My most memorable place at Yale was the small outdoor café on the top of the Art and Architecture building, where I went the night Martin Luther King was killed, watched The Hill neighborhood burn in the riots that ensued, turned 20 at 3:30 am, and came down having decided to dedicate my career to education, which, as it turned out, was just the right thing for me.
– Paul Chapman
Senior year I enrolled in a course at A&A titled Architecture for Non-Architects, taught by James Righter, from whom I learned to see the world with “fresh eyes” and to contemplate the effect of the experience of “space” on the human environment. Rather than multiple classrooms, A&A was comprised almost entirely of multi-level open spaces, which in turn required that students learn and work together as part of a collaborative process. Ah, breathe deeply, take it in…openness, engagement, community.
– David Johnson
Paul Rudolph’s oft-reviled A&A building (where I never had a class) always beckoned me to come in and explore. It was the only building in the world ever to do that for me.
It seemed to open itself to the street in multiple seductive ways. I could hardly ever resist darting inside one entry or another if I was passing by. Once inside, I would find myself in an open expanse or a broad or narrow stairway — and all of it surrounded by this jagged corrugated surface of grey concrete. Whichever way, I would be drawn to the next level or around some corner — in which there might be a copy of a Greek torso sculpture or another stairway to somewhere else — but never a flat surface or a square hallway or room with a top and bottom. It never seemed to look the same twice. I just loved to get lost in it.
– Andrew Weltchek
My favorite architecture is the Rudolph Building, a prime example of Brutalist architecture – but it always felt warm to me. Stairwells were womb-like, even cozy, but opened into large lofty open areas. I loved the many – and always interesting – transitions between varied levels and spaces.
– Ben Slotznick