Imagine a place that’s equal parts science lab, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and Kraftwerk’s home studio. Throw in a touch of Haight-Ashbury circa 1967, a sprinkle of Prince Jammy’s mixing board and Bob Moog’s synthesizer collection – all in a 22nd century remix – and you’re halfway there.
That’s the description the Red Bull Music Academy gives of it’s annual celebration of musical talent and accompanying state-of-the art interactive creative space.
The Red Bull Music Academy (RBMA) is an international music festival held every year in a different city. Organized by Red Bull, dozens of selected participants are brought together and given the chance to create and learn from peers and industry experts in state-of-the-art studios.
For this year’s festival, held in New York City, the RBMA commissioned architecture firm, INABA, to turn a 38,000 square-foot vacant building in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood into a collaborative learning environment. Occupying 4 floors at 218 W 18th street, the innovative space is a departure from the traditional classroom environment and instead embraces a more interactive, free-flowing, interpersonal learning experience. The experimental venue encourages personal interaction and the sharing of new ideas through the use of a variety of design elements including open layouts, large windows that bathe the entire area in natural light and allow unrestricted views of the space, innovative lighting design, and rounded walls.
As reported in Arch Daily, the facilities include performance spaces, private workshops, production, broadcasting, recording studios, rehearsal rooms, the RBMA radio station and 8 collaborative music studio pods which also have large floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto the workspace. The areas vary in size in order to accommodate different types of collaboration. Wide open areas were created for the benefit of performances and other large gatherings, while smaller rooms and studios allow for a more intimate exchange of ideas.
The festival, which consists of performances, interviews, lectures, and workshops, runs from April 28th until May 31st.
Following the conclusion of the festival, the building will remain in use primarily as an office space, while also doubling as a creative haven to be utilized by artists of all kinds.
Click through to see more images of the space:
Photo Credit: Greg Irikura