gathering: sukkah city new york
gathering: sukkah city new york gathering: sukkah city new york
mar 09, 2012

gathering: sukkah city new york

a finalist in the sukkah city new york competition, gathering was selected out of more than 600 international entries to be built in a “visionary village” in union square park in september 2010. gathering was then purchased by the sixth and historic synagogue and exhibited in washington, d.c. through october 2010.

sukkah city new york was a competition that sought to re-imagine the sukkah, a temporary shelter erected each year to remember the biblical exodus from egypt. the sukkah is meant to be inhabited for meals, entertainment, rest and congregating. guided by a large set of strict, esoteric rules for construction, sukkah city new york envisioned radical alternatives to the traditional post-and-polyester rectangular huts and displayed them in the appropriate urban environment of new york city.

for forty years, the israelites wandered the desert. they found rest from their wandering, communing with one another in shelters built of brush and trees. the city is similar. we wander its streets and get lost in its chaos. in the city we search for our own trees and our own temporary moments of urban intimacy. and whether wandering through the desert for forty years or through the city for a day, all people desire respite. the sukkah is an icon for this relief from transience, and this project explores what a temporary structure can be in the urban environment through a non-linear design.

the relationship of urban transience to the non-linear system is in how singular bodies move towards certain attraction points within given conditions. the result is a calculated yet unpredictable pattern.

as the sticks shift, they create a specific entry and space of occupation for the user. now the movement and body of the user have a direct interaction with the structure itself. the aggregation of the branches and the degree range of enclosure also allows for movement, creating a variation of porosity. the angle and flow of the sticks shades the reflecting soul during the day and at night guides the dweller’s eyes and spirit up to the stars. this process creates a phenomenological space – through its randomness, light is manipulated and it is through this intangible material that a pace becomes dynamic, reaching to the intangible spirit.


interior detail


detail diagram


fabrication process

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

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