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Columbia GSAPP Studio 2017: Art House / Art Museums

In Fall 2017, vPPR taught an advanced studio called ‘Art House’ at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture (GSAPP).

‘In the 1970s, New York was known as a place of great artistic production … Slowly my city went from a place of production to a place of consumption. So now it’s a place of the art market and not a place for art production.’  Elizabeth Diller


While New York City is in the throes of a housing crisis, the art market is booming. The USA currently holds a 40% market share in art sales worldwide and 95% of these occur in New York, which generated $551million in auction revenues between June 2015 and June 2016. The success of New York as an art market is the flip-side of the same coin that means that artists can no longer afford places to live or work in the city. If New York wants to preserve its position as a hub for art production and not only as an art market, then it is incumbent on big arts institutions, endowed with capital, reach, fund-raising expertise and powerful, glamorous brands, to address this issue.


Art House (2017) proposes artist housing and studio space on museum sites within New York, from the main museum sites of MOMA, the Guggenheim, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Dia Foundation (Beacon and Chelsea) and the New Museum, to off-site museum holdings such as MOMA QNS and the Guggenheim storage facility in Red Hook, located in areas where many artists already live but which will soon be out of reach. While many artist residencies currently exist, these only provide temporary accommodation to artists. In our brief, the possibility for permanence is essential. We will find redundant spaces, repurpose or develop parts of museums to find long term homes and studios for artists in order to genuinely support creativity in the city into the future. The studio will invite a number of curators, exhibition designers and artists, to participate in guest crits and site visits.


Home to millions of art objects, could the museum also become home for the artists themselves? The studio will investigate hybrids of the domestic and the public, of culture and community and of production and consumption.


Over a series of short briefs, the studio researched artists, precedents, museums and sites to create new artist housing typologies connected to art institutions in New York. In Fall 2017, our students included:

Javier Moya, Clifford Champion, James N Brillon, Hasan Youssef, Madeleine Haslam, Ashely Kuo, Aude ElAzzi, Swati V Jain, Yi Xu, Haodi Zhang

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