Certainly most people enjoy creative competition, including architects.
A good time was had by all on Friday, July 27th, where I served alongside Brigitte Blanton (Greensboro Public Library) and Mary Young (Green Hill Center) as a judge for a design competition open to staff at J. Hyatt Hammond Associates (JHHA). JHHA is a leading architectural firm in Greensboro that has experience not only in new construction, but also in historic preservation such as Natty Greenes’ and Bennett College (as witnessed by their own offices in the historic Kress Building on South Elm Street). The competition, part of a celebration to commemorate the firm’s 50th anniversary, involved use of 50 wooden building blocks to construct a sculpture that would be evaluated in three areas of interest: craftsmanship, aesthetics, and originality.
Eight employees participated in the project, which allowed builders to incorporate one foreign material, one consistent attachment method, and alteration of only 10 blocks, among other guidelines. The projects were revealed on Friday afternoon, at which time they were scrutinized and evaluated by the studious team of judges.
And what an unveiling! A remarkable level of creative and engineering diversity was conveyed within the projects that ranged from a colorful abstract piece that incorporated the company logo and the numeral ‘50’, to a functional scheme that doubled as a coat rack, to interpretive compositions displaying human relationships, movement, and classical architecture.
Judges came forward with a slate of three projects that stood apart by only one point each. Third place was given to Lisa LeBlanc for her piece interpreting sibling rivalry; composed of a series of three arches frozen in time and in varying degrees of destruction due to the mischievous hand of an invisible sibling.
went to Patrick Deaton, who created a piece that challenged negative and positive space, volume, and form. First place (right) was awarded to Adam Gregory for his entry that stretched the use of materials to maximum gain by incorporating wire with sawn disks to create a sprawling and highly visual sculpture.
Certainly J. Hyatt Hammond Associates contains a diversity of talent, and certainly the firm values having a good time. Congratulations to the firm for celebrating 50 years, and thank you for a wonderful celebration of creativity and talent in Greensboro!