The Art Institute of Washington’s
Arlington, VA (November 13, 2008)–Sister schools The Art Institute of Washington and the Art Institute of Tennessee – Nashville recently retained the architectural and acoustical services of the Walters-Storyk Design Group to redesign existing recording facilties for their students.
WSDG has over 2,000 professional recording studio designs to its credit, including teaching facilities for the Universities of Colorado, Michigan and Boston, New York University, the Ex’pression Center For New Media (Emeryville, CA), Full Sail (Florida) and Five Towns College (New York).
Jack Chester, Director of Facilities for The Art Institute of Washington, contacted WSDG to redesign the college’s existing facility and establish a modern learning complex. Chester feels a professional learning environment is a priority for preparing students to compete in today’s job market. “WSDG was highly recommended; our meetings with John Storyk made it clear that they were the optimum designers for our purpose,” he says.
“I’ve supervised many Federal Government construction projects throughout my 34-year career. This has been one of the best experiences I’ve encountered. The level of detail in the WSDG drawings was extremely comprehensive. Only three minor change orders were required throughout the entire process,” Chester adds.
WSDG senior project manager Romina Larregina describes the 1,200 sq. ft. Art Institute of Washington complex as a 500 sq. ft. live studio, a 350 sq. ft. Control Room, 135 sq. ft. multi-purpose sound lock; 100 sq. ft. iso booth, and 140 sq. ft. machine/storage room. “These are small classes designed to provide students with extensive hands-on experience,” Larregina says. “It’s one of the best possible ways to teach audio production and post production. Dr. Chester was extremely knowledgeable and adept at articulating The Art Institute’s needs. We all benefited from a great deal of positive collaboration.”
The Art Institute of
Tennessee – Nashville’s
Soon after commencing work on the Washington complex, WSDG was commissioned by Dr. David Hinton, Dean of Academic Affairs for the Art Institute of Tennessee – Nashville to redesign the audio facility for that campus. The Nashville project will be followed by audio production facilities for the Art Institutes schools in Austin, TX and San Diego, CA.
Carol L.A. Menck, President of The Art Institute of Tennessee – Nashville, noted, “The room went online this summer, and the program hosts multiple classes with both local and out of state students. Robb Wenner, lead instructor for our Audio Production Program, encourages students to work on their own projects in the facility, so it is in constant use. We are extremely pleased with the John Storyk design. It provides a totally professional environment and gives students the sight lines and physical access necessary to acquire a true understanding of how the studio works.”
“Each of these installations was awarded independently,” Storyk says. “While the technology is similar [three of the four feature SSL Duality consoles, Washington is outfitted with an SSL AWS 900+], each studio was approached as a unique design project. We worked with the individual Recording Arts Program directors and customized our plans and design team to meet their specific needs. For example, our Systems Designer, Judy Elliot-Brown, supervised the full technology proposal and onsite installation for Washington. The in-house staff of the Nashville, San Diego and Austin schools coordinated their own equipment packaging and installs.”
Elliott-Brown reports that in addition to different consoles, the Art Institute of Washington selected Genelec 1038 main speakers while Nashville chose ADAM S4VA MK2 mains. Both schools opted for Dynaudio AIR 15 surround speakers. “The San Diego and Austin schools will stick with the Nashville equipment package,” she says, “but each school has the option of selecting its own gear. We hope to collaborate with a number of the Art Institute’s facilities in the future. Each will receive the design and technology best suited to its specific teaching and student requirements.”
Storyk’s enthusiasm for designing learning facilities stems from his commitment to teaching. He lectures on acoustics and studio architecture at NYU, Columbia, Yale, Berklee College of Music and many other schools. In addition to the personal gratification he derives from teaching, Storyk has found a number of interns who have made major contributions to the firm. In fact, two former student/interns, Dirk Noy and Renato Cipriano are the respective heads of the WSDG European and Brazilian offices.
Walters-Storyk Design Group