The Design and Construction of Frank O. Gehry's Stata Center at MIT
The evolution of a Frank Gehry building, from planning and design and architect-client interaction to construction; with color illustrations throughout.
This stunning, lavishly illustrated book chronicles the entire planning and construction process of the Frank Gehry-designed Ray and Maria Stata Center at MIT. Taking us from the historical background and architectural context at MIT through the interaction of the clients' needs and the architect's vision to the choice of building materials and construction methods, Building Stata offers a uniquely detailed look at the evolution of a major work by a master architect. The purpose of the Stata Center is to bring the "intelligence sciences"—computer science, artificial intelligence, information and decision systems, linguistics, and philosophy—together into a space that emphasizes research-focused collaboration. Frank Gehry's design integrates flexible and interconnected workspaces and incorporates a series of steps from public to private space, with places for social and intellectual interaction on lower levels giving way to space for study and contemplation on the upper floors; thus a two-level warehouse-like space is topped by two towers. The Center is wrapped around a series of outdoor terraces visible from a central court in both towers. The characteristic Gehry curves are clad in metal, the more block-like elements in brick. The architectural drawings and photographs—300 of them in color—in Building Stata document the making of the Stata Center from concept to concrete reality. The photographs by Richard Sobol portray a work in progress, evoking the beauty of its architectural form and capturing the telling detail—the building's sculptured shape against a clear blue sky, or construction workers perched on a massive curve of metal.