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Sanders Pace Architecture Receives 2021 AIA Architecture Award for Design of Loghaven Artist Residency Campus


Today the American Institute of Architects presented the 2021 AIA Architecture Award, the architecture profession’s highest national recognition, to Sanders Pace Architecture for its original design and architectural rehabilitation work for the Loghaven Artist Residency, a new residency for emerging and established artists in the fields of visual art, dance, music, writing, theater, and interdisciplinary work. The juried award—which celebrates the best contemporary architecture regardless of budget, size, style, or type—honors Sanders Pace’s exceptional design for a ninety-acre campus to foster artistic exploration and the creation of new work.

The design for the Loghaven campus combines new construction and innovation with careful rehabilitation of the historic log cabins on the grounds—creating a seamless dialogue between the new and historic architecture and the natural landscape, and advancing the residency’s dynamism as a center for contemporary artistic practice.

During a six-year planning and design process, Sanders Pace partnered with the Aslan Foundation—which created and funds the Loghaven Artist Residency—on the rehabilitation of the historic log cabins that give the site its name, as well as the conceptualization, design, and construction of three new structures on the campus: the Visual Arts Studio, the Performing Arts Studio, and the 3,900-square-foot Jim McDonough House, which serves as a central gathering place for resident artists and features additional studio space and facilities. The log cabins, which had fallen into disrepair prior to the creation of the Loghaven Artist Residency, were revitalized to serve as artist housing. Loghaven’s studio spaces and three of the artist cabins provide collaborative artist groups the space for an intensive live/work experience, a rarity among artist residencies.

“We have close relationships with all our clients, and it was particularly inspiring and rewarding to work with the Aslan Foundation,” said Brandon F. Pace, FAIA, founding partner of Sanders Pace Architecture. “The project brings together elements that are central to our practice—respect for the unique nature and history of each site, design that grows out of the special character of the place, and the creation of spaces that serve and support users. The Institute Honor Award follows our colleague Michael A. Davis, AIA—who was instrumental in the Loghaven project—being recognized with a 2021 AIA Young Architects Award. We’re honored that the AIA selected us from among firms from across the nation for these awards, and we are more committed than ever to helping shape discourse around architecture and design innovation in our region and around the country.”

“Sanders Pace Architecture has been an incredible partner in the creation of the Loghaven Artist Residency, and we are thrilled to see them receive national recognition from the AIA,” said Andrea Bailey, Executive Director of the Aslan Foundation. “We invited artists to join us on-site in early 2020, and their response to Sanders Pace’s design was tribute to the thought, care, and effort the firm brought to every element of the campus. We’re eager to launch our inaugural open call on June 1 and share the Loghaven experience with a widening group of artists. The news of this award is particularly timely as we have just named Loghaven’s central building in honor of Aslan Foundation Board Member Jim McDonough, an architect in his own right, who invested so much of his energy and passion into creating Loghaven before his passing this March.”

"At Loghaven, artists reside and work in gorgeous living and working spaces with meals and stipend support provided,” said Sharon M. Louden, an advisor in the development of the Loghaven Artist Residency. “I’m excited for artists to find inspiration whether it’s at home in their cabin or exploring the campus. Artists should be sure to bookmark this fantastic opportunity and apply.”


Loghaven is designed to offer artists—including dancers and theater makers—the facilities that are essential to their work. The 3,900-square-foot Jim McDonough House includes a multidisciplinary studio, a fully integrated audiovisual and acoustics system, a range of equipment for artists to use in creating new work, and a dining area for communal meals. The two free-standing, cantilevered artist studios are designed to extend into the adjacent tree canopy with eight-foot-tall windows providing a visual connection to the landscape. The Performing Arts Studio features an 860-square-foot sprung floor, a professionally designed sound system, and an abundance of natural light. The Visual Arts Studio has both natural and directional light, a separate wet area, an enlarged loading door, and equipment for creating a range of different work.

Sanders Pace carefully rehabilitated the log cabins at Loghaven so that they could serve as artist living spaces. The five cabins are on a private, tree-shaded road, and each has its original logs, a working fireplace, a porch or balcony, and artist working spaces. Kitchens and bathrooms have been modernized with sensitivity to historic preservation, and all cabins have amenities to ensure a fostering living and working environment.

The new structures built at Loghaven have been designed to enter a dialogue with both the historic cabins and the natural environment. The Jim McDonough House has a similar visual language to the nearby cabins, elevating traditional building materials to create a restrained and harmonious contemporary addition to the campus. Its placement was precisely calibrated to limit the impact on a stand of mature oak trees, and the cantilevered artist studios project over the hillside to further limit site impact. All of the new buildings have expansive views of Loghaven’s grounds.

On June 1, 2021, Loghaven will launch its inaugural open call for applications, accepting submissions from emerging and established artists across the U.S. who are 21 or older. The chief criteria for selection are artistic excellence and creative potential. For more information, visit loghaven.org/residencies/apply.