Rothko Chapel Renovation and Master Plan

2017-Ongoing | Houston TX

Client Rothko Chapel 
Architect Architecture Research Office
Structural Engineer Guy Nordenson and Associates

Guy Nordenson and Associates (GNA) is currently working with Architecture Research
Office (ARO) on the Rothko Chapel Renovation and Master Plan in Houston TX.
Completed in 1971, the Chapel was designed as a non-denominal space for spiritual
contemplation by the artist Mark Rothko in close collaboration with architects Philip
Johnson, Howard Barnstone and Eugene Aubry. The goal of the renovation is to
preserve the unity of art and architecture within the Chapel while also improving the
visitor experience. One of the most important features of the renovation is to better
control the illumination of the space, which contains 14 murals by Rothko. To this
end, GNA has performed a preliminary structural analysis of the existing roof framing
capacity in order to allow for revision of the Chapel’s central skylight. Future work
may include strengthening the roof beams to support the additional weight of a new
baffle and skylight design. GNA is also providing structural engineering services
for three new independent buildings that will expand the Chapel’s program with
visitor, event, administration and archive spaces, in addition to an energy house for
maintenance operations.