Small Wooden Pavilion

This project entitled a surgical demolition of an existing shed and the erection of a small ancillary building. The old structure housed the electrical and communications utilities of a large compound, and the new project had to preserve the location and function of all this equipment, therefore some walls and floor levels are set from the beginning.

The program required two different type of users, therefore we decided to split the building in two, allowing for a separate circulation for each group. The upper piece houses the electrical room and the team quarters, while the lower portion holds two individual restrooms for visitors.

The project sits in the middle of the forest therefore we chose charred wood to make it blend with the surrounding nature. On the other hand, the polycarbonate façade brings natural light and privacy to the interior. All floors are made of polished concrete for easy maintenance and a radiant slab keeps an optimal temperature during extreme winters.

Architect: Miguel Quismondo
Client: Olnick Spanu
Location: Garrison, NY
Built area: 600 sq.ft.
Completion Date: 2019
Construction Manager: Miguel Quismondo
Collaborator: Miguel Bello Escribano and Jacobo Mingorance
Structural Engineer: Michael P. Carr, P.E.

By Alberto Campo Baeza

Today, on a stroll in Midtown Manhattan with Miguel Quismondo, under an unusually radiant December sun, on 242 east 52nd Street, we discovered a wonderful, small building, between party walls. Only three floors with exposed brick and an exposed metal structure. A perfect example of control, beautiful, that could have very well been signed by Mies Van der Rohe himself.
When we googled it on Miguel’s phone, we discovered that it was from the prolific Philip Johnson. In truth, when Philip Johnson designed as a Master, he knew how to do it very well.
In the same way, when Miguel Quismondo designs like the Masters, he knows how to do it more than well. He has just finished a small pavilion in Garrison for the Olnick Spanu family, right after finishing the magnificent Magazzino, the arte povera museum for the same clients.
This small pavilion is all built in wood. The occasion, the function, the size and, especially the location, required it. In order to protect the double shifted structure, he decides to cover it with a simple sloped galvanized metal roof. Everything is simple but exquisite. It brings to my mind references of Sea Ranch, Charles Moore’s best work and even some of the architecture of Glenn Murcutt. Every detail in the erection of this pavilion is a prodigy of good construction, of a deep knowledge of how we should built in wood. But first, and above all, we must emphasize the adequacy of the idea and the beauty of the result.
A small great work of a true master.

Arquitectos: MQA

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Miguel Quismondo
MQ Architecture

Miguel Quismondo, AIA

Born and raised in Spain, Miguel attended the Polytechnic School in Madrid, where he graduated with a degree in architecture. A will to extend his understanding of architecture led him to travel to the United States, where he has carried out most of his career, first working for corporate America (Perkins+Will) and later collaborating with award-winning architect Alberto Campo Baeza in the design and construction of the Olnick Spanu House.

Over the past decade, he has worked for Olnick Spanu in several fields spanning from design, construction and management. Additionally, he had the opportunity to work with many international artists in order to help them implement and install site-specific projects in Garrison, NY.

During the more than two decades of professional experience in the fields of architecture, construction and development, Miguel has continued his education; he holds one Master’s degree in Real Estate Development from Columbia University, and another in Construction Management from NYU. He has also recently started his PhD studies in architecture, focusing on the financial aspects of design and development.

His work has been published in la Biennale di Venezia, Architectural Record, A+U, Domus and Casabella, among other magazines, and he was recently recognized with an Honor in Architecture by AIA New York.

He practices architecture blending design and construction management to achieve a very personal, cost-sensible and meticulous result.

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