Performance Capture Studio / Kanner Architects & Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects

© Frank Oudeman

Architects: Kanner Architects & Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects
Location: Bay Area, California,
Kanner Architects Team: Stephen Kanner (FAIA, Principal), Damian LeMons (Project Director), Mel de Leon, John Hixson, Adriana Molina
Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects Team: Lorcan O’Herlihy (FAIA, Principal), Donnie Schmidt (Project Director), Sabrina Schmidt-Wetekam, Alex Morassut, Claudia Lugo, Monica Ream
Project Area: 120,000 sq ft
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Frank Oudeman, Nicolas O.S. Marques, Donnie Schmidt

Designed for an intensely collaborative and creative film production studio, this massive internal project involved transforming two airplane hangars on a former Coast Guard base and converting them into a full production film studio. Reflecting the client’s unique operational flow, the project was conceived around the premise of ‘strange loop’, a term often used in film to describe the movement through interconnected levels, where one finds oneself back where one started. Through the utilization of an adaptable display wall system that encompasses the various departments within a continuous loop, various artistic and production departments are able to engage and collaborate with each other in a non-linear back-n-forth manner.

© Donnie Schmidt
© Nicolas Marques

Program was positioned according to its specific level of required light and sound control. Through the aggregation of the significant amount of required ‘dark program’ (screening rooms, color grading stations, theaters, etc), along a centrally located core, other programs are allowed to receive natural light from the exterior while simultaneously providing a flexible open floor plan. Carve-outs through the core define shortcuts, maximize circulation efficiency and provide ‘color’ opportunities otherwise not available, due to the sensitivities of computer monitors. Additionally, strategically located curvilinear vertical nodes promote further collaboration between levels and enhance the experience of the considerable height of the hanger from ground level.

flag wall perspective
© Nicolas Marques

The flag wall system, primarily comprised of 11” x 17” magnetized steel panels, dynamically communicates the unique process of performance capture, while facilitating the large demand for adaptable working pin-up space. In addition, the 18% gray tri-fold curtain provides flexible horizontal light control throughout the day.

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Cite: "Performance Capture Studio / Kanner Architects & Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects" 08 Apr 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 May 2015. <>