TBSP Photography Studio / CKMS Design
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Text description provided by the architects. We were approached by a photographer to design & build their new studio in a Brooklyn loft that they had just acquired. The program called for a flexible space that could accommodate a variety of different studio setups. Formerly a residence, the space was subdivided into multiple smaller rooms. Given the abundance of natural daylight from windows on 3 sides of the property and 2 boarded-over skylights, we were able to see the potential of the space if it were to be opened up with as few permanent divisions as possible.
We distilled the smaller programmed rooms into two 10-foot cubes and placed them in opposing corners at either end of the space. To allow for maximum flexibility we designed a mobile living room, which could be reconfigured and moved into any part of the studio necessary to accommodate the various setups.
In homage to the Brooklyn loft, we sourced locally recycled wooden joists, abundant in the New York building stock, and fashioned them into wide-plank 12-foot-long floorboards, each 4-inch-thick beam was able to yield 3 individual floor boards, which were tongue-and-grooved onsite and installed by our local wood flooring specialists.
As a practice, we are focused on sourcing whatever we can locally, upcycling materials where possible, and celebrating the local architectural heritage. We are also committed to material experimentation, in this instance for example we knew we wanted cement as the finish for the bathrooms since we felt like it complimented the existing raw material palette, but we wanted to see how the same material could have opposing surface qualities, so we experimented with rough sprayed-on mortar cement for the ceiling and smooth hand-cast cement tiles on the floors and walls, the sinks were cast on-site in custom made molds built-to-size using a cement impregnated with fiberglass fibers and various bonding agents, all 3 material variations were pigmented the same color to accentuate their difference.