a Centennial celebration of monumental proportions
To celebrate the 1988 centennial of the Sheet Metal Workers International Association, the organization commissioned the then emerging architect, Frank Gehry, to design a temporary architectural structure to be placed inside the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.
Engineered, fabricated, and installed through a collaborative process, the project was one of the first produced by Gehry with Zahner.
Zahner provided the four types of metal panel used to create the 65-foot-high structure: copper, polished brass, galvanized steel, and terne plate. The varying metal types and tones emphasized Gehry’s vision to represent a city in terms of ‘a collage of disparate pieces.’ Each panel, cut to various size, was placed in thoughtful juxtaposition, conveying a sense of organized chaos.