Client: University of Tampa
Location: Tampa, FL, United States
Completion date: 2010
Artwork budget: $89,000
Skyward, Sykes Chapel. Several sites, three windows in a small meditation chapel and several door surrounds down a hallway.
The two main installations in the meditation chapel respond directly to their very limited architectural constrictions and thematically to the idea of attending college and then “blasting off” into the “real” world.
On the corner of the building is the Meditation Room. One enters a low-ceilinged space that opens up in a soaring gesture. The architectural situation determines both the composition and theme of my design response. The windows are a simple upward gesture, like a plant reaching for the sun. Set a moral compass and grow.
The budget required a creative response to the door surrounds. Unlike the Meditation Room, this glass is pure architectural ornament. Everything about the hallway is big and open, as are the entries themselves. A skylight dominates from above. The masonry, millwork, and flooring are spectacular. I felt the entries should be restrained and rich to complement this situation. Monochromatic golds harmonize with the surrounding materials. There is a high contrast of transparent, translucent, and prismatic glasses to play with the overhead light. I’ve incorporated the same radius and truncated arch geometry found throughout the building to make the wraparound designs “fit” in a subconsciously pleasing way.
A typical situation wherein the design principals and client thoroughly informed me of their tastes and goals for the project, supplied me with a full set of plans, then let me do what I thought was best.