domesticated
Sukkah City competition, 2010

Domesticated was conceived as a structure that could accommodate two different sorts of groups - intimate, informal settings of 2-3 people and larger parties of up to six people. The informal "standing" arrangement has the occupants sitting on mats on the ground, sharing food amongst them. The larger, "horizontal" mode allows occupants to use the laminated wood frame as a bench, and accommodates a low dining table.

The project explores the idea of the sukkah as a sort of hybrid house-animal – a temporary construct that is animated by its inhabitants. Like a large, friendly animal, the sukkah exists in a space between house and furniture, between an architectural object and a companion body.

The sukkah is constructed in three parts. The flowing frame is made from laminated strips of wood, using a technique developed for boat-building called "strip-building". The frame is constructed on a simple temporary form or "strongback" (in boat-building parlance). Flexible strips of wood are glued together, allowing the builder to create smoothly curved surfaces. When finished, the strips combine to form a strong, lightweight composite. The schach or covering is made from tree branches stripped of bark, woven into a wooden lattice. The lattice and the frame are intended to be permanent and could be disassembled, the schach is intended to be replaced every year.In true urban-nomadic spirit, we envision using mostly recycled material in the construction of the sukkah: salvaged joists for the wooden strips in the frame and lattice, dead-fall and storm-damaged limbs from street trees for the schach.