FIU Department of Architecture Students Design Mobile Art Pavilion for South Florida Communities


Fifteen students from FIU’s Department of Architecture designed concepts for a multi-use, mobile art pavilion to bring the arts to South Florida communities. The 315 square-foot pavilion will serve as an art display and performance venue showcasing popular short plays, pop-up events, and full-length dramas.

This partnership between FIU Department of Architecture and Grace Arts Florida stemmed from the desire to take art beyond gallery walls and into the community to generate more exposure for artists. Senior Instructor Claudia Busch led 7 student teams from her Graduate Architecture Studio 9 to build on ideas and advances in new manufacturing technologies to propose a vision of what a future pavilion might hold. To achieve these visions students worked with FIU’s Robotics and Digital Fabrication Lab (RDF) to provide the integration of industrial robotics and other advanced manufacturing technologies for the design and construction of the innovative pavilion.

“The challenge was to imagine a pavilion that is a piece of art but also functional and innovative,” said Senior Instructor Claudia Busch. “The pavilion can be used at art fairs and public places installed either indoors or outdoors. It’s very versatile.”

The design of the mobile art shelter challenged students to imagine a pavilion that is a piece of art but also usable for art display and performances. This multifaceted architectural design can be experienced from within and from outside as a sculptural, innovative, and functional space. Adaptability and mobility were significant aspects in the design proposals. Although designed for art display, the pavilion would inherit the functions of any of its kind as a piece that stands on itself, and as a representation of innovation within the commu­nity. One of the

proposals was selected and will be fabricated at the RDF Lab to be on site in the South Florida community in summer 2020.

“I was happy to sponsor and participate in the studio,” said Grace Arts Florida Director, Clare Vickery. “Several of the region’s leading architects and contractors poured into the students and this project and we are very grateful for their input.”

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