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Notre-Dame Design Competition

+ Grand Prize Winner

+ Designer's Choice Winner

+ Finalist

T. Joseph Surjan, Stephanie Surjan, Luca Surjan

Chicago Underground Practice

ID: 315

Designer's Choice Award

This design competition is currently accepting votes for the Designer's Choice Award.
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Voting ends August 24, 2020

ID: 315
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House of Love Each morning the house searches for the sun. The sun always finds the house, but it can’t always be seen in return despite the house’s wishes. Each of the house’s apertures is open with feelings of desire towards the sun and therefore produces effects and atmospheres otherworldly, but without physical dimensions. In alignment, the house and sun become one, inseparable, linked temporarily in happiness: a moment disappearing as soon as it arrives.

Each opening in the house, a subtraction from the walls or roof, constructs an invitation for the sun’s rays to fully occupy its body. The moment when exterior architectural voids become interior additions, the illusion of a new material is born which only the house and sun could create. This love story is not always harmonious, but the house was built to last and could withstand the forces of time that the sun regularly tossed its way. The sun, a liquid medium that cannot resist the temptation of a void, always crossing the threshold from exterior to the interior of the house’s volume, drew unforeseen boundaries. The openings, operable fissures welcoming the sun in return acted as a lover’s embrace. The sun wanted to, but could not find a way to return the loving gesture.

Their love needed to mature in order for it’s emotions to project onto its many omni-textured surfaces. Wood, concrete, copper and glass all awaited their turn with the parallel rays of light speeding toward the house. The house, assembled with these original set of materials, acted as a record of the lover’s first affair, but could a new accessory represents their continued commitment, appearing as an open public declaration? As a public pronouncement, the new peripheral would be adjacent to, and seamlessly integrated via the bonding adhesive agent of the sun’s inextinguishable heat. What was considered past and what was considered future, now together, would symbolize all the possible frontiers the house and the sun could envision. The new, visceral appendage, would perform as an embracing sign. The house was fully functional by itself, the sun’s gift would also need to fit a purpose. Having been built over many centuries, the house’s structure was sound and the sun only glorified its’ many details. An addition to the house would combine ornamentation and tectonics into a singular architectural statement.

Their creation, an accumulated  timepiece for architectural occupation, has no clear numerical sequence or machinery but, needs tending to, like a garden during the many seasons of the year.as if similar to a garden.First would come fall and winter, then would come spring and summer, then would come fall and winter again. The timepiece, a living, growing organism with architectural ramifications, laid witness to the seasons, in anticipation of the next in a sequence both linear, yet dynamic and full of unexpected, spontaneous disruptions. The house and sun combined made a metaphorical clock, but there was also a way to make the couple literally tell time. A system of interlocking, tapering conical elements, each of which was non-standardized, assembled together into an organic chronometer atop the house would make this possible. The chronometer, a type of spire which can measure exact circumstances, ambitiously reflected the exact date and time of the couple’s first encounter.

The couple now had its’ symbol, its’ sign for all to read and document. What once private, now is public. The house and the sun produced a third condition, one which encapsulates the wish all lovers hope to witness. Together they are cast in history, not via the written words, but as a story with time as its medium. The sun and the house are always a clock, their wish come true cemented them as mythical characters, within a place called the city of lights. The city of lights brightest beacon is not a steel tower, it is a temple to unite lovers in legal ceremonies. The illumination of each such union ignites an eternal flame, a spectacle inscribed on all surfaces of the house. The blaze is a constellation ever expanding the city of lights into unforeseen territories, thereby attracting a global audience, intoxicated in passion.

T. Joseph Surjan, Stephanie Surjan, Luca SurjanT. Joseph Surjan, Stephanie Surjan, Luca SurjanT. Joseph Surjan, Stephanie Surjan, Luca SurjanT. Joseph Surjan, Stephanie Surjan, Luca Surjan

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