Canopy MoMA/P.S.1

New York
Photo © Frank Oudeman
Photo © Frank Oudeman
Photo © Sam Dufaux
Photo © Frank Oudeman
Photo © Jorge Pereira
Photo © Frank Oudeman
New York


30,000sf Courtyard

Young Architects Program summer installation

Groundbreaking first time use green bamboo at architectural scale. Largest bamboo structure in USA at time of completion

AIA NYC Design Honor Award

Competition team: Eric Bunge, Mimi Hoang (Principals), Jorge Pereira (Project Architect), Samuel Dufaux, with Kayt Brumder, Phu Hoang, Claudia Martinho, Marica McKeel, Christopher Rountos, Dayoung Shin, Nik Vekic; nARCHITECTS fabrication + installation team: Eric Bunge, Nick Gelpi, Mimi Hoang, Matt Hutchinson, Ian Keough, Jonathan Kurtz, Jeannie Lee, Marica McKeel, Jorge Pereira, Aaron Tweedie, with Anthony Acciavatti, Jenny Chou, Samuel Dufaux, Jennifer Fetner, Toru Hasegawa, Mark Hash, Hikaru Iwasaka, Sebastian Potz, Christopher Rountos, Kevin Sipe, Peter Thon, Nik Vekic.

Bamboo Consultant: Dave Flanagan, President, Northeast Chapter, American Bamboo Society; Bamboo Supplier: Big Bamboo, GASteel Fabrication: Amuneal Manufacturing Corp., PA, and nARCHITECTS; Structural Consultant: Markus Schulte, Ove Arup & Partners; NYGarden Consultant: Marie Viljoen; NYSound Environment: José Ignacio Hinestrosa

nARCHITECTS, Amuneal Manufacturing Corp., PA (steel)

Canopy was a temporary structure built with green bamboo in the courtyard of P.S.1/MoMA, a contemporary art and music venue whose weekly Warm Up music parties attract 8,000 revelers every Saturday in the summer.  Overall, Canopy was host to more than 100,000 visitors during its five months of existence, during which time it underwent a slow transformation as the freshly cut green bamboo turned from green to tan.  This rapid transformation emphasized Canopy’s brevity, allowing visitors to experience the effects of time in a direct and tactile way. Dips in the canopy defined rooms open to the sky, each with a distinct climatic environment for different modes of lounging. Canopy is the first documented structure built of green bamboo.

Canopy was built in situ over a period of 7 weeks by nARCHITECTS and their team of architecture students and recent graduates.  Prior to construction, they spent 6 weeks on site testing each arc type to determine the maximum span, minimum bending radii and overlap dimensions.  The structure utilizes 30,800 linear feet of freshly cut green Philostachys Aurea bamboo, spliced and bound together with 37,000 linear feet of stainless steel wire.  Steel ring beams with welded pipes (into which the bamboo was inserted on the ground) and steel wall straps with welded pipes (into which the bamboo was inserted above the walls) were primarily fabricated off site during this testing period and installed prior to erecting the bamboo.  Students used a cad/cam foam cutter to cut the undulating underwater topography of the wading pool out of 38 pieces of EPS foam, which were glued and sprayed with Polyurea on site.  The initial order of 1,100 bamboo poles was chopped, cleaned and shipped from Georgia in one week, so that it arrived as fresh as possible upon delivery.  Once on site, the poles were stored in racks, covered with UV resistant tarp and watered twice a day to keep them green and flexible. 

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