Weller Architects

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


East Façade as viewed from the northeast at the main campus drive. This view exhibits the strong or ”hard„ side of the building; eventually the vantage of this photograph will be part of an internal loop drive inside a future dormitory ring currently master planned; the building is the first of several that shall eventually form a ring around a central open space.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


The mass of the building rises up from the high plain in similar fashion as Shiprock; dark, ominous and foreboding qualities give way to strength, perseverance and protection under the light of knowledge and history.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


As a model of defense and protection, the mythos of Shiprock and its historic sacred relationship as a stalwart of the perpetuation and validation of the Diné culture, is acknowledged and eluded to in the encompassing forms of the building masses; mnemonic clues are placed to reinforce the positive qualities of the endeavors of the college;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


cracks, crevices and crags are carefully staged in designed vistas in and out of the building; spaces of various sizes are created, some small and personal, easily comprehended, other larger, and of a more complex nature, intended to elicit a corporal and subconscious response tying to the permanence of Dine’ values and the a priori condition of existence;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


the play of light at once enlightens and creates mystery, carefully and purposely establishing a sequence of discovery and learning whose purpose is to re-establish the awareness of the palpable, life sustaining qualities of the Diné cosmos in the manner of the rituals and Navajo Medicine Wheel;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


immersed in this environment, the primordial and monstrous qualities of the unknown transmute the world into an understandable whole; an air return becomes an open, mysterious opening defying immediate understanding and putting in motion a deeper thought provoking state of being.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


Mysteries are established and revealed through movement, interaction and thought; the building invites exploration and establishes a recognizable language in light and texture;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


movement becomes more than a process of getting from point ‘A’ to point ‘B’; order is established through rhythm and reinforces expectation or hope; unexpected conditions of materials, forms and spaces create a level of anticipation, adding a dimension of dynamic character and life to the spaces; order and surprise directly relate to understanding and mystery.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


The center, whether located in the individual or the eventual enclosed open space of the campus, is protected; both vulnerable and transparent, character and knowledge are apparent; this heightened focus of the center allows for self assessment and evaluation;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


specialized, contemplative spaces are carefully located in various locations around these ‘softer’ portions of the building;

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


places where the individual may repose and collect thoughts; the individual is then equipped to shed unprofitable or harmful thoughts or habits and allows for the mental and physical requirements for the rigors of advanced learning.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


The individual, thus forged, is equipped to return to the greater Navajo society, reinforcing their cultural traditions and bringing enrichment to the Diné as a whole. The cyclical qualities of the medicine wheel allows for continual examination and reflection. The integrity of the design captures the spirit of Diné cosmology and will withstand continual evaluation.

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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


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Diné College Campus
Master Plan and Initial Classroom Building and Student Union


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