Left untouched for decades, toilets and bullets were found in the excavation. Although considered an invasive weed, owners were charmed by the central mulberry tree. They chose to wrap their deck around it. The design called for three terraces and a staircase steel staircase to negotiate between the garden duplex and the owner occupied floors and cellar. Each tenant receives a private terrace, and the intermediate platform is used for outdoor cooking and dining. Salvaged trex decking, recycled brick from neighbor’s facade demolition, and cement pavers provide a muted material backdrop to the lush green New York Summer plants. The south facing wall is left as chain link, to engage and encourage neighborly communication and let the sun light up the raised beds throughout the year. Outdoor LED step lights provide surface lights, as string lights circle the yard and rise 50’ into the tree to create a beacon for the private common spaces.
COMPLETED WINTER 2017
3,000sf townhouse revonation
UNDER CONSTRUCTION TO COMPLETE SPRING 2018
Home is a 4,OOOsf pop-up home showroom in Tribeca for New York Design Week 2018. Working with Thisopenspace, JMGA led the design of the shoppable apartment experience, featuring top of the line direct sales home brands including:
GrowShelter, winner of the Schuylkill Environmental Education Center Sustainable Design/Build Competition. The shelter uses strategies to create space within an evolving and devolving living system, allowing the inhabitant to become more aware of the complexities and fluctuations in the natural environment.
The Bird/Seed Shelter is made up of a permanent shell component for visitors to play and camp, and a temporary earth component as a "feeder" for plants and animals. The permanent shell component is constructed of lime mortar over a reinforced framework structure. Lime mortar has been used for thousands of years for building masonry structures and carries an 80% smaller carbon footprint than the more commonly used Portland Cement. The lime mortar is mixed with water and sand and hand applied to the spherical frames to create the round habitable shells.
The temporary earth exterior is built from large quantities of soil retrieved from the excavation of the pond adjacent to the site. The soil is mixed with water and lime mortar to form a sticky mud which is then accumulated and packed over the shells, supported by formwork constructed from salvaged wood. After the mud is packed, the wood form work is taken away leaving the earth form. A fertile topsoil layer is then added over the packed earth layer, including Philadelphia native plants and flowers along with birdseed ingredients composed of peanuts, sunflower seeds, and corn.
The life cycle of the shelter begins in early spring. The permanent shells will remain throughout the year, while the earth, during the spring and summer will attract and support a micro biome of local animals and birds at the site. During the fall and winter, the earth will slowly weather away, leaving the permanent shells bare in a pile of earth, ready to be re-packed and planted for the coming spring. We see the bird/seed shelter as an experiment and educational tool in our continuing research of pushing the limitations of sustainable architecture.
Julia Molloy Gallagher co-designed the GrowShelter with Taka Sarui working as XLXS. See more work by XLXShere.
Curated art walls, designed for you. Collect with us.
Because we know the power of art-curious advisory, we’ve partnered with renowned Absolut Art to curate 10 unique, thematically driven concept walls. Whether you’re the Activist or the Dreamer, the Environmentalist or the Wanderer, we’ve created something to fit you and your space. Come along to This Open Space where you can shop individual artworks or pick up an entire curated wall.
Development of artist residence and performance center.
ONGOING TILL SUMMER 2023
3000 yards of colored yarn, 3 sets of 48 screws, 88ft wood furing strips, white paint
This installation is a 3-Dimensional abstraction of an advent wreath. The colored yarn refers to the traditional colored candles: purple and pink, representing peace, hope, joy, and love. The five chandeliers: the five candles. Unlike the traditional advent wreath, this installation opens up as you walk through it. Walk though the room and explore how the lines undulate and twist. From different vantage points they give you a new perspective on the same line, the built space, the community occupying the space, and the natural light.
installed by volunteers from Trinity Grace Church
in Williamsburg, Brooklyn
COMPLETE WINTER 2017
The images shown, are excerpts from J Training: a documentary research looking at the development of commercial real estate on church properties near the J Train in Bushwick, Brooklyn.
ONGOING TILL SPRING 2019
New Galley Kitchen Design
The one hundred year old townhouse renovation provides an opportunity to invent sustainable solutions to design a common place that each of the four private bedrooms can share. By creating a central timber display wall, even a tight budget allows for an extraordinary double height space to display art work, grow a home garden, and make the extensive book collection available to all tenants.
The skylight opens up and floods the neighboring rooms with natural light. Extended views and reflective materials take the viewer out of the surrounding urban landscape, and pulls in the surrounding flora.