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Architectural Photography & Stories

Black Rock Desert

Black Rock Desert

Last Spring I was on the road driving from Salt Lake City to San Jose and spent a night in Reno, Nevada to break up the miles. I had never been to Reno and wasn’t very interested in exploring dated casino buildings. However, I was looking forward to checking out the Nevada Museum of Art designed by Will Bruder.

When you drive up, you immediately see this massive black sculptural form strongly standing out from its vanilla office building neighbors. While the all black building looks completely foreign in its downtown environment, the design was clearly inspired by Nevada’s natural landscape, the nearby Black Rock Desert.

I chose to highlight the exterior facade in this photograph as its not everyday you see an all black building in the desert. The dark material was not chosen simply to mimic the black rock of the desert, it is also 100% functional. The zinc cladding serves as an insulation feature, creating a solar chimney for heat to escape between it and the weather proofing behind.

For more information about the building and Will Bruder’s fascinating career, Christopher Hall, wrote a wonderful piece for the New York Times back in 2003 introducing the museum.

I also have a gallery page dedicated to the museum to view more photographs of this beautiful sculpture of a building.

JC

Salk Institute

Salk Institute

Cheese Grater

Cheese Grater