Florida/Caribbean Architect - Summer 2014 - (Page 24)

JUDAICA READING ROOMS, UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA, gainesville, florida KENNETH TREISTER, FAIA, miami, florida The Foyer, with its mahogany wainscot and paneling, contains various design elements, including a stained glass mural titled "One God," a photograph of Todd Carroll Price to whom the library is dedicated and custom-designed light fixtures. All photos by Laszlo Regos, Berkeley, Mich. "To let elements arise and shine at the expense of final repose is for the architect a betrayal of trust, for buildings are the background or framework for the human life within their walls." Frank Lloyd Wright, In the Cause of Architecture, 1908 The Isser and Ray Price Library of Judaica in the University of Florida's Smathers Library is a suite of reading rooms containing what is considered to be the foremost Jewish studies research collection in the Southeast. With more than 100,000 volumes, many of the Price Library's late 19th and early 20th century materials are very rare and held in few other institutions. Architect Kenneth Treister, FAIA, described his design for the project as a work of "romantic architecture that emanates warmth with a continuous flow of impressions that positively affect the senses and radiate the collection's themes of Jewish literature and knowledge." The suite of rooms was designed as a work of holistic art with beautiful forms, spaces, craftsmanship, artistic details and a genuine respect for the library as a place of scholarship and historic continuity. Where many library reading rooms are neutral and devoid of intellectual stimulation, the Judaica Reading Rooms reinforce scholarly study. Dedicated in January 2014, these spaces for the rare collection will make a wide range of books and documents available to scholars and will also be used for classes, seminars, lectures and cultural events. As a marriage of art, architecture and literature, the suite is a perfect example of Gesamtkunstwerk, a total work or synthesis of the arts. Ken Treister, the 2013 recipient of AIA Florida's Gold Medal, designed the space and everything in it including light fixtures, paintings, sculptures, stained glass, graphics, furniture and integral ornamentation. This holistic work is a wonderful example of what Frank Lloyd Wright described as a total work of architectonic art. 24 The introductory statement explaining the suite's theme is built into the wall behind the bronze and stainless steel sculpture titled "The Parting of the Red Sea," Millwork and furniture is by A Ward Designs, Winter Haven, Fla. The Main Reading Room with the Mezzanine above and left, "The Star of David," one of 13 original paintings by Ken Treister. Each alcove study space is partially enclosed by shelving. Each of the eight alcoves has thematic books, a study carrel, sculptural chairs, custom light fixtures, two windows with grilles and a thematic Jewish quotation. www.aiafla.org http://www.aiafla.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Florida/Caribbean Architect - Summer 2014

President's Perspective / Nathan Butler, AIA, LEED AP
Editorial / Diane D. Greer
Legislative Update
Work-in-Progress
Spotlight: Emerging Professionals
Captiva Guest House
Temporary Structures as Urban Elements
Sunrise Public Safety Complex
Judaica Reading Rooms, University of Florida
Wellness Center, Florida State University
Smokey Hollow Commemoration at Cascades Park
Master Plan for an Academic Hospital
Advertisers Index

Florida/Caribbean Architect - Summer 2014

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