First Ascent

Located in Chicago, First Ascent brings world class rock climbing to the community. The 25,000 sf. facility offers guests an escape from the flat Midwest plains with climbs up to 55 ft. in height. Upon entering the reception area, guests are immediately engaged with an artistic interpretation of a terrain well known to the climbing community; the Red River Gorge in Kentucky. This 654sf unique ceiling cloud combines brand personality and purpose with functionality.

The outline of the canopy was developed using a sampling from an aerial elevation of the topographical mapping of Red River Gorge. While the shape and undulation offer flow within the environment, it is the materials which bring the cloud to life. A dense, high-quality felt, ranging in color from grays to oranges, offers the flexible quality to form the rugged curvatures and flowing undulations. The design application not only adds to the aesthetic quality of the space, but also creates a barrier to control acoustics.