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Sitting at one of Richmond’s busiest intersections, on the edge of Virginia Commonwealth University’s downtown campus, Steven Holl’s massing of oblique cuboids into a 3,800-square-metre modern-art institute creates a new link between city and school. The shape is a metaphor for “forking time” and potential new directions in contemporary art. The faceted volumes, which incorporate exhibition galleries, a 240-seat performance space, classrooms, offices, a café and retail space, combine to make a landmark gateway to the campus. At night, white lighting is diffused through the ICA’s translucent glass, making some of the cubes’ facades glow. The intersection of these volumes at odd angles created exciting opportunities for the interior floor plan, which is more fluid than the edgy exterior.

Project Institute for Contemporary Art   Location Richmond, Virginia, U.S. Firm Steven Holl Architects, U.S. Team Steven Holl and Chris McVoy with Dominik Sigg, Dimitra Tsachrelia, Garrick Ambrose, Rychiee Espinosa, Scott Fredricks, Gary He, Martin Kropac, JongSeo Lee, Yasmin Vobis, Christina Yessios, Charles Piper, Gilbane, Robert Silman Associates, Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Arup, Ascent Engineering Group, Michael Boucher Landscape Architecture, L’Observatoire International, Convergent Technologies Design Group, Theatre Projects Consultants and Sustainable Design Consulting

Institute for Contemporary Art

Explore more Award Winners

2020
WinnerBuildings Over 1,000SqM
Location
Qinhuangdao, China
Firm
ch Office (Shanghai, China)
2018
Award of MeritBuildings Over 1,000SqM
Location
Beijing, China
Firm
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, USA
2014
WinnerBuildings Over 1,000SqM
Location
Fayetteville, Arkansas
Firm(s)
Marlon Blackwell Architect, Polk Stanley Wilcox Architects
Team
Marlon Blackwell, Mark Herrmann, David Jaehning and Joe Stanley with Meryati Johari Blackwell, Jonathan Boelkins, William Burks, Angela Carpenter, Craig Curzon, John Dupree, Conley Fikes, Laura Lyon, Sarah Menyhart Bennings, J. B. Mullins, Bradford Payne, Michael Pope, Kimberly Braden Prescott, Stephen Reyenga, Reese Rowland, Michelle Teague, Jim Thacker, Christopher Thomas and Wesley Walls.