Kaneko Entrance Addition
Kaneko Entrance Addition
An Innovative, Urban Design Connects Past and Present
Taking advantage of an opportunity to use an additional 20 feet of street space in front of Kaneko, we worked with the client and Mark Mack Architects, to transform the space into a sheltered, signature entrance with a multi-use circulation area. Established in 1998 by international artist Jun Kaneko and his wife Ree, Kaneko is headquartered in three turn-of-the-century warehouses in the Old Market District of Omaha.
The atrium acts as a corridor, inviting visitors in and leading them through to the gallery showrooms, which are filled with art works, including Jun Kaneko’s large-scale ceramic pieces. In addition to exhibitions, the gallery hosts readings, lectures and multimedia presentations centered on four themes: design, ideas, performance and innovation.
The entry features a large picture window revealing current exhibitions, as well as offering a welcome attraction for night strollers when Kaneko is closed; at the same time it allows for events after hours to be directly accessed without opening the entire facility.
Performance-Driven Design Enhances the Structure
With its distinctive artistic expression, the Addition was “born” by juxtaposing a three-degree site slope against a three-degree column/beam slope, for a total effect of six degrees of variance. The entry area is also negotiating between the various levels of the different existing structures, ramps, stairs and platforms to bridge the street level and interior levels. The three degrees of structural slope defines the building form and influences the glass and foundation walls. Light, transparent glass and the panelite enclosure create a varied field of visual experiences as one climbs the stairs or works in the offices.
Architectural Details Include:
- Materials and structures reinforce the matter-of-fact architecture of the existing warehouse architecture of the early 19th century
- Fritted glass
- Sloped standing seam metal roofs
- Architectural shading devices
- Patterned granite walkway
- Opens with a high ceiling which showcases the existing structure; displays existing rustic brickwork, and connects the past structure with the present
- Faces north and west, with the glazed portion of the atrium laid out in a striped pattern flowing with the steel structure
- Barrier between the street and the interior is accented by a serrated concrete wall to embrace the dynamic form of the structure