A New Cultural Sanctuary for Shylo Arts


Our team met with Shylo Arts biweekly with the goal of presenting them with a fundraising package for a new “cultural sanctuary”. After an initial site visit, all future meetings were conducted remotely.

Shylo expressed interest in a secular place of reflection and gathering for neighborhood residents, local artists, and visitors. “Approach” became the lexical touchstone when considering the structural and theoretical proposals for the design.

Structurally, it is important to Shylo to retain an ADA accessible front porch, a vernacular frame, and an open sanctuary space.  We proposed a two directional ramp elevating ADA accessibility from a requirement to an asset by extending its frame to merge into the landscape, offering a multi-planar performance or congregation space. This is designated as the “ramphitheater.”

Theoretically, these elements embody the history of the building and welcome people inside. As such, our team determined that language is an invaluable tool when working on this project. There is a language implemented for remote communication to replace in person work sessions, another formed through naming conventions that brand and build identities, and a third used when presenting findings to the client. 

Community Partners
Shylo Arts
Jessica Allie

Student Team
Megan Finley
Dan Shen
Shandra Bernath-Plaisted
Mytreyi Chandrasekhar Metta

Faculty Mentor
Anya Sirota

For more information about the Shylo Arts, visit this link.