Tag Archives: Cornell Center for Materials Research

MoMA PS1 Warm Up summer music series kicks off

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Johann Hamilton


Hundreds gathered at MoMA PS1 on Saturday for the return of its Warm Up summer music series.

Taking place every Saturday through September 7, Warm Up also features the 2013 winner of the annual Young Architects Program “Party Wall.” The structure was designed by CODA, an studio for architectural research and design founded by Caroline O’Donnell.

Standing at approximately 40 feet tall, the Wall has a porous exterior created out of skateboard scraps donated by Comet, an Ithaca-based skateboard company. Some of the wood scraps can be detached from the Party Wall’s self-supporting steel frame in order to create benches and tables.

“It’s a really interesting work of art,” said attendee Bruce Dessner. “It’s hard to believe that it’s all just skateboard parts put together. Definitely worth coming to see in person.”

The Wall also features an aqueduct-like system for transporting water along the top of the structure into various misting stations and pools found both inside and around the structure itself. Because the wall is hollow, dozens of people can relax inside of it, enjoying the shade and cooling off in one of the small pools located inside.


“I love that there are pools inside of it so you can keep cool,” said Ashley Baker, who was taking advantage of the shade found within the Wall. “It’s very imaginative.”

Warm Up also features a large dance floor overlooked by the DJ’s stage, a selection of beers and wines and an indoor art exhibit. Admission to the event is $15 in advance and $18 at the door. Long Island City residents get in free with proof of residency. For more information, visit momaps1.org/warmup.



‘Party Wall’ to debut at MoMA PS1 Warm Up summer music series

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Images courtesy of CODA

Once again, the heat won’t be the only thing warming up Long Island City this summer.

The 16th edition of MoMA PS1’s Warm Up summer music series and dance party will kick off June 29 and take place every Saturday through September 7.

More than entertainment, the series also acts as an architectural exhibit.

The winner of the annual Young Architects Program provides shade and seating for those attending the series each summer in the modern art museum’s outdoor courtyard.

The 2013 pick, “Party Wall,” by Ithaca-based experimental design and research office CODA, will combine function and innovative design like the previous year’s winners. But it also will have an eco-friendly twist—woven wooden panels made from recycled skateboard scraps.

“At CODA, we don’t know what we’re going to end up with, but we have a certain way we approach design projects, and that is to look very closely at the site,” said CODA principal founder Caroline O’Donnell.

She got her first look at the future site of “Party Wall” when she came to the U.S. for her master’s degree in 2004.
“One of the first things I did [when I came to America] was go to PS1,” said the Irish-born O’Donnell.

About four years later she started teaching at Cornell University, where she is currently an assistant professor of architecture.

The same year she came to the school, she started CODA.

After successfully competing in several architectural competitions, CODA was nominated and later chosen as one of five finalists to submit designs for the MoMA PS1 Warm Up 2013 project.

Finalists had to create a temporary outdoor installation that provided shading and seating for attendees, had a water feature and addressed environmental issues, such as sustainability.

This year, architects also had to create a design that could be used for other events and programs in addition to the music series, said O’Donnell.

CODA tackled these requirements and beyond.

Many former winners used a canopy as shade, she said, but the CODA team thought there were other ways to create it, and that was one reason they chose a wall.

They also saw a wall as an ideal multi-functional element.

“We were interested in ‘how the wall could do more than just be a wall,’” said O’Donnell.

Panels will detach from the lower section of “Party Wall”’s façade and will be used as benches and communal tables during Warm Up and other events.

O’Donnell wanted to use a material that was sustainable or had a future life for the detachable seating, and first thought of recycled plastic chairs, but those were not in the budget.

With the help of the Cornell Center for Materials Research, she found Comet, an Ithaca eco-friendly skateboard company.

The manufacturer donated uncut boards for the seating and boards after they are cut into the skateboards, which will be woven together to make the façade.

These woven pieces of reclaimed wood will also help create the structure’s “micro-stages.”

“Party Wall” will also feature pools of water that will serve as cooling stations. These can be covered for additional staging or shading.

“It doesn’t just have to do one thing. It has to do many things,” said O’Donnell.