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(PORT)FOLIO Alex Witteman Twenty Eighteen

F O U RT E E N O F I V E WA L N U T S T Year Two Fall, Twenty Seventeen Whitney Hamaker

COMMUNITY FILM CENTER In recent years Cincinnati has seen a massive rise in urban revitalization, which is particularly prevalent in Over the Rhine, a neighborhood just north of the city center. This revival has mostly manifested in renovations of historic buildings into various bars and restaurants, a direction that the longstanding community of OTR does not particularly approve of. This project attempted to create a cultural landmark for all members of the community that celebrates the history of OTR and can engage both communities living in the area. The rich and historic past of Over the Rhine played into the design by utilizing various brick massive modules which stem from an existing building on site. These masses resemble a typical OTR building, and black metal exposed structures were used in an allusion to the various fire escapes throughout the neighborhood.

TUNNEL to create entry while preserving existing building on site.

COPY to exploit views to northeast and create programmatic pockets.

FILL to create central void and accommodate larger parts of program.

CAP to shelter the void and continue the buildings visual language.


E N T RY SEQUENCE This whole project revolved around its entry. The existing building is used in tandem with an extension of that building to funnel inhabitants inside and allow them to feel the weight of the existing structure.

C I R C U L AT I O N A central void was utilized in this project in order to create a major circulation stair. The idea was to move inside the perimeter of the void in a large looping motion, which contains several points of rest along the way.


The final step of the film institute was to create some sort of system to break up the banality of the various facades. The facade design called for a fin system which, like the floor plan scheme, revolved around the forty five degree angle. This system was set directly perpendicular to the prevailing angle in order to subvert the dominant order of the system and allow light to enter the building. This contradiction to the prevailing language of the building creates greater visual interest in the form, and simultaneously makes moving along the building faces a dynamic experience that provides for glimpses inside.



T I N Y PAV I L I O N Year One Spring, Twenty Sixteen Melanie Swick

G A R D E N F O L LY The folly was a spacial construction created using wood and MDF. Its design utilizes multiple grounded layers of MDF to create various levels of habitation. These zones were then covered with large wooden wraps to tie them together and create one cohesive space that is simultaneously subdivided into major strips of habitation and movement. This design was more outward focused and attempts to create different levels of reposing spaces where users can rest, look out across the lawn, and take note of their surroundings as well as see the variety of other follies on the lawn and decide on where they should go next.








PAV I ( L I O N )

In order to emphasize the wraps going over the folly, wooden inlays were created in the floor pattern that matched where the wraps meet the MDF. These inlays clearly demarcate each wrap from the other and make the resting areas feel more intimate and friendly by inviting inhabitants to sit down in them. A white fabric was also employed to create shading within the wraps and was inset in the overhanging structures in a fashion inspired by the treatment of wood and stucco in Tudor style homes.

PAV I ( L I O N )

ROW HOUSE Year Three Spring, Twenty Eighteen Ryan Ludwig

LIVE WORK ROW HOUSE Located just south of Cincinnati in Kentucky, this row house design was an opportunity to explore daylighting and spacial organization. The site for this project was interesting in that it was not a true row house, but a corner of a series of row houses. It also sits very close to the Ohio River on a large sloped hill. Spacial adjacencies became crucial to this project because a substantial workspace had to be included in the program. This workspace was pulled to the front of the building and lifted up off the ground in order to keep the building above the floodplain of the Ohio River. The two bedrooms were treated similarly, but essentially as floating masses above the building that hang off of the spine of the structure. All three of these masses were cut at an angle in order to mimic the topography of the site and create tiered living and working spaces. Between and underneath these three masses is a large and open living space, which can become autonomous with the work space depending on daily needs of the inhabitant.






Daylighting was another major aspect of this project. The main living space was completely glazed in to allow for light to flow deep into the building. The light pulls inhabitants up through the space, and creates a very dramatized movement through the space while simultaneously providing practical lighting for most of the house. The masses over the atrium prevent too much glare from entering into the house and create differing lighting conditions within the main living space.


DOUBLE SCULPTURE Year One Fall, Twenty Fifteen Sean Cottengim

A R M AT U R E The armature project was very unique in that it was a sculpture made to house a different sculpture. The first of these projects was the balance block, which is a small sculpture created to balance on less than a square inch of space. The balance block needed to be analyzed to understand what to extenuate or change in its housing. This balance block contained two dominant elements with a fairly large void between them, which was to be emphasized by the design. In the end, the design became about taking the existing lines of the balance block and skewing them slightly so that they feel like a continuation of the block, but also take on their own shape and create new forms. The design does not only revolve around skewing the dominant lines, but also on maintaining a void in the middle of the sculpture. This was emphasized by making the sculpture sit on two different pedestals, which created a large gap in between the parts of the model itself which creates a sense of disconnection between the two different masses of the balance block.

( A R M ) AT U R E

The armature was crafted of wood to contrast the materiality of the plaster balance block. This difference in materiality helps to emphasize the differently skewed moves that the armature makes. This design intentionally did not smother or hide the plaster block, but simultaneously it did not simply create a pedestal for it. Sections of the plaster are left very exposed and boldly stick out while others are capped and nestled away into wood piece. This allows for the two sculptures to morph together and simultaneously maintain some semblance of individuality in their forms.

( A R M ) AT U R E

ALMS Year One Spring, Twenty Sixteen Melanie Swick

ADDITION TO ARCHITECTURE STUDIOS The Alms insertion revolved around creating a new space inside or next to the two graduate studios at the University of Cincinnati. One large problem with these studios is the major lack in cross collaboration. The first year grad students hardly ever mingle with those above them and vice versa. It was decided early on to connect these two studios in some manner without directly intruding in on the studio space. After studying varying concepts, a graded canopy became the solution to the problem. This canopy would cover a new outdoor stair with bleacher like seating on it where both years of students would hopefully go and meet each other, fostering a greater sense of collaboration between the elder and younger students. This space acts as a communal break space where people could bounce ideas back and forth or simply relax and take in some fresh air.





The canopy system was a result of a series of models studying the concept of grade. The system is essentially duplicated and staggered forward to fill in the gaps between the graded system and provide for a more dramatic moment where the insertion meets the sky. It starts at the top of the existing stairwell in the building and acts as an extension of it to draw viewers to the insertion rather than to studio. The steps also contain bleacher-like seats so that inhabitants can comfortably sit or lie down in the shade. It acts as a sort of retreat for students to escape to when they feel stressed or overwhelmed.


A R T PA R K Year Three Summer, Twenty Seventeen Mara Marcu

R I V E R F R O N T A R T PAV I L I O N A park on the Cincinnati Riverfront was the proposed site for a new arts pavilion for the Cincinnati community. A smaller scale was important in this design, and the finer systems of the building were designed first as a way to drive the whole building. This study explores using a rigid frame containing masses that bulge beyond a strict framed grid. The given site has a strong axial nature which is used in the design to set up a symmetrical organization. This organization is then broken by the bulging-block system, which rings the outside of the pavilion to add more playfulness to the facade and stop the symmetry of the structure. Since the building is proposed on a small park, the idea arose to actually have a park on top of the various gallery spaces. This park was integrated into the museum experience by creating a series of intimate sculpture gardens within it.





SEQUENCE OF MOVEMENT Yeatman’s Cove, where this art pavilion was to be placed, has a large axial walkway leading up to it. This design adds to and modifies this major axial organization. The final destination of the building still lies at the end of this axis, however the journey itself meanders around the park built on top of the building. This meandering path also intentionally leads the visitors near various sculpture gardens, which entice them into visiting as many as possible. One reason for creating this elaborate stair was to let natural light down into the atrium area. Light also spills through via the two entrances at both sides of the building. These entrances let the pavilion act as an extension of the trail along the river to the south. In these ways, the building reacts to the site organizations and morphs them into a slightly varied sequence of movement that allows for a greater variety in use.




G A L L E R Y S PA C E S A N D SCULPTURE GARDENS The gallery spaces are made to be directly linked to the sculpture gardens above them. The actual pathway between the gardens varies from that of the galleries, but the destinations are directly stacked on top of each other. The gallery demands to be a somewhat normal space for the hanging of art, but a couple of intrusions were utilized to continue the language of the growing cube forms. There are more protrusions into the space above when the scaffolding penetrates over the gallery space. The gardens are made to all have the same layout, but differing relationships between the art and the garden itself. Each intimate pocket varies slightly from the last to entice the user into visiting them all.



FILM PHOTOGRAPHY Various Years Twenty Whenever Jordan Tate and Solo

WHY FILM? Shooting film photography has been a hobby of mine for a number of years. I photograph on film because it forces me to think about composition in a more holistic manner and to make every shot count. Digital photography allows you to be sloppy and make lots of mistakes. Film doesn’t, and I’ve started to understand the camera more because of that fact. In addition, darkroom processes have recently become a passion of mine. This adds yet another layer of complexity to the entire photographing process. All of these photos were shot and developed by me and various darkroom techniques were utilized to create high quality prints. As a whole, my interest in photography is as a method of experimentation, not documentation. Film allows for freedom in analog experimentation that digital photography cannot provide and can produce photographs with a great sense of depth and feeling that the Photoshop cannot quite replicate.









THANK(YOU) Alex Witteman 414-344-8172

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2018 Portfolio (Outdated)  

2018 Portfolio (Outdated)