CAM presents Hedge, an architectural installation created by the design team of Jason Foster Butz, Nathaniel Elberfeld, and Lavender Tessmer. Built from recycled materials taken from industrial sites, Hedge experiments with light and reflection, with material and ephemera, and with changes in the weather. The design team investigates modular forms, with the repetition of smaller units reconceived to create a large-scale holistic material system. The completed form maintains a subtle yet profound influence on the outdoor space, a surprise to the eye activated by cloud, sun, moon, and slant of light.
Prior to Hedge, Butz and Tessmer led graduate architecture students from the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis in the creation of the site-specific installation Accumulus, which glistened above CAM’s front entrance in 2015. Accumulus contrasted the concrete exterior of the building with translucent shapes that reflected color and light. In the summer of 2017, Butz and Tessmer led students in the design and installation of Spectroplexus at St. Louis Lambert International Airport. The 100 foot-long structure hovers above a terminal full of busy travelers, yet does not distract or intrude, making its presence felt by light passing through polycarbonate panels. Returning to CAM with their colleague Nathaniel Elberfeld, Butz and Tessmer bring their iterative design practice to an outdoor space. This Hedge of scrap materials will be a gentle intervention in courtyard, a delicate formal system that may transform in the moment and through the seasons.
Jason Foster Butz, Nathaniel Elberfeld and Lavender Tessmer are graduates of and lecturers in the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design at Washington University in St. Louis. They have taught seminars and studios in parametric design, digital fabrication, and digital representation and share research interests where digital specificity and analogue handcraft intersect. Prior to their collaboration, the three have practiced in offices in St. Louis and New York City and designed a wide-range of projects, from site-specific installations to high-end residential and commercial projects around the world.
Hedge is organized for the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis by Lisa Melandri, Executive Director.