Michael Bierut + Jessica Helfand | Audio

S3E2: Claire Weisz

Claire Weisz is is the principal-in-charge of WXY, an architecture and design practice focused on innovative approaches to public space, structures, and cities.

Weisz talked about a few recent projects in New York City. Weisz and WXY took on the redesign of the boardwalk in the Rockaways, which had been destroyed in Superstorm Sandy.

In the Rockaways, the need to rebuild was clear, but sometimes clients don’t know what they want. In the case of the SeaGlass Carousel, a merry-go-round with translucent fish at the southern tip of Manhattan, Weisz says that she

had to come up with it as an idea and demand that our wonderful client, Warrie Price, be as excited about it as we were.

The Salt Shed, on the West Side of Manhattan, stores road salt for when it snows.

When working on a project, Weisz says, it’s important to listen.

You don't ask people what they want. You ask them what they need — and you start drawing things.
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Michael Bierut + Jessica Helfand Jessica Helfand, a founding editor of Design Observer, is an award-winning graphic designer and writer. A former contributing editor and columnist for Print, Eye and Communications Arts magazine, she is a member of Alliance Graphique Internationale and a recent laureate of the Art Director’s Hall of Fame. Jessica received both her BA and MFA from Yale University where she has taught since 1994. In 2013, she won the AIGA medal.

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