Watts Utilitas

As the Watts Towers serve as symbols that give voice to the Watts community, these Towers have recently fallen into disrepair, resulting in a necessary restoration led by The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).  Through the process of preservation however, the influx of money and physical scaffolding has created a financial, physical, and visual disconnect between the community and the Towers.  As a process which is predicted to run indefinitely, the inevitable divide between private restoration and public dialogue with the Towers is mitigated through the design. By composing a series of ambulatory rings around the spires and their scaffolding, the architecture celebrates the restoration process instead of concealing it. This project allows for a more intimate communal interaction with the symbols and preservationists, ultimately blurring the hard edges created by the restoration.