Sky Veil, 2015

Ogden Juvenile Courthouse, Ogden Utah, dichroic glass and steel

My challenge was to transform the courthouse environment for those who are visiting the courthouse in a time of sorrow and stress. The glass curtain wall that slices through the volume of the building and creates beautiful lobbies outside each courtroom is the most dramatic element in the architecture of the courthouse. From these windows we can see the surrounding landscape and the sky.

By putting panels of dichroic glass on the face of these casings, the visitors who enter the spaces see the reflection of the sky and mountains behind and to the east through a veil of color. The view is limitless and boundaries are removed. The structure of the curtain wall is dematerialized and there nothing between you and the sky. Nothing shuts you in. The light that bounces off the dichroic glass and projects into the space is moving throughout the day as the angle of the light changes and the sky changes color. The image is the reflection of the dramatic landscape and sky. No art imagery could match this to sooth to the soul. The majesty of the mountains and the beauty of clouds touched by sun are brought into the room in fragmented slivers that appear and disappear as we move by them. They are as insubstantial and as quick as a door that opens and closes on a young life.

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Sky Veil, 2015 description | video
© Catherine Widgery