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A N D R E W D AV I S THE IMPERMANENCE OF ARCHITECTURE


06 - 07

Curriculum Vitae

10 - 19

Degenerative Artifacts Detroit, Michigan

22 - 31

Urban Aquatics A u s t i n , Te x a s

34 - 43

Safari Lodge Lira, Uganda

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Criticism The Impermanence of Architecture

54 - 63

Photography

T H EC O I MNPTEERNMTAS N E N C E O F A R C H I T E C T U R E


A N D R E W D AV I S T H E I M P E R M A N E N CCEU O R RF I C AU R LCUHM ITE VC I TTAUER E Education

Work

The University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture B. Arch 2013 Alpha Rho Chi Medal in Architecture

Program Coordinator [The UTSOA Summer Academy] Currently employed marketing + advertising administration communications Teaching Assistant [The UTSOA Summer Academy] Summer 2011 + 2012 visual communications desk critiques seminar planning Design Assistant [Smilja Milovanovic + Robert Mezquiti] Fall 2012 + Spring 2012 visual communications desk critiques curriculum consultations Volunteer [Baldridge Architects] Summer 2012 water proofing structural footings site grading

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andrewdavis.arch@gmail.com 972.804.5419 909 w23rd Street, E A u s t i n , Te x a s 7 8 7 0 5 Editorial and Exhibitions

Recognition

Editor [Study in Italy Publication]

Nominee [Oglesby Travel Prize] Spring 2013

Spring 2012 - Summer 2012 Student Curator [Study Abroad Exhibition] Spring 2012

33 students under consideration Nominee [Architype Review Travel Prize] Spring 2012

Editorial Staff [Issue 008]

35 students under consideration

Spring 2012 Nominee [Excellence in Design] Spring 2012

Skills and Proficiencies Technology Laser Cutting Adobe Photoshop Adobe Illustrator Adobe Indesign Adobe Bridge Photography Digital: Analog:

Nominated from all advanced design students Auto Cad Rhinoceros 3D modeling Google Sketchup Microsoft Office Revit (familiar)

Olympus Pen E-PL1 35 mm Argus C3 Rangefinder

Recipient [Undergraduate Research Fellowship] Spring 2011 Awarded to a select few of UT’s undergraduates [for research see p. 10 - 19] Nominee [Excellence in Design] Fall 2009 Nominated from all Design III students

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T H ED E IM G PE ENREM RAT NIEVN E CAER O T IFF AACR TCSH I T E C T U R E


Degenerative Artifacts A s t r a t e g y f o r c u l t u r a l d e c a y, 2 0 1 3 Critics Judith Birdsong Cisco Gomes Lois Weinthal Funding Undergraduate Research Fellowship Goldsmith Society Grant

Symposium UTSoA Research Council Selected Presentation

In 2008 the federal government made a large pledge of stimulus funds to the city of Detroit, among the highest of any city in the nation. Of the many millions earmatked for “construction” contracts seven out of every ten were actually made to demolishtion companies. The federal omnibus bill performed its task, it created j o b s , h o w e v e r t o t h e d e t r i m e n t o f D e t r o i t ’s morphological landscape, as the city was given congressional approval to establish a cottage industry for destruction.

1926

This project responds to that reality ritualizes the death of objects in the city through an architectural attenuation. The structure is meant to slowly sink and collect the detritus of the failing house as it goes, in an accumulating effect. While I cannot bill this design as a productive solution f o r t h e c i t y, I c a n h e l p redefine the brutalistic razing manufactured by corporate interests. 3

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The

10

City

of D

ns

xatio

nne

it’s A etro


Highland Park

Hamtramck

THE CITY OF DETROIT X

De

tro

it

Ri

ve

Lake St. Clair

1739 Field St.

r

Dearborn Statistics 706,585 persons 143 square miles 31 square miles vacant

Windsor, Canada

*33.77 square miles, land area of the island of Manhattan Parkland City owned vacancies

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X

X X

X X 1739 173 739 73 7 9 Field Fie Fie ield Street iel Sttre St r et re et

X

X site sit ep plan lan an a

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X

X


front of house

back of house

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tensile cables

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collection tube

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before degeneration

after degeneration

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1 18


Steel Shell With Plywood Interior

Primarily Bolted Steel Frame

Concrete piles, cast on site

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T H E I M P E R M A N EUNRCBEA N O FA A QRUCAH TI T CES C T U R E


Urban Aquatics Natatorium and water retention complex, 2011 Critic John Blood Sound Building Completion

Downtown Austin is currently experiencing intense morphological alteration. In what is consider one of the United States’ fastest growing cities, there is noticeable advantage to be taken of the valuable urban land. This project acts as a mediating proposal o n o n e o f A u s t i n ’s m o s t p r e c i o u s u r b a n parks. The intention is to integrate the building into the already highly functioning amenities while improving the consequential constructed space. This is primarily done by retaining the water runoff from this site and the sites adjacent into above ground cisterns. The cisterns function as programmatic dualities (bench, table, fish pond) and eventually release t h e w a t e r i n t o t h e C o l o r a d o R i v e r. This elevated use of urban land allows for a true “Aquatics Facility” and serves both cultural and practical programs.

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site plan

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street level plan

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water level plan

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w a t e r- s i d e e l e v a t i o n

street-side elevation

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transverse section

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pool interior

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water retention system

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T H E I M P E RRMI TAUNAELNI ZCEEDO F A R C H I T E C T U R E


Ritualized Remote Safari Lodge [Uganda], 2012 Critic Michael Garrison Partner Drew Finke Te c h n i c a l Communications Completion

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In developing nations, especially African states with inherited generations of poverty and corruption, tourism has provided economic s t a b i l i t y. While this draws justifiable criticism from humanitarians, the people of these countries generally accept their foreign benefactors. The design of this safari lodge is intended to disrupt the typical touristic experience for traveller by altering the expectation of comfort. The long ritual of moving from city > country > wilderness allows the visitors to forget their preconceptions of Uganda and focus instead on a true experience borne from the landscape and the people within it. Once on site, the decentralized lodge exposes the guests to the dangers inherent in the Uganda landscape by move them from the interior to the exterior several times before settling into the safety of the r e m o t e t e n t s n e a r t h e w a t e r.


entry cluster

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Ground Floor Plan

Site Strategy The site strategy is organized into spaces of transition and spaces of consolidation. The brick “huts� are group similarly to traditional African huts and act as gathering spaces. The distance between the huts allows for physical and spiritual distance between primary programmatic elements. The interstitial space is covered with ceramic shading devices which are also u s e d t o c o l l e c t s o l a r e n e r g y. T h e e f f e c t i s an elongated experience of the site and the program nest within the landscape.

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Foundation Plan


Framing Plan

Lighting Plan

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Structural Strategy

Te r r a C o t t a T i l e R o o f E x t e r i o r

OWSJ - Primary Structure

Te r r a C o t t a B r i c k

2’ Deep Window System

Slab-on-grade Foundation

elevation

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longitudinal section

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Summer

Solar Strategy The primary roof system is composed of custom made ceramic louvers with built in photovoltaic cells. Because o f U g a n d a ’s p r o x i m i t y t o t h e equator the country receives both southern and northern s u n e x p o s u r e s . To r e s p o n d to this highly unique solar orientation, the louvers function to optimally prevent direct light infiltration under the roof. While the roof blocks the solar gains it allows for air and water permeability preventing localized green house effects and erosion due t o i m p e r m e a b l e c o v e r.

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N 64o

S 67o

Winter


interstitial space

interior space

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1

2

3

4

structural details

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3

2

1

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T H E I M P E R M A N E NCCREI TOI C FIS AM RCHITECTURE


The Impermanence of Architecture A study of degenerative processes in architectural design Theoretical Impermanence In architectural design there are few certainties. For architects, certainty breeds doctrine and doctrine is antithetical to a free process of creation. For many designers the only truth one needs to know is that form contains space over an indeterminate amount of time. This equation explains the essential role of an architect in solving issues of material culture. Architects will viciously disagree about what I have just written, and much discourse has already been made on the respective subjects of form, space and time. My particular interest is in the relationship of the three subjects as a theory of architectural design. Like any equation, it can be reworked: form limits space as accelerated by time; space fills temporal form; time alters form at the expense of space. Each of these arrangements proposes a distinct theoretical understanding of architecture while simultaneously having the same meanings. The mutability of these three tenants confirms a lack of doctrine in determining the role of a designer in the making of architecture. Formal and spatial arguments have dominated much of contemporary architectural theory beginning with the modernists who monumentalized form and space with the so-called “International Style�. Modernists suspended time as a theme of the modern architectural movement by defying historicism, or a record of previous doctrine. This practice reinforced the modern notion that a piece of architecture could and must last indefinitely to be considered a relevant contribution to the discipline.

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Villa Savoye

Decayed

As seen in the iconic building Villa Savoye by architect Le Corbusier, the wear of time did not support the modernist theory of perpetual permanence. Thirty years after it was generated the building’s form was imperceptibly altered by the hands of time. With this change, the link between architectural form and space was severed as the house reverted to a feral state. The notable architectural photographer Balthazar Korab wrote of his first visit to Villa Savoye that “the building was completely abandoned and stacked with hay on the ground d level. Everything was growing wild, 1 . . . and I thought, ‘My God! How did they let this happen?’” It happened because architecture, like all other physical manifestations, is bound by the yoke of duration. The material components of a built environment are susceptible to various degenerative processes. The house is now restored to its previous condition, however not because it was designed for regeneration, rather because ecau it represents yet another historical trope to be made permanent in the 2, 3 history of architecture. Objective j Impermanence p

Renovated

Most every thing is at some point of decay. This may not be a holistic interpretation of a process which is admittedly complex and universally applicable, but the spirit of the thought is untarnished by proof from nature: A human completes its creation at birth and must then experience the many degenerative processes of living independently of its provenance.

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A flower when cut from the plant will slowly die of dehydration. An overgrown woodland will burn

“Meaning is a

It is both objective and existential that all objects, born naturally of the earth, must have some reasonable end. Objective because we can understand existence best through tactility. This is a sensory understanding of things in which communication of an artifact is evident through touch, sight, smell, taste, and audibility. Existential because every object has an intangible cultural meaning grafted into its morphology. This is extra-sensory, or even anti-sensory speculative quality, because meaning is a speculative quality constantly augmenting and diminishing within a given context.

constantly augmenting and diminishing

An object’s existence can be divided into three indeterminate categories: life, death, and whatever happens after death. The human body, for instance, may have a beginning and end but does the sociological entity that defined that organism live beyond its physical confines? And in what capacity? To consider this topic for too long, I fear, would lead to a slow and insolvable dialogue in which religion and generic philosophical theories would dominate the conversation. In that respect, this essay rather deal with the impermanence of architectural objectss and their corresponding sociological attachments.

within a given context�

In architecture, the discussion of imminent expiration is perhaps more apparent because the discipline is largely predisposed to formal arguments. It is not that questions of existence are minor

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to architectural theory, but rather they pose irresolvable metaphysical propositions. Is architecture merely physical, or does it play a mediating role between objectivity and cultural meaning? My preemptive conclusion is that architecture is not only an agglomeration of materials but the particular performance of those materials within a sociological system. The fundamental importance of an assemblage is the relationship between its material composition and the various phenomenological attachments society ascribes to the relic. Ruin or Relic Obviously some works of architecture have performed better than others in resisting their impermanence. One can enumerate the elite among them with ease: Pantheon, Parthenon, Stonehenge, and surely any other structure of religious endowment. These works last longer because the object is protected by a social enamel, extending its tenure in “In other words they are objects the cultural vernacular. In other words they are objects made significant by fetish. This is the essential definition of a relic. This point has been previous made significant by fetish. This is the explored in Villa Savoye. If these historical heirlooms instead had no cultural clout, they would be nothing more that the stuff with which they are made; essential definition of a relic.� concrete, stone, and stucco. This is the essential definition of ruin. I must express that relic and ruin are essentially the same term in so far as their material degeneration is concerned. In other words, if Villa Savoye was built twice with one left to die and the other to live infinitely, time would treat them the same. The intervening element in this case would be culture;

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this is an intangible thing determining the fate of a object. These categories, too, are not inherently negative or positive because objects are innocent until their destiny is prescribed. The lives of individual buildings are terminable for various reasons, including natural disasters, political distaste, and social irrelevance. Take for example, one such mundane victim of these fatalities: the platonic American home. One can imagine the physical representations of this ideal: a sedan, four bedrooms, a dog, a television, those essential kitchen appliances that are useful only for holiday cooking. In this example the cultural prescription is domesticity and the object is a house. objects will either

“Architectural linger forever as relics to inform history or architectural objects will disappear in the form of ruins.�

As domesticity is either revealed to be perfect or imperfect the condition of the house is altered. Divorce could cause an accumulation of dinge on the exterior wood siding; marriage could add a fresh coat of paint. Death could cause the gutters to coagulate with silt. Birth could encourage a renovation of the downstairs half-bathroom. While these are superficial changes to the morphology of the structure, there is cause to examine larger social movements and the effect on this house: economic depression, crime, war. These sociological factors characterize the physical appearance of architectural object and, in turn, define them as ruin or relic. Criticism In the American hypothetical described above, there are a few themes under consideration. One

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theme is that architectural objects will either linger forever as relics to inform history or architectural objects will disappear in the form of ruins. The second theme is that human culture is the definitive judgement of what will become a relic or a ruin. An architect can design a building to perform a particular function in a social situation however it is not the architect who allocates meaning. The inception of design asks the creator to determine a terminable condition for the product whether consciously or otherwise. Many architects design with a seemingly interminable duration in mind for their buildings. The design is fetishized as a sublime creation to be preserved beyond its expiration. As I mentioned, this is not necessarily a negative practice because fetish has produced a history of relics which influenced generations of creators. My wonder is what kind of architectural dialogue would emerge if designers were told that their buildings would only last briefly in our cultural zeitgeist? Would they design the decay of the building rather than its immortality? My sense is that the profession would more easily avoid doctrine and embrace degenerative processes as tools in the built environment. Though these questions are personal to each architect’s theoretical prerogative, it is clear that all things will have some reasonable end whether in adoration or desolation.

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T H E I M P E R M A N EPNHCOET O FG RAARPCHHYI T E C T U R E


Photography The importance of architectural photography Critic David Heymann Equipment Digital; Olympus Pen Analog; Argus C3

The media of photography is perhaps the most indispensable tool in architectural practice. While emerging technologies allow designers to test the limits of form, innovative structural systems, and sustainable techniques, the rapid representation of these designs is of critical importance. P h o t o g r a p h y, e s p e c i a l l y d i g i t a l , h a s t h e editorial potential to characterize a work of architecture in terms of speculative meaning. Contemporary architects have altered their practice based on the way people photograph their work which is apparent through the use of didactically photorealistic rendering techniques. Photography either proves these images to be heroic or false. Considering the p r o f e s s i o n ’s c u r r e n t p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h “the digital�, photographic representation is indisputably changing how architecture is made.

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LBJ Library and Museum, 2013 Austin, Texas

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Architect Gordon Bunshaft Built 1971


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The Kimber Modern Hotel, 2013 Austin, Texas

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Architect Burton Baldridge Built 2006


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Barcelona Pavilion, 2011 Barcelona, Spain

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Torre de Comunicacions de Montju誰c, 2011 Barcelona, Spain


Marcat de Santa Caterina, 2011 Barcelona, Spain

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Englischer Garten, 2011 Munich, Germany

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100 11th Street, 2012 New York City, New York

Venice Biennale, 2011 Venice, Italy

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Architectural Portfolio  

Architectural design, criticism, an photography

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