Sunday, May 10, 2009
Inside and out, Northern Guilford Middle School stands as a study of nature, where solid forms play against open spaces, stitching the space together, much like the experience of looking up into a tree and seeing the overlapping leaves and branches that weave into a seamless interior. This pattern enhances the linear corridor composition; the consistent ordering creates an underlying stability and predictability. The use of purple, green, orange, and gray, each representing a season, enhances the space by strategically adding color as a way finding technique. Each color band signals a classroom or other entrance from the hallway. The color bands also balance the horizontal emphasize of the long hallway. Color works on a smaller scale at each classroom entrance, where featured student work sits within a nook adjacent to the door. The student lockers provide another palette for color exploration, emulating leaves of trees. All in all the corridors become feeders to the adjacencies and act, as nutrients to ensure growth, much like a forest eco system. The resulting corridors feel balanced—yet stimulating and energetic—bringing students and nature into one system.