conical knitted tubes, with roughly a three-foot space
between. It was this creation of volume that triggered
the direction of her latest work in progress, the
massively ambitious Lumen, which will be installed at
MoMA PS1 this summer.
‘The double surface, and ultimately creating a volume
in the interior, was the biggest achievement of the
Poly Thread project,’ says Sabin. ‘That part became the
immediate point of departure for Lumen. What would
it feel like to inhabit that interior zone? Lumen became
about inhabiting that space in a much larger scale.’
The commission was a result of Jenny Sabin Studio
winning MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Program 2017,
beating five other practices. The annual competition
awards an emerging architectural firm the opportunity
to design a site-specific installation in the courtyard of
the Long Island City contemporary art institution.
Lumen represents her confidence to ‘take it outside
and work at a much larger scale’.
The installation will occupy all three courtyards at
MoMA PS1. The textile canopies will be tensioned
to the existing 15ft-tall concrete walls and then at
three points there will be 30ft-tall towers which lift
the canopy. The largest expanse will be 125ft x 90ft,
with subsidiary structures measuring 74ft x 50ft
and 16ft x 17ft respectively. While the fibres used for
PolyThread blended cotton and polymers, Lumen
will also integrate recycled post-consumer fibres.
‘One of the things that drives all of
my work is the fact that architects are
being repositioned as makers again’