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SDF Pavilion Competition Announces Top Designs

Earlier this year SDF invited designers and multidisciplinary artists to submit designs for the SDF, pavilion, the visual anchor of our Festival which welcomes supporters, partners, and Festival-goers. Design teams were encouraged to consider our Festival goals and capture the spirit of our annual Festival elements. This week our jurors met to deliberate the submissions, and we are excited to share the top four designs! The winning design team, which will be announced live at Ignite!, will be granted $10,000 to cover design hours, materials, fabrication, and installation of their design!

Top Designs 2022 SDF Pavilion Design Competition


  • The City’s Canvas, MG2
    • Design Team: Tehilla BenGershom, Jessica Bone, Katie Fenn, Fidel Ramos Viveros
    • Concept: The City’s Canvas aims to give visitors to the Seattle Design Festival a platform where they can leave their mark by expressing their creative side. The idea was born from the City of Seattle’s fishing, sailing, and lumber industries and history. That ultimately informed the materials we wanted to use: wood to lumber rope to fishing, and canvas to symbolize sails. The iconic architecture in Seattle inspired our form, and the artistic and innovative spirit of the city informed the purpose of our pavilion: for visitors to leave their mark. The pavilion is comprised of a series of arches, which are divided into 6 modular units each. This allows for ease of transportation and assembly. The modularity creates an adaptable pavilion that forms a variety of spaces and layout each year.


  • The Pavilion, Fraser and Fogle Architects
    • Design Team: Dani Baehm and Zoe Evans
    • Concept: The 2022 Seattle Design Pavilion unravels the idea of a traditional welcome booth and host staging area, and instead invites visitors to come in, explore, and be introduced to SDF’s unique atmosphere. The foundational principle for the pavilion is to create a welcoming and interactive space that is accessible to festival participants of all backgrounds and abilities.


  • Portal Pavilion, Fraser and Fogle Architects
    • Design Team: Ryan Hendryx
    • Concept: Portal Pavilion is a 3-dimensional extension of the brand that leverages the logo, typeface, color, and form to produce a consistent, pragmatic, and novel pavilion for a variety of audiences and participants. Portal Pavilion anchors SDF by acting as both a threshold to and from the Block Party (or, series of thresholds depending of the distribution of modules across Lake Union Park), a public engagement platform, maker-space, and social media backdrop.


  • SDF Pavilion, Johnston Architects
    • Design Team: Alison Walker Brems, Sarah Burk, Jesse, Mona Zellers, Amber French, Maggie Ciaccio, Harmony Cooper, Jennifer Kriegel, Shane Leaman, Kristopher Kohl, Jack Chaffin
    • Concept: Aviation history pervades Seattle’s culture with multiple major airports, the Museum of Flight, and Boeing, one of the world’s most notable manufacturers. Seattle’s air is filled with innovation. This Pavilion invites visitors to participate in the rich, dynamic early history of taking flight in Seattle and beyond. 1903 was the year of the Wright brothers’ first flight, but it was also the year that Alexander Graham Bell wrote about his discovery of the Tetrahedral Kite in an issue of National Geographic. Experimenting with Hargrave’s box kites, Graham attempted to build a kite that was scalable: large enough to carry both person and motor. A multi-celled rigid box composed of tetrahedrally shaped cells, the kite forms a kind of nascent space-frame while expressing its tetrahedrally compound shape. An early experiment on the path to manned flight, the Tetrahedral Kite inspires the forms and patterns of this Pavilion.


We would like to congratulate the teams who were identified on the jury’s shortlist and thank you to all the amazing designers who participated in this competition! It was a difficult deliberation that examined thoughtful and innovative submissions that we received.


We are so grateful to our esteemed jurors: SDF Council Member Yannick Mathews RA, AIA, WELL AP; SDF Block Party Coordinator Yasir Al-Tameemi Assoc. AIA; SDF Staff Member Bray Hayden; SDF Council Member Jake Woland PLA, ASLA, LEED AP; SDF Block Party Coordinator Shauna Wilson; SDF Council Member Mindy Lehrman Cameron FAIA; and Senior Principal Design Director with Amazon Alistair Hamilton FIDSA