Studio 2024

The studio began with experiments in the language of architecture, drawing inspiration from music. Each team selected a musical fragment from four composers: Olivier Messiaen (b. 1908, Avignon–d. 1992), John Luther Adams (b. 1953, Meridian MS), Tomás Marco (b. 1942, Madrid), Kaija Saariaho (b. 1952 Helsinki–d. 2023) and created models within a rectangular volume of 13x26x13m in 1:100 scale for the midterm presentation.

Messiaen’s inspiration from Utah’s Bryce Canyon and from birdsong (Des Canyons Aux Etoiles) and Luther Adam’s exploration of the ecology of music are closely linked. This studio’s initial research into the works of these composers extended to the writings of environmental scientist E.O. Wilson, particularly his book Half Earth, 2016, which advocates that “only by committing half of the planets’ surface to nature can we hope to save the immensity of life-forms that compose it.” The spatial energy of daylight, a fusion of structure and light, human scale, and landscape, were explored via study models.

The program is a non-denominational chapel for chamber music, seating 450. The project is sited in the outer boroughs of Granada. The cross-fertilization of music, painting, sculpture, and architecture is a core aim of this studio.

This studio was taught with the assistance of associate faculty Maria Ryder.

“It’s probable that in the artistic hierarchy birds are the greatest musicians existing on our planet…In nature I find the ultimate inspiration for my compositions. The perfect harmony and balance can be found in the simplest of things.” “Music is the bridge between the physical and the spiritual, a vessel through which we can glimpse the transcendent… My goal in composing is to capture the essence of the divine and make it tangible through sound… I believe that music has the power to heal, to uplift, and to transform.” ‐ Olivier Messiaen