Matter Architecture Practice

Matter Architecture Practice

Brooklyn, NY


PEACE & QUIET | Dialogue Station for Times Square

Peace & Quiet was a temporary dialogue station where veterans and civilians—two wide ranging demographic groups, whose paths increasingly do not cross—could openly engage each other in conversation. Installed on the north end of Times Square starting Veteran's Day 2012, it was a tranquil place to meet, share stories, leave a note, shake hands—a veteran-civilian exchange, in person.

Located far opposite the US Army recruiting station—the possible commencement point for arduous and dangerous journeys for those fortunate to return—the dialogue station engaged the women and men of the armed services in their re-entry into civilian life. Abstractly interpreted, the stations were intertwined portals, bracketing experiences the vast majority only hear of in the news; events at the forefront of our national identity and economy, and yet too often remote to those who do not—or dare not—enter these situations directly.

This project was initiated by MATTER, as part of our interest in socially active design for the public realm. Responding to a call for proposals from the Times Square Alliance (TSA) Public Art Program - and selected out of nearly 400 applicants - we proposed a structure to house social dialogue.

Times Square, arguably one of the world’s great public intersections, has an estimated 500,000 people passing through it everyday. It seemed an ideal circumstance (or mad challenge) to initiate and inform a poignant exchange of ideas, to will intimacy and critical thought in an instance of its opposite.

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Status: Built
Location: New York, NY, US
Firm Role: Designers and Fabricators
Additional Credits: Matter project team:
Sandra Wheeler, Alfred Zollinger, directors
Chelsea Crisafulli, John Brandes, Christopher Malloy, Samuel Weston

Jessica Barnhouse, Danae Colomer, Teresa Cacho, Luke Eddins, Sarah Leenen, Robert Miller, Emily Mak, Takuya Toyama

Structural Engineer:
Hage Engineering PC

Station Graphics and Identity: