Reading the Cosmic Landscape: An Observatory in the Nevada Desert
McDonald, Hilary Jane
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This thesis aims to restore value to the phenomenological experience of the desert through architecture, exploring the desert as a physical, cultural and experiential landscape that ideally lends itself to the study of astronomy and to a greater understanding of a universal order. This project will create a recreational observatory allowing amateur observers to study the skies. The observatory will be located on the desert peak of Mount Washington, located in Great Basin National Park in Nevada. It will provide a venue for the astronomy-focused activities which already exist within the park, and will serve as a destination highlighting the cosmic properties of the desert. This thesis proposes that architecture can play a role in realizing the essential qualities of this unique landscape and can enhance the study of astronomy as an endeavor that goes beyond science to access a greater understanding of the human condition.
- Architecture