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The Whitney Studio shipping containers are stacked to form a two-level structure measuring 20x20x20 feet. The volume is sheared by two fluorescent lime green diagonal planes that create a continuous cut – and visual break in the volume – that runs along the sides of the container up to the roof to create a skylight. The design of the windows also engage the museum’s entrance bridge, its lobby, and its lower level restaurant, allowing visitors to observe the activities going on inside. A stark white interior and plenty of fluorescent light lend to brightening up and opening the studio, which could easily feel compact — particularly as it is sited in a moat below street level, wedged between the lower floor window and a concrete wall.

The modules were modified locally at a New Jersey factory, where they were also painted before being transported to the Whitney. The six pieces were carefully craned into the moat one at a time and then fastened together.

The studio will remain at the 75th and Madison location until the Whitney’s new Renzo Piano designed building opens in the Meat¬†Packing¬†District in 2015.

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Photos: Michael DePasquale for Inhabitat