National Building Museum's Summer Block Party, Studio Gang to Construct ‘Hive’

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    Architecture Architecture Apr 21, 2017 12:03 PM EDT


    The National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. will host the "Hive" this summer as a part of the museum's Summer Block Party series. The 60-foot-tall structure, designed by Studio Gang, is built of more than 2,700 individual paper tubes.

    The structure, to be temporarily situated in the National Building Museum's Great Hall, will join three domed chambers constructed from wound paper tubes wrapped in a reflective silver exterior and a bright magenta interior. The tubes sizes will vary from several inches to 10 feet tall, creating a vibrant visual contrast to the museum's historic interior and colossal Corinthian columns.

    "Through their use of space and materials, Studio Gang pushes the limits of our summer series to new heights, literally and figuratively," Chase W. Rynd, the executive director of the National Building Museum said. "They have ingeniously co-opted a commonplace material, the paper tube, into the ultimate building block, capable of reaching dazzling heights and affecting the sound, light, and scale of our surrounding building."

    As visitors enter the historic Great Hall, they would have the feeling of being in an outside space due to the traversing sound effect before it gets reflected back and made audible. The chambers shaped by sound are exclusively designed to accommodate intimate conversations, gatherings, performances and acoustic experimentation in the National Building Museum.

    Wound paper tubes is a common building material that carries unique sonic properties and can be easily interlocked to form a catenary dome. It's these properties that create a "hive," and encourage people to come together to the National Building Museum to "explore and engage the senses," according to Arch Daily.

    Meanwhile, tubular instruments like drums and chime will be featured inside the Hive's smaller chambers, inviting visitors to playfully experiment and discover the acoustic properties of the structure. The temporary structure inside the National Building Museum will be open for public visitations between Jul. 4 and Sep. 4, 2017.

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