Susan Carpenter

OUTSIDE/Inside: Spring 2001

This project was a seminar assignment completed in my final year of graduate school. The seminar explored issues concerning the natural environment and its relationship to building technology. The assignment called for the design and construction of a device that altered the way in which the architecture school's inhabitants would perceive the building's systems their relationship to the natural environment. My partner, Whitney Hudson, and I proposed a space within the school that would be supported by and filled with outside air. The sealed space was essentially an outside space inside. The point of this installation was meant to question the nature of sealed, artificially cool/heated environments such as Campbell Hall. The room also included the projection of 'natural scenes'. By proposing an outside space inside, my partner and I looked to engage the students and staff in a dialog about the limitations of conventional HVAC controlled buildings.


Beauford Residence:
Albemarle County, Virginia, Fall 2001-present

This project, which is currently under construction, is collaboration between Daggett and Grigg Architects, and Zen Associates, Inc, Boston. The house, designed for a family of three and their staff, implemented Japanese inspired materials and forms. In order to balance the client's desire for the floor space and the Japanese proportions, the mass of the house is broken into several volumes. These volumes are unified by one-story passage corridors. The corridors act as a unifying spine, while giving the volumes an independent legibility. The volumes are situated on the site in order to take full advantage of view and sun exposure.

completed while with Daggett & Grigg Architects, Charlottesville, VA


Fashion Institute: Spring 2001

This project, completed during my final graduate studio, proposed the siting of a Fashion Institute within and upon a Civil War era fortification. The fort, located on a beach along the Outer Banks of South Carolina, is carved into the earth. My proposal sought to accentuate the hidden vault construction and mass of the fort through light, transparent roof cladding. Transparent, multi-colored bar volumes intersect to create the figural expression of the institute on the beach.


Beach Shack: Spring 2001

The beach shack was an introductory project to the Fashion Institute. The shack is meant to house a flutist along a stretch of beach on the Outer Banks of South Carolina. The formal expression of the house attempts to recall the complex system yet basic form of the modern flute. While the house is, diagrammatically, a rectangle box, its mass is comprised of several volumes encased with a steel frame. The presence of water becomes an additional unifying thread for the partitioned rooms.


The Evolving Face: The Role of Skin and Surface in late 20th Century Paris
Sarah McArthur Nix Fellowship - Summer 2000

This fellowship is awarded yearly to one student within the School of Architecture. For my proposal, I examined the present experience of cladding and skin within the city of Paris. Through this research I hoped to establish how the juxtaposition of surface materials and textures might inform an overall sensibility towards building within an historic context.