WaterFire Arts Center Ribbon Cutting

(6.19) This building is almost entirely windows with some brickwork in between to hold the structure up. The WaterFire Arts Center website explains how this excessive fenestration served the needs of the original U.S. Rubber Company:

The WFAC has a great number of large windows. This allowed the maximum amount of natural sunlight to enter the building, and minimize minimum amount of electrical light to function in a time when electricity and electric lighting were much more expensive than today.

I can’t wait to see it from the inside which we can all do tomorrow, Monday morning, when the public is invited to explore the new WaterFire Arts Center at the official ribbon cutting ceremony. The ProJo piece by Kate Bramson has some great pix as well as background, plus the ambitious plans for the future of this enormous space.

When WaterFire Providence embarked on a $13.7-million redevelopment of a former U.S. Rubber Co. factory, the nonprofit group’s leaders envisioned a home that would do more than help them fuel the flames of their popular art installation on the city’s rivers.

They wanted a better headquarters, yes — a space to accommodate the growing apparatus behind the braziers on the water. But they also seized the chance to broaden the franchise into the great indoors with a stunning, capacious space that can host the exhibits and performances of arts and cultural organizations and offer meeting and event space to other groups.

There are wonderful architectural details on the building’s exterior: the heavy-duty canopies, that fire escape, and those gigantic blue scrolling doors! Can’t wait to see the gantry crane. RSVP and register at Eventbrite.

Ribbon Cutting, 10:30am, Monday, June 19, WaterFire Arts Center, 475 Valley Street, (directions)

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