Spanning Lines of Longitude and Latitude

© Andrew Clark

Essay by Iker Gil and Andrew Clark, editors of MAS Context University Works

Beginning at the desk of the 1st year studio, architectural education drives students to think, create, produce, react, critique, absorb, challenge and reinterpret. Architecture studios hum with this energy of work. UNIVERSITY WORKS began with a dual interest in discovering what students and universities are working on, working with, working for, within a Dymaxion projection of our world.

We undertook the project as the continuation of two lines of exploration. The first, MAS Context, is a journal in which we address contexts that shape design and the world and create a platform for sharing knowledge and discussing topics. The second is the tradition of architectural publications recording and broadcasting the condition of the academic work. UNIVERSITY WORKS was approached both as a project in method, how to collect, curate, and understand a pixelated view of architectural work, and a project in broadcast, how to instigate discussion and draw new connections between students, schools of architecture, and universities. We strove for multiple means of representation and readings: an objectified print publication, a circulating document at the student-affordable price of free, and a location on the world wide web (where else).

It is a collection totaling 50 student projects, selected by 10 curators, instructing in 10 schools of architecture at 10 universities. It is a book raising the visibility of the students’ promising design work through distinguished curators’ selections from the schools of architecture.

Bookshelves of architect’s offices, architecture schools, and student studios include the publications of architectural student work. These are usually one of three forms: a school’s annual design catalogue; a jet-setting, visiting professor’s studio compilation; or, an encyclopedia of a multi-faceted project taken on by many students over several semesters. These works have charted new terrains and trajectories for the discipline by continuing to push the method, visualization and position of architectural design.

The architectural discipline awoke to the burgeoning force and project of globalization in the 90s, and UNIVERSITY WORKS is a response to this condition. It is a publication that seeks to go beyond the borders of one studio or project, beyond the margins of one school or country. As we begin the second decade of the 21st Century, UNIVERSITY WORKS sets out to explore cultures, contexts, and creations that span lines of longitude and latitude. Breaking physical boundaries is also a goal, and in some cases, we could say a need for most of the selected schools. European schools have the ERASMUS programme (the European Union’s flagship mobility program in the field of education and training), and U.S. universities have their programs abroad. A few of the schools selected have travel programs: UIC’s semesters in Barcelona, Virginia Tech’s Chicago Studio and Parson’s work with the International Design and Architecture Program at the Faculty of Architecture at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok. Architecture schools are going beyond their building walls to stay relevant.

The selected universities are located on five continents. Out of this breadth, UNIVERSITY WORKS discovers distance or connection, difference or sameness, small divergence or escape velocity for these schools of architecture. They are schools with which we had strong connections, brief collaborations, close friends, or first conversations. The choice of university was largely driven by the choice of the curator.

UNIVERSITY WORKS is not a strict cross-section sampling that leads to an image of the director’s vision or press-ready position of any school. This is acknowledged in some of the of the curator’s introductions, citing for example the scale of the school as a factor of the heterogeneous production and vision of the school. Rather, the publication is more a lens from an insider’s view on the condition of the school. Curator’s subjective selection strategies include: a comprehensive view of the school, blue-ribbon winners, and traveling studios or distance projects. Their involvement in the development of certain works ranges from direct to nonexistent.

The selected projects in UNIVERSITY WORKS are comprised of programs and design challenges across the spectrums of scale, use, context, technique and representation. Included in the works are memorials and museums, mined Manhattans, methods of modeling, and multiple critiques of modernist design. In most cases, they are a set of hyper-contemporary resolutions to 21st Century challenges, while a few explore challenges and discussions the discipline has been experimenting with for half a century.

UNIVERSITY WORKS is a publication where the City is king — evident even in the selection of the universities. Many projects are situated in the urban context, deliver on challenges of restricted sites and existing histories, dialogue with conditions of higher densities and speculate on new metropolitan landscapes. However, they are projects, more than other student work publications in previous years, that respond with buildings and volumes, not only plans and diagrams.

Whether in visualization or approach, UNIVERSITY WORKS represents the shrinkage of time and space resulting in various levels of consistency in the selected projects. Among the schools, methods and approaches extracted from the student work, more are similar than different. The choice of representation and the style of visualization by the students’ highlight this growing sameness. This pseudo-monotony is also present in the absence of sustainability (embedded or the “Green Giant” variety), blobs or sinuous formal resolutions, and urban design as diagram.

Digital terrains are the driving force of the speed and frequency of intellectual and creative disbursement, keeping students attentive to the goings-on online. Software and Intel chips have made imitating and creating images easier. Daily doses are now hourly check-ins, while watching the RSS feed on the web has replaced afternoons in the stacks.

UNIVERSITY WORKS and the panel discussion we organized with architects and educators from around the world (currently based in Chicago) bring into question several issues of direction, presence, persona and influence; whether it’s the school’s position and its trickle-down effect or a mid-tier influence permeating upwards and downwards. Each level of the educational system has a position and an agenda: the university’s mission, the school of architecture’s direction, the professor’s refined, evolving project, and the developing pupil. Students work, professors work with the students, the school of architecture works the system, and the university keeps everyone working to pay the bills. UNIVERSITY WORKS is a point of departure, a first experiment in generating conversation and discussion around the conditions of schools of architecture. Refinements to this project’s method are certainly our aim. A discussion that arises from the publication is the role of the studio instructor and his/her acknowledgment in the establishment of the identity of the student work submitted. In addition, selecting schools with established connections, selecting a larger amount of schools and projects, considering cross-reference programmatic similarities instead of geographic differences are aspects to be studied for future efforts in presenting student work. They will produce different confrontations and parallelisms between the projects.

UNIVERSITY WORKS is intended to start this conversation among those in architectural education. Students should be able to produce their own tools in order to understand what other students are doing; professors should establish studios with strong identities at the forefront of the architecture discipline; and Directors and Chairs of schools of architecture should establish clear positions for their schools.

UNIVERSITY WORKS is our first contribution to this discussion.

 

Andrew Clark is a designer at MINIMAL and a collaborator in MAS Studio. He has designed solutions for communications, brand, vision, experience and visualization projects. His work is featured in “Shanghai Transforming” (Actar, 2008), “Building Globalization” (UChicago Press, 2011), and “Work Review” (GOOD Transparency).
www.mnml.com | @AndrewClarkMNML

Iker Gil is an architect, urban designer, and director of MAS Studio. In addition, he is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of Architecture at UIC. He is the recipient of the 2010 Emerging Visions Award from the Chicago Architectural Club.
www.mas-studio.com | @MASContext

Discussing University Works

Photo by Iker Gil

2.20.2010 UIC SoA
Andrew Clark [AC]
Judith De Jong [JDJ]
Alexander Eisenschimdt [AE]
Iker Gil [IG]
Jimenez Lai [JL]
Paul Preissner [PP]
Juan Manuel Rois [JMR]
Karla Sierralta [KS]

 

On a Saturday morning, we assembled a panel of eight architects and educators that have lived, studied, worked or taught at locations around the world. The discussion centered around their thoughts and impressions of the project we undertook, UNIVERSITY WORKS, and the differences in learning and teaching, not specifically the student work. It was meant to spark a discussion, not a resolution.

 

IG: We can start the conversation by sharing your first impressions of the work on the wall.

JMR: What I am thinking is how cultural material gets reproduced and, at the same time, where information is introduced in this discipline. And to me, what I am looking on the wall is basically the second tier of expression of cultural material, and not the first one. I don’t think that innovation is on the wall, but basically the enforced repetition by institutions of things that then become clichés. Of course, in every repetition, in every reproduction then you have variations. Institutions come with disciplinary enforcement and with ideologies, so ideas are appropriated and transformed to fit in a specific context of politics and economics. It is interesting how you can actually trace that genealogy. You can actually trace where every project on the wall comes from. Basically, many of the things that we have here on the wall we have seen before. There is some weird stuff too.

The weird stuff appears when there isn’t a practitioner, which is like the bad gene, or a very old gene, getting back into the conversation. There are probably drops of weird stuff all over the place, and you understand it as some kind of peak at the cultural material.

KS: Are you saying that the weird is the innovative?

JMR: Yes. They are moments of brilliance that they don’t get stratified or solidified, because we are practicing in schools and not in the real world.

KS: Do you think that with all these new blogs and the opportunity of students of publishing their own work, there would be more possibility of some of this work to get out there out there faster than before?

PP: I think it does get out and that is why it’s not surprising that so much of the work looks the same.

JDJ: One of the things that is interesting is that there are some universities up here where the five projects are so broad that it’s actually difficult to discern the direction of the school. Even when you read the description and then you look across the projects, they don’t necessarily correlate. My question to the rest of you then would be, do you think in a framework such as this, it’s a stronger idea to show range that may not in fact reinforce position or would it be more instructive to, in fact, select five projects that reinforce the position of the school?

IG: That’s a good point. Is it a unified direction of the school or is it a specific collection of projects that represent the interests of the curators’? That was one of the questions we raised as we approached the schools for selection. For example, in the case of ETSAM with 4,000 students it is clearly not the intention to have single identity for the school. Can you give an image or do they even want to give an image?

AC: Is the idea of this publication a successful way of exploring this discussion, or is this idea in of itself unable to obtain an image or position of school?

JMR: I think there are certain schools, because of their scale, scope and vision, that can craft a particular identity. But there are other ones that cannot, especially because they are not in the professional frameworks. Some of these schools have professional degrees so they have to train the nuts and bolts of the profession. Other ones are just asking the questions of the discipline because they don’t have that professional attachment. So it is very hard to try to establish a mutual relationship.

JDJ: I think maybe that’s a false distinction because all the schools have a certain obligation towards the profession. That’s not to say they are teaching the profession, but your distinction of schools that don’t teach the profession is perhaps unfair.

JMR: But that’s true. There are certain schools that their degree is the professional degree of Architecture —“I am an architect.” Where if I finish school in the U.S., I am not an architect.

JDJ: But it is still a professional degree.

IG: What Juan is saying is that in some schools, after you receive the degree, you can practice right away, and in the U.S. there is a next level of education required before you can practice.

JDJ: I see. You are saying in those schools where professional frameworks exist, they have the obligation that once you graduate from their school, you are a practicing architect.

JMR: They have a legal obligation. They are practicing the way they teach. I think the American model is more interesting to me.

JDJ: In that respect, do you think that the American projects are potentially more speculative because they have fewer obligations?

JMR: They can be.

PP: The ETH is an American model in terms of their curriculum, so I don’t know if that is fully true for all. I think everybody has the same legal and professional obligation. Certainly, given the five projects of the schools, I can‘t see how you would figure which ones do or don’t. I don’t think any of them are more or less speculative than other projects. For me, you can’t really evaluate the schools based on five projects without knowing the studio context that those five came from and what may be the other projects in that studio. These publications are always good because they can get a dialogue going between the different curators, but I don’t think you can get the dialogue between the different schools. But you do see that more or less everybody has the same technical capabilities at their disposal. I think that has a lot to do with what Karla brought up, which is that blogs and online journals have really accelerated the ability of students to be visually comfortable with what’s going on. I’ve noticed that, in the last 10 years of teaching things like software, it used to take a whole semester and now it takes two weeks because students are already more visually comfortable with what to do. They don’t have to grapple with what it looks like because they already have that expectation. Australia looks like Chicago, looks like Zurich, looks like…No one is better than anybody else anymore… maybe Argentina is a little behind. But you know, you would hope that Argentina would figure out that they shouldn’t just play catch up because it will never work. They need to figure out how to cheat and jump ahead of all.

AE: But that’s exactly why curating an agenda would be important. Because it gets so homogenized through the technical capabilities and through the internet, blogs and these kind of things. The boundary conditions no longer exist, so having a strong agenda for the school or for a studio it’s actually really important. Otherwise, we get this kind of blur context.

PP: It is also tough because we are in a very mushy moment.

JL: We as in UIC?

PP: No, everybody in the profession. Schools don’t know what to do next.

AE: But there are always just a few schools. There was never a time where schools across the globe knew what they were doing. At certain point it was the AA, at another point it was Columbia, and this had to do with a person in the department or Chair that had a clear agenda. In a way, these publications are really good, and the ones that will stick out have an agenda. It might be that the discipline is in a moment of flux, but at the same time, it is usually at these moments of flux where schools suddenly identify a very clear position, at least that’s what happened in the 60s and 70s when Tschumi went to Columbia. In a way, the five works don’t give us the ability to identify their clear position, but nevertheless I think it is maybe too easy to just say it’s the situation right now and that’s why we can’t define it. There are certain schools that seem to position themselves, and, as Iker was saying, that there are some schools who just say, we are so broad, we have so many students and so many faculty that we don’t even try to plant a position, which I think is a fairly weak spot.

IG: For me, when I was studying in Spain, there were two models. One was the architecture school of Barcelona, where I studied, and the second one is the architecture school in Madrid. Barcelona had a more controlled way of teaching, carrying certain qualities throughout all the studios. The model of the architecture school of Madrid for me was always more open, where professors had really different interests but a really clear agenda and identity. And probably this is an excessive generalization but the younger generations coming from the ETSAM have probably had a bigger impact in the profession in Spain, especially in competitions.

JL: There is something about the choice of these schools that is a little flat. I feel that when Juan was talking about professional training he establishes a distinction between vocational training and surplus. For the discourse or discipline, we actually need the schools that have less connection to vocational training. Places like the Berlage Institute or Sci-Arc have less affinity to commitment there. Because when we are talking how slow or fast things are moving, they are moving all at once. Of course, the genealogies can be detected but the quality at which they are innovating is slower. But I think these things only happen when there is a surplus in the systems.

JMR: It’s not that I want to defend the Argentinean case, but in the catch up game, basically it is the only school on the wall that it is not part of an advanced economy or first world. We like to think that we are but we are not. In the catching up game, I think that before architecture was a discipline the only thing that you needed was a table, two or three tools, spatial imagination and architectonic ability. Right now you need to have routers, 3d scanners…

AE: In order to do what?

JMR: In order to play this game, in order to part of this wall. There is a big divide and it is called the digital divide. It’s an economic reality, and is also because we are an applied profession. We aren’t in a bubble, speculating about ideas. We are connected to economic realties and construction protocols. We don’t build with digital technologies in South America, there is no expertise there. When it is going to happen or if it’s ever going to happen is an open question.

AC: Is the digital divide shrinking faster?

JMR: I don’t see it shrinking. I actually see it becoming wider.

AC: It is an interesting point, because Argentina is the only school, outside one or two projects from other schools, that selected projects which were built or installed in a physical space. Does it represent this divide or the reality of the culture of South America?

AE: But that is a choice by the curator, isn’t it?

AC: It certainly is, but it’s also a distinctive quality for them as opposed to the other schools in the way in which they represent their work or direction there is actually going. From desk, drawing board, computer, to built, perhaps there is a condensation of time given their reality. In fact, built realities might not exist for the other schools, because their work will mostly stay in the world of desktop computer as they cycle through the machine of architectural education and practice.

AE: But one could make the argument that when Columbia introduced the paperless studio there was the model where, the only thing you need is the computer. It did not need the 3D router or 3D printer.

JMR: That was 15 years ago. Now you need the router.

AE: Do you need a router to teach your studio?

PR: We are obviously quite poor [at UIC]. We have two machines and one is always on fire. What you actually see is that regardless the finances, every schools ends up being the same. First of all, the students steal stuff, its not like everyone buys it. In that sense, you would think that Latin America should be stealing more than they are. But none of that matters. There is no clear direction that anybody is really making and if it was, we would know it. Columbia is a model, AA is another. When that happens, it is clear and everybody knows it. We are still too early for that to be clear because things have just changed at UIC and I don’t know the history of the direction of the other schools that are up here. As a curation, maybe all of these are a little too Eurocentric, with the exception of Latin America and Japan. Australia might be geographically different but Australia is not that different. We are all just looking at different Macintosh Apples.

JDJ: And within that, it’s also a very specific set of schools. It would be interesting, for example, to get some random school from Southern Italy and some random school from another location.

JL: But it shouldn’t be random. I think it should be a school with a distinct identity. For example, Y-GSA, the Yokohama Graduate School of Architecture, produces a really distinctive kind of architecture that is extremely different from Waseda University. But Waseda University is a very technically sound place.

JDJ: Actually, the one thing that I do see across all of these schools and again, I think this is maybe a question of the initial curation, is a very explicit interest in engaging with the city.

JL: Every university is located in a metropolis except for Virginia Tech.

JDJ: But even Virginia Tech has actually recognized that it’s an issue for them so several of these projects are from their Chicago Studio. They actually bring their students to Chicago because they realize that is a necessity. What do you do when you are located outside a metropolitan area? I think they are trying to, in fact, engage those metropolitan issues.

AC: To that point, if we take the same snapshot ten years ago programmatically, would we see different projects developed? Would we see less urban projects? Would there be a wider bandwidth to the work?

JMR: Program, in the schools, never changes. What changes are the forms they will take.

JDJ: I think that the level of engagement in the city in this set of schools might not have changed because they are located in cities, and that is potentially part of their agenda. I don’t know all the schools from 10 years ago so that’s a speculation on my part. I suspect that there are schools outside the metropolitan areas, like Virginia Tech, who have made explicit decisions to engage urban issues and have changed in 10 years.

JMR: But I don’t think that it’s about the urban issue at all, I think is about the digital technology. Digital technology has changed the way we think in this profession and actually how we work. And they have decided that they are not interested in that. I don’t know if it is a conscious decision or not but what is on the wall does not have any interest of computer in design. And if 10 years ago we have had the same snapshots we would have 3 schools less with digital examples.

JDJ: I was speaking strictly about their interest in the city.

JMR: I don’t think it is a programmatic issue, I think it’s more of an implementation of the technology in the design culture.

IG: If the projects selected by the curators represent the school, whether they are a comprehensive view or a small snapshot, what do the school introductions and studio pictures add to the conversation?

PP: All this work is from the schools, so it is representative of the schools. I like the pictures they sent to show their schools.

AE: These are the best.

PP: Every school looks like it could be the same school, except for University of Toronto. They really wanted us to know that celebrities speak in Toronto. Everyone else is the same, even Universidad Torcuato Di Tella and UIC look the same. What’s great is that UIC, which has a lot of digital projects shown, its picture shows “Maylines.” I think the pictures of the schools sometimes could be more telling.

AC: Also, the pictures of the schools are tied with selections of text from their website. It’s either the position of the school or what the school is about. So there is a dialogue between the image of the school and what they are actually saying to broadcast it on their website.

PP: Just knowing the example from the school we teach at, I don’t want to read any of these too much with just the curators. Because for example, Doug [Garofalo] curated the ones from UIC but none of them are from Doug’s studios. I don’t know if there is enough information in just these five projects to start making a discussion about where people come from and where they go. Those projects did not come from Doug’s studio so it really doesn’t matter what his history is for the productions of these projects. I think we have to be less deep about these things. These are five projects that represent each school and we take it as a face value. And then we have to see what their ambitions are instead of the technical competence. Juan and I were talking that the schools should try to figure out how to be cool instead of how to be rich.

KS: How do you become cool?

PP: It is like in high school, you are either from the rich group or you are from the cool group. Sometimes they are the same. If you want to be popular, which is what all these schools want to be, you can either be rich and then you have all the software, technologies, and the facilities that you can stay up to date, or you have to be really cool.

JDJ: The burden on the poor schools is to be cool.

JMR: It’s a survival strategy.

JL: It shouldn’t be about survival.

PP: You have to figure out how to skip ahead of the line. It happens in every artistic practice. Either you have high production value or you have to figure out how you can make cool music cheap, and that’s what rock music does as opposed to live studio music. I don’t know if we can tell that from these projects.

JMR: Survival sounds tragic. It is true that to be part of the conversation you need to find what is your position. It’s all about being in touch with your own expertise and how you can leap frog.

IG: One question that I want to ask is how do you distribute the information that is produced in the academic world, considering that some of them have more economic resources than others? Is it a website? Is it a publication, where the avenues of the publication are very tight and competitive? Is it self publishing? How do you get your work out?

AE: I guess there are 3 ways. One way is through the students. There are certain schools that utilize the graduated students that go off and hear about them because they pop up everywhere, because they teach in different universities, do good work, or they start offices right away. Another one is the university itself, either through their lecture series or their faculty itself, where they travel around. In those schools you hardly hear about the students work. And then, the third one I think is the student publications. While they all do them, I am actually not so sure how important they actually are. I always get the UPenn publication in the mail and it’s really impressive but I don’t think anybody else really sees these publications. They make 2,000 or 3,000 and then, they mail them out to the alumni, so it is a tight group of people that will get them. But I think the other two methods, the students and the school, do it more.

JDJ: I think the publication actually has more weight than the other groups you are speaking of. For example, we have 4th year undergraduate students with the UPenn publication from last fall. I do think that those things disseminate past the alumni and do, in fact, have an effect. Also, I think the websites do matter, because when students do their research on schools for the graduate program, the work on the site communicates the position of the school. We found that to be incredibly important in conveying our message. The digital catalogue, whether it’s printed on paper or not, is actually really critical to disseminating the ideas of the school.

AC: I think also the students are looking to other schools, and knowing who the professors are in many ways actually starts to dictate choices. So knowing certain faculty, or specific people that are teaching there is really interesting. There is definitely the university and there is also the faculty who are teaching and promoting their ideas that creates that kind of dialogue, and helps the students to select one school or another. It’s as much about the professor that I can encounter while there as it is going to the university itself.

JMR: The issue of choice is a very American model. If you are from Rosario you don’t have a choice, you go to the only school that is around. For me is not a competition and I am not looking for more visibility to bring something. To me, this is about the cultural discussion. You need to know what is going in your field. In my personal case, my field is mostly architectural education and also practice, so I want to know not only what is being done but also how it is told. Any kind of medium for being in touch easier is good, whether is this publication or a web page.

AC: We selected everybody for this panel because the book is a global look and all of you have either taught, worked, or come from another country to the US; or you have multiple degrees at schools within or outside the US; or you have lectured abroad. Is it advantageous for you to float among the schools, float among countries, to review in different universities? There are professors who obtained their degrees all the way to PhD and are still teaching in the same school. Is it an advantage, and is it a contemporary condition?

AE: It’s certainly interesting to see it. The only problem is that I know the schools that I see on the wall. I know Universidad Torcuato di Tella through Juan, I have sat on reviews of Parsons, I teach at UIC and I have visited some of the others, so I actually know these schools. What it would be really interesting for me is to discover other schools. I have no idea how architecture schools in Africa function, what kind of work they put out. For me it would be really interesting to say that every continent gets three schools. Either your pick them or somehow they are filtered out. That would be for me even more interesting because then we are really going beyond what we know—schools that for the most part do the expected things.

JMR: This, in the end, is a really tight network of schools.

IG: You are suggesting then moving to another network of schools.

JMR: There are schools that are outside this network.

JL: Regarding the question about different continents, without meeting a person from Nigeria who was working at OMA, I wouldn’t have known that perspective. I would ask him which schools are the most amazing in Africa, because obviously there are. I would even look within the US, for example Taliesin, which is weird, it’s a strange place. They operate their academic and ecological model entirely outside this spectrum.

KS: I wonder if it would be interesting to do a cross pollination not of the people who curated the work but the people who taught the work in the schools. Maybe then you could try to get out of that cross-pollination and find those schools we are now suggesting. I think the work might be different then.

IG: So what we are arriving at is that even though these selected schools are spread out, it might be possible that different schools, much closer geographically, are more different and part of completely different networks. So distance has less of a role in some networks?

PP: But I don’t know if you are ever going to find what you might want in that sense. The work has become more or less even at this point. Everybody is pretty rapidly aware of what’s going in on in the rest of the world. It’s not like there is natural Danish work, or natural South African work, that is distinctly in itself anymore, because everybody travels in one way or another too much. I remember Joe Rosa had this show at the art Institute of Chicago called “Young Chicago” and in all the criticisms of the show it came up that some of us who were in the show were not from Chicago, as though if that was going to happen anymore. You are never going to have any big city where its representative work is from people who have never left it. It’s not the nature of how things work.

At the level of a university, which is not cheap to go, you are in a pretty small minority of population. You are not going to find that localism that might have occurred 60 years ago, the means weren’t as quick. Now you know what happens in Japan because the blog “Dezeen” publishes it every two days. You don’t have to go there to actually be familiar with it, and everybody is so quick at assimilating what they are seeing that they can internalize and start doing it. So even the school that is starting to get there, has the stuff. We are just a little better at the guitar because we have been playing it longer.

AE: So does the publication want to show that across the globe all the schools are the same?

PP: I don’t think they are all the same. I think they are technically all at the same speed.

AE: That’s what we are saying; technology is no longer an excuse.

PP: Clearly the representatives from the ETHZ are very serious; they don’t like to joke around in Architecture. It is very evident. And UIC likes to joke around in Architecture. In terms of the level of production, they both take it seriously but in terms of content, one school has no sense of humor and the other one has a sense of humor about it. So I think you can see those kind of differences. One school has a kind of moral agenda and other schools don’t seem to have that. There are differences between them, but I just don’t think that the selection from a curator gives that proper conversation. All of these are in different circles, it seems like a speed dating event.
JL: If there is a criteria about the curatorial selection process, like the persona of the metropolis, we would have some impression of their position. I wonder if it has to do more with the school or the city.

JDJ: But, for example, within Chicago there are very different points of view among the four schools of architecture. So one cannot describe that to a city necessarily.

JL: In a way you could, because for me, I am here because Chicago is the capital of a really huge region, it’s exciting to be here, and somehow that seems to be the case for many other people.

PP: A lot of the reasons why people go from one place to another is because a job is offered to you. You might not have an intellectual commitment to a city until you have an economic interest. I don’t think that’s a false or fraudulent way to go about it but I don’t think we shouldn’t discount why people move. There are not these pure attractions to how cities are organized that made them what they are. You have a job here. Its not like we would hang out for free.

JL: Except on Saturday mornings for two hours with you guys!




Judith De Jong is an Assistant Professor at the SoA UIC. She received her M.Arch in Urban Design from Harvard Graduate School of Design and B.Arch from The Pennsylvania State University.

Alexander Eisenschimdt is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the SoA UIC. He received his PhD from the University of Pennsylvania, M.Arch from Pratt Institute, New York and Dipl-Arch from HTWK, Leipzig.

Jimenez Lai is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the SoA UIC. He received his M.Arch from the University of Toronto and BA from the University of Toronto.

Paul Preissner is an Assistant Professor at the SoA UIC. He received his M.Arch from Columbia University and his BS.Arch from the University of Illinois.

Juan Manuel Rois is an Assistant Professor at the SoA UIC. He received his M.Arch from the University of Illinois at Chicago and his license as an architect from the National University of Rosario, Argentina.

Karla Sierralta is an Assistant Professor at the College of Architecture IIT. She received her M.Arch from the University of Illinois at Chicago and her BS.Arch from the Universidad del Zulia, Venezuela.

 

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Universidad Torcuato Di Tella Escuela de Arquitectura y Estudios Urbanos

Photo Courtesy of Diego Arraigada

MISSION

The School of Architecture and Urban Studies is an academic unit within the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella conceived to stimulate, renew, and transmit the knowledge of the theories and practices of architecture and urban studies.

It is a flexible, dynamic and open organism, that tries to capture the quick changes of our times, while reflecting on the values that allow to decide about its convenience, and promote academic actions that contribute to improve the public and private spaces in the country.

Source: http://www.utdt.edu/ver_contenido.php?id_contenido=106&id_item_menu=447

 

INTRODUCTION

Witnessing the inception of a School of Architecture is a unique experience.

The School of Architecture and Urban Studies of the Di Tella University in Buenos Aires is — under the direction of Jorge Francisco Liernur — currently undergoing its birth. Having completed the third year of existence in 2009, the first graduated architects will obtain their diplomas in 2011 — after a five-year graduate program. One of the goals of the School is to reinforce the learning of the discipline across all the different courses with the same degree of importance. Design Studio shall not occupy the central core of the school but it is just another -important- class that contributes to the learning of the architectural thinking as the intersection between every course.

Studio, theory and technology courses are taught by outstanding architects and practitioners.

The following selection of projects seeks to provide a cross section sample of some courses that undertake design problems, techniques, and theory from their own perspective. These initial projects of the three first years of the school deal with simple starting points and tasks that achieve complexity through the process.

Nevertheless, the selection for this publication tried to detect the projects (or sequences of short projects) that succeeded to promote discussion about disciplinary issues rather than to arrive to fully developed and known solutions.

Diego Arraigada

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Edita Aurelia Alvarado & María Honoria Perearnau | Triangulation/Ribs
Lucrecia Bakir, Ana Luz Dardik, Chiara Gibertoni, Ines Lobos, Andrea Real & Florencia Romaniello | Small / Large Inflatables
Maria Luz Crescini & Guido Gastaldi | Computer Models II
Carla Laguzzi, Armando Agustín Negri, Josefina de Paul, María Luz Rodríguez, Ignacio Mussi Tiscornia & Carolina Wundes | The Room
María Magnasco | A Lot with Little

 

Diego Arraigada is a Professor at the Escuela de Arquitectura y Estudios Urbanos of the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella in Buenos Aires, and at the Facultad de Arquitectura de la Universidad Abierta Interamericana in Rosario. He graduated in Architecture from the Facultad de Arquitectura, Planeamiento y Diseño de la Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Argentina, in 1999 and received his Master in Architecture in 2003 from the School of Architecture & Urban Design, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). He established his office, Diego Arraigada Arquitecto, in 2005. Along with Johnston Marklee he develops residential projects, and along with Juan Manuel Rois he develops urban and landscape projects.
www.diegoarraigada.com

Triangulation/Ribs

Project by Edita Aurelia Alvarado & María Honoria Perearnau

Project 1: Triangulation
The goal of the project is to intervene within a topography divided in two by a river. Within this context, the intervention performs a conceptual link between the two sides. To achieve that, the topography itself is the base for the “bridge.” It is rotated vertically. Both the original and the extracted topography are then triangulated. Two sides, connected diagonally are selected and are modified in order to respond to the terrain where it is applied.

Project 2: Ribs
The goal of the project, similarly to the “Triangulation”, is to work with topography of similar characteristics. Unlike the previous project, the “bridge” and the surface were treated with different techniques. To establish the connection, a fraction of the same surface was chosen, rotated 90 degrees, and worked with the ribs. To emphasize the concavity of the surface, the lower area of the longitudinal ribs were freed, leaving only the cross ribs in contact with the original surface.








 

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Small / Large Inflatables

Project by Lucrecia Bakir, Ana Luz Dardik, Chiara Gibertoni, Inés Lobos, Andrea Real & Florencia Romaniello

Starting with the patterns from the Burda magazine to tailor clothes, two parts of a single garment were selected and intersected three-dimensionally, e.g., torso and sleeve. The model in real scale was oversized and inflated with a turbine to create a space that the members of the team could occupy. Three aspects the project addresses were: connection of the parts, connection to the ground and materiality.

Site Plan

Cut Pattern


Instructions:
Close clothespins
Close circumference line IMaterial:
50 MC Nylon crystal (3 cm. wide)
Waste bag (1 cm. by 6 cm.)

Quantities:
Cubic meters of air: 30 m3
Square meters of membrane: 50 m2
Membrane grams: 30 gr. per 1 m2
Total: 1,500 gr

Consumables:
Turbine rent: $100 per day
Waste bag: $75 (100 bags)

Supplier:
BIGJUMP 4760-4733/4761-9189

New proposal:
The idea is to generate a new space in which the relationship between interior and exterior is maintained, and where the intersections of the sleeves and torso generate a path that can address the columns found in the selected space.





 

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Computer Models II

Project by María Luz Crescini & Guido Gastaldi

Starting with the selection and study of a diagram, three volumes, each one 12x12x12 cm, are generated using Rhinoceros 3D. The first one is generated using curves, the second one with surfaces and the third one with volumes. After selecting one of the models, a new model, 24x24x24 cm, is generated, this time determining a main circulation path. Finally, an internal element is created to establish a continuous conceptual relationship with the previous diagram. This element is a fragment of an interior partition that can establish a variety of relationships (visual, acoustic, programmatic, etc…) between both sides of the wall.














Creation of a partition using the pieces generated and placing them depending on their size and structural strength.

 

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The Room

Carla Laguzzi, Armando Agustín Negri, Josefina de Paul, María Luz Rodríguez, Ignacio Mussi Tiscornia, Carolina Wundes

The project asked for the mechanical creation of an inflatable space that could be inhabitable. The room developed by our team was able to adapt to the context by locking itself to an existing wood fence. The project was materialized with construction plastic. The connection of the pieces was solved with a specific adhesive tape with enough strength to withstand the air pressure. To solve the access, we developed a double door, one side fixed to the fence and the other connected to the membrane, that allowed for construction and deconstruction as desired.

Materials Used to Build the Membrane.

Packaging Tape: 48 mm wide 900 m used approximately Various shades of brown and Transparent Polyethylene: 100 microns thick 4 m wide 40 m used approximately

Detail of Connection with Access

Direct connection

Inflatable connection

Security door

Detail of Connection with Air Blower

Detail of Membrane Construction and Change of Tonality in the Connections

Detail of Patches to Fix Cuts







 

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A Lot with Little

Project by María Magnasco

The project, located in Totoras, in the province of Santa Fé, is a continuous strip that defines the border of a plaza and holds 15 residential units. Within a 20 x 50 m lot — oriented to the north and located by a boulevard — the project is stimulated by the possibility of establishing a visual connection with the rural landscape. This idea generated a rectangular plan with north-south ventilation that framed the horizon of the landscape. The building is composed of 6 units of 55 m2 on the ground floor and 9 units of 45 m2 on the floor above, each one having terraces or private green spaces. Young people that are looking for open areas to develop an artistic activity or families with young kids can enjoy exterior spaces within the unit.



Second Floor

First Floor

Ground Floor

North Elevation

South Elevation

Section A-A

Section B-B

Section C-C


Materials

 

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Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design

Photo Courtesy of Kathryn Clarke Albright

MISSION
The mission of the School of Architecture + Design is to create a setting for the pursuit of theoretical, practical, and productive knowledge, embracing the duality of the education of an individual and the practice of a profession. The School takes a decidedly Modern position towards design and simultaneously seeks to understand the structure of historical development and culture. The School has a long-standing commitment to international and urban studies through the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center, the Study Abroad Program, and the University’s Center for European Studies and Architecture.

The objective of the School of Architecture + Design is to produce graduates who will be leaders in their chosen professions and in the communities in which they live. The School seeks to provide a forum that cultivates vigorous dialogue and debate, enriching the interrelations between education and practice

Source: http://archdesign.vt.edu/about/

 

INTRODUCTION
The School of Architecture + Design at Virginia Tech is comprised of four disciplines – architecture, interior design, industrial design and landscape architecture. Lead by Scott Poole, the director since January 2004, the school seeks collaboration among disciplines, integration and application of knowledge from multiple disciplines, and projects that extend our reach beyond the borders of the university.

The projects selected for this publication draw from both its undergraduate and graduate programs. Katie Jones, Rachel Islin, and Iris Lui worked collaboratively on a project within the context of CHICAGO STUDIO, an alternative to the traditional design studio that integrates education and practice for upper level architecture students. Students are situated in offices in Chicago for six weeks of the semester where professionals review and help advance their work.

Jeremy Keagy, Andrew Montgomery, and Matt Sander were three of ten finalists for the PELLA PRIZE that is School’s top recognition for excellence in design for undergraduate thesis. The three proposals reflect the individually defined focus of research, study and formulation made in conjunction with two faculty advisors. Over the course of two semesters students exhibit their work publically in Cowgill lobby three times. The undergraduate faculty selects the top proposals as finalists who must give public presentation to students and faculty.

Meredith Barker received the top award in the graduate program for excellence in thesis. Each graduate student has a committee of advisors he or she works with throughout the year. The graduate faculty makes the selection for this award.

Kathryn Clarke Albright

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Meredith Barker | Four Black Boxes and a Beacon: a Theater for Roanoke, Virginia
Rachel Islin, Katie Jones & Iris Lui | Olympic Village 2016+
Jeremy Keagy | Immanence
Andrew Montgomery | Sculptural object: A House
Matthew Sander | A House for a Farmer and His Dog Plus Requisite Outbuildings

 

Kathryn Clarke Albright is an Associate Professor in the School of Architecture + Design at Virginia Tech and serves as chair of its Foundation Program. She received a Master of Design Studies from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, and a Bachelor of Architecture from Virginia Tech. She has received numerous awards, including the University’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 2005. She founded her own practice in 2001 as well as Friends of the Farmers Market in Blacksburg, Virginia. She also serves on several town advisory committees.
www.archdesign.vt.edu/faculty/kathryn-clarke-albright

 

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Four Black Boxes and a Beacon: a Theater for Roanoke, Virginia

Project by Meredith Barker

A proposition for a theater in Roanoke, Virginia is the vehicle for the exploration of architectural ideas on contrast. The project’s form, program, site/city relationship, construction, and materiality developed through a series of models and drawings that studied oppositions in weight, height, transparency, and light.

Ground Floor Plan

 

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Olympic Village 2016+

Project by Rachel Islin, Katie Jones & Iris Lui

After performing research and analysis, the team assessed the need to revitalize the desolate parking lot around the White Sox Stadium. This would bridge two neighborhoods and provide space for the 2016 Olympic Village. The team tackled the large site by breaking it into four scales. The scales served as building blocks to create a process in which to implement a pattern of design. The research and analysis created a timeline to calculate the needs of occupants over periods of time. The process will be repeated over time to expand the revitalization.

 

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Immanence

Project by Jeremy Keagy

The thesis proposes a model conceived as the insertion of a non-referential language to convey dynamic movement through a network of related building and landscape elements whose literal form is static. The language is derived from self-organizing logical diagrams which operate through abstraction to compose an organic system.

Exploded Axonometric

Site Plan

Landscape Plans

Landscape Sections

Building Plans

Building Sections

 

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Sculptural object: A House

Project by Andrew Montgomery

The house as an object is used as a medium to express ornament as non-figurative and formal expression of space through the composition of static forms. The totality of this composition can ennoble man and elevate his thoughts with his interaction of the object as a whole.

Generative Diagrams and Plans

South Elevation

North Elevation

East Elevation

West Elevation

Longitudinal Section A-A

Cross Section B-B

 

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A House for a Farmer and His Dog Plus Requisite Outbuildings

Project by Matthew Sander

The site is located in Louisa, Virginia, on a 7-acre produce farm. A tower house is the hearth of the farm with additional functioning outbuildings positioned using the ancient Greek’s polar coordinates system. From a critical view point at the entrance of the house, the farmer surveys the farmyard, additional structures, and crop rows, focusing predominantly outward, toward the landscape.

Site Plan With Polar Coordinates

Doghouse Right Elevation

Greenhouse Elevation and Plan

 

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Parsons, the New School of Design School of Constructed Environments

Photo Courtesy of Brian McGrath

MISSION
The School of Constructed Environments challenges students to grapple with forces shaping the world today: shifts in global and local ecological flows, changes in living patterns, growing economic disparities, excessive consumption, and increasing ethnic diversity. Architecture, interior, lighting, and product design students work with faculty and global communities to develop design engagement, integrated thinking, and urban practice skills in a collective effort to create sustainable urban habitats, products, interiors, and buildings.

Source: www.newschool.edu/parsons/constructedenvironments-school-sce/

 

INTRODUCTION
Bangkok: The Architecture of Three Ecologies

Our studio focused on three different municipal boat piers along San Saeb Canal in the heart of Bangkok and included the areas within a ten-minute walk from each pier. The studio was preceded by a ten-day workshop hosted by the Faculty of Architecture, Chulalongkorn University and funded by the Rotch Travelling Studio.

The San Saeb Canal boat piers are part of a low-cost and efficient water commuting network that connects the historical walled royal city, to the eastern suburbs, which runs parallel to the Bangkok Transit System Skytrain, and a string of spectacular Shopping Malls. Each pier is markedly different due to the context it connects to, but all three are currently invisible from the city above and hard to access, and the canal itself, while formally the main access to the east from the royal city, is now the “back-door” to the contemporary shopping center of the city.

The projects address the architecture of the three ecologies of Bangkok: first, the psychological condition of living simultaneously embedded in a culture of royal allegiance and devotion to Buddhism and an open embrace with modernization and globalization; second the social space that is created between the two worlds of modernity and tradition; and finally the environmental degradation that has accompanied modernization.

The projects are exemplary in that they do not privilege one condition or ecology over another, and treat slums, shopping centers, waterways, institutions, vendors and transportation systems as all of vital importance to the life of Bangkok, but rather search for hybridizations and recombinations of the multiple conditions of the architecture of Bangkok.

Brian McGrath

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Regina Galvanduque Flores | Bangkok Market: An Architecture of 3 Ecologies
Ross Guntert | Bangkok Piers
Kwangjin Lee | Pratunam Pier
Alexandra Milo & Claudia Garay | Bangkok: The 3 Ecologies
Edward Yim | Bridging Ban Krua

 

Brian McGrath is an Associate architect, planner, urban designer, theorist, writer and educator, whose work and ideas have influenced architects and planners worldwide. Principal at Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates, her years of experience in urban planning, urban design, and campus planning have contributed to VSBA’s unusual breadth and depth in architectural design.
www.urban-interface.com

 

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Bangkok Market: An Architecture of 3 Ecologies

Project by Regina Galvanduque Flores

The market is a node between the boat pier, the sky train and the proposed extension of the sky walk reducing car dependence. The market creates a simple structure to provide the vendors with shade and the proper infrastructure they need to operate (light, water, and rest rooms). This market is made by typical local materials such as the vegetable crates, color plastic, wood, metal framing, etc. The market’s character is seen in the adaptability by the vendors themselves. Each of the vendors will be located in a different area inside or outside the main volume. They will be given their own material, identical to all the other vendors, but with a different color. Respecting their traditions, the market creates order to create a better economy in a better condition.

 

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Bangkok Piers

Project by Ross Guntert

To celebrate the process of emerging up onto the street level from Bangkok’s San Saeb Canal, the existing bridge was redesigned to create a pedestrian friendly space that allows for easy access in an out of the city, interaction with local food vendors and elements of light and media that transform with the space from day to night.

Site Plan

 

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Pratunam Pier

Project by Kwangjin Lee

The project creates new streets, bridges, plazas and atria which connect the pier-side shop house and street vending environment to the mall interior landscape. It makes the shop house more mall-like and the mall more public and open to the street, thereby strengthening the connection to the temple.

Site Plan

Street Vendors Diagram

 

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Bangkok: The Three Ecologies

Project by Alexandra Milo & Claudia Garay

A collaborative urban design project, “Bangkok: the Three Ecologies” addresses the cultural and social gap along the San Saeb Canal in Bangkok, focusing on the community of Ban Krua. By designing an “exquisite corpse” structure, the space provides areas for silk weaving and other recreational activities, becomes a beacon during kite fighting season, collects rainwater during monsoon season, creates an awareness of the community, and generates new economies for the community.

Ban Krua
A densely populated community made up of one to two story wooden houses concentrate around the abundantly polluted San Saeb Canal. Just on the outskirts of the community lies the rapidly developing Bangkok., that encroaches and threatens this 400 year old community. Houses appear to be developed upon one another, and as many as 20 people can live within the walls of an individual home sleeping in shifts on the floors of their homes.

The people of Ban Krua
This predominately Muslim community is a very colorful and rich with life. Most of the family’s that are present there have lived there for many generations. The mosque rings at prayer time, the children run through the walkways to and from school, families sell traditional homemade food of their doorsteps, and families and groups of friend congregate around and exchange conversation and play music.

Analysis
These three categories begin to weave the site together. This idea of the community being woven together mimics the original silk weaving process that use to lay all over Ban Krua. Ikat is the traditional pattern used in producing Thai silk. These are three examples of ikat pattens. I used these three silk patterns to represent each of the three categories I divided the site into.

Housing
The places that the people identify with shelter, not necessarily a place that they live their lives. For the people there it seems that their home was a place for sleep and rest. All throughout the hours of day people gather outside of their homes and experience.

Community Life
The spaces where the people gather and interact. These spaces, not located within the walls of the homes, include the pathways that intersect and connect the site, as well as the small plazas sparingly sprinkled along the site. Along the pathways and in between the homes residents use their personal belongs to fill up the two foot wide gaps between their homes. These are the objects that representing their lives.

Boundary
The objects that are constricting the space within the site, whether it’s intentional constriction or not. The San Saeb Canal is a 20 foot wide waterway that is used for transportation, that cuts through the site. The waterway is extremely over polluted, from the sewer system over flowing during the rainy season, that the water has turned into muddy black water.

Outcome
The end goals for the kite-fighting-silk-tower would be that this structure would provide space for silk weaving as well as other recreational activities, serve as a beacon for kite fighting season and monsoon season, collect rainwater during monsoon season to prevent the sewers from over flowing into the San Saeb Canal, create an awareness about the Ban Krua community to the surrounding cities, to bring outsiders in, and to create a profit for silk weavers as well as those that sell goods from their homes.

 

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Bridging Ban Krua

Project by Edward Yim

A single modern building has taken up a vast plot of property along the south shore of the Saen Saeb Canal. Across the canal stands the historical Ban Krua Community huddled together in a large density. The dichotomy of the modern building and the ancient village presents an urban issue of space use; the mall’s property is vacant during closing hours, whereas every inch of the village is occupied at all times. The project is an intervention resulting in collapsible spatial units attached to the columns of the Tesco Lotus parking lot. These units can be opened during the off-hours of the mall to create a night market and allow migrant workers to work and reside for a short amount of time in accordance with the mall. The symbiosis of the two programs would present the exploration and awareness the city needs for future urban planning.

1935, 1955, & 1975

2009

Intervention

Pedestrian Circulation

Existing Site

Existing Site conditions, Intervention- Daytime, & Intervention- Evening

Occupied Columns, Closed Units- Daytime, & Open Units- Evening

 

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University of Illinois at Chicago School of Architecture

Photo by Iker Gil

MISSION
The School of Architecture is particularly fortunate to participate in an urban context and international network of strong and varied professional offices from which students are able to select in order to continue their practical education. Through a close attention to its discipline, the School is best able to prepare students for the multiple formats of practice, both current and future, that inevitably erupt in a dynamic office culture. A school does not serve its students well by simulating practice, a compromise only necessary in locations with weak professional offices, but can be extremely effective at demonstrating ways of thinking and working that give students the confidence to confront the unknown and contribute to the development of a project in its largest sense.

Forty years ago, in August 1968, the streets of Chicago gave birth to the slogan “The whole world is watching.” In this peculiar combination of collective event and mass media, this collision of city and technology, the School recognizes one instance of its design and research agenda. Architecture and urbanism need to channel that level of cultural urgency and attention today, soliciting unexpected audiences and developing new modes of communication and affect.

Architecture at UIC aims to make the metropolis an offer it can’t refuse. That’s the Chicago Way.

Source: http://www.arch.uic.edu/

 

INTRODUCTION
At the SoA at UIC recent school interests and conceits engage the relationship of architecture and urbanism. But these are not treated in a “traditional” way, precedent analysis understood as an active interpretation; a borrowing, stealing, and/or copying, all for the purpose of reimagining traditional relationships between these two broad categories. Each maintaining its autonomy yet each also inspires, regulates, defines and / or mutates the other.

Architecture is largely a practice of organizing information, of intelligently identifying and deploying patterns–conceptual, visual, structural, behavioral, and material–in the world.

We enlist the legion of unlikely scenarios and cartoon-like diagrams extracted from the city’s archive, aimed toward the projection of alternative futures both here and elsewhere. We are more interested in extending the city’s experiments than preserving its monuments. Admiring so much the paradoxes – swagger, frailty, brilliance, and failure – of the historical figures and environmental features of the city and region, we refuse to invoke them as a means to market rote styles, or to place what are ultimately political and aesthetic choices beyond reproach. Nothing is beyond reproach; it’s all up for grabs.

The questions and possibilities offered to architectural design by contemporary technologies and metropolitan formations are never assumed, but always open to renewal and reconsideration. Neither the city nor technology is static… when deployed creatively, architecture and urbanism are two of the most powerful tools available to remake the world as an artifact of our desires, ethics, and ideologies.

The School of Architecture at UIC works from the premise that a student’s best chance for getting a position is by taking a position.

Douglas Garofalo

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Laetitia Croize-Pourcelet & Sheri Zon | New York is Not a Place
Dana Elkhoury & Katlyn Reichelt | Family
Ryan Johnson & Darya Minosyants | Off-Grid Scenarios: Solutions for the Endless City
Matt van der Ploeg | RUBIXtube
Julia Sedlock | Collective Nesting: Urban Housing Prototype

 

Douglas Garofalo, FAIA, is a Professor at the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and served as Acting Director from 2001-2003. He received a Master’s degree from Yale University in 1987, and a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Notre Dame in 1981. His studio, Garofalo Architects, is an internationally renowned practice based in Chicago that produces architectural work through buildings, projects, research and teaching. This work has been widely recognized, and was the subject of a retrospective show at the Art Institute of Chicago in 2006.
www.garofaloarchitects.com

 

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New York is Not a Place

Project by Laetitia Croize-Pourcelet & Sheri Zon

The strategic densification of Manhattan allows the re-activation of neighborhoods and the enhancement of distinctive areas of the city. The densification transforms buildings into multiprogrammatic environments. As these transformations progress, Manhattan functions as one uninterrupted urban composition.

Existing Building Typologies Within Manhattan Neighborhoods

Manhattan After Application of Density Strategies

Connected

Saturized

O-Zoned

Mushroomed

 

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Family

Project by Dana Elkhoury & Katlyn Reichelt

Within current building typologies, letter forms have become standard and program flattened. Although these letter forms may serve a value, current programmatic strategies are not flexible. By combining current formal typologies with varying programmatic strategies, new building forms are created to achieve a more interactive and responsible building for the individual occupants and the city.

Existing Form and Program

Alternative Program Distribution Study

Skin Studies

Osaka

London

Dubai

 

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Off-Grid Scenarios: Solutions for the Endless City

Project by Ryan Johnson & Darya Minosyants

Chicago is about to gain a new addition to its skyline and its endless grid. Except this time it is different: no one can find it; it seems to be invisible amongst a crowded downtown. Slowly, an inversion occurs, skylines no longer tower to the clouds, but instead extend an astonishing 1200 feet below the surface of the earth. Alleys turn to bridges, garages to entries and what we used to know as ground turns to rooftop. The invisible off-grid moments now have a new monumental importance and have surpassed any limits of the traditional urban planning. This is not practical research on the city; rather, it is a project preoccupied with the notion of possible realities, which intends to use these scenarios as a theoretical construct from which to build new worlds and hypothetical landscapes. The intention is to use ‘what if’ scenarios as an elaborate interpretation of what the city could become, an alternate universe based on familiar but re-envisioned narratives and possibilities.

PHOTOSHOP: A collection of Chicago’s grid irregularities, applied as Photoshop commands throughout the uniform urban canvas.

Pattern Wrap & Mask Typical

Sponge Free-Float & ZigZag End

Pattern Stylize/Distort & Mask Sprawl

Mask Mini & ZigZag Compromise

A CITY OF EXCEPTIONS: An abstracted diagram of a gridded city, such as Chicago, where exceptions become the leading characteristic of that city.

FIGURE-GROUND: Off-grid commonly perceived as an exception within the city starts to overtake the city and makes grid the one exception.

PLOT: Chicago’s endless orthogonal grid gets penetrated by spontaneous interruptions, such as diagonals.

INVERTED MONUMENTS: the invisible off-grid moments are about to be emphasized and monumentalized; not upright monuments but inverted ones

OFF-GRID ISLANDS: for all practical purposes these inverted monuments remain invisible to the city grid, but at the same time the grid cannot exist without them.

2,090 Sq. Ft.

DUALITY: Invisible on the surface, beyond the surface they become a new type of urban monumentality.

10,395 Sq. Ft.

FLIP/INVERT. These operational techniques use the surrounding gridded context in a new experimental way: built matter becomes the void in itself.

TOPOGRAPHY: New typologies emerge, not from the ground but into the ground; the city “zero” plane becomes shifted and redefined.

LABORATORY: The city is changed forever; normal functions and daily operations became replaced by daily “what-if” experiments. The city becomes a laboratory.

 

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RUBIXtube

Project by Matt van der Ploeg

1. CUBE 2. BORE HOLES 3. CUT 4. SCRAMBLE 5. (RE)STACK
RUBIXtube says that, although you can make any form you want, it will probably be more interesting if you cut that form up into smaller (yet regular) chunks, scramble them, and reassemble according to taste. Repeat as desired.

14th Floor Plan

21st Floor Plan

Unfolded Section

Operational Techniques – Foam Model 1.7

Horizontal and Vertical Sections – Foam Model 1.7

Horizontal and Vertical Sections – Paper Model 2.3

Spatial Catalogue – Paper Model 2.3

Diagramatic Floor Plans

Access, Program, & Envelope Strategy

 

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Collective Nesting: Urban Housing Prototype

Project by Julia Sedlock

Designed for a generic site in Chicago, this project proposes a new form of collective urban habitation. A system of nests and perches offers retreat into isolation and inner-life on one hand; exposure and social-life on the other. Nests are warm, cozy, private, small and static. Perches are open, airy, light, social and flexible, and exist along a gradient of sharing and accessibility, depending on individual, family and community needs.

LEVEL 3: Private Nest
Individual ownership; quiet, intimate & introspective

LEVEL 2: Territorial Cluster
Kitchen & terrace; private entry, visual connection to immediate neighbors, views of terrace & city; compact & efficient

LEVEL 1: Collective Perch
Open, flexible, differentiated activity areas, “flex space”, visual & acoustic connections

Sectional Perspective

 

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University of Toronto John h. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design

Photo Courtesy of An Te Liu

MISSION
Students not only have the city to use as a resource, but also have access to Toronto’s large professional design community, many of whom teach at the school. In addition, the city’s multicultural networks and international connections make Daniels a powerful place to start a career. Daniels’ focus on interdisciplinary training and research will test your limits and challenge you to rethink design for the 21st century.

Source: http://www.daniels.utoronto.ca/about/2225

 

INTRODUCTION
The fields of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design are characterized today by exceptional pressure for change. Globalization and the convergence of new media, materials, and building technologies have led to radical change in economic, technical, and aesthetic formations in the design fields. The John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design (Daniels) is responding to these shifts.

As the largest city in Canada and one of the most dynamic in North America, Toronto is a thriving metropolis, providing exceptional resources for the aspiring architect, landscape architect, or urban designer to study the early twenty-first century human condition. Daniels has a global orientation in its teaching and research while simultaneously believing in the importance of sensitively addressing local forces. In this context, Daniels strives to harness the potential of Toronto’s distinctive multi-ethnic and multicultural society. The greater Toronto region serves as a dynamic laboratory for critical studies and the imaginative exploration of design alternatives that will be of consequence internationally.

An Te Liu

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Tomek Bartczak | Montreal: Port/City
Jesse Jackson & Luke Stern | Automatic Revisited: Fabricating Sustainable Concrete Elements
Lingchen Liu & Chenglong Wang | Difference and Innovation in New Housing Typology
Anne Miller | Edison Redux
Sando Thordarson | Hotel Affect-ed

 

An Te Liu‘s installations and sculptures explore issues of function, malfunction and cultural coding in our built and hypothesized environments. He is Associate Professor in the Daniels Faculty of Architecture at the University of Toronto, where he also holds an Adjunct appointment in the Department of Fine Art.
www.anteliu.com

 

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Montreal: Port/City

Project by Tomek Bartczak

The port is a scale-shifting device, mediating between the global and the local — but as a physical entity, it’s spatial linearity blocks off all access to the waterfront. The project proposes to renovate existing industrial infrastructure of the port to create a hub to create a shortcircuit between the international scale of the port with the local scale of the city, through programmatic interaction and physical adjacency.

 

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Automatic Revisited: Fabricating Sustainable Concrete Elements

Project by Jesse Colin Jackson & Luke Stern

This two-part exploration began with the deconstruction and re-creation of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian Automatic system. Following this, an original family of modular elements permitting a high degree of variability using a limited number of unique parts was developed. Both phases of the project culminated in the gallery exhibition of full-scale artifacts.

 

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Difference and Innovation in New Housing Typology

Project by Lingchen Liu & Chenglong Wang

Responding to the individualization caused by globlalization, this research developed new housing types using “left-over” sites in downtown Toronto as means to densify the city. The project breaks down the density by sprinkling a much finer grain into the city instead of adding chunk volumes to form a new field which is organized without hierarchy.

STUDY AREA 01:SPADINA AVENUE
Total: 1,249 units. Increase by 32.3% (3,863 existing units)
STUDY AREA 02: DOWNTOWN CORE(far right)
Total: 2,528 units. Increase by 265% (954 existing units)

2.4 M
By turning the streetcar lane on Spadina Avenue into a green tunnel with openings allowing sunlight and views to penetrate, this project adds houses with different shapes and dimensions on the lane and use the barriers to accommodate their at-grade entrances. This project also explores how a variety of units is possible on such a constricted site and scenarios are developed.

BUBBLE BATH
In this project, located in a collective mat on top of the U of T athletic center, the units gain independency due to their round shape and being separated from each other by the enlarged in-between space, which forms a continuous flow surrounding these bubbles replacing conventional corridors. With their different sizes and configurations of interior space and gardens, the units respond to various life styles.

SIDEWALL
This project is a pair of experiments on the blank sidewalls of two tall slabs to test opposite ideas about differentiation and individuality. In the first one the new housing is a thin layer negotiated with added common facilities to form a folded external wall. The second one is a volume with smooth external surface and the variety is resulted from the carving out of four gardens.
DISTRIBUTED APARTMENT BUILDING
The spacious laneway and backyards of the deep residential blocks in Toronto is an important resource with great potential. Negotiating with lot-owners in the block results in buildable sites of different sizes, proportions and locations. The variety of units comes from this process. The units are connected by a corridor and given a face on city streets. Thus they are both collective and distributed.

CLOUD
We propose a roof to this outdoor court to make it viable in all weather conditions. The roof holds one-story housing units, and four yards. Instead of punching holes to give sunlight to the space below, we opt for a mat a floor made of glass blocks and skylights to the units to create a diffused light effect in the space below. Seen from there, the building looks like a piece of cloud; From above, the roof evokes a manicured landscape complete with a reflecting pond rolling grass mounds.

ULTRA-THIN TOWER
Thin towers tend to be inefficient due to the large elevator cores. One possible solution is to connect the thin tower to its adjacent buildings. To reduce the number of bridges needed, the new tower is made of several groups of walk-up units accessed from a garden. Since the tower is close to its adjacent buildings, we introduced two zones in each unit to lead in sunlight and view as well as protecting their privacy.

CANOPY
This project can be seen as a variation on the Cloud. While the Cloud is better suited for smaller courts, this one can be applied to large public spaces. In this case the hovering mat-building is supported by funnel-shaped deformation. These vortices have public uses at grade to serve the square as well as residential entrances. The project is aiming to transform the square into a sheltered space which can accommodate public activities of different scales

IVY
Glass-clad high-rise buildings provide opportunities of intensification. We propose to ‘clad’ the existing office tower with a new layer of housing that strategically climbs up the building , capitalizing on existing infrastructures while providing for new means of expansion and densification. A great diversity of unit sizes and configurations is another interesting result of this innovation.

 

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Edison Redux

Project by Anne Miller

A focus on research, exploration of the contemporary tectonic and economic possibilities of concrete construction, and effects produces a critical reinterpretation of the work of Thomas Edison. The systems of construction considered could have far reaching implications for low-cost rapid-construction, from inherently urban projects to remote post-disaster housing. The potential of this study extends far beyond Edison’s ideas and into a new way of thinking about concrete.

 

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Hotel Affect-ed

Project by Sando Billey Thordarson

Half graphic novel and half corporate promotional material, this is a meditation on the role of affect and quality within the current context of architecture. As such it investigates the tension of spectacle within the global corporate climate, exploring light as a phenomenon of physics as well as a tool of illusion and seduction.

 

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Universidad Politécnica de Madrid Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Juan Carlos Sancho

MISSION
Today, more than ever, it is essential for the ETSAM to participate actively in the world network of knowledge, creativity and applications in the field of architecture. We are convinced that the important position of prestige that the ETSAM has in the international scene can only become consolidated if we promote interchange and collaboration. Our goal is to promote, encourage and establish new relationships with the best universities and schools around the world in order to increase the mobility of professors and students, as they are our best ambassadors. The internationalization of the ETSAM aims to be the way to offer a great diversity of options for the future of the students, professors, professionals and researchers in all areas of architecture.

Source: http://www.aq.upm.es/nuevawebnode/1062

 

INTRODUCTION
Within a school like the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (with more than 4,000 students), the areas of work and studio vary and the strategies are not homogeneous, unlike other smaller schools that are more focused on their approach. Madrid is an overlap of more than 30 Academic Units (autonomous groups) lead by a professor with a group of approximately 130 professors and interns. From this diversity it receives its character and personality.

Thus, the selected projects are a sample that represents a landscape of this school, but many other selections that would cross or oppose these projects could be proposed.

The submitted material is a summary of thesis projects that start from theoretical, analytical and conceptual aspects, develop an architectural language and finish with their mechanical and constructive expression.

All the projects are based on situations — site, program, use — in real needs and solutions within a free work of theoretical investigation proposed by each student.

Dr. Juan Carlos Sancho

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Laura Cano Benito | A Viewpoint: A Continuous Circuit
Victoria Cobeña Serrano | Tourist Topography in Paraty, Brazil
Silvia Echeverría Echeverría | Revitalization of the South-West of Merida, Yucatán: “Chain-Value” Buildings
Bárbara García Sos | Musical Acoustics Research & Coordination Institute (M.A.R.C.I.)
Ana Martínez Carreño | Flamenco Diffusion Center

 

Dr. Juan Carlos Sancho is a Professor at the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. He graduated in Architecture in 1982 from the ETSAM and received his PhD from the same university in 1992. In 1997, along with Sol Madridejos, he founded his studio Sancho–Madridejos Architecture Office (S-MAO). Their work has been widely publicized in Spain and abroad and displayed at the architecture biennials in Venice, Quingpu and Buenos Aires, as well as the MoMA in New York.
www.sancho-madridejos.com

 

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A Viewpoint: A Continuous Circuit

Project by Laura Cano Benito

The project is located in Alfama, one of the oldest areas of the city of Lisbon. The project proposes a solution to both an urban and a functional problem using the principles that guide the architectural process of building: a building is the joint of a condition given by the context, a viewpoint, and, at the same time, a continuous circuit.

Site Plan

East Elevation

Section A-A

Section B-B

Section C-C

Project Volume and Geometries

 

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Tourist Topography in Paraty, Brazil

Project by Victoria Cobeño Serrano

The landscape is the place where the connection between man and space is narrower. The project only can be understood through a constant dialogue between the natural landscape and the architecture. It is conceived as a game of intermediate spaces, thresholds that participate in the inside-outside condition. The architecture pretends to boost the experience of the place and provide for it new qualities that it lacked before. Dwellings would be multisensorial approximations, equal to the nature based in the surrounding routes and walks.

Landscape Roof Plan

Cross Section

Accommodation Section

Accommodation Plan

Elevation

 

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Revitalization of the South-West of Merida, Yucatán: “Chain-Value” Buildings

Project by Silvia Echeverría Echeverría

The South-west socioeconomic issues are affected by its urban planning problems. A possible solution creates a territorial order, designed by means of a peripheral ring working as a democratic new urban-town. It involves two rural parks and four activity programmatic items, including local and touristic requirements, while solving demanding problems through growth.

Chain 05

Site Plan

Chain 07

Chain 02

Site Plan

Construction Process, Climatic Skin, and Access to Selling Stairs and First Floor

Section A-A

 

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Musical Acoustics Research & Coordination Institute (M.A.R.C.I.)

Project by Bárbara García Sos

The project comes out of the need to find perfect spaces in order to research and perform new musical compositions and structures of the 21st Century. The building is an object of transition between two architectural concepts: stereotomic and tectonic. Both create different spaces and programs, related to their architectural qualities. The major elements of the space are void, light and tension.

+15.50 Level

+11.50 Level

+7.50 Level

+3.00 Level

Section A-A

Acoustic Room

Section B-B

 

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Flamenco Diffusion Center

Project by Ana Martínez Carreño

The city is considered as a system, where each snatch is a potential sender, absorber or energy diffuser. The functional program is integrated in three bands according to those energetic criteria, intertwining and adapting themselves to the conditions of the environment and giving rise to three public spaces.

Structure

Ground Floor

Axonometric Sections

Axonometric Plans

 

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Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya Escola Tècnica Superior d’Arquitectura de Barcelona

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Eduard Bru

MISSION
The Architecture education is based on technical, artistic and humanistic disciplines. The taught knowledge in an interrelated way in the different areas is essential to project and build buildings, something it has always been recognized as a characteristic of architects.

The disciplinary fields that lead to and form architecture give way to specific activities with professional acknowledgement. This generic areas are: Projectes, Urbanisme, Teoria and Tecnologia to which lately Paisatgisme and Disseny have been incorporated.

The project, that constitutes the main part of the architect work, is developed in a different way related to the mentioned areas. In a way or another the architect can take part in a project related to a city or to a lamp, going through edification, restoration, town planning, landscape, interior design and the building elements design, urban or interior furniture.

The architect also participates in the construction of a building as work director, manager or collaborator in the productive and construction process.

The architecture studies are structured in five years in order to offer an education of a general character that has been understood essential, proper and specific to start working as such in their different variants.

The European Space of Superior Educations (EEES) establishes a second level of specialty or postgraduate level that will complete the first step of general education.

Source: http://www.etsab.upc.edu/web/frame.htm?i=0&m=escuela&c=escuela

 

INTRODUCTION
It is probably a widespread opinion that the ETSAB specially emphasizes the areas of relationship between the projects and the context, especially with the urban context.

If this were true, the selection of projects that we present in this publication would confirm, without premeditation, this hypothesis.

I have to admit that in the last five years, starting with the verification of the failure of the Forum Barcelona 2004 (futile repetition of the formula Olympic Games = big event = urban development) and finishing with the apotheosis of the obscene capitalism, our point of view about architecture developed in an environment of growing isolation.

Times have changed and I hope we can bring back to the architectural conversation that an action transforms and depends on the site, even if the site was in the desert. We knew it regarding the urban context and we will now demonstrate the inhabitable qualities of infrastructures and those they will create.

Yes, we play architecture as a team, but that does not imply any determinism, quite the opposite: it expands the field.

Playing this way is not so strange, although it is difficult: pay attention to how FC Barcelona does it.

Dr. Eduard Bru

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Josep Esteve Doladé | Recirculation in Terramar
Alejandro Konrad Stöhr | University and Student Housing in the Center of Amsterdam
Ana Quintana Zazurca | Erik Gunnar Asplund’s Stockholm Public Library Expansion
Cecilia Rodríguez Vielba | “Conservatori del Liceu” Building in el Raval Neighborhood
Roger Trias Carol | New Topography for “Autòdrom St. Pere de Ribes”

 

Dr. Eduard Bru is a Professor at the Escola Tècnica Superior d’Arquitectura de Barcelona at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya where he served as director from 1997-2001. He graduated in Architecture in 1975 and received his PhD in 1987 from the School of Architecture of Barcelona. He has written several books – in particular, Three on the Site (1997), New Territories/New Landscapes (1998), Coming from the South (co-author,2002) – and his work focuses mainly on contemporary urban and territorial phenomena. With his own practice, he has been involved in the sustainable development of Greater Barcelona, and in this capacity was the author of the Hebron Valley urban plan (1988), in preparation for the 1992 Olympic Games.
www.bagsl.eu

 

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Recirculation in Terramar

Project by Josep Esteve Doladé

The start of the project considers two elements: the two kilometers of the existing track and its proximity to the highway. This big scale intervention focuses on the “in-motion circulation” as a new way of living for the project and the landscape. It is the car, the new user of the new programmatic infrastructure, that surrounds and revitalizes the old automobile track.

Structure and Plan

Elevation

Typical Structure

Plan

Housing Plan

Housing Detail

Housing Section

 

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University and Student Housing in the Center of Amsterdam

Project by Alejandro Konrad Stöhr

The project starts from the redefinition of the current building’s outline, responding to a duality between an interior and exterior of the block of different urban characteristics. It includes two different programs that are easily related. The public space and the use of the bicycle play a crucial role in the project’s success.

Circulation Intentions

Program

Fourth Floor

Third Floor

Second Floor

First Floor

Section Detail

Section Details

 

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Erik Gunnar Asplund’s Stockholm Public Library Expansion

Project by Ana Quintana Zazurca

In the proposed project, the platform of the Stockholm Public Library is extended in order to create the connection with the new building. The expansion meets the library with a light structure to preserve the importance of Asplund’s building, while the main portion is placed in the opposite side of the site. An orthogonal volume is bent in approaching the library to create the link between both buildings. The new library faces the hill of the Stockholm Ridge, generating a new public area and at the same time creating an ordered barrier with the street.

Site

Site Plan

First Floor

Ground Floor

Elevation From the New Plaza

Section A-A

Sections

Structures

 

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“Conservatori del Liceu” Building in el Raval Neighborhood

Project by Cecilia Rodríguez Vielba

The “Conservatori del Liceu” ties the sky with the ground of Barcelona. Public space, above, attracts the street up to the roofs. Underneath, the classrooms remain protected by the return path materialized in the form of a ramp. Education and delight of music are fused with the city from its roofs.an ordered barrier with the street.

Plan of el Raval

Typical Plan

Unfolded Section

 

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New Topography for “Autòdrom St. Pere de Ribes”

Project by Roger Trias Carol

The project recovers the old St. Pere de Ribes circuit and converts it into a test zone where an automobile manufacturing company could establish their regional headquarters. The project organizes the site through a strip strategy. The stripes fold and generate a new topography that contains the program: a hotel, offices, residential units, and museum display area. The concrete strip itself is key to the dialogue with the landscape. By minimizing the trace — the gesture, the folding creates the architecture and relationship with the site.

Site Plan

Section A-A

Section B-B

Section

Section C-C

 

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ETH Zürich Faculty of Architecture

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Josep Lluís Mateo

MISSION
In keeping with the almost unfathomable extent of global challenges, the purview of architecture has become more complex. Fulfilling human needs has evolved into a diversely precarious enterprise. With architecture being deeply affected, the discipline must open up to new discourses. Causes and effects of — and countermeasures against — urban sprawl, the aggravation of climactic, energy, and social conditions, but also the creeping degradation of architectural building culture, can be approached only in dialogue with other fields of endeavor.

In order to approach this intricacy at an international level, the Department of Architecture sees itself as a dynamic structure of complementary teaching and research entities. At the center of this program is practice-oriented education in design and construction. Here, the actual production of architecture begins, and it is in design studios that comprehensive and passionate education in architecture takes place. All activities are characterized by a profound understanding of the past and a forward-facing outlook. Talents are furthered by stringent and visionary thought, as well as sharp observations; an unconventional approach is taken to solve complex problems in a cross-disciplinary manner. Represented almost as a formula, Design, Construction, and Integrated Disciplines are mutually determining: D+C+I.

Source: http://www.arch.ethz.ch/darch/departement.php?lang=en

 

INTRODUCTION
Design studios in ETH Zürich are organized by Chairs directed by a Professor who develops his own pedagogic project. Professor Josep Lluís Mateo’s Chair at ETH Zürich proposes to the students each semester to work on a research topic highly relevant on the contemporary architectural context. This approach is both practical, through the exercises proposed to the students, and theoretical, through the research developed at the Chair and by external contributors and that is reflected in a yearly publication, “Architectural Papers.” The selected projects presented here are connected with two of these research topics.

The first one, “Cathedrals of our Time,” propose to develop significant architecture beyond its contemporary status as an icon through two different programs and locations: a Concert Hall in Dubrovnik and a small Museum in the periphery of Basel. The two main issues developed in these projects are the definition of a significant space and the interpretation of the context. The Concert Hall as a public building with specific consistence and expression into a Mediterranean city fabric where the space is defined by sound and the context considered as a cultural, historical fact. The small museum as a pavilion in a green area surrounded by industry buildings and infrastructure where the space is defined by light and the context considered as a physical fact.

The second topic, “Spaces to Work,” provides an occasion to work on the contemporary workplaces in today’s postindustrial world. A mix of the desire to represent, functional logic and profitability, a place for production and social exchange, contemporary workspaces bring together the desire to build an image with the need for comfort and environmental and spatial quality. We present two office projects in Zürich, one located in relationship with the landscape, in between the lake and the mountains defining Zürich’s natural profile, and a second high-rise building in Zürich Nord, a city area in expansion, where this typology is defining the new urban form.

Chair Prof. Dr. Josep Lluís Mateo

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Margarita Klee Barillas | Office Space Zürich See
Davide Blasi | Hochhaus in Zürich Leutschenbach
Benjamin Engelhardt & Götz Lachenmann | Concert Hall in Dubrovnik
Ioannis Piertzovanis | Museum Würth
Ren Tian | Museum Würth

 

Dr. Josep Lluís Mateo is a Professor and Chair of Architecture and Design at the Department of Architecture at the ETH Zürich. He graduated in Architecture in 1974 from the ETSAB and gained his doctorate (cum laude) at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in 1994. Mateo’s practice, Mateo Arquitectura, is based in Barcelona, and he is currently involved in a number of local and international projects. With each of his projects, Mateo seeks to connect the practice of construction with research and development in both intellectual and programmatic terms. He works in the area between the sphere of ideas and the physical world of reality.
www.mateo-arquitectura.com@MateoArq

 

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Office Space Zürich See

Project by Margarita Klee Barillas

In today’s post-industrial world, the typical workplace is an office building—a mix of the desire to represent functional logic and profitability, production and social exchange. Contemporary work spaces bring together the desire to build an image with the need for comfort and environmental quality. What interests us is: one, the project in relation to its spatial content; two, definition of a place, not just an icon—work on the physical and compositional conditions of the form; three, the context is central rather than peripheral as it lies on the borderline between land and water; and four, attention to possible design repercussions with respect to energy and sustainability. This issue was elaborated within an integrated design in collaboration with the Chair of Prof. Carmeliet.

Ground Floor

Elevation

Third, Second and First Floors

Section A-A

Section B-B

In order to make the building energy efficient the volume is involved with a double shift facade. This allows a flexible ventilation of the interior, as well as a sun protection layer in the south and view protection in the north.

The installations are mostly concentrated between both volume sides, allowing artificial night ventilation to the corridors and offices.

These measures sink the heating energy during the winter and allow constant natural ventilation during summer.

 

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Hochhaus in Zürich Leutschenbach

Project by Davide Blasi

The chosen area, Zurich North, is already specified as an appropriate site for this type of building by the city of Zurich’s “Hochhausplan.” It is a site in transformation. Its Cartesian coordinates are the following: the north-south axis links the city with the airport and with its constructive energies in action, and the axis southwest accumulates urban facilities and rail networks. Siting the building’s location responds to the different forces present: the large scale of the metropolis as well as the small scale of the immediate neighbors. As usual in this type of building, it is intended for generic, subdivided, and rentable office space. Our goal is to imagine a tall building, a new piece of architecture qualified and singular in a city under construction.

Ground Floor

Section

Typical Floor

Open Plan Office Floor

Facade Detail and Section

Sports Club Fitness & Weight Room Floor

Pool Spa and Massage Floor

Restaurant and Bar Floor

Director’s Office

Section A-A

 

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Concert Hall in Dubrovnik

Project by Benjamin Engelhardt & Götz Lachenmann

The project begins with a computer-animated analysis of Richard Wagner‘s “Götterdämmerung,” and a series of wave-sequences were derived in a space-time disposition. Through an abstraction from these notations, a sectional diagram was constructed. By placing the large auditorium in a cavity, connected in a continuous line with a second hollow, the smaller hall floats up front above the ground. In a successive step, the grand auditorium assimilates the descending lines of the site’s existing slope in its formal outline and becomes an anchor, tying the project to the ground. Underneath the smaller hall a public square with a restaurant and bar is articulated.

Perspective Section A-A

Site Plan

First Floor

Second Floor

Elevation

Perspective Section B-B

Perspective Section C-C

 

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Museum Würth

Project by Ioannis Piertzovanis

The design proposal is a small museum at the periphery of Basel for an existing trust. The location, which is neither picturesque nor representative, is in a green area surrounded by industry buildings and infrastructure. Without a defined collection, the museum is essentially a significant space and in order to define this space, we need to: one, identify the void; two, manipulate the light which makes the space apparent; and three, define with precision the limits of the project which should be closer to a pavilion than an institutional building.

Site Plan

Ground Floor

 

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Museum Würth

Project by Ren Tian

This project is conceived as open staging for temporary exhibitions. Its floor plan is a schematic system of sloped, straight and bent corridors. Seen from the outside they appear as a group of hierarchically organized plain volumes: a donut pavilion sunk into the ground, a stick placed along the creek and a sloped double corridor that connects them. A promenade through the museum reveals a more complex structure. Movement through the exhibition is organized in a loop, from the narrow entrance ramp through the ascending spiral around the internal court, down the glazed slope to the long and narrow water pavilion. This continuous movement is sequenced by two archetypal moments: the silent cylindrical room and the open terrace exposed to the sound and mist of the running water. In spite of its authoritative geometry the small museum is strongly imbued with the site, and poetically magnifies the natural aspects of the site.

Plan -3M

Plan -7M

Site Plan

Circulation

Exploded Axonometric

Section A-A

Section B-B

 

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Waseda University Department of Architecture

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Masayuki Irie

MISSION
The aim of the education (MA)

I: study in the “Waseda Architecture” tradition, and develop the ability to fulfill what modern society expects of architecture and the built environment.

J: Have both a global perspective and a point-of-view that appreciates region-specific history and culture, and develop the ability to contribute internationally.

K: Have the opportunity be involved in the practice of architecture and urban design, and understand the professional skills of architects and their mission in society.

L: Obtain the ability to make creative proposals based on a deep knowledge of design and aesthetics of architecture.

M: Develop the ability to absorb proactively advanced knowledge in architecture, urban design, and related fields-of-study.

N: Develop the ability to identify, investigate, and analyze broad ranged issues enrooted in human activity and the region, based on existing base of knowledge in architecture, urban design, and related fields-of-study.

O: Develop the ability to solve problems of architectural design and planning pragmatically through collaborative work with faculty and other students.

P: Develop the ability to exert leadership in collaboration with experts of different fields-of-study and the general public to propagate one’s idea broadly to society.

Source: Dr. Masayuki Irie

 

INTRODUCTION
Shown are projects from the 3rd year class “Sekkei Seizu II” (Planning and Designing II) and “Shushi Sekkei” (Final Project for master degree.) 3rd year students have four projects in a year, and master students are placed in a laboratory of a specific field.

The student’s first project in 3rd year is to design a “museum.” Site is small and program is fixed, but the aim of the class is to provide those students with first contact to their “domestic visions of atmosphere and forms.” They are reviewed by professors every week and continue making progress with the instruction of teaching assistants. Three of the selected projects are memorial museums for the late Basque sculptor Jorge Oteiza, with the main construction material being steel.

For the Final Projects at master’s level, students define their own theme as a requirement for their diploma. This project is a comprehensive survey of their six years of study. Searches for contemporary design moves, needs in lifestyle as a member of society, and site investigation are totalized in one project. The quality of the project is heavily related to the depth of originality and awareness in theme. Two of the five selected projects are examples of these Final Projects.

Dr. Masayuki Irie

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Chiaki Ishii | The Memorial of Jorge Oteiza Standing on the Kawasaki Harbor
Masaaki Matsuoka | Jorge Oteiza Museum 2009
Munetaka Onodera | Modern Times
Makoto Sakui | Museum of Sculptor Jorge Oteiza in Golf
Asahi Shinoda| Thinly Town: Reversible Landscape of the Underpopulated Village

 

Dr. Masayuki Irie is a Professor of Graduate Architecture Research Department, Science
and Engineering, at Waseda University. He graduated in Architecture in 1969 from Waseda
University Department of Science and Engineering Department of Architecture, and received
his Master’s degree program and PhD from the same university in 1972 and 1990 respectively.
www.irie.arch.waseda.ac.jp

 

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The Memorial of Jorge Oteiza Standing on the Kawasaki Harbor

Project by Chiaki Ishii

The site has two powers: the power of land and the power of sea. The design and shape of the memorial reflects both these two powers. The interior space of the memorial integrates the harbor of Kawasaki and the works of Jorge Oteiza, as well as reminding us of the surrounding space.

 

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Jorge Oteiza Museum 2009

Project by Masaaki Matsuoka

This site chosen for the museum is extremely important due its location in the industrial area and adjacent harbor. The museum connects a gap through scale, structure, and detail. Water, light, iron, concrete, and work are mutually related elements that change little by little as visitors inhabit the museum. The iron surrounding the site creates a gravitation and visibility for the visitors.

The drawing shows the existent building’s large areas and depicts the scale of the site. However, walking the site gives one more information than the map can provide.

Factories surroundings this museum force the people and activity inside and it is very rare to see that activity or its influence exhibited to outside.

But in this museum the people move inside and outside continually and this action creates more aspects to the surface of museum. This surface and the environment are in constant relation.

Floor Plan

The Rhythm of Scale, of Light and Height

Detail Section

Sections

 

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Modern Times

Project by Munetaka Onodera

This project is a facility for disassembling the fishing vessel. In previous generations, this action was performed by the multitude of fishermen who could disassemble vessels. Today, the harbor faces economic depression due to its lack of modernization. This facility revives the harbor by teaching the skills of those fishermen to the next generation.

Section A-A

Section B-B

Floor Plans

Harbor

Tramai Festival

 

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Museum of Sculptor Jorge Oteiza in Golf

Project by Makoto Sakui

Sited on the edge of a canal of Kawasaki in Japan, the museum follows the form of the canal and its two steels: “the received steel” and “the succeeded steel.” In a reclaimed ground, the museum will now endlessly continue redeeming and connect to a new structure of the future.

 

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Thinly Town: Reversible Landscape of the Underpopulated Village

Project by Asahi Shinoda

Generally, many small towns’ population in Japan have shrunk over the last 100 years. A small town in Hokkaido may altogether disappear in the next twenty years. The project proposes the new type of country life in an aging society. This is a story of one family who returns there to start new life in 2050..

 

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University of Technology Sydney Faculty of Design, Architecture and Built Environment

Photo by Regan Ching

MISSION
The School of Architecture leads and provokes the development of the profession through research and education focused on an expanded practice of architecture and innovative architectural design.

Designing architecture is a complex cultural practice that exceeds pragmatic problem solving.

Source: http://www.dab.uts.edu.au/architecture/index.html

 

INTRODUCTION
“The beauty of the human form, the pleasant colors, the curved features that enchant in his face, are only as if molded into the exterior shell. They only last as long as our senses. Underneath the skin terrible forms lie hidden. All vessels are intertwined seemingly without order. The entrails balance each, but without harmony. Much manifold, but nowhere unity. Much activity, but nowhere ease in activity. How much the creator would have failed if beauty had been his only aim!”

The quote given above, from Moses Mendelssohn’s Letters on Sensations of 1755, was written during the most fertile and inventive epoch in the history of the theory of aesthetics, the period now known as the high enlightenment. Associated with classicism in architecture, rationality in philosophy, and libertarianism in politics, enlightenment discourse on the judgment of taste places the problem of beauty not only at the centre of aesthetics, but also of metaphysics and morality. Mendelssohn’s example presented a crisis for the status of beauty within metaphysics. For Mendelssohn, “Man” is, by definition, a creature in God’s image, and his entrails are also perfectly crafted for their purpose. That they should also be repulsive opens up an abyss within aesthetics, for it ends the mythic accord between perfection and beauty in a God-given order. Viscera are good, but ugly. What then is the role of ugliness within aesthetics? What role does the judgment of taste have in determining an object’s function? These were the very first questions in an attempt to radically re-read the history of aesthetics from the position of its excluded categories, a process whose implications, both for the theory of architecture and the practice of design, the selected five projects elaborated over the course of a semester.

David Burns

 

STUDENTS | PROJECTS
Robert Beson | The Ruins of Modernism
Erik Escalante & Alina McConnochie | Beirut City
Josh Harrex | Sydney Concert Hall
Samaneh Moafi | The Gap
Nora Niasari | Vehicles of Memory

 

David Burns is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Architecture at the University of Technology Sydney. He studied architecture at the University of Tennessee and Columbia University. From 2001-2003 he was the Paul Rudolph Visiting Assistant Professor at Auburn University’s School of Architecture and from 2003-2007 he was an adjunct assistant professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture. He is the founding principal of SO-AD and has fifteen years combined experience as an architect, designer, artist, musician and educator.
www.so-ad.com | @burns

 

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The Ruins of Modernism

Project by Robert Beson

We build castles in the sky that are all corridor and stair. There is no room to function in this dysfunctional memorial because here function has been taken to the extreme. Piles of corpses line the lower levels of the high-rise. The ascent to higher levels is a Sisyphean task; as you rise, the self-perpetuating machinery rises further still continuously producing this consumable environment. Instead, we must elect for radical surgery. Within this stricture our lives themselves are the memorial. The project desires to become the memorial to capitalism, the memorial to modernist rationalism. Here, we do not memorialise the global financial crisis, we celebrate it. The only hope is to explode the machine, to continue to always explode it – to expose the inner workings and destabilise the relationships. The heroes of this revolution: Richard Goodwin, Yves Klein and Tyler Durden show us the way. As you rise higher and higher out of the ruins of modernism it at last becomes apparent that all that was solid has melted into air. The only hope is constant revolution.

 

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Beirut City

Project by Erik Escalante & Alina McConnochie

The project proposes a high density extension of Beirut City, including a high speed rail hub linking cities on the coast of the Mediterranean. Differentiated neighborhoods were developed where building types group and nest in clusters to form collective assemblies. These respond to the hot, arid climate of Beirut creating large shaded public spaces at ground level while also providing opportunities for shared structural and spatial moments. Infrastructure is monument as the train station is not an object in the city, but is formed by the fabric of the city itself.

existing distribution of infrastructure across Mediterranean union

proposed high speed rail loop and potential tertiary rail infrastructure

building footprints

building roofprints

shaded open public space (space under roof unoccupied by built footprint)

massing variation

Site Plan

 

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Sydney Concert Hall

Project by Josh Harrex

The brief was to design a new concert hall located in the Sydney Royal Botanical Gardens. The proposal is perched off the underdeveloped and underutilized young precinct shore in Sydney Harbour. The design serves to tie the park back into the city as the end to the foreshore walk. An existing crane on the site dominates the skyline of the park. The building design then acts to enhance and appropriate this structure in the setting. The architecture aims to become a visual icon for the park, the harbour and city. It utilizes the site’s exceptional landscape and skyline to its advantage. The articulation of form serves to frame the Opera house and the Hammerhead crane, adopting the attributes of the crane itself.

Site Section

Site Plan

First Floor

Section A-A

 

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The Gap

Project by Samaneh Moafi

There exists a story of a man trapped by an image of his youth. The presented images imbed within themselves secrets about this man and his story that are not to be unfolded, parables, not to be interpreted, and codes, not to be uncovered. The story within these images is happening or has happened outside their frame. Me and you will need to co-create the “gap,” the hidden in between. I trust you.








 

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Vehicles of Memory

Project by Nora Niasari

This project is a short film exploring the present memory of Beirut through the lens of the taxi driver. The film has a constant reference to Martyrs square which acts as a compass for the city, connecting 4 major districts including the Corniche, Bachoura, Gemmayze and Hamra.


North

South

East

West

MARTYR’s SQUARE if the static surveillance for the city with people crossing its path throughout the day and taking a moment to remember. The taxi service is the mobile apparatus for surveillance that relentlessly searches for passengers to cross paths and temporary borders. A conversation emerges between the taxi drivers that operates on 3 levels of memory:

1_Collective memory through the physical boundary of the Green Line
2_Subjective memory through the object of the Martyrs Square postcard
3_Objective memory through the National symbol of the Martyrs Square Statue

Compass of Beirut axis

North

South

East

West

Taxi Drivers- Haisar_7:15pm_sp: Gemmayze [East]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Haisar_7:15pm_sp: Gemmayze [East]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Haisar_7:15pm_sp: Gemmayze [East]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Haisar_7:15pm_sp: Gemmayze [East]_ep: Martyrs Square

Lens of the city- Haisar_b.1941_original Beiruti_obj: rosary beads with crosses

Taxi Drivers- Ziyad_5:20pm_sp: Corniche [North]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Ziyad_5:20pm_sp: Corniche [North]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Ziyad_5:20pm_sp: Corniche [North]_ep: Martyrs Square

Taxi Drivers- Ziyad_5:20pm_sp: Corniche [North]_ep: Martyrs Square

Lens of the city- Ziyad_b.1943_original beiruti_obj: turquoise beads

 

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