M.Arch. students Lisa Sauvé and Adam Smith win first prize in 10up Atlanta Competition for their project 'Edge Condition'

The Young Architects Forum of Atlanta (YAF Atlanta) second annual competition challenged applicants to design a temporary outdoor installation that will operate as a beacon during the week of Modern Atlanta’s “Design is Human” event. The installation is an expression of the event’s intent as well as a platform for young designers to exhibit their work. Lisa Sauvé and Adam Smith proposed an installation considering the use of a single material and its implications before, during and after the event.

Utilizing a by-product material produced through hardwood manufacturing as a means of invoking the condition of the temporary nature of the pavilion, wood edges cut from hardwood boards constitute a standardized object to build upon creating a field in which to inhabit. By operating on the edge of definitive material, neither board nor wood chip, the wood edge becomes the temporal object between two phases.

The flat stacking method of Edge Condition produces opportunities for expansion and contraction of the volume of occupation within the material assembly itself. Variation of stacking techniques allows for light to move into the pavilion through spaces between edges transforming the edge condition into an ephemeral effect, one that begins to shade and illuminate through the permeable texture of the material.

The standardized one-inch-thick wood edge and weight of the hardwood compress the stack into an inhabitable nest stabilized by its dimension and assembly. While dis-assembly is the reverse operation, the disposal of the material is a process of returning the wood edges to the hardwood mill for chipping, allowing for the material’s re-entry into the recycling stream and process. Extended delay of the industrial recycling process generates new opportunities for temporary architectural production.

‘Edge Condition’ advances work developed by Sauvé and Smith in the fall 2010 Material Fringe course taught by faculty members Adam Fure and Ellie Abrons. Sauvé and Smith are currently completing their M.Arch degrees in the Stormfront thesis group under faculty advisers Kathy Velikov and Geoffrey Thün, and are preparing to install the ‘Edge Condition’ project in late May following graduation.

Sauvé and Smith extend their appreciation to Taubman College for the resources and the encouragement to pursue this type of endeavor. For more information on the 10up Atlanta Competition and the ‘Edge Condition’ project, visit

The is the 2nd year in a row that University of Michigan has won the 10up Atlanta Design competition. To read more about last year’s competition and the architecture project, click here.