2015 Awards

Design: General

Merit Award

Windhover Contemplative Center
Stanford, CA
Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture
Principal in Charge: Andrea Cochran
Landscape Architect/Project Manager: Megumi Aihara
Client: Stanford University

Windhover provides the community with a uniqure destination for contemplation and reflection.
Architecture and landscape work in concert to heighten the experience of nature.
The framed gravel courtyard allows for reflection at any time of day.
A reclaimed stone sculpture and steel scrim quiet exterior distractions, inviting contemplation.
Elegant planters capture stormwater run-off from the building's roof.
An oak forest provides a rich setting to appreciate Nathan Oliveira's art.
A reflecting pool unites building and landscape, earth and sky.
Stepping stones lead visitors through a ginkgo grove to the building entry.
Tucked into the busy campus, Windhover offers visitors a tranquil respite.
Planar surfaces of rammed earth and water capture light and shadow.

The Windhover Contemplative Center, named for a series of paintings by artist Nathan Oliveira, offers a spiritual respite on the Stanford campus. Using Oliveira’s art as a vehicle for personal renewal, the center provides a place for students, faculty and staff to decompress and re-center themselves. The design capitalizes on the building’s unique context—adjacent to an existing oak woodland—to provide a series of spaces that allow visitors to experience Oliveira’s paintings in concert with an inspiring natural setting. An integrative approach to building and landscape shaped nearly every aspect of the design, from the carefully choreographed entry sequence; to the visual and physical permeability between the interior and exterior spaces; to the interplay between the building materials, light, and shadow. Windhover represents a new typology for institutional design, offering a lush, green sanctuary within a bustling campus and a unique way to experience art and nature.