The Daniels Building's most photographed and celebrated detail is the signature ceiling that spans the third floor graduate design studio. But did you know that the award-winning ceiling almost never came to be? Catherine Osbourne of Azure spoke to NADAAA's Katie Faulkner to learn how she and Nader Tehrani proved that moving forward with this design feature — which brings light into the center of the building and provides an inspiration place of learning — wouldn't break the bank.
Given that the ceiling looked complicated, they decided to build a section at full-scale. “We sat down and wrote up a list of what we would need, and almost everything we wrote down we could get at Home Depot. So we went shopping.”
Within a week, they had constructed a metal frame covered with ¼-inch ply, a thinner-than-usual option that could bend a bit more than thicker plys. They built a surface with two end points that tip either up or down, and which demonstrated that over a long distance, the framing could accomplish the desired curvature using straight lines.
NADAAA’s hyperbolic paraboloid solution, says Faulkner, was significantly different from how the contractor was envisioning it.