Gargoyles haven’t really factored much in architecture since late medieval times, not counting occasional revivals mostly on church façades. But the citizens of NYC might be in for a real treat (or terror, depending on taste) if the fantasy of one bold architect became a reality. Behold the proposal for the so-called Khaleesi skyscraper. This tower is “post-neo-Gothic” (we just coined this term) on steroids and has architecture critics scratching their heads in shock, awe and disdain.
The 102-stories-tall mixed-use, but mostly residential, structure envisioned by architect and assistant dean of the Yale School of Architecture Mark Foster Gage would be embellished with gargoyle like creatures and wing shapes as well as large balconies jutting out from the exterior. The carvings, Gage said, could be created via CNC technology and robots. This phantasmagorical column would tower above the city in the heart of Manhattan, on West 57th Street, just below Central Park.
The embellished high-rise idea is Gage’s response to the fact that Manhattan’s landscape of skyscrapers is basically just “tall boxes […] virtually free of architectural design.” One could argue that ascertainment, but existing towers certainly are rather conventional looking in contrast to this intricately decorated proposal. This concrete, bronze and glass marvel with a façade of limestone-tinted concrete panels, sheet bronze and brass, would feature a viewing platform on the very top, luxe retail shops on the 64th floor as well as a high-end restaurant and two-story ballroom.
In an interview with The Creators Project, Gage said that the gargoyle motif isn’t any kind of symbolism but rather “high resolution architecture.” The goal, he said, was to create “high levels of detail,” and allowing people to create their own narratives when experiencing the structure.
By the way, Khaleesi, the name of the “mother of dragons” character from the “Game of Thrones” saga, is just the project’s nickname. The theatrical oeuvre was commissioned by a high-end developer. Will it become a reality? They say “winter is coming,” so stay tuned!