Charlotte Street Foundation _ 2020

A Community to Create

Kansas City, MO _ 24,689 sqft
Architecture, Interior Design
Photo Credit _ Hufft

Charlotte Street Foundation’s new campus is a two-building industrial complex located just down the road from our Kansas City shop. The campus offers its staff and artists nearly 25,000 of operation and creative space.

The building concept began with the idea of an artist’s village. Like a village, the campus will be home to many unique individual inhabitants whose collective spirit and knowledge drive the community. To produce an artist’s village, we focused on connections: artists to other artists; artists to the greater community; artists to the Charlotte Street staff; and artists to the surrounding landscape.

The building opens both vertically and horizontally, starting with inserting a main reception that connects the lower and upper terraces. As the new collective entrance to the building, it ensures that everyone passes through the same space, regardless of how they access the hilly site. It serves as a lobby, an incubator, a lecture hall with a large cascading staircase, and the first space for a chance interaction. The artist studio levels are visible from reception, forming the next level of community interaction.

The formation of a campus or Artist’s Village will consolidate multiple venues and resources currently scattered across the city into a single locale. The program mirrors the varied discipline of artists that Charlotte Street serves, and will include residency studios, shared maker spaces and resources, a black box theater, white box exhibition space, administrative offices and multiple outdoor terraces. The campus is raw and functional, with focus spaces conceptualized as blank canvases for residents to create. Flexible studios can be adapted to the needs of each individual artist as they rotate in and out of residency. Shared resources will be well-equipped to serve artists working across multiple mediums. The common, more public areas will serve as space for the community to engage with artists and their work.