When Argentine developer Alan Faena envisioned what would become the six-block Faena District of Miami Beach the intent was to showcase art and culture. The Faena District is a culmination of hotels, shopping center, and cultural center encompassing 43,000-square feet. The centerpiece however to Alan Faena’s vision lies within the design of the Faena Forum, a 4,645-square foot structure dedicated to arts and performance. Through art and culture, the Faena Forum draws people in with robust displays of vibrant artistic works ranging from canvas, music, dance, and more while also allowing artist a space to invent and create through surrounding inspiration. "Faena Forum has been designed to radiate art and ideas into the community and throughout the city," said Faena. "It is a new kind of cultural enterprise, one that encourages thinkers and practitioners from across a range of disciplines — the arts, sciences, technology and urbanism — to collaborate and creatively collide in ways that push their practices and produce new works, new experiences, and new ideas."
Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning Rem Koolhaas/OMA, the monumental Faena Forum is the new cultural art cornerstone of Miami Beach. When awarded the high-profile, $1billion project of bringing Alan Faena’s vision to fruition OMA understood how impactful the design would need to be. The forum is characterized by performance space, event halls, and open floor spaces for galleries, all highlighted by natural lighting through the use of windows covering the entire façade of the building.
The crowning achievement and centerpiece of the space is the 40-foot domed ceiling with a glazed oculus positioned in the center of the piece. With aesthetics being the primary concern of the project, OMA diligently worked to find acoustical solutions for the reverberant space that would not tarnish the intended design of the project. 40-foot ceilings, encompassing glass, and marble floors created a highly reverberant space that would surely be amplified when occupied with large amounts of guests.
BASWA Phon sound absorbing acoustical plaster was utilized throughout the Faena Forum to minimize reverberant sound and excessive noise within the space. Through sound absorbing technology, BASWA Phon Acoustical Plaster Systems absorb excessive sound created by reflective spaces and compounded noise, making the sound within a space less harsh, and conversation more audible. BASWA Phon was not only the product of choice due to performance, but also due to the product’s ability to be installed within a space while not disrupting the initial intended design. Kevin McKean of Bradleigh Applications, the installer on the project, spoke to the finished product of the BASWA Phon positioned on the oculus dome stating, “This was definitely one of the more challenging jobs we’ve worked on, it had its twists and turns (literally) like any project, but in the end, it was another beautiful BASWA job.”