John Hartmann is a founding partner of Freecell Architecture in Brooklyn, NY. He received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from The Cooper Union and is a Rome Prize Fellow and a MacDowell Colony Residency recipient. Freecell’s installations, drawings, and furniture address issues of scale, movement, and desire of the occupants. The work relies on active participation to surprise and challenge. Stemming from an interest in understanding the potential of material properties, their projects develop tectonics using these qualities and behaviors. Freecell has completed projects with cultural institutions including SFMOMA, the Pulitzer Foundation, and the University of Akron, and with the fashion designers Alexander Wang, and Joseph Altuzarra.
John Hartmann currently teaches Freehand Drawing, ARCH 114, alongside Professor Michael Webb.
View John Hartmann's CV here.
Projects & Links
St Louis, MO
PXSTL is a community arts and urban incentive created by the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts and the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis.
Our design, Lots, the first installation of PXSTL, is a temporary pavilion conceived of as an overhead spanning structure that frames fragments of the city and the sky together. Creating a wall-less extension of the museum and academia, it forms a physical platform for varied planned programs and spontaneous unplanned programs throughout the summer. This platform, or stage, provides a public place to breakdown the zones and strata that exist in the city and aims for community-based discussions and diverse audiences.
Thompson Street Townhouse
New York, NY
A hundred-year old building sits at the corner of Thompson St and Grand St in SoHo. Constructed when there were horse-drawn carriages and an elevated IRT train atop West Broadway, this structure has been subjected to various alterations over the years. Additions were built and different interior divisions converted it from single family to multifamily and then back to a single family. The current owners have asked Freecell to renovate the building and bring a level of clarity and organization to both the interior spaces and the exterior facade.
Moving the main living space from the ground up to the third floor and connecting it with a new skylit stair to the rooftop garden, brightens the entire structure within. The expansive third floor, previously chopped up with bathrooms and bedrooms is now opened up to be one loft floor. The new windows extend views to the city across Grand St and down to Canal St bringing southern and western light to the Living room and Main bedroom through new french doors with balconies.
Spontaneous Interventions, U.S. Pavilion, Venice Architecture Biennale
The US Pavilion at the 2012 Venice Architecture Biennale, curated by Cathy Lang Ho, features an installation rather than a conventional exhibition of projects. It consists of a lively system of banners to present a collection of 124 actionable strategies aimed at bringing immediate improvements to the urban public realm.
Freecell collaborated closely with communication design studio M-A-D, led by Erik Adigard and Patricia McShane, to design an enveloping environment that puts Spontaneous Interventions in a broader historical and cultural context. Freecell designed a kinetic system, employing banners, counterweights, and pulleys, in which the viewer needs to reach to pull information from the sky.