Harvard ArtLab

Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Photo © Iwan Baan
Barkow Leibinger
1-5 Stories
Harvard University
Frank Barkow, Regine Leibinger, Martina Bauer (Associate), Sebastian Awick, Johannes Beck, Jordan Berta, Sophia Hannekum
Architect of Record
Sasaki Associates Inc.
Construction Manager
Lee Kennedy Co. Inc.
Structural Engineering - Concept
Werner Sobek
Structural Engineering - Executive
RSE Associates Inc.
MEP/FP Engineers
Landscape Architect
michael boucher landscape architecture

Harvard University’s ArtLab, a cross-curriculum space for the arts, is located on the school’s Allston campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Designed to be curated and adapted by its users, the 9,000 square-foot space will be available to students, teachers, visiting artists, and the wider community.

The building, a one-story “pinwheel-like” plan, consists of a series of studios, workshops, and media spaces that surround a common “Hub” space. The Hub, which can be opened and closed by a series of four large sliding partitions, enables performances and exhibitions, cultivating interactivity at the ArtLab’s center. Surrounding spaces provide recording studios, sound-editing stations, and rooms for rehearsal, improvisation, and informal performance.The ArtLab encourages and expands participants’ engagement with interdisciplinary arts-practice research, serving as a collaborative activator for the school and the greater Allston and Cambridge neighborhoods.

The building, which complies to Massachusetts’ high energy efficiency standards and is projected to be net-zero, is constructed of lightweight steel columns and open web steel trusses on a concrete slab on grade. Framing is mechanically fastened, able to be assembled and disassembled easily and efficiently, allowing for the building to be transferred and given a second life when needed. The steel frame is clad in transparent insulated glass and lightweight high-insulating polycarbonate panels. These panels range from transparent totranslucent to opaque, exploiting diffuse natural light and a street-level view by day, emerging as a glowing “lightbox” by night. These materials emphasize the building’s ephemerality while providing a robust and adaptable space for the arts. The roof is covered with photovoltaic panels, generating the power required for the building.

Related Projects

  • Ausbau zweite Dachgeschossebene und Sanierung Fassade
    Andreas Marti und Partner Architekten
  • Mehrfamilienhaus Auf Hirtenhof
    Andreas Marti und Partner Architekten
  • Umbau und Erweiterung Bündtenweg
    Andreas Marti und Partner Architekten
  • Bamboo Gateway
    West-line Studio
  • Kuro.Mori


Other Projects by Barkow Leibinger

Canteen Ditzingen
Ditzingen, Germany
Tour Total
Berlin, Germany
Serpentine Summer House
London, Great Britain
Apartment House
Berlin, Germany
HAWE-Werk Kaufbeuren
Kaufbeuren, Germany
Trumpf Smart Factory Chicago
Hoffman Estates