition space are separated from the private office, archive and screening room stack.  The private office to the east seeks to appropriate morning light through the adaptation of an existing architectural corner chamfering of the building.  The public space to the west peels away an upper portion of the facade to allow for daylight interplay with layered material surfaces activated by afternoon light.


Beginning with a descent underground, the theater procession mediates and connects these two programmatic volumes through its upwards movement toward the two theaters, which emerge from the existing facade, acting both as solar reflectors and shading devices.


The electric lighting design explores the stacking and layering of particles, planes, and voids.  The theater procession is composed by a series of custom Philips OneSpace luminous planes, acting to redefine body orientation.  Through the shifting and rotating placement  of these individual planes, a uniquely individual but simultaneously collective experience is achieved.  Halfway through the procession, the visitor is delivered to a liminal space which reveals the public program.  Within the public program, a large custom LED half-tone luminaire (chandelier) is constructed in the center of the space.  This is achieved through the stacking of five modules ranging from a quarter of an inch to an inch and half, particles become mass.  Shortly after glimpsing the public program, the theater procession pushes into the private office program.  The office block utilizes the stacking of electric and daylight “voids,” integrated into the furniture, to create connection between the floors.


The theater procession culminates in two possible outcomes, both yielding to the ultimate luminous plane - the projected screen.  In one instance, the viewer faces traditionally forward.  In the second, the viewer is oriented upwards.


For the final exploration, the project revisits the initial photographic stacking allowing the mapping of a dynamic pathway from entry to pinnacle (the theater space). Each of the 12 major processional moments are stacked using the same technique utilized in the preliminary site analysis.