The Juilliard School / Diller Scofidio + Renfro Architects with FXFOWLE, by Iwan Baan

© Iwan Baan

This seems to be a very good year for Diller Scofidio + Renfro: The opening of The Highline (a project in collaboration with Field Operations), the competition for the Audio and Image Museum in Brazil, the Creative Arts Center at Brown, the Alice Tully Hall at the Lincoln Center in New York

And now, thanks to architectural photographer Iwan Baan, we present you the recently completed Juilliard School, part of the major redevelopment plan for the Lincoln Center, project on which DS+R has been working with FXFOWLE.

The details on this project are stunning, specially the stairs.

More photos after the break. You can see our previous coverage of DS+R projects here.

Cite: "The Juilliard School / Diller Scofidio + Renfro Architects with FXFOWLE, by Iwan Baan" 22 Nov 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 01 Sep 2014. <>


  1. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    Those staircases are super sexy…looks as though DS+R spent a lot of time making places for students to mingle. The folded seating areas are quite nice as well, great project and very well documented.

  2. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    It seems that sometimes they make too much to things that don’t need that much at all. Sometimes you can do just a simple seat, instead of that strange form we see in the last picture. We don’t need to complicate simple things to make them better looking.

      • Thumb up Thumb down +2

        I have never thought that way. I like it! Architecture is to complicate simple things. (for the sake of aesthetic masked with sustainability, urban dynamic,whatever BIG words one could come up with.) Architecture is my hobby though.

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      isnt it just a way of solving a condition of level changes with a bench and and a guardrail? whats complicated about that?

      i dont know how it was built, but is precast complicated?

    • Thumb up Thumb down +1

      urm, yeh but one structure becomes; stairs, railings, and two levels of seating it is not complicated just very good design…

  3. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Very interesting… It’s cool how a simple twist can make ordinary things more interesting, and therefore I would guess more usable; there’s no way I could pass by those stairs and not sit on them!

  4. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    i like the las pic staircase and seating. It looks like the extension of the landscape….nice project

  5. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    I’m sure these people do not do it for themselves. It’s actually a good thing that others even spend time to create interesting approaches out of very simple objects. These are not negative things, especially in a space that might seem generic. They might actually make a small difference in your day. Hats off!

  6. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    How was that staircase build? I don’t see any central beam?….

    This is a beautiful interpretation – inspiring

    • Thumb up Thumb down 0

      “How was that staircase build? I don’t see any central beam?….

      This is a beautiful interpretation – inspiring”

      That would be a good question for Zahner, the boys in Kansas City who made it.

  7. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    I think you guys mean “especially” the stairs. Either way, I’ll have to check this project out once I’m back in New York. Iwan Baan has been kind of ho-hum lately.

  8. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    “…simple but briliant !!!” Come on! That stair can be everything but simple! And more… “isn’t that the point of architecture? to complicate simple things” If architecture were this, there would be no point to exist!
    Do you want to complicate things? Call Morphosis! hahaha! They know how to do it!

  9. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    What’s so complicated about a stair-seating hybrid? It’s done all the time and if it generates unexpected social interactions within the space than it has done it’s job.

    Well done.

  10. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    We don’t need to do real seatings to make people seat in a chair! Bed colours, bad design, with a table that has nothing to do with the rest. Too much for something that don’t need it!

  11. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    the thing that irks me about those stairs is that no one remembers to integrate the rail at the bottom for the visually impaired. so it’s always an add-on after the inspector comes around to get their C of O.

    that is a big oops on the design IMO (and it’s not just this project–happens all the time)

    super sexy stair…if you can see it.

  12. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    i really wish they broke off the handrail at the center to let people move from stair to seat midway through the transition

  13. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    It’s so cool and funcional, a great and Very interesting stucture It’s cool, simple, and things more interesting, and therefore

  14. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    FilipE, your kind of thinking may be right. Because first they could spend this money for charity or something useful. Also it may propagate some kind of materialistic world view (like everything has to shine and be beautiful from outside and the peoples appearance is over-rated in our world). Instead there are more important values, I think. Also minimalism and brutalism etc have some theory behind them.

    But then again, many people think that art has transcendental value and it praises our life and world.

    My opinion is that sometimes this artistic design is favorable.

  15. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    If they spent their money on something “useful”, they wouldn’t be Juilliard. Everything we’re looking at is music, stunning stunning music. Quit dancing about architecture.

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