"It All Began with Sheep"
February 21, 2012 11:13 AM   Subscribe

Double helix stairs allow for performers on one stair and audience on the other, letting the two intertwine but never come into direct contact as the stairs wind up the tower. An eight-story structure built on the grounds of Oliver Ranch in Sonoma, designed by Anne Hamilton.

Fundamentally conceived as a performance space, double helix stairs both separate and connect the performers and audience while openings in the tower allow occupants to inhabit the massive walls in various positions–sitting, standing, or laying horizontal— without giving views of the surrounding landscape.

Singer and composer Meredith Monk performs a piece for an unseen audience.
posted by Danf (9 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Yeah, but does it have a major and minor grove?
posted by Blasdelb at 11:26 AM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]

...without giving views of the surrounding landscape.

She blinded me with science.
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 11:27 AM on February 21, 2012

I think I ran around on these in a Zelda game once.
posted by Infinity_8 at 1:14 PM on February 21, 2012

I attended a similar musical event at The Monument in London last year. And very good it was, too.
posted by Paul Slade at 1:46 PM on February 21, 2012

Looks like concrete to me.
posted by BlueHorse at 2:03 PM on February 21, 2012

Leonardo did this at Chambord rather more effectively.
posted by IndigoJones at 2:07 PM on February 21, 2012

This piece is just a taste of the site-specific art at Oliver's Ranch. Serra, Goldsworthy, Puryear, oh my! An interview with Steve Oliver, former head of SFMOMA, who owns and curates the ranch with his wife.
posted by donovan at 4:02 PM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]

Nowhere on the Oliver Ranch website does it actually say where exactly they are located. Sonoma, okay, that's got me in the county ... I guess they are trying to discourage drop-in visitors (they are open via prescheduled tours only) but I'm not sure hiding your street address is the right way to do it.
posted by intermod at 6:47 PM on February 21, 2012

The tours page goes so far as to say "A map to Oliver Ranch will be provided prior to the tour and is not provided for distribution, reproduction or publication." So yeah, it sounds like they're not interested in having their location public.

(But Google knows, and I found the double helix tower.)
posted by mendel at 9:42 PM on February 23, 2012

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