windhover contemplative center offers tranquility at stanford university windhover contemplative center offers tranquility at stanford university
feb 04, 2015

windhover contemplative center offers tranquility at stanford university

windhover contemplative center offers tranquility at stanford university
all images © matthew millman

 

 

 

the ‘windhover contemplative center’ by aidlin darling design in collaboration with rammed earth works, is located on the campus of stanford university where it serves as a sanctuary for quiet contemplation amid the academic bustle.

 

the landscape architecture attributes to this sense of calm and was created by andrea cochran, the site is also surrounded by a grove of mature california live oaks. the use of rammed earth provokes a deep feeling of serenity as the massive walls of native rock, sand, and clay quieten the outside chaos, the tranquility is reverberated by a unique combination of thermal and acoustic stability. in addition the walls were specifically designed as a backdrop to the paintings by nathan oliveira. 


the center serves as a sanctuary for quiet contemplation

 

 

the process of getting the color of the rammed earth walls to complement but not overpower the art was a challenge, involving a dozens of subtle iterations of the mix formula. although the reddish brown weathered sandstone that lay directly beneath the site would have met the structural specifications for rammed earth walls on its own, the color of the site-sourced earth was too dark and too rich for the art, so it was blended with other materials to achieve the final color. the formula involved a blend of site soil with coarse sand, small gravel, crushed rhyolite, decomposed granite, and two different cements.

 

 

 

‘the design lends a very naturalistic and ascetic feel to the space. it is a very relaxing place to be and a welcome reprieve from the constant busyness of the stanford campus. it’s nice to have a place to sit still and breathe deeply.’ says henri person, a stanford senior.


the landscape architecture attributes to the sense of calm

 


the massive walls of native rock, sand, and clay quieten the outside chaos

 


the walls were specifically designed as a backdrop to the paintings

 


image © matthew millman

 

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

  • exquisite

    dbkii says:
  • For me, invoking tranquility was a major attribute to the success of Mies Van Der Rohe’s Barcelona Pavilion, a building which no doubt influenced the design of this contemplative center. I do hope this building works as well and stimulates those who experience it in much the same way as has the work of the old master.

    James Williams says:
  • Exquisite. A stunning achievement.
    A most beautiful space.

    Ron Smith says:

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