c. amstutz


angler hostel

Chain of Rocks Bridge | St Louis, MO
38°76’05.8”n  -90°17’63.7”w

critic: kelley murphy
final core studio  
fall 2017

Located on historic Route 66, the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge spans a shoal of rocky rapids from Missouri to Illinois. On this well traveled site, students were asked to propose a hostel inspired by a material study of liquid tectonics, which was translated into both poetic and formal qualities of the hostel.

liquid tectonics
the poetics of water

In the exploration of liquid tectonics, I developed a hydro-printmaking device which creates radial prints utilizing ink, water, and hydrostatic pressure between a doubly wrapped mylar cone. The circular prints generated served as an object for analysis. To explore representation, I utilized nautical language and references to re-imagine the prints as randomly generated landmasses. This language served to quantify experiential qualities of the hydro-prints, such as hue, saturation, and projected speed and direction of the ink into a legible set of data, creating an entirely new and fabricated understanding of the results of the liquid tectonic study.

water as context

Siting for Angler Hostel was determined by bathymetry and a fish species analysis. Understanding the bathymetry explains the speed of the river flow: a determinant in the type of species that inhabit the area. Sited on pylon 5, the Angler Hostel was located based on diversity of species in the area. Pylon 5 has direct access to many water depths and speeds, providing a range of species to the visiting fishers.

fluid inflection
formal articulation

Inspired by concepts explored in the liquid tectonics study, the hostel formally interprets the idea of the inflection point evident in the hydro-prints. Situated between two bridge modules, the hostel serves as an inflection point between these modules, gesturing from high to low, right to left, and finally wrapping around the mass of the pylon to reach toward the water.

The Hostel consists of both private and public space; two dwelling levels, each with two units and peeling balconies; and a lobby, overlook, and fishing dock which provides a public space to enjoy the ambient sound of the rushing river and the fish below.


© 2022 caroline amstutz