CHAMBER, 2014 - March 7, 6 pm

On Display
February 3, 2014 to March 8, 2014
Art/Soc Atrium and Architecture Building

Chamber is a spherical capsule made predominantly of industrial felt. From without, it is a soft polyhedron of felt cells, evoking simultaneously the rigid geodesic domes of Buckminster Fuller, and the supple symmetries of Robert Morris. Inside is a darkened anechoic chamber; the folded felt interior surface defines a soft room with deeply textured walls that inhibit visual and aural means of environmental engagement in favor of the tactile. The sphere is weighted at the bottom but un-tethered, rocking slightly with the movements of its occupants. This movement, limited within a fixed range, intensifies the inhabitants' disorientation with respect to the outside world, adding even gravity to the set of uncertain senses. The internal reorientation - the only possible orientation - relies on imminent, physical, tactile sensorial experience.


Chamber is installed in the Art Atrium. To experience Chamber,  see visiting hours posted below. Drawings and models are on view across from the Kibel Gallery in the Architecture Building.


Primitives, a lecture by the designers, will take place on March 7th at 6 pm in the Architecture Building Auditorium (ARC 0204) with reception to follow in Art/Sociology Building Atrium.


Partners: UMD Art Gallery, Department of Art, Honors College, Design | Cultures + Creativity Program.


Interior access begins February 17th.

Chamber is open to users Monday - Friday 9 am - 9 pm. Interior access requires users to visit the Chamber in pairs.

An attendant will be available to assist users with interior access (hours noted below). 


Chamber Attendant Hours

Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 11am - 1 pm

Tuesday, Thursday 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm

Weekends by appointment: contact Ashley Grzywa at


Rules for Use

1. One person in the Chamber at a time.

2. No food or drink in the Chamber.

3. Limit use to a maximum of 30 minutes (10 minutes while others are waiting).


NOTE: Those prone to claustrophobia should not enter the Chamber. 


Photography Credits

Assembly Photos: Ashley Grzywa, Maryland School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation

Assembled/Detail Photos: John David Todd, WOJR


Joel Lamere

Principal / Assistant Professor
GLD Architecture / Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Joel Lamere has been teaching core courses in architectural geometry, design and representation at MIT since 2007. He received his MArch from Harvard GSD, and has previously taught design and research studios at Northeastern University. He has been active in architectural practice in the Boston area, and continues independent research in developable surfaces and the fabrication of complex geometries.

WIlliam O'Brien, Jr.

Principal / Assistant Professor
WOJR / Massachusetts Institute of Technology

William O’Brien Jr. is Assistant Professor of Architecture at the MIT School of Architecture and Planning, and is principal of an independent design practice in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His practice was recently awarded the 2011 Architectural League Prize for Young Architects and Designers. Last year his practice was a finalist for the MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program, and was recognized as an inaugural winner of the Design Biennial Boston Award.