Princeton, NJ: March 18, 2016 — Steven Holl Architects has won the invited competition to design the new Rubenstein Commons at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, New Jersey. Competing firms included MOS Architects, OMA, and Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects. The Institute—where Albert Einstein worked from 1933 until his death in 1955—has received funding for the building from businessman and philanthropist David Rubenstein, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The Carlyle Group. At approximately 20,000 sf, the new Rubenstein Commons will be at the center of the IAS campus, providing a new forum that encourages interactions among the Institute’s diverse community of scholars. This is Steven Holl Architects’ second building in Princeton, NJ, with the Lewis Center for the Performing Arts at Princeton University, scheduled to open in 2017.
Sited along a major pedestrian route near the center of the academic campus, the Rubenstein Commons will support community and academic life on the IAS campus, promoting communication and collaboration through a variety of social and meeting spaces. Providing a communal and flexible gathering place for the Institute’s research community, the building will offer a space for the display of images and materials that tell the story of the Institute’s heritage, extraordinary scholarly community, as well as current and future efforts.
“It is an honor to work on this inspiring campus and within the Institute’s rich academic history. We hope the new generation of scholars will enjoy the Rubenstein Commons as it brings the community together with inviting spaces. We look forward to the collaboration and realization of this important piece of architecture,” said Steven Holl.
“We are incredibly pleased to be working with Steven Holl Architects on this exciting project,” stated Robbert Dijkgraaf, Director of the Institute for Advanced Study and Leon Levy Professor. “The Rubenstein Commons will provide a greatly needed space for enhanced social engagement and academic collaboration, and Steven and his team will bring a rich and varied level of experience to help us achieve these goals.”
Founded in 1930 by philanthropists Louis Bamberger and his sister Caroline Bamberger Fuld, and established by Founding Director Abraham Flexner, the Institute is one of the world’s leading centers for curiosity-driven research in the sciences and humanities. For more than eighty-five years, it has been the academic home for many scientists and researchers at the top of their fields, including J. Robert Oppenheimer, Erwin Panofsky, Hetty Goldman, Homer A. Thompson, John von Neumann, George Kennan, and Clifford Geertz. Currently, a permanent faculty of approximately thirty eminent academics guides the work of the Institute’s four Schools—Historical Studies, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, and Social Science—and each year awards fellowships to some two hundred visiting scholars, from about one hundred universities and research institutions throughout the world. An independent academic institution, the IAS frequently collaborates with Princeton University, Rutgers University, and several other nearby institutions, as well as an international network of academic research centers.
Read more in today’s New York Times.