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selected works: 2014–2018

CIERAH BASA university of tennessee, knoxville college of architecture + design bachelor of science in interior architecture


6 18 30


hammond residence

aeroponic apertures


01 02 03

40 54

bluegrass hotel

mixed media

04 05




knoxville, tn education center | spring 2017 | 3rd year | professor rana abudayyeh


Sound interacts with objects in three ways: it passes through the material completely, is absorbed by the material, or is reflected by the material. The design for this space, located on Cumberland’s Evolve building, heavily uses these three performative aspects in tandem with the needs of autistic children as a user group. The use of music is a well-known, therapeutic

treatment for those with autism. Music has been known to reduce anxiety, increase speech output, and increase interaction with the autistic person’s peers. The program for this music center accommodates for their needs with the usage of curvilinear elements, tall ceilings, a performance/ classroom center, therapeutic pods, learning areas, and research terminals.



crossville tile, laminam 23’6” cnc cut slabs spaced 5” apart spanning 49’ sound modifiers

mdf 49’ cnc cut slabs spaced 1’ apart spanning 23’6” tile support

structural tubing steel grid structural support for ceiling system


The building, located on the Cumberland strip and below the Evolve Apartments, is rather loud and may be a means of disturbance in terms of noise to children with autism. The primary goal of this design was to serve as a sound boundary between the busy street and the calming inside. The motivation for the design of the ceiling, shown in section, was to optimize the perception of sound in order to benefit those who suffer from autism.


section perspective of reception + stage 11

study area

The Northern half of the Music Center is a dedicated study area, office area, and mood pods located adjacent to the Northern wall. The study terminals provide a spacious area in which students can study. The max capacity of students in this area are up to six to seven students as children with autism require more space to reduce their stress levels. The students would be paired with a mentor throughout the duration 12

of their visit who would guide them in learning to use an instrument or provide headphones in which the student may learn and be eased through various types of music of interest. The slatted “walls” act as a separation from the main action, creating an office space that bulges from the base curvaceous form. The slats also form benches that are essentially extrusions of

MDF from the main slat structure. These benches are important in forming seating areas near the Northern wall that act as a calming mood pod, where if an upset child has an episode, they may be taken to this isolated section to cool down with a mentor or two. The reason for this “wall” is to as a mean for connection to the whole while simultaneously creating a separate space.

sound interaction with ceiling

stage room 13

millwork detail 14

mood pod perspective 15


reception + stage perspective 17


hammond residence

knoxville, tn residential design | spring 2016 | 2nd year | professor ryann aoukar


Jeremy Hammond, the woodshop supervisor at the Art + Architecture Building at the University of Tennessee, is the single father of two children and a local craftsman. Hammond describes himself as a disorganized person, but he aspires to be more organized. He currently lives in Knoxville, but prior to this, he resided in New York City for fifteen years. The site is located at 1300 Cherokee Boulevard, about ten minutes from UT’s campus in Sequoyah Hills.


1. volume


2. overlap

3. extend

4. embed


This section shows the family sector of the design which includes Jeremy’s room, his two children’s rooms, the living room, and the dining room, and the woodshop. This specific axis shows an 22

organization of family-oriented rooms as opposed to the very utilitarian axis. The woodshop + living room is included as both a family and utility room as it is both a place of bonding and usage.

This section shows the utility axis in which you see the garage, living room, kitchen, and woodshop. This axis organizes the units that Jeremy would use to get work done. 23


dining room + living room 25


new york city Hammond lived in New York City for ten years of his life working as a woodshop supervisor at a design university. He is inspired and heavily influenced by the organized chaos of the city.



rietveld Hammond, being a skilled woodworker, admires the thoughtful craftsmanship of Gerrit Rietveld. The colors, furniture pieces, and wall structures emulate Rietveld.




aeroponic apertures

new york, ny commercial design | fall 2016 | 3rd year | professor lisa mullikin


The design for the top two floors of Renzo Piano’s Whitney Museum is based around the concept of the aperture, taking inspiration from its ability to direct light and its own ability to transform itself from nearly closed to all the way open. The notion of letting light in through openings is utilized with various skylights and openings seen throughout the two floors, most notably within a series of three aeroponic gardens

seen in the main two exhibit areas. The openings become gradually smaller as one traverses through the gardens and tapers to a framed view of the meatpacking district. The botanical research center focuses on three main studies of aeroponic growth: sustenance, medicinal uses, and aesthetic species. The space includes dedicated research areas, dedicated growth areas, and dedicated herbarium displays for the three studies.


7th floor plan


8th floor plan



7th floor apertures 35

aperture closure aperture openness 36

optiwhite pilkington 1/2� clear glass

The concept for this herbarium was centralized around apertures opening and closing to let light penetrate the plants accordingly. The aperoponic apertures, the rhombus-like glass structures suspended from the ceiling create a three storage/display units for three different categories of plants.

yellow pine wood


antenna workspaces knoll

womb chair eero saarinen knoll

k. lounge sofa + bench knoll


The UV light system to the left is embedded into the bottom of each shelf allows each plant to receive proper light and nutrients no matter the time of year. The different colors correlate to the amount of light needed for the plant to photosynthesize despite the conditions outside.

plant specimen

specimen holder

nutrient rich mist


UV light


8th floor apertures 39


bluegrass hotel

pigeon forge, tn hotel design | fall 2017 | 4th year | professor ryann aoukar


The design of this hotel was inspired by the genre of bluegrass music. The choice was due to its prevalence and origins steeped within the Appalachian region and its affect in the culture between now and its inception. Pigeon Forge is a giant hub for bluegrass music and the culture built upon it and also exploiting said culture. The genre is famously known for utilizing only string instruments. Traditional

bluegrass uses unamplfied string instruments such as the acoustic guitar, the dobro, banjo, stand up bass, the fiddle, and the regional mountain dulcimer. The formal aspects of this design was inspired primarily from the guitar and the dobro guitar, song structure, and the cultural embodiment. All of these components designed together create an atmosphere unique to Pigeon Forge.


restaurant kitchen fire pits


garden space



game room


women’s restroom

men’s restroom

bar bar storage


music/gift shop

offices empl. lounge


doorman garden space valet


empl. kitchen


garden space stage empl. changing empl. lounge empl. changing

women’s restroom

men’s restroom


library business room





hotel entrance 45

The courtyard is a place meant to be used not only for acoustic musical gatherings, but for general public events such as large parties, expos, large presentations, etc. While not in use, visitors are encouraged to

courtyard axon 46

explore, as there is much to be found in this maze-like courtyard. The shape is influenced by the contours of the guitar, which serve to amplify and distribute sound to opposite facing ends of each stage.

In the courtyard, niches exists adjacent to the bar in which guests may sit, have a drink near the fire pit and have an outdoor music experience.

There are more niches to be discovered. In the top left corner, there are two fire-pit niches adjacent to one another in which the guest may utilize.


The lobby’s design (below) takes inspiration from the interactive nature of the guitar with strings suspended from the ceiling and secured through to the floor, which is seen in the entrance vestibule and various parts of the hotel. Another interactive element in the lobby are the sound horns that

lobby 48

are seen mounted adjacent to the window of the courtyard. Visitors walking past the various sound horns will experience music from the outside. The horn alludes to materiality of the dobro and is shaped to optimize the opportunity for sound to travel from the outside and to the inside.

The cigar bar (pictured right), located adjacent to the courtyard, represents the culture associated with the region and the genre itself. The cigar walls and ceiling are meant to give the visitor a more immersive cultural stay at the hotel. Visitors also have easy access to the outdoor courtyard.

tiletile flooring flooring

external thread

external thread

external externa t

cable insert

cable insert

cable cab

grip lock

grip lock




gypsum board

gypsum board




plyw p

metal studs

metal studs


gypsum board

gypsum board


copper cable

copper cable

copp c

cigar bar

concrete concrete slabslab

dual occasional moon moon vintage toledo barstool moroso restoration andreumoroso world hardware

burnt + gunmetal black topoak +translucent black basewhite. translucent white. Thisrotationally itemrotationally is artisan with meticulous care. occasional table with crafted round base and molded, molded, 100% 100% recyclable recyclable Given its handmade hand-finished injected aluminum ovaland column in matte nature, polyethylene polyethylene variations in the wood or metal work are towith be white or matte black finish and round oak with integral with integral color; color; also available also available with expected and celebrated. board top. metallic metallic finish. finish. Each item is unique and no two are exactly alike.

dual dual occasional occasional vintage cigar toledo walls+ceiling barstool restoration andreu andreu hardware custom worldworld

burnt black oak + top gunmetal black + black top + base black base walls crafted with thewith intention enriching This item is occasional artisan crafted meticulous care. occasional table with table round with round baseof and base and the sense ofaluminum smelland by harkening to the cultural Given injected its handmade hand-finished injected aluminum oval column ovalback column innature, matte in matte ties in ofwhite bluegrass music and tobacco. variations the wood or metal work are todifference be oak white or matte or matte black finish black finish and round and round oak scents may specified. expected and celebrated. board board top. top. Each item is unique and no two are exactly alike.

vintage cigar vintage walls+ceiling toledo rampu toledo barstool barstool restoration restoration custom fabbian hardware hardware

matte burnt burnt oakblack + oak gunmetal + gunmetal walls crafted with the intention ofmeticulous enriching the white stain or ismatte black painted stainless steelcare. This item This isitem artisan artisan crafted crafted with with meticulous care. sense ofGiven harkening back to the diffuser. cultural metal frame. glass cylindrical high Given itssmell handmade itsbyoptical handmade and hand-finished and hand-finished nature,nature, ties of bluegrass tobacco. difference flux LED. in themusic variations variations in wood theand wood or metal or metal work are work to are be to be scents may specified. expected expected and celebrated. and celebrated. Each item Eachisitem unique is unique and and no twonoare two exactly are exactly alike. alike.

cigar rampu cigar walls+ceiling walls+ceiling fabbian custom custom

matte black walls crafted with the with intention the intention of enriching ofsteel enriching the the whitewalls staincrafted or matte black painted stainless sense of optical smell of by smell harkening by harkening backdiffuser. toback theto cultural the cultural metalsense frame. glass cylindrical high ties ofties bluegrass of bluegrass music music and tobacco. and tobacco. difference difference flux LED. scentsscents may specified. may specified.


suite—day light diagram 50

suite—night light diagram 51

suite — day section


suite — night section

cable wall suite detail

concrete slab

gypsum ceiling

plenum surface mount cable attachment brushed metal ceiling

external thread

cable insert

grip lock


gypsum board plywood metal studs gypsum board copper cable

tile flooring concrete slab


moroso translucent white.

dual occasional andreu world

black top + black base

vintage toledo barstool restoration hardware

burnt oak + gunmetal

cigar walls+ceiling




matte black



mixed media

varies furniture design | hand rendering | graphic design | photography


The following are selected works that reflect an appreciation of beauty in culture and diversity. The photography taken in Japan and New York City capture and celebrate the handful of quiet moments had during these expeditions. The graphite drawings were created during my first year and embrace negative space, anthropmorphics, and dynamicism in compositions.


kasmit table The idea for this table design was inspired by the need to mitigate the potential for spillage by liquids via a cup onto a surface and anything on the surface (phones, laptops, etc.). The forms are based upon the methods and aesthetics of the De Stijl movement and the works of Piet Mondrian. The table utilizes the aesthetic methods of geometric


forms and leading lines to create a design reminiscent of the De Stijl movement. The rectalinear geometries form together, adding and subtracting to and from forms, to create a table surface, an inset niche and a platform for holding liquid receptacles in order to avoid spilling said liquids onto important documents or even technology placed upon the surface.


model diagrams

2018 create

De Stijl geome-

nd sub-

create e and a

ptacles liquids r even urface.

exploded axon

plan dimensions

berry, ood rn s light wide sting

added shelf

process photos

subtracted shelf


study abroad - japan







hand rendering

dynamic progession


negative space


graphic design A NE IS A PLA OF PATH













B D REA TH. 65


Exterior view of buildi

“C O

form developed— the need to sque onto a constricte is bordered by pr


It was Holl’s deft ago for the Scho maintained an o to build the new former and right a no one could hav art building.

nspired by Picasso’s Cubist composition for a 1912 guitar sculpture, Steven Holl’s first building for the University of Iowa is a stealth work of architecture whose layered weathering-steel assembly and light structure hugs its site and juts out over a quarry pond. His second one is nothing like that.

In 2008, catastrop of Iowa in what w in U.S. history. Th million in damag Harrison & Abram for instance, was a new performin

Perched atop a hill, Holl’s new 126,000-squarefoot Visual Arts Building is more cube than Cubist. Originally intended to have only two levels, its boxy

Holl’s 2006 buil replaces the Art west bank of the



Exterior view of building during construction.

visual arts


The new Visual Arts Building improves on the obsolete Art Building, offering purpose-built studios for students in painting, drawing, ceramics, sculpture, metals, photography, printmaking, and multimedia, as well as gallery space, classrooms, and offices. It also presents an architecture that is completely different from—but, according to Holl, complementary to—his first building. Concrete rather than steel, volumetric rather than planar, the new Visual Arts Building comprises barebones interiors within a beautifully crafted envelope of zinc-clad poured-in-place concrete walls. Portions of those perimeter walls throughout the four main levels slip away from the straight planes of the orthogonal container to create angled setbacks. (A small penthouse leads to open-air studios and a green roof.) Six cuts, or scoops, surfaced in channel glass, further articulate the facade and bring daylight deep within the building. At its core, a seventh, and largest, cutout creates an irregularly shaped atrium wrapped by stairs and ramps that stretches from the ground floor to the

Exterior view of building with campus context.

cutouts, modulate light and reduce solar gain where this is most needed, but also offer abstracted surfaces during the day, as well as an alluring glow at night when the interiors are humming with activity. The Visual Arts Building at the University of Iowa is one of seven educational buildings devoted to studio art or architecture that Steven Holl Architects has either completed or is in the process of designing. Most famously, Holl designed the Reid Building at Scotland’s Glasgow School of Art directly opposite Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s touchstone building. There, he deferred to his famous neighbor by creating something that was the complete opposite of it. In Iowa, Holl is in conversation with himself but takes the same approach. Separated by 10 years and wholly different aesthetics, his two buildings are as individual as could be but unmistakably Steven Holl. Maybe the second one is better than the first; together they are two of Holl’s best buildings. And at a university that has long been a patron of contemporary architects—with buildings by Gunnar Birkerts, Frank Gehry, Charles Gwathmey, and Norman Foster—they are two of the best buildings on campus.

Exterior view of facade, night time.

“CONCR E TE R ATH E R TH A N ST E E L, VOLUMETRIC RATHER THAN PLANAR.” form developed—after more than 40 schemes—with the need to squeeze as much program as possible onto a constricted lot at the edge of campus that is bordered by private property.

roof—a much grander version of the social stair he employed at his earlier building. Holl calls it a “social condenser,” a place for the 1,600 students and faculty who occupy the space daily to meet and interact.

It was Holl’s deft siting for that first project a decade ago for the School of Art and Art History, which maintained an open green, that made it possible to build the new one—nearly twice the size of the former and right across the way from it—even though no one could have predicted the need for another art building.

The rest of the interiors are all that they need to be—loftlike spaces with concrete floors, exposed pipes and ducts, and multiple points of daylight (dimensions for the variously sized square window openings follow the Fibonacci series). Maintaining that spare interior environment, however, is deceivingly complex, with energy requirements that rival those of a lab building due to the kilns (both indoor and outdoor), foundry, and fume hoods used in the creation of art that are spread throughout the building. The exterior offers a different kind of industrial aesthetic. The southwestern and southeastern faces—which overlook Holl’s earlier building and where the main entrances are located— are covered in perforated stainless-steel panels that rest 5 inches away from the zinc cladding and windows beneath. The screens, featuring a pattern derived from the elliptical shapes of the building’s

In 2008, catastrophic floods ravaged the eastern half of Iowa in what was the fifth-worst natural disaster in U.S. history. The university suffered nearly $800 million in damages, particularly to its arts campus. Harrison & Abramovitz’s Hancher Auditorium (1972), for instance, was destroyed, replaced this year by a new performing-arts center by Pelli Clark Pelli. Holl’s 2006 building was salvaged. His new one replaces the Art Building, which was built on the west bank of the Iowa River in 1936 after the plan

Interior view of printing studio.

of Palladio’s Villa Emo near Venice. It was damaged to the point where it could no longer support its program. With financial assistance from FEMA, Holl’s latest campus contribution, designed with partner Chris McVoy, restores the exact square footage lost

from the Palladian structure and later additions from the 1960s and ’70s. (The additions were razed, though the original red-brick portion remains standing; the university hopes to repurpose it.)

Interior view of main atrium.



new york city 68

knoxville 69


Interior Architecture Portfolio | Cierah Basa