From the Boiler Building to the Pitzer Center

ann e. pitzer center uc davis
Last night I held a talk at the UC Davis Design Museum in conjunction with my sketchbook exhibit, “Conversations with the City”. It went really well, a lot of people came, and hopefully I made some sense. I know afterwards I kept thinking, “oh I forgot to say that! I should have mentioned this!” One thing I did make sure was a central part of the talk though was the idea of the sketchbook as a tool to record history, and to demonstrate that I showed the history (over a period of a few years) of one spot on the UC Davis campus, that being of course where the Boiler Building once stood, and its heir, the Ann E. Pitzer Center. UC Davis’s newest music building is, as regular readers will know, now complete and hosting beautiful music, and at last my final drawing of the building is done, right above. I sketched this last Sunday morning and showed it in my slides last night, the original will be displayed at Putah Creek Winery from next week (did I mention I have another show in Davis starting next week? I think in my excitement I forgot to say last night! I’ll post about it soon…)

So now then I will show at last the full story, as I showed people last night, of my sketches from the Boiler Building to the Pitzer Center. It has been a fun piece of documentation.

THE OLD BOILER BUILDING

Old Boiler Building

allez les verts

nanodrawmo 33

boiler building

boiler building (other side)

boiler building again

behind the boiler buildingboilers

THE DEMOLITION

boiler building, under demolition

boiler building, under demolition

boiler building (back)

boiler building, coming down

boiler building 121112 two

…AND IT’S GONE

former boiler building location

TWO YEARS LATER…

music recital hall (under construction)

music recital hall (under construction)

Pitzer Center under construction

pitzer center uc davis

pitzer center uc davis

pitzer center oct2015-2 sm

pitzer center (under construction)

Pitzer Center UC Davis (under construction)

Pitzer Center UC Davis (under construction)

Pitzer Center UCD

Pitzer Center UCD

Pitzer Center UCD

Pitzer Center UCD

pitzer center - nearly done!

THE PITZER CENTER OPENS!

pitzer center back

pitzer center rear

pitzer center performance 9/24/16

ann e. pitzer center uc davis

Thanks for following this, everyone. It’s been fun.

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The Pitzer Center…finally finished!

pitzer-center-performance-sep2016-sm

After more than a year covering its construction, preceded by several years sketching the old Boiler Building on this spot, then documenting its demolition, the Ann E. Pitzer Center is finally open. This is the new Music Recital Hall for the UC Davis campus, a state-of-the-art performance and teaching facility. This past weekend was the opening weekend of performances, and on Saturday evening I attended the Faculty and Students of UC Davis concert, choosing a seat near the back to not only get as good a view for a long-awaited interior sketch, but also to test the acoustics of this new space. They are very good. I drew most of the room before the performance started, and just added the performers of the first piece once they took to the stage; I spent the rest of the time just sitting taking in the beautiful music. Many of the performances were amazing, and so varied, a lesson in the history of music, but for me this first piece was the best bit. Members of the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra played “Crisantemi” (“Chrysanthemums”) by Puccini, and it was just beautiful, haunting, elegant. The music comes right back to me when I look at the sketch. That is the thing about sketching – you can show, and you can even demonstrate your feelings in the lines, but unless you were actually there, you weren’t there, and I wish you could hear the music I still hear when I see it. I enjoyed this event, and the shiny clean newness of the building. I must make an effort to see some more events there.

pitzer-center-sep2016-sideback-sm

I did get an outside sketch of the back of the building before the concert, though it was a little rushed, and the green grass a little forced.

pitzer-center-sep2016-rear-sm

I did do another one on Monday in pencil, of the view with the tall Sproul Hall behind it. I wanted to get one last sketch of this view, as this was the same view from when I sketched the Boiler Building back in 2011.And for all that I like this new building, and the beautiful music that it will host from here onwards, this view made me a little sad to think about the old Boiler Building, crumbling, idle, full of cobwebs and rust. I loved sketching that old place. Looking at Sproul in the background, though, I think I’m better at perspective now…

Old Boiler Building

along hutchison drive

hutchison-panorama-sm

In July I started a new sketchbook, a long panoramic accordion Moleskine sketchbook, with the intention of doing some very long drawings on the UC Davis campus. As it turned out I managed three scenes, all on the same street (Hutchison Drive), though only in pen with a dab of colour here and there. If you click on the image above, you will see the whole thing in closer detail. Below, I’ve cut the three scenes down – still too long to see, so click on them for a closer view.

Hutchison Panorama part1.jpg
First of all, the new Pitzer Center, still under construction in this sketch, on the left. A good place to start! Then, the Music Building, followed by Wright Hall and the Art Building. Good place to stop.

Hutchison Panorama part2.jpg

Next up, the Silo complex, also under reconstruction. First of all you see Rock Hall, the Chemistry Building’s lecture hall. Next up, the back of the Bike Barn building, this side has been various things since I have been here, and I’ve sketched it many times. This whole area is being rebuilt and improved at present. Next up is the Silo itself, where I often eat lunch. I stopped once the sketch got across the street, where the Silo Bus Terminal is, and drew a tree as a dividing line to the next part.

Hutchison Panorama part3.jpg

Finally, on the other side of the street, Walker Hall, which is currently empty but will eventually be completely renovated and this side rebuilt, when it becomes the Graduate and Professional Students’ Building. I think that is the name. IT’s going to be pretty cool, but I do like this building, and will probably draw it again…

This sketchbook will actually be on display along with many more sketchbooks in my upcoming exhibition, “Conversations with the City“, at the UC Davis Design Museum in Cruess Hall from Sept 19 to Nov 12. If you’re in town, do come by to see it!

Building the Pitzer – part seven

pitzer center - nearly done!

I probably have one more final post about this building, the Ann E. Pitzer Center, to come, but look! It’s nearly done! After all this time, the new music recital hall at UC Davis is set for its big opening. That sign on the building that says “Ann E. Pitzer Center” was only unveiled a couple of hours before I sketched this, at lunchtime earlier this week. It’s all very exciting. The grand opening events start on September 23 with jazz ensembles in the courtyard, followed by the Anderson-Roe Piano Duo in the Recital Hall, a concert by faculty and students of UC Davis on Sept 24, and a film screening of Koyaanisqatsi by composer Philip Glass on Sept 25, which will include a discussion betwen Philip Glass and music professor Pablo Ortiz. Here’s an article on the UC Davis website all about the Pitzer Center’s upcoming openings. I hope to go, I am eager to see the inside!

Here are the previous chapters: PART SIX (May 2016), PART FIVE (Feb 2016), PART FOUR (Oct 2015), PART THREE (Aug 2015), PART TWO (Aug 2015), PART ONE (July 2015).

And here, for a bit more history, are the posts about the old Boiler Building, the previous tenant of this spot, showing its whole demolition back in 2012. The changing campus…

building the pitzer, part six

Pitzer Center UCD
It’s nearly done, the Pitzer Center, the new Music Recital Hall on the UC Davis campus. I’ve sketched this spot since it was the Boiler Building, and watched that old campus character get knocked into the dust, with this finally rising to take its place. It’s nearly done.
Pitzer Center UCD
Here is the front entrance area, now fully glazed. This is what will greet visitors to campus for years to come. I’m looking forward to finally seeing performances there myself.
Pitzer Center UCD
Below, a panorama using pencil. I was thinking about Florian Afflerbach that day, he would have enjoyed to sketch this building. It’s through him that I gained the interest in sketching buildings like this, and using them to really study perspective.

Pitzer Center UCD

Here are the previous chapters: PART FIVE (Feb 2016), PART FOUR (Oct 2015), PART THREE (Aug 2015), PART TWO (Aug 2015), PART ONE (July 2015).

building the pitzer, part four

pitzer center (under construction)

More sketches detailing the construction of one of the campus’s new buildings, the Ann E. Pitzer Center (Music Recital Hall) on the location of the old Boiler Building. A few more angles here. Above, more work being done on that large front piece, I sletched this on a lunchtime a few days ago.

pitzer center oct2015-2 sm//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

The day before, I sketched from the other side, next to the art buildings. And the bottom one is a very quick ten-minute sketch that I did in purple. This project marches on…

pitzer center UCD