|Vol. 17, No. 9||Oct. 30, 1997|
The shining lights and contemporary style of the Trabant University Center are attracting worldwide attention and awards.
The center was featured in a recent issue of Japan's SD magazine, a monthly journal of art and architecture. The issue features the 1990s works of the architectural firm, Venturi, Scott Brown & Associates, which designed the building, and four pages are devoted to the UD center.
One double-page spread showcases color photographs of the interior of the gallery with its arching neon lights, banners and signs and an exterior night shot. The other pages feature black-and-white photographs of the center, its adjoining buildings and the east elevation. Architectural drawings of the exterior and interior accompany the article.
The text, in part, says: "This building was designed to be an integral part of the pedestrian circulation system of the whole campus and town. Its arcade-facade is bold in scale as it relates to this whole but also, via its details, small in scale to relate to individuals....so it is a place as well as a building.... Charming little buildings...help preserve the existing quality of this part of town and its historical aura....The arcade-gallery itself...is emphatic but varied in its architectural quality....Reinforcing the gala effect of the gallery are banner-like signs....Spanning this gallery are decorative arches depicted by repetitive floating neon tubes that vividly articulate the place as a whole."
In other recognition, the Trabant University Center received first place for neon lighting/graphics in the 1997 Electric Sign Design Contest, sponsored by Signs of the Times magazine. An interior photograph of the gallery and a description of the lighting, designed by Patricia Pitzer of Illume Creatif of Philadelphia and fabricated by Custom Neon Designs of Wilmington, are featured.
The center also received an International Illumination Design Award of Merit from the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America.