The Tozzer Anthropology Building by Kennedy Violich Architecture, the architectural practice of Professor Sheila Kennedy, received an Architecture Merit award from the 2017 American Institute of Architects New York (AIANY) Design Awards. The project will be part of the Center for Architecture 2017 Design Awards Exhibition, on view April 21 through June 20, 2017.
MIT News profiled the Tozzer building upon completion in Fall 2015: “The new Tozzer Anthropology Building is a gut renovation effected within Tozzer’s original shell and footprint. A new skin of iron-flecked brick is used on the building, while a new third and fourth floor ups its usable space to just under 35,000 square feet. A glass skylight, set in a copper roof and angled by KVA to capture maximum daylight, illuminates a birch-clad light well in the heart of the building. Mirrored slits in the pale-colored paneling offer reflections of sky and stars to those in the common space below. Composite panels placed irregularly into the birch walls dampen echoes and ambient noise, making the well more suitable for seminars and presentations.
Tozzer’s signature feature, however, is the east-facing façade on its entry pavilion, a complex geometric composition achieved entirely in corbelled brick, a design that steps and stacks brick units. Stacked in a complex arithmetic array, the bricks fan out in two separate waves from a recessed central seam that angles from upper left to lower right. More sculpture than wall, the stepped courses of brick read like archetypes from an ancient world. Yet they are stunningly contemporary.”