performance and limitations

We are motivated by the limits and conditions we inherit with every new scenario. Constraints - economic, cultural, historical, physical, political - give us the resistance we need to hone our responses; finite boundaries provide welcome parameters in a territory often characterized by shifting rules.

In architectural terms, we seek a balance between formal emphasis and spatial introversion. We have found that a sparing approach, respectful of unique characteristics that are outside our control, regularly leads to incisive moments of power and drama in spatial and material resolution.

The same mentality carries through to technology. Our attitude towards energy use, for example, is to minimize consumption as a first priority and interpret the parameters this approach throws up as a series of spatial opportunities as the design develops. Peter Culley is fully trained in the Passive House initiative, the most stringent energy consumption auditing system in existence, that looks to site orientation and building envelope performance as a series of non-negotiable limiting factors. For more about Passive House principles, follow this link.

Over and again we find that restraint generates an artful stage for exuberance and is our preferred method to negotiate the quirks and queries of imposed limits.



The guard and storage building at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, built on Central Park land balances existing architectures, vegetation and stringent planning conditions with its own responding identity of form and materiality