Our retrospective this month takes a look at The National Ballet of Canada. It is one of many projects featured in Cultivating a Design Legacy: The First 50 Years, a culmination of work by Gottschalk+Ash Toronto and Entro Communications.
At the National Ballet’s new headquarters in the Walter Carsen Centre (Toronto), we extended the limits of possibility to find an unexpected solution to satisfy the needs of the client, the major donor, and the architect.
For the donor wall, our design team envisioned a floating, curved structure inspired by dancer movements and the soft satin ribbons of pointe shoes. The final curved, acid-etched metal donor wall – as strong and gracious as dance itself – was very well received, and integrated perfectly with the architectural environment.
For the Celia Franca Atrium, we found the dancer’s photographic profile so striking that we chose to present her in a more subtle and artistic way. Using a minimalist, almost abstract approach, we created her silhouette with a line of stainless steel set on the wood-finished threshold.
The finished design program won awards, was embraced by all stakeholders, and continues to stand the test of time.