Spectral Grove

Spectral Grove is a permanent outdoor public installation of cascading, latticed ribbons of colored aluminum and steel at the entrance of Pivot Park in West Philadelphia. Commissioned by developer Wexford Science + Technology, the University City Science Center, and the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, Spectral Grove is situated at the juncture of 37th and Market Streets, an area which comprises the latest phase of uCity Square, a multi-block mixed-use development home to research labs, offices, and residential space.

Spectral Grove aims to recreate the connection between 37th Street, a pedestrian thoroughfare, and busy Market Street by emphasizing the new park situated at their meeting point. The sculpture simultaneously marks the park’s entrance and invites visitors inside with a grove of archways, woven together from intersecting bands of powder-coated aluminum in 28 colors.

Instead of providing a single entrance, the installation feels more like a sparse forest, allowing pedestrians to visually engage with the structure while weaving through it. The installation emphasizes the overlap of function, structure, and the various communities the park and large development will serve and was inspired in part by Leonhard Euler, an 18th century mathematician who pioneered graphic diagrams used to illustrate relationships and commonalities between different groups.

Each of Spectral Grove’s six columns is made from a gradient of two similar colors, so that their palettes appear to shift as visitors move around and through them. Below these gradients give each column a unique identity, while their fins intersect in the arches above, producing a cohesive woven canopy of open coffers rendered in different shapes and myriad color combinations. While appearing idiosyncratic, the canopy’s latticing also gives the piece its structural strength, affording essential stiffness and tying each of the columns together. The honeycomb of metalwork simultaneously reveals glimpses of the sky above and interacts with the sun’s movements throughout the day. As light passes through at different angles, various tones are highlighted and its woven pattern is traced in shape-shifting shadows on the ground below.

Collaborators: ARUP
Photos: Alan Tansey

Spectral Grove
Spectral Grove
The Nautilus
The Nautilus
BOB 176
BOB 176
Mirror Mirror
Mirror Mirror
Sequin
Sequin
Possible Mediums
Currents
Building Connections 2018
Iris
Iris
315 Montgomery
Clog X Artificial Intelligence
Anáhuac Workshop
Anáhuac Workshop
Structural Branching
One State Street
Happy Holidays!
Aurora – Facebook NYC
Volume Interface
Facebook AIR
Volume
Wonder Wheel
Silex
Museum of the Future 2017
Frame 113
Frame 113
IBM MWC 2017
Young Architects 14 : No Precedent
Sites ARCHI
Archtober 2016
Project #5
Ventricle
NOVA – Flatiron Holiday Installation
Happy Holidays 2016
Museum of the Future 2016
Spectralline
3M SXSW 2016 – The Big Picture
Plume
Frame
Behance
RAB Interface
darc
NOVA – Opening
Melissa – Crystallized
Happy Holidays 2015!
5 x 5
Treatise: Identity Crisis
Innisfree
BranD Magazine
BranD Magazine
Cell Structure
Sites ARCHI
Cumulus
Cumulus
GAUD 2015
3M LifeLab SXSW 2015
Frame
Rise Nation
Melissa – We are Flowers
Metropolis
Surface Panel Fabrication
Museum of Future Government Services 2015
GAUD13
Pentagram Remixed
Light House
Crystalized
Glass Trösch – BAU 2013
Feast 2013
CFA – Considering the Quake
Interior Design
Designer Werktag 2012
Non Discrete Architectures: Networks, Digital Prosthetics and Augmentation
San Gennaro North Gate
Light House – Interface
360 Design
R&D:azzle
CLOG Sci-fi
GAUD14
POLYP.lux
Beaux Arts Ball 2012: Tender
Resonate 2014
Gimme More
Plot
bob
Eliciting Environments | Actuating Response
art4d
Red Sea
Happy Holiday 2013
Kerb 21
Flu
CHROMAtex
(n)arcissus
Architectural League 2012
PIN-UP
bob | International Magazine of Space Design
No Shame: Storefront for Sale
Light House for SONOS
Common Weathers – NYSCI
Design Bureau
Gimme More Opening
Global Concepts
bob
Alan Tansey
Fashion Worlds
NOOKA
CHROMAesthesiae
Happy Holidays 2012
Cellular Automata
Future Now Summit 2012
White Zinfandel
Beaux Arts Ball 2012
The Pop-Up Generation
bob
Designer Werktag
Newly Drawn
T Magazine
The Sky’s the Limit – Applying Radical Architecture
ID+C
ON SHOW
RE:Think – Smart environments
2012 Architectural League Prize for Young Architects + Designers
AIT
Modern Decoration
bob
GAUD12
WILD CHILD
RUM
BOFFO – The Lake and Stars
AD Scripting Cultures
Day Trip
Let us Make Cake – Festival of New Ideas
Archi-Film Mash Up
Design Exchange
Paul Poiret – King of Fashion
Surface
Installation Art
Blue Marlin
Shizuku
Evolo
Node 10
NPNY2010 film
Prototype *.4a
NPNY  2010
NPNY 2010
Tarp
Evolo
CROMA
pAlice
Shizuku
Stiletto
CHROMAesthesiae Install
The Living
Stiletto
Proximity
SOFTlab Promo
Verizon FIOS
Illumination
Inversabrane