Wendy: Dance and neutralize pollutants all in one space
Meet Wendy, a dynamic partyscape in Queens, NY that was designed with an environmental conscience. It provides an edgy, spacious, fun space to party in — all the while cleaning the air.
Architects Matthias Hollwich and Marc Kushner (HWKN), winners of this year’s MoMA Young Architects Program (a competition to build an outdoor partyscape for its PS1 location in Queen’s) were encouraged to work within guidelines that addressed issues of sustainability and recycling. As Hollwich said, “Architecture is entering a new period where buildings have personality, rights, and responsibility. Wendy is testing these grounds on a social, ecological, and humanisitic level.”
Their design consists of a ginormous scaffolding to support 1555 square yards of fabric coated in a solution of titania nanoparticles, which neutralizes airborne toxins. In this way, HWKN designed a rooftop partyscape that contributes some part in cleaning the air. As described by Hauke Jungjohann, director at Wendy’s structural engineering consultant firm, “Wendy is the perfect synergy of architectural aesthetics, systems efficiency and structural creativity. The magic of Wendy lies in the usage of something simple like a scaffolding system and reinventing its usage so that something new appears that has never been seen before.”
If you need any more proof that this is an awesome design, it is expected that Wendy’s impact on air pollution during the summer of 2012 will be equivalent to taking 260 cars off the road. And those spiky arms in the design? They shoot out blasts of cool air, music and water. With temperatures reaching the mid-thirties in Ottawa within the last few days, Wendy sounds like the awesomest summer party space ever.
To help fund the construction of this ambitious and complicated structure, HWKN worked with graphic designers to design merchandise (bags & T-shirts), all of which are also coated with the same pollution-neutralizing solution used on the structure itself.
Click here to visit Wendy’s website, where you can learn more about the design, watch videos, and even buy some titania nanoparticle-soaked, pollution-fighting merch if you are so inclined. If you are near Queens at any point this summer, check out Wendy! We’d love to hear your opinions about it.
- Gabrielle Doiron