design with company to build pavilion MMM in miami
all images courtesy of design with company




a competition was held by the non-profit organization, dawntown, for the design of a temporary pavilion to be installed at the miami cultural plaza. the chicago-based architecture office, design with company, has won the commission with their entry ‘pavilion MMM (Miami Many-a-chair Monument)’. the proposal includes purchasing various chairs, of differing colors, from local yard sales. the seats will be converted into swings, and hung from a modular structure made of construction scaffolding members. the strategy makes assembly straightforward, economical, and appropriate based on the installation’s temporary existence. the project is to be fabricated in early june, and will energize the public space and encourage interaction among miamians and visitors alike.


the competition submission included the video shown above, describing the design/build strategy
video by design with company




coming directly from the residents of miami, the multi-colored collection of chairs represent the diverse cultural community by displaying their previously owned furniture. with no two seats alike, these everyday objects, if viewed with a careful lens, tell stories through their individuality and marks of usage.

design with company pavilion mmm designboom




the gridded configuration is turned forty-five degrees compared to the adjacent historymiami museum, and aligns with the orientation of pavers in the courtyard. the location of scaffolding members and the positioning of swings dictate the irregular circulation and promote playful interactivity. sheets of stretched canvas create gable forms in the upper layer of the structure, which serve to shade the the pavilion from the summer sun.

design with company pavilion mmm designboom

the structure is shaded by gabled canvas stretched between scaffolding members

design with company pavilion mmm designboom

the plan view shows the irregular configuration of swings, canvas shades, and circulation

design with company pavilion mmm designboom

the swings create a playful environment, encouraging interaction among users



the following quote by philip johnson (architect of the plaza and adjacent museum) served as conceptual inspiration for the design:

my pavilion is full scale false scale, big enough to sit in, to have tea in, but really “right” only for four-foot-high people. change of scale like this is a harmless and pleasant joke on serious architecture. and yet it is serious architecture, if architecture is to be defined as the art of making pleasant enclosures for people to be inside of. it is pleasant to be in false scale—to feel big or feel small.



project info:


location: miami cultural plaza, miami, florida
installation date: june 2014
team: stewart hicks, allison newmeyer with shifa virani and jade narrido