Ennead: NY Botanical Garden Pfizer Plant Research Laboratory
This is one in a series of books, each of which tells the story of a single building. It is our hope that as these books accumulate alongside our body of work, they, in their aggregate, will form a profile of our design intentions. - Ennead Architects
For many scientists, professional life entails months of fieldwork in remote locations around the world coupled with dedicated research in the Garden's laboratory. Comprehending these radically different environments became inspiration for creating a new paradigm for a laboratory that would like these extremes and minimize their contrasts. Reinforcing this vital connection between botanical research and the natural environment became fundamental to developing the conceptual underpinnings and experiential qualities of the design. We sought to create a sense of "reciprocal illumination," a phenomenon described as "looking at the plant, then at the molecules, then back at the plant, [which results in seeing] things [not] noticed previously."