81 Centre Ave. Lobby — Centre Main EquitesNew Rochelle, NY
The naturalistic and historical motifs used for the lobby of 81 Centre are drawn from the building’s recently-restored terracotta facade and embody the spirit of the emerging artist community in New Rochelle. Originally constructed in 1929, the building was one of five restored as part of our New Rochelle Model Development Block project, which received a Preservation League of New York State Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation. A permanent art installation was developed to help achieve the owner’s goal of transforming the building into an enclave for artist-tenants. Sustainable materials and practices were used, including the reuse of pre-existing mirror, floor tile, and wood trim in order to minimize environmental impact and cost of demolition and replacement. Bamboo plywood paneling was used to accent and frame the organic shapes of new artwork, which we designed for the lobby as a permanent art installation. Grain patterns, colors, and the natural oil finish of the bamboo compliment the brightly colored organic shapes of the graphics which have been layered on top of the mirror. Unique bamboo plywood was employed to create address panels on the building’s exterior and for individual plaques that identify artist studios on the second and third floors.