olson sundberg kundig allen architects: lightcatcher at whatcom museum

‘lightcatcher’ at whatcom museum
all photos tim bies
all images courtesy olson sundberg kundig allen architects jim olson of olson sundberg kundig allen architects has designed the ‘lightcatcher’
at whatcom museum, seattle, a new addition to the city of bellingham’s downtown arts
and cultural district. the structure will add 42 000 square feet of space to the museum
and will house state-of-the-art galleries for art exhibitions and the new family interactive
gallery (fig).

the lightcatcher is named for its focal point and most innovative feature – a translucent
wall 37 feet high and 180 feet long that captures the northwest’s most precious natural
resource, sunlight. the building utilizes natural materials endemic to the region.

at the heart of the 11.6 million USD project, the ‘lightcatcher’ gently curves to form
a spacious exterior courtyard, bridging the museum’s interior and exterior spaces. during
daylight hours, the light-porous wall floods the halls and galleries inside with luminosity,
serving as a beautiful, eco-friendly, and energy-saving ‘light fixture’ that will also help
to ventilate the building. the elegant wall also reflects light into the ‘garden of the ancients,’
the museum’s courtyard. in the evening, the ‘lightcatcher’ glows with the changing colors
of the structure’s interior illumination.


the lightcatcher in the early evening


the lightcatcher in the evening


interior of the whatcom museum


the lightcatcher


rendering of the lightcatcher

Source:  designboom
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