Online delivery giant Amazon is the tenant of the newly completed $66-million “last-mile” distribution centre located on 7.8 acres of land owned by the Victoria Airport Authority in Sidney, BC. Roderick Quin and the Ombrae Studios team were commissioned to create original artwork to adorn the extensive coverage area of the south and west elevations. Inspired by the surrounding natural beauty of iconic landforms, the artwork is a true nod to the local region. The artwork also takes into account a number of site-specific factors including the inclusion of solar panel arrays which are visually referenced in book-end fashion, and the design-to-budget requirement of mixing Ombrae with customer perforation. The custom perforated area of the facade works in conjunction with the Ombrae scope, extending the work of art across the entire area as a unified piece.
Client: York Realty
Size: 6,800 sqft (630 sqm)
Completion Date: 2023 (in-progress)
Keith Panel Systems
One of the truly novel approaches to this work of art lies in the mixed coverage of Ombrae, custom perforated panel, and solar panels, resulting in one continuous work of art across the entire paneled façade area. Running east to west, a considered fade-out of randomized panels tapers off from full solar coverage into the anodized aluminum Ombrae and custom perf panels.
The clouds in the sky, and ripples in the water are primarily expressed with custom perforated panel. By leaving areas of the panel unpunched, a mid-tone highlight region is created that reflects light differently on its flat surface, versus the Ombrae and through-hole surrounding it. Careful consideration was given to this artwork to create a sense of perspective, building upon the strong horizon line established in the Ombrae area. Additionally, selective scattering of Ombrae pixels can be seen in the water artwork area, creating a glimmering quality, much like specular reflections on a water’s surface appear in nature.
Finally, the Ombrae area itself is optimized to reflect a full range of highlights and shadows, as Ombrae is uniquely capable of achieving. With prominent imagery of Mount Baker anchoring the primary viewing angle at the corner, followed by a cascade of the Olympic Mountain Range, tapering into the lower foothills across Saanich Inlet, the snow capped mountains are powerfully depicted in the Ombrae panels. When viewed from certain times of day and from certain angles of view, the sky and water actually appear brighter than the Ombrae, which will be primarily in shadow: as though a sunrise is occurring behind the mountain range.
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