Dash Marshall

Flexibility can be a poison pill for architecture, leading to spaces that are so accommodating that they are generic and bland. Yet some spaces demand flexibility and character. Makeshift Society Brooklyn is one of those.

Facade The large facade windows are used for rotating art exhibitions. Shown here with an installation by illustrator Alonzo Felix.

Makeshift Society is a coworking space housed on two levels of a pencil factory built in 1907. The program required a space that was flexible enough to accommodate daytime working as well as evening classes and events of various shape and size.

We borrowed Donald Judd’s concept of ‘Specific Objects’ which have a particular character and disposition while being ambiguous enough to be interpreted and used in different ways at different times. Makeshift is a collection of Specific Objects.

The Cube is closed

The Cube is closed

The Cube is one of the Specific Objects. It functions as meeting room (pictured above), workspace, and stage.

Cube in working mode

Cube in teaching mode

Library nook Library nook Library nook

The Cube is carefully located within the space to create different zones around it. Behind The Cube is a library nook.

Canyon view

On one side of it is a sliver of space designed for focused, ‘head-down’ work. The tables are removable to make extra room during events.

Studio wide view

Bon Appétit had nice things to say about the solid maple skeleton kitchen when they wrote about it in their April, 2015 issue.

Bon Appetit Bon Appetit


Foam wall dark

The conference room reimagines Herzog & de Meuron’s Dominus Winery with trash. Light seeps through irregular spaces left between offcuts of foam recycled from architecture & industrial design offices around the country.

Foam from outside This wall was completed in collaboration with The Foam Agency.

Foam light


Floorplan Floorplan Floorplan Floorplan Ground floor - red highlights showing a gradient of privacy in the spaces between the ‘specific objects’

Floorplan Cellar



Photos variously by Mark Wickens, Tim Gibson, and Dash Marshall