Artfarm New York architecture, Ai Weiwei NY building design images, Chambers Fine Art, HHF architects United States

Artfarm Salt Point : New York State Architecture

Salt Point Building, NY, USA design by HHF architects with Ai Weiwei

Feb 5, 2009

Location: Salt Point, New York, USA

Date built: 2008

Design: HHF architects + Ai Weiwei

Artfarm, Salt Point New York building

Photos by Iwan Baan


The Artfarm is located near Salt Point in upstate New York (1.5h drive from the city), on the site of an existing private residence, built in the 1980s. The client is an art collector and owner of Chambers Fine Art, a well-known gallery located in New York City and Beijing and which is specialized in contemporary Chinese art.

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The building is designed as a gallery for a professional art collection. On the interior it’s subdivided into different sized showrooms, an office space and spaces designated to store art.

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The outer shape is a consequence of the used pre-engineered and easy to assemble type of steel building, which often gets used for agricultural purposes in that area. With ist abstract metallic appearance the structure becomes an equal member of a whole groupe of sculptures which are spread out in the landscape.

The three volumes are put on a solid concrete slabs, which follow the existing grade on the site. The different levels are connected through a continues cascading ramp in the middle axis. This middle hallway with its ramp works as access for all spaces, allows an easy way of exchanging big pieces of art between storage and showrooms and works at the same time as a picture gallery.


Approaching the Artfarm building from outside you don’t know what’s expecting you on the inside. Even though there are only three windows existing to the north (and the end of each hall, above the middle ramp, this is the only visual connection to the outside and allows a view into the wood), the building with its pure white interiors is astonishing bright on the inside.

The massive concrete floor and the white shiny PVC batt insulation are creating a quiet and cool space. For delicate goods such as paintings etc. consistent indoor temperatures are needed, which is a challenge in an area with such enormous change in temperatures.

With the concept of an hermetic closed and insulated envelope, the existing heating and cooling needs only to conserve the climate and support it when needed. This seems to work well, during the first summer the cooling had never to be turned on, even on really hot days it was comfortable and cool on the inside.

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ARTFARM – Building Information

Architect: HHF architects + Ai Weiwei
Design team: HERLACH HARTMANN FROMMENWILER & AI WEIWEI with Tom Strub, Fumiko Takahama
Structural engineering: Crawford & Associates, Hudson, NY
Construction management: Crawford & Associates, Hudson, NY
Client: Christophe W. Mao / Chambers Fine Art

Built area: 373m² / 4015 sqft (gross)
Cost: € 250,000
Design phase : Aug 2006 – Feb 2007
Construction phase : Mar 2007 – Jun 2008
Max. height of the building from ground level: 5.8m
Min. and max. temperatures of the site: -25°C to +45°C
Information © HHF architects

Photos: Iwan Baan (

Artfarm Salt Point images / information from HHF architects 050209 from HHF architects

HHF architects + Ai Weiwei

Location: Salt Point, New York, USA

Architecture in USA

Contemporary Architecture in USA

New York State Architecture Designs

Another building in New York State by Ai Weiwei:

Guesthouse Ancram, New York, USA
Design: HHF Architects and Ai Weiwei
Guesthouse Ancram
photo : Iwan Baan

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Comments / photos for the Artfarm New York Architecture page welcome