After one missed appointment via jetlag, we made it to the New 42nd Street Studios amidst the hustle and bustle of the theatre district. It’s immaculate neon facade, impressive in the photos, was decidedly understated compared to it’s neighbours. This being a positive. It’s restraint makes it different in a ubiquitous neon playground. The building houses 10 floors of rehearsal space for various performing-arts groups, along with the Duke Theater. The internal spaces are logical, repetitive and basic. The graphics are loud, clear and whimsical. Each floor is slightly different. Our guide, Alma, talked about the complexity of the wayfinding being in part a guise to keep the privacy of the building and the studios and the rehearsals for top-secret performances. The graphics are inspired by De Stijl and the tape marks put down on stages to indicate performers’ positioning. There are some problems with the upkeep of the signage and repainting of the walls and replacing of the floor which haven’t been resolved in terms of long term upkeep. New signage that was created in the building has faded must faster than the originals.Click on any of the thumbnails below to view the images full size.
Case Studies : Duke on 42nd Street. : New York : July 27, 2011