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Jonathon Meier Yale School of Architecture M.Arch I 2014

Academic Work presented chronologically

Shifting Planes.................................................................................. Transformative Skin.......................................................................... Extended Landscape........................................................................ Colliding Volumes............................................................................. Continuous Light.............................................................................. Suspended Field............................................................................... Voided Monolith................................................................................

4 12 28 34 40 48 54

Shifting Planes Critic: Ana DeBrea Ball State University Spring 2009 Muncie, IN *Honorable Mention Prize, BSU Gresham Smith Competition

This project for a new Multicultural Center on Ball State University’s campus, designed in partnership with Jessie Rabideau, was an exploration of form based on the disruption of preconception. Continuous surfaces change roles and create varying functions by folding, intersecting, and merging. The design process began non-contextually by exploring how a single plane was capable of changing direction–how a single surface was capable of taking on multiple roles. The same thought process was applied to the site, where pieces of the ground begin to rise up and intertwine with one another to define space. The fenestration fits between the planes, but folds and angles within itself much like the concrete and grass planes. The angled glass is supported by vertical structural glass fins. Where the angled glass planes meet, they bring together reflections from disjointed locations. One might see oneself in a reflection next to a stranger from the other side of the building, or one might find the grass in a reflection directly adjacent to the sky.


perspective from southeast corner


0’ 75’ 175’ B


^ N


















top section B-B bottom section A-A





top left angled green roof detail bottom left truss system top right roof detail bottom right library

perspective from southwest corner

Transformative Skin Critic: Andrea Swartz Ball State University Fall 2010 Washington, D.C. *Honorable Mention Prize, AIAS National Competition *Project Published, AIAS Magazine *Honorable Mention Prize, BSU Cripe Competition

This project for a new Municipal Courthouse in Washington, D.C. was designed in partnership with Jessie Rabideau. In viewing the courthouse as a place of transformation (inherent in the courthouse’s function of determining individuals’ futures), the design intent was to embody, through form and function, the courthouse’s role as a transformative yet authoritative and stable place. While maintaining the respected civic ideals of authority, stability, and integrity, the new courthouse exemplifies transformation in form, skin, security, and experience. The idea of a twisting object developed as a visualization of “transformation”. The object, initially itself, twists and becomes something different on the other side. The twist remaining in the center of the object is left as the “moment” of transformation. The user would experience this moment of transformation when walking between the vertical and horizontal parts of the building. The skin, enveloping the building, sweeps over, down, and around just before sweeping upward from the opposite side. The skin wraps around the building as a controlled system of fabric membrane louvers. Each horizontal piece of fabric membrane is independently hinged at its ends, which allows it to twist at any given point across the piece. It transforms spaces by adjusting daylight, visual exposure, and solar gain as the twist moves or is eliminated altogether. It was developed parametrically using solar altitude angles. The skin uses solar sensors to make the louvers become immediately more vertical in overcast conditions (permitting daylight) and more horizontal in sunny conditions (blocking solar radiation). The passersby can see the kinetic skin transforming in real time as the clouds pass over and the skin adjusts to the needs of the building and its users.


^ N

left site context, Washington, D.C. right security diagram (with ramp as security checkpoint)

perspective from northwest corner

concrete structural grid

kawneer 1600 ss and sloped glazing curtain wall system

skin shading/privacy control device

fiberglass membrane

Kawneer glazing

solar sensor

suspended ramp

aluminum armature

structural steel member

retention wall

rentention pond

South Side 58 degree variance

North Side 360 degree variance

far left detailed wall section top left louver twist variation top right single unit of framed system right close-up skin-to-frame connection

series progressive images of dynamic facade, twisting as clouds pass over




^ N A left ground floor plan top right section A-A bottom right section B-B

series circulation sequence from entry, through security checkpoint and into courtroom

Extended Landscape Critic: Joyce Hsiang Yale School of Architecture Fall 2011 New Haven, CT

This project was for the extension of an invertebrate exhibit at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History. The site is situated at the top of a hill on Yale’s campus set next to the Klein Biology Tower and its colonnade designed by Philip Johnson. Displaying invertebrates in their preserved states completely removes the specimen from their natural context, allowing the specimen to be seen as free-standing objects of sculpture. This project seeks to further remove the objects from their contexts by rescaling the traditional vessel (jar) to become long, glass cylinders which stretch up and through the building— dually serving as display case and light well. The horizontal planes flow between the extents of the cylinders to shape circulation paths and create an unbroken topographic experience with Science Hill. By day, the backdrop of the planes creates an intensely graphic display. By night, the tubes illuminate the specimen and expose them as free-floating objects in space.


top left day view bottom left night view right section

unfolded section along circulation path

Colliding Volumes Critic: Joyce Hsiang Yale School of Architecture Fall 2011 New Haven, CT This project translates the intense noise, both audio and visual, of the program and site into interactive volumes. The volumes, each representative of a dance studio, collide with one another to define new spaces and create internal visual connections (i.e. studio-to-studio, studioto-cafĂŠ). When the volumes collide to the point of piercing, the mesh skin is broken and transparent glass is exposed, and a connection is made to the exterior (i.e. main entrance). The spatial resultant of all the collisions is the performance hall, where the angles of the collided volumes form the necessary acoustical and line-of-sight angles for the theater.


top left northwest elevation bottom left west elevation bottom center south elevation right west-east section

Continuous Light Critic: Peter DeBretteville Yale School of Architecture Spring 2012 New Haven, CT

This project investigates how form can simultaneously address tight site constraints, environmental needs, programmatic innovation, and experiential affect. The program houses work space and private living quarters for 8 entrepreneurs on a site only 17 feet wide and open to a large courtyard on one side. The courtyard is considered a means of advertisement to the public for the entrepreneurs and their ideas; therefore the public is pulled into the building by a voided exhibition space on the second level. The void scoops up into the building as a social space and forms the exhibition hall, creates a 2-story social work space (where entrepreneurs can discuss ideas with one another), pierces the other side, and then twists back around to form a shared roof-top terrace. The piercing draws in day light to both the live and work units—where the site would not otherwise have air rights--and pulls it through the voided space and glass floors to the exterior ground floor of the site. The light exposure on the ground floor (to what would otherwise be a dark space) allows the void to materialize and test the boundary between solid and void.


view of the light void cutting through the building from the courtyard on the other side

plans showing the void moving from the courtyard up and through the building, and re-emerging on the rooftop

section cut showing the void moving from the courtyard up and through the building, and re-emerging on the rooftop

left light causing the void to materialize right structural model

Suspended Field Critic: Mark Foster Gage Yale School of Architecture Fall 2012 New York, NY

The new Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) building was designed to be a new genre of exhibition space–both in how one experiences and inhabits it, and in how the exhibition space affects its surrounding spaces. The exhibition space was thought of as a field of objects suspended between two lattices that moves up, through, in, and out of the rest of the building. By lifting the field of objects above ground and exposing it with the porous lattice, the underside of the building is established as CASIS’s primary facade. One flows through the field of objects on a walkway that is suspended between a porous “floor” and “ceiling”. This creates a feeling of being neither “here” nor “there”, but rather existing somewhere inbetween the ground below the floor lattice and the sky above the ceiling lattice. The exhibition space also interacts with the street and the interior classrooms and offices beneath it by exposing its contents as silhouetted objects. The upper lattice holds a thick space frame for structural support, allowing the lower lattice to be delicate and hang from above.


suspension between ground and sky while circulating through the field of objects




left site plan showing building as a terminus to the allĂŠ connecting to the waterfront right ground floor through 4th floor showing the lattice moving through the building







section showing the relationship between the field of objects and the exterior of the building

view from the exterior, beneath the lattice; objects appear as silhouetted masses

Voided Monolith Critics: Marcelo Spina & Georgina Huljich with Nate Hume Yale School of Architecture Fall 2013 Los Angeles, CA

This project exploits dissonance as a means of floating between opposing elements: monolithic object and multiplicity; hard and soft geometry; solid and void; interior and exterior. Rather than juxtaposition, which may be seen as overt contrast between two elements, dissonance in this case may be described as the coalescence of these oppositions into a single, in-between state–a limbo state in which the oppositions can neither be fully combined together nor fully extracted from one another. The exterior appears to be composed of a series of cubes (both upright and rotating). As one moves around the building, that which appeared to be a cube quickly dissolves into soft geometry and new cubes seem to appear. This process continues and when one has fully revolved around the building, it becomes clear that there is no cube at all. The building’s apertures are as ephemeral as its cubic form. Their patterns at times line up with the cubic edges, and at other times flow indiscriminately over them. The apertures read like a texture and are cut perpendicular to the curvature of each surface, which allows them to appear and disappear as one moves around the building. Each surface can therefore be read as either solid or porous depending on one’s location relative to the surface. Masked by the texture of apertures on the north façade, a large void peels inward and flows down into the building. The apertures from the exterior continue along the sides of the void. The surface eventually re-merges with the exterior on the south façade to create a strange sensation within the void–clouding one’s sense of interior versus exterior.


view from interior through the texture of apertures

rotating elevations showing the cubic image appear and disappear









axonometric drawing showing relationship between void, floor plates, exterior massing, and apertures

section showing relationship between void, floor plates, theaters, exterior massing, and apertures

left drawing of apertures cut perpendicular to the curvature of each surface right apertures in physical model

left cubic image of north elevation with void to interior right south elevation with context

top left view from interior looking out of void center left view from exterior looking into void bottom left west elevation with aperture effect right southwest elevation of section model

Mute Icon Critics: Deborah Berke with Noah Biklen Yale School of Architecture Spring 2014 Reykjavic, Iceland This project for a new center for internet freedom and free speech advocacy in Reykjavic, Iceland embraces the scale of Reykjavic while creating a new image for the internet freedom movement. It creates a dual reading of form that floats between iconicity and contextual muteness. Adopting the scale and rectilinear footprint of the nearby buildings, it is sited directly across the street from the Museum of Contemporary Art, which requires pedestrians and drivers to approach the building on the oblique. The rectilinear footprint is extruded as opaque walls at the building’s corners to maintain the building’s scalar and contextual reading at a distance; however, as one approaches the building its complexity is exposed. Requiring movement and exploration to be understood and gradually revealed, the building becomes increasingly transparent and fluid toward its center. While the form is completely contained within the boundary’s four corners, the form subtly absorbs circulation flows from outside the boundary. Upon approach, the loose, horizontal formwork of the concrete comes into focus, which gives the forms a subtle and imperfect texture that moves with the form’s directional flow. Toward the center of the facades, the concrete strips away to become a louvered veil over the apertures reinforcing a transparency gradient from the building’s boundary to its center. As the flowing forms pull back and overlap one another, exterior spaces are formed at all levels creating an intense depth to the facades. At the heart of the building, the surfaces become completely transparent.

left site plan top right site model right model showing roof plan

4th floor / roof

3rd floor

2nd floor

ground floor

diagrammatic model: rectilinear boundary with fluid center

view from southwest corner showing duality between the simple, rectilinear boundary and the complex fluidity within

top left south view showing transparency gradient bottom left interior fluid forms and tiered exterior spaces right section perspective from ramp up to terrace with view to water and mountains

section perspective looking south

Built and Professional Work Vlock Building Project...................................................................... 74 Internship.......................................................................................... 84

Vlock Building Project Winning Design Team: Ryan Connolly, Charles Hickox, Thom Medek Jonathon Meier, Robert Scott, Xiaodi Sun, Kate Warren Yale School of Architecture Spring-Summer 2012 New Haven, CT As participants of the Jim Vlock Building Project, all first-year Yale M.Arch I students work toward designing and building a house in an economically depressed neighborhood. For the second half of the spring semester, the class was divided into eight competing design teams before collectively building the winning proposal throughout the summer. As part of the design team for the winning proposal, my primary duty was designing and organizing the plans. Unlike most Yale Building Projects (which are predominantly single-family houses), the 2012 project was a two-family house for an owner and a tenant situated on a prominent corner in a New Haven, CT neighborhood. Prior to Neighborhood Housing Service’s selection of the site for construction, the empty lot was used daily by neighboring children and teens as a make-shift basketball court. Consequently, it was of great importance to the neighborhood. By talking with the neighbors, our design team quickly learned the significance of even just the visual openness offered by the empty corner lot. According to the neighbors, simply seeing across the lot from their front porches to where their children were playing offered an important sense of security. Sensitive to the neighborhood’s concern, our design sought to maintain the openness on the corner while creating a sense of invitation to the backyard. This conceptual link between the public corner and the private backyard—manifesting in a diagonal line—was used as both circulation and a privacy buffer between the living spaces of the two housing units. The organization of the two units offers each its own private outdoor space and completely independent and private views from one another. From the interiors of each unit, one has the sense that they are in their own singlefamily house.


left northeast corner right southwest corner

left final model for competition right construction framing model

SECTION ISECTION I 1/4’’=1’-0’’1/4’’=1’-0’’

SECTION I 1/4’’=1’-0’’

SECTION IISECTION II 1/4’’=1’-0’’1/4’’=1’-0’’

SECTION II 1/4’’=1’-0’’

SECTION III SECTION III 1/4’’=1’-0’’1/4’’=1’-0’’

left sections top right 2nd floor bottom right ground floor

Internship Terroir Architects Summer 2009 Sydney, Australia These next pages are dedicated to the work completed during a summer architectural traineeship with Austrailian-based architecture firm Terroir. While in the office, I was exposed to foreign approaches to architectural thought, design, and practice. My work in the firm included model building, architectural drawing, graphic design, and exhibition organizing. The Maitland City Bowls Club is in a small town north of Sydney, and it is a five-phase project for Terroir. The second stage involved designing a new entry way for the outdated club and a sleek new roof to unify the previously disjointed building. As the approach to the building is from atop a hill, the roof design was to be very exposed. To help the firm and the clients visualize the design’s complex geometries, I created a detachable, nearly 1.5 meter-long model. After being used in the office, the model was placed on display at the club. The Sydney Laneways competition sought innovative ideas to spark interest and draw attention to Sydney’s unused laneways. I worked with the director of Terroir, Gerard Reinmuth, and photographer Brett Boardman to create a visual package for Terroir’s project entry. After being explained Terroir’s programmatic ideas for each laneway, I designed an image to graphically communicate each idea, and then combined the images into a comprehensive visual package. The project entry was short-listed and presented to the City Council of Sydney.


Maitland City Bowls model

left Maitland City Bowls model right finished project

City of Sydney Laneways Competition Entry

Jonathon Meier  


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