Host_Winnipeg Art Gallery x Inuit Art Centre
Find a way to #SAVETHESHAFT.
Propose a potential re-purposing of the existing Winnipeg Art Gallery chimney stack.
Retain a portion of Gustavo Da Roza's design within the new Inuit Art Centre.
SKY SHAFT: Winnipeg Art Gallery x Inuit Art Centre
First announced in 2010, the Inuit Art Centre (IAC) is slated to be constructed linking into the southern portion of the triangular-shaped Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG). This new addition and renovation will soon put the largest collection of Inuit Art on public display for the first time in history.
The IAC, a Californian-designed white brick-clad iceberg, will soon rise up behind the Tyndall stone-clad Canadian-designed mid-century modern gem.
Situated between these two buildings exists a standalone triangular chimney stack, rising up beyond the roof-line.
With the IAC design completely underway, the stack is up for demolition as the sub-grade mechanical rooms are to be rebuilt and consolidated to accommodate the new building and evolving air-handling technologies.
We believe this chimney, a piece of art in its own right, is integral to continuing the relational connections between buildings old and new and should be re-imagined, retained, and integrated into the new Inuit Art Centre's design.
I'm a title. Click me and tell your visitors what's in your gallery.
Rendering: aerial view of the new IAC addition, WAG stack visible between the buildings.
The Sky Shaft is an adaptation of the existing chimney as an inhabitable, light-filled space. The shaft also acts as a triangular way-finding marker, puncturing through the various floors and spaces of the Inuit Art Centre, connecting all floors to the sky above.
Courtesy of it's triangular profile, the interior of the Sky Shaft is both an internal lighthouse and an experiential sky-kaleidoscope.
Clad in reflective mirrors, the shaft brings in light from above, and draws it deep into the the depths of the building.
Observational port holes located at each level of the IAC provide visitors with views into the mysterious reflective interior; they can gaze upon its obscured imagery, changing along with the prairie skies above.
Three layers of stacked reclaimed pallets create a raised structural base to construct upon. A blanket layer of flexible plastic becomes a surface to pour small aggregate concrete onto. The plastic layer is then sealed shut, encompassing the wet concrete and creating a burrito-like form to mould and shape the surfaces of the bench.