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Image: B-Pro Show 2016

Contents 6 Introduction FrĂŠdĂŠric Migayrou, Bob Sheil 10 MArch Architectural Design (AD) Research Cluster 1 Synthetic Constructability: Increased Resolution Fabric of Architecture Research Cluster 2 Cross-Scale Design Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3 Soft Machines Design Computation Lab Research Cluster 4 Large-Scale Discrete Fabrication: Particles, Parts and Meta-Parts Research Clusters 5 & 6 Fabricating the Un-Makeable BiotA Lab Research Cluster 7 Extreme Materiality Research Cluster 8 Large City Architecture: Mereologies

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

12 22 32 42 44 54 74 76 86

98 MArch Urban Design 100 110 120 130 140 142 152

Research Cluster 11 The Only Way is Essex Research Cluster 12 Back Up City Research Cluster 13 Work is a Four-Letter Word Research Cluster 14 Big Data City: From the Material to the Urban Urban Morphogenesis Lab Research Cluster 16 Polycephalum City Research Cluster 18 Bridging Across Mass-Customisation

164 MSc/MRes Architectural Computation 170 178 180 182 183

Staff Biographies Bartlett Staff, Visitors & Consultants Bartlett Lectures Our Programmes Bartlett Space 3

Image: Research Cluster 11 field trip to India


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Professor Frédéric Migayrou Chair, Bartlett Professor of Architecture Director of B-Pro The Bartlett School of Architecture’s B-Pro, or ‘Bartlett Prospective’, offers three graduate courses. MArch Architectural Design explores the most advanced experimental research in computational design and fabrication. MArch Urban Design takes critical approaches towards creative urban and landscape design, defining creative strategies for global cities and communities. This year these programmes are joined by our established MSc/MRes Architectural Computation (previously Adaptive Architecture and Computing), which engages with and advances the main technologies by which tomorrow’s architecture will be designed and constructed. The 12-month B-Pro courses welcome a diverse international student cohort, offering highly structured access to the realisation and application of research, and to the production of new schemes of conception and construction in architecture and urbanism. Throughout the year, B-Pro develops numerous seminars, workshops, lectures and public events, such as Plexus, to underpin these ideas and promote collaboration, discussion and inspiration. The 2016-2017 Architectural Design course, directed by Gilles Retsin, was organised around research clusters driven by their respective tutors, including two labs (BiotA Lab; Interactive Architecture Lab) to target both specific speculative and prospective fields and domains of application. The latest technologies – robotics and AI, CNC fabrication, 3D printing, supercomputing, simulation, generative design, interactivity, advanced algorithms, extensive material prototyping, biotechnologies, and links to material science – and their many applications, are researched in great depth. The exploration of supercomputing and software packages such as Maya, Grasshopper, Arduino, Processing, Houdini, and other generative platforms, also 6

forms a core part of B-Pro’s innovative approach to conception and fabrication, enabled by our top-of-the-range digital production facilities. In 2016-2017, Urban Design, directed by Professor Mark Smout, looked at creative approaches towards environments and cities at all scales, especially innovative design. Along with the Urban Morphogenesis Lab, the clusters developed alternative proposals and models, based on new morphological concepts and protocols, which reflected how cities are complex, dynamic living systems. Critical environmental and ecological questions are also viewed through an interdisciplinary lens, embracing fields such as archaeology, anthropology, design theory, ecological history, advanced computing, government, law, media, philosophy, planning and political theory; thereby acknowledging the dispersed and often paradoxical nature of contemporary urbanism. Through contextual case studies and interventions, we address the challenges involved in resolving complex issues facing populations, public space, building typologies and land use. A diverse array of projects carried out by students on the newly relaunched Architectural Computation programme, directed by Dr Sean Hanna and Manuel Jiménez Garcia, challenged the boundaries of what architectural computation can achieve. Projects explored artificial intelligence; prototyped objects for dynamic building components and wearable devices to assist learning; and developed new interfaces between the real and the virtual. The work of this group demonstrates the possibility of becoming truly fluent in computational language, opening new domains for research. We were honoured to be publicly recognised for our work in computation this year, when B-Pro received the ACADIA Innovative Academic Programme Award of Excellence. The award, presented by colleagues worldwide, celebrates our consistent contributions to, and impact on, the field of architectural computing.


creative vision and those who guide it. As ever, they also showcase the commitment, passion and ingenuity of our dedicated students. Professor Bob Sheil Director of The Bartlett School of Architecture This publication represents the final furlong of a 12-month journey of experimentation, learning, testing, invention and reinvention. Catalogues are but a snapshot of a vast mountain of work, and both collating them and editing them is a tricky business. The first few pages begin to emerge just a few days before students submit portfolios for internal examination. The final few pages fall into place just a few days before preparations for the external exams and show intensify. Being witness to this performance, and watching page upon page flesh out with an abundance of ideas, bravery, optimism and critique, has been inspiring. Our B-Pro programmes are immensely important to the School, and this importance is growing. They are important because they are melting pots, where embryonic experimentation meets rigorous research and theoretical contextualisation. This buoyancy has allowed us to launch three new 15-month graduate programmes for 2017-18: MArch Design for Performance and Interaction, MArch Design for Manufacture, and MA Situated Practice, with more to come in 2018-19 and beyond, in landscape architecture and in bio-integrated design. This is a pivotal time for The Bartlett School of Architecture, and the excellent work contained in this book hints very loudly at a new and exciting era that is just beginning.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

The Bartlett International Lecture Series – with numerous speakers, architects, historians and theoreticians, sponsored by Fletcher Priest Architects – continued to present new opportunities for students to encounter fresh takes on emerging research, alongside lectures and workshops organised by Dan Hill and Joseph Grima, the School of Architecture’s Sir Banister Fletcher Visiting Professors. In early 2017, we moved back to our newly refurbished home at 22 Gordon Street, in the heart of Bloomsbury. Our new exhibition space offers an exciting context for the B-Pro Show – which presents the work of all clusters, and includes drawings, models, prototypes, installations and constructions, and demonstrates the intense activity undertaken throughout the year. As we look to the future, B-Pro programmes will be further enhanced by collaboration with the recently-launched MRes in Architecture and Digital Theory, co-directed by myself and Professor Mario Carpo, dedicated to the theory, history and criticism of digital design and digital fabrication. Students will also benefit from access to opportunities for computational research and fabrication offered by our vast new studio and workshop space in Hackney Wick, Here East (read more on page 183). B-Pro, entirely devoted to creative design, will become even more of a nexus of stimulating exchanges between history and theory, design and technology. Through a shared vision of creative architecture, B-Pro is an opportunity for students both to participate in a new community and to affirm the singularity of their individual talents. These programmes are not only an open door to advanced architectural practice but also form the base from which each student can define their particular approach and architectural philosophy, in order to seek a position in the professional world. This year’s B-Pro exhibition and accompanying book are testament to the depth, quality and intensity of The Bartlett’s current


Image: B-Pro Show 2016

MArch Architectural Design

MArch Architectural Design Programme Director: Gilles Retsin

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

MArch Architectural Design is a 12-month post-professional programme invested in the frontiers of advanced architecture and design and their convergence with science and technology. Composed of an international body of experts and students, it is designed to deliver diverse yet focused strands of speculative research, emphasising the key role computation plays within complex design synthesis. Design is increasingly recognised as the crucial agency for uncovering complex patterns and relations, and this has never been more important. Historically, the most successful architecture has managed to capture cultural conditions, utilise technological advances and answer to the pressures and constraints of materials, economics, ecology and politics. Presently, this synthesis is accelerated by the introduction of computation and the everevolving landscape of production. Students are introduced to advanced coding, fabrication and robotic skills, aimed at computational and technological fluency. Simultaneously, students are exposed to larger theoretical ideas specifically tailored to their enquiries. Placing advanced design at its core, the programme devotes a high proportion of time to studio-based design enquiry, culminating in a major project and thesis. The programme is organised into research clusters, each with their own research agendas, underpinned by the shared resources of technical tutorials and theoretical lectures and seminars. The latest approaches to robotics and Artificial Intelligence, CNC fabrication, 3D printing, supercomputing, simulation, generative design, interactivity, advanced algorithms, extensive material prototyping and links to material science are explored. We engage critically with new developments in technology, which are rapidly changing the landscape of architecture, its social and economic role and its effectiveness in industry applications. 10

Students are introduced to theoretical concepts through lectures and introductory design projects supported by computational and robotics skills-building workshops. Throughout the year, students work in small teams or individually, according to the methodology of each cluster, amplifying their focus and individual talents in the context of complexities of design research and project development. Projects are continuously evaluated via tutorials with regular design reviews by external critics. Alongside our cutting-edge research, we host public lectures and seminars throughout the year. The MArch Architectural Design programme is affiliated with three research labs: Interactive Architecture Lab, Design Computation Lab and BiotA Lab. These specialist research bodies interact with specific clusters and can attract external funding and partnerships.

Image: Chao Jiang, Andrés González Molino, Zhixin Sun (Research Cluster 4), ‘Infinite Voxels’, 2017

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Synthetic Constructability: Increased Resolution Fabric of Architecture Alisa Andrasek, Daghan Cam, Soomeen Hahm, Andy Lomas

Students Sebastian Aste Cannock, Eleni Chalkiadaki, Arianna Di Pasquale, Jiawen Ding, Madalin Gheorghe, Huaibo Han, Jingwen He, Zhihao Li, Zaiguo Lin, Paat Pimarnprom, Mikaela Psarra, Yin Yuan, Xinyu Zeng

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Student teams Abundance Eleni Chalkiadaki, Jingwen He, Mikaela Psarra Cartella Arianna Di Pasquale, Madalin Gheorghe, Huaibo Han, Zhihao Li Choreography Sebastian Aste Cannock, Jiawen Ding, Xinyu Zeng, Baiqiao Zhao Modiform Zaiguo Lin, Paat Pimarnprom, Yin Yuan Theory tutors Mollie Claypool, Evan Greenberg Technical tutors Vincent Huyghe, Henrik Malm, Vicente Soler, Feng Zhou Thanks to our critics and consultants Vicente Soler, Feng Zhou, Tyson Hosmer, Ping-Hsiang Chen, Assa Ashuach Thank you to our sponsors nVidia, Formfutura


New spaces of synthesis for architecture are being opened up by highvolume computing, computational physics simulations, discretised and adaptive algorithms, and the inclusion of large data sourced from multiple domains. Architecture can now draw on large data from the finer-grain physics of matter: matter as information, enabled by computation. This not only expands on technically enriched material formations, but also activates previously hidden material powers, enabling the creation of designs that, in both imagination and performance, are beyond our anticipation. 3D printing is now going mainstream and growing in scale, becoming increasingly relevant to architecture. Multi-material printing introduces blending material states in high detail, with the capacity to increase material performance, including minimising the weight and volume of structures while maximising their strength; enabling mass-customisation at any level of detail; and yielding previously unseen aesthetic possibilities. Such high-resolution construction methods are further accelerated by finer-grain physics simulations, disrupting the blueprints of architecture, resulting in structures with the increased resilience, plasticity and malleability of complex interrelated systems – in short, increased designability within complex ecologies. Innovation is accelerated by simulating material states and thus radically cutting down the need for exhaustive physical prototyping. The physics of matter is explored through simulating properties such as gravity, friction and fluid dynamics. Complex syntheses of geometry and physics, fortified by principles of self-organisation, are allowing designers to work with materialisation prior to materialisation. Boundless opportunities open up by coupling robotics with material behaviours and the ability to design various extensions for robotic arms via 3D printing. In Research Cluster 1, each student team has developed its own fabrication, material and computational system that is than tested through a series of design challenges across multiple orders of scale, starting with a scale of product design, proceeding with the scale of furniture, to culminate in a scale of a small building. The cluster promotes principles of computational virtuosity, whereby students are trained to become fluent within computational fabrics, and adaptive to multiple software and coding environments. A similarly ambitious approach is applied to building expertise in robotics. The design research projects presented here are evolving pre-existing knowledge to new thresholds and the cluster strongly promotes collective coding culture. This notion is extended to collaboration with guest designers and experts.

MArch AD Research Cluster 1

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MArch AD Research Cluster 1

1.2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

1.3 Figs. 1.1 – 1.4 Abundance Thanks to increased computer power and high-resolution data visualisation technology, it has become easier to directly execute digital computed materials in physicality. This project pushes the boundary of the utilisation of such technology in architectural design, dealing with a high population of elements, creating an algorithm-generated structure as a unique architectural space. The design process is experienced through virtual reality technology which enables an intuitive understanding of the special qualities designed during the generative process. Visual lightness is enabled by the high resolution of the structure, which can be digitally fabricated through a robotic printing technique. The design is driven by the experiential quality that the structure provides. Virtual reality 14

introduces a full feedback loop by enabling design decisions to be made through a series of intuitive visual interactions between the structure, environment and the observer. The project also looks specifically at lighting quality.

MArch AD Research Cluster 1

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 1

1.5 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

1.6 Fig. 1.5 – 1.9 Modiform A voxelised grid enables the organisation of a systematic and integrated toolpath for robotic fabrication. This project explores the differentiation of density and directionality within the set voxelised grid system. It uses a generative strategy based on structural principles to look at the integration of structure and form. The multi-agent system is introduced during the form generation process based on datasets that are generated through structural analysis and topological optimisation.


MArch AD Research Cluster 1


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




MArch AD Research Cluster 1

1.10 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

1.11 Figs. 1.10 – 1.12 Cartella The fabrication of complex shapes often requires sensitive translation, penalisation, subdivision and re-typologisation. This project investigates generative strategies for doing this. Agent-based generative logic allows the grid cells to grow from set positions following the structural and environmental data. The generated patterns follow the fabrication criteria and material principle. The images show a sample ceiling piece design and a series of examples of different typologies on an identical patch.


MArch AD Research Cluster 1

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 1

1.13 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

1.14 Figs. 1.13 – 1.15 Choreography Digital fabrication has often neglected the errors and flaws caused by unexpected material behaviour or environmental factors. Dealing with robotic 3D printing, this project utilises those ‘errors’ by allowing them to happen in a highly controlled way and using computer vision to sense them and decide the next robotic behaviour. The images show how computer vision works, with simulated examples of some vertical objects that are produced by this controlled and uncontrolled integration. The column is created through real-time interactive robotic printing process. During the printing process, the material’s flaws and errors are allowed – in a highly controlled manner – to illustrate the level of control, or lack of it. Software which is designed for the project as well as a 1:1-scale physical model. The material’s behaviour 20

creates an interesting texture and porosity which humans can not manually model and scripts cannot exactly simulate. The project allows these qualities to be applied to specific areas within the designed structure to meet certain structural and architectural criteria.

MArch AD Research Cluster 1

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




Cross-Scale Design Maj Plemenitas

Students Huan Huang, Yuanqing Huang, Oliver Ledzema Gallegos, Mahtab Manzoumeh, Ian Tu, Xiaoyu Wei, Yuhan Xiao Thanks to our critics and consultants Alisa Andrasek, Ana Abram, Daniel Widrig, Daniel Koehler, Steven Gage, Frédéric Migayrou, Mario Carpo, Jakub Klaska, Vicente Soler The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Theory Tutor Sayan Skandarajah


Our continuous experimental architectural design interest, driven by rigorous design research, is focused on cross-scale design (CSD). This novel strategic approach looks at the development of the expanded effective design range, in order to engage with coexistent complex dynamic and emerging conditions as well as conflicting objectives that are beyond the effective range of traditional design practice. It achieves this by utilising nonlinear, scale-specific relations at multiple spatial, temporal and operational scales. ‘Cross-scale’ here refers to processes at one spatial, temporal or operational scale interacting with processes at another scale. The results may occur within or across scales, leading to complex behaviour. The interactions can affect, alter or promote relationships between processes and patterns across scales. For example, small-scale processes can influence a broad spatial extent or time period, or large-scale conditions can interact with small-scale processes to create complex system dynamics. This year, Research Cluster 2 worked with the processes of developing objects, (infra)structures, territories and systems through trans/cross/ multi-scale coexistence by embedding, implanting and imprinting. The research investigates how these strategies and logics influence each other and proposes new forms of multivalent organisation, taking into account global conditions as well as the narrower operational scales of interfaces, structure, materiality, and physical or chemical composition. The strategy utilises the unpredictability and instability of relations as the generative production accelerator, promoting nonlinear behavioural design control by establishing, defining and re-negotiating the relations between encoded behaviours and contextual fluctuation. The design protocol and the building machine are embedded into the architectural, infrastructural or territorial tissue itself. This combination enables generative, matter-based processes that are usually limited to the virtual domain of digital simulations, to produce physical, multi-scale and variable state sequences. It also enables transitions between objects, structures and territories to take place. These processes have the capacity not only for direct adaptive responsiveness, but can also enable developmental capacity during the life cycle: through partial reconfiguration based on continuous additive, substitutional, metamorphic and subtractive processes. Over the course of multiple developmental generations, evolutionary potential is opened up.

MArch AD Research Cluster 2

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 2

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

2.3 Figs. 2.1 – ­ 2.3 Yuanqing Huang, Xiaoyu Wei ‘CSD’. Fig. 2.1 Detail of a multi-scale structure. The research project is a segment of a broader continuously growing field of research into cross-scale design. Fig. 2.2 Structure #23, a multiobjective design protocol which negotiates potentially conflicting goals through a relational system, direct design input and control at specific operational scale, and their indirect cross-scale effect. Fig. 2.3 Multi-objective protocol and the resulting structure, #11. The interactions affect, alter or promote the relationships between processes and patterns across scales. For example, small-scale processes can influence a broad spatial extent or a long time period, or large-scale conditions can interact with small-scale processes to create complex system dynamics. 25

MArch AD Research Cluster 2

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017






MArch AD Research Cluster 2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

2.8 Figs. 2.4 – 2.8 Yuanqing Huang, Xiaoyu Wei ‘CSD’. Fig. 2.4 Operational scale and identity are of critical importance to understanding and effecting cross-scale relations. To enable the developmental and evolutionary potential of objects, physical structures, or territorial conditions is it clear that we need to enable and embed the capacity for metamorphic, additive and supplemental, and subtractive action on the lower constituent level that cumulatively forms the identity that we recognise. Fig. 2.5 When the lower constituent level changes, through rotation, addition, subtractions, growth, mutation, etc, the change is reflected on the identity of the higher operational scale. Fig. 2.6 Computational material: behaviour simulation. The multi-objective enabled capacity ranges from load-bearing

capacity to complex parallel, governed and potentially dynamic constraints. These may include forces, functions, and characteristics that are reflected in behaviours such as controlled directional flexibility, tensile or compression resistance, stability, responsiveness to environmental condition differentiations, porosity, selective semipermeability, aperture, local or regional reinforcements, or re-configurability. Fig. 2.7 Physical Prototype. Detail of high-resolution directional interlocking system. Fig. 2.8 Detail of a multi-scale system.


MArch AD Research Cluster 2

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 2


2.11 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017


2.12 0.0 Figs. 2.9 ­­– 2.12 Oliver Ledzema Gallegos, Ian Tu ‘CSD’. Fig. 2.9 Top view: multiscale articulation of a void. Selectively permeable structure and ground. Fig. 2.10 Design grammar applied on several operational scales, forming a convergent assembly. Fig. 2.11 Multi-objective set. The prioritisation of desired output objectives and the resulting configuration of embeded constituents. Fig. 2.12 Articulation of a void, and permeability as an interface with an exisiting water infrastructure system.


MArch AD Research Cluster 2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

2.13 Fig. 2.13 Oliver Ledzema Gallegos, Ian Tu ‘CSD’. Details of three distinct multi-scale interfaces. The research aims to develop a convergent process spanning from base resources, material behaviours, production protocols to interfaces with other systems. The project utilises computational multiobjective simulation and automated in-situ fabrication processes for unconstrained, multi-objective and multi-scale enabled production, assembly, performative behaviour, reconfiguration and connectivity. Fig. 2.14 Huan Huang, Mahtab Manzoumeh, Yuhan Xiao ‘CSD’. Weaving pattern developed through multi-objective simulation that takes into the account structural capacity, load distribution and a range of qualitative/quantitative aspects such as directional (selective) permeability, localised/regional flexibility, 30

connectivity, and the embedded internal infrastructural network for internal transfer of information and matter.

MArch AD Research Cluster 2

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




Interactive Architecture Lab Soft Machines Ruairi Glynn, Jessica In, Matt Jakob, Yuri Suzuki

Students Keisuke Akiyama, Sini Bian, Xue Chen, Qianhui Feng, Luca Giacolini, Shuhong Hao, Hisham Hattab, Jiasheng Huang, Anirudhan Iyengar, Ching Lee, Yingchao Li, Yixiao Liang, Liquan Liu, Ioulia Marouda, Adi Meyerovitch, Junxi Peng, Sirou Peng, Samerah Rahimzada, Silvia Rueda Cuellar, Xiaoxu Sun, Wenjie Wu The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Artist in residence, supported by The Leverhulme Trust Amy Croft Teaching Assistant Vasilija Abramovic Theory Tutor Fiona Zisch Thanks to our critics and consultants William Bondin, William Victor Camilleri, Asha Ding, Sean Jing, Ifigenia Lamprou, François Mangion, Marshmallow Laser Feast, George Profenza, Ling Tan, Manabu Shimada, Vicente Soler

Interactive Architecture Lab’s multidisciplinary research explores the behaviour and interaction of things, environments and their inhabitants. Areas of focus include adaptive responsive environments, kinetic design and robotics, multisensory interfaces, the Internet of Things, performance and choreography, and biological and material computation. Each year’s theme is intended to drive early research exploration and the development of core skills. However, the studio actively encourages students to break out and over the course of the year develop their own research agendas. This year we have softened the perceived boundaries between the body and our built environment. Through the design of physical and virtual installations we have explored material and immaterial approaches to what a soft architecture can be. A number of recent technological developments have led our exploration. Soft Robotics The future of robotics is soft. Improvements in flexible and programmable materials are literally reshaping robotics away from typically rigid structures driven by servomotor systems, towards more fluid and responsive mechanics inspired by nature. Virtual Reality The indivisible relationship between our visual-auditory experience of virtual space and our somatic sensory body grounded in physical space is fractured by Virtual Reality technologies. We have examined ways to bridge the virtual and physical, building mixed realities where both immaterial and material worlds interact. Artificial Intelligence In the search for a softer body for architecture, we have explored the soft architecture of the human brain, studying the nature of ‘thinking’ through cybernetic theory and experiments in computational neuroethology. 


MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3



The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

3.4 Fig. 3.1 Hisham Hattab, Anirudhan Iyengar, Ioulia Marouda Fig. 3.5 Xue Chen, Junxi Peng, Adi Meyerovitch ‘Prancing ‘Neural Kubrick’. Neural Kubrick deconstructs classic Golem’. filmmaking and reviews it from the scope of new media machine-learning techniques. Figs. 3.2 – 3.4 Adi Meyerovitch, Sirou Peng, Silvia Rueda Cuellar ‘Aposema’. Aposema is a responsive facial prosthesis, which explores the mask as a soft robotic and augmented reality interface. By sensing specific facial gestures as performed by the wearer, the soft robotics inflate to form patterns that unlock otherwise encrypted information that the wearer choses to present in social scenarios. Represented via the augmented interface through motion graphics and sound, the data is then decrypted by other masks, adding to the constant overlay of spatial-visual information as perceived via the mask’s embedded ‘eyes’. 34



3 X Spider joints

3 X Air muscles

Wooden sticks

31 cm



18 X Panda joints

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Need parts to assamble the Prancing Golem//




25 cm

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32 cm

1 X Beetle joints

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38 cm

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Prancing Golem

Constructing Step 1 // Body

Step 2 // Body

Step 3 // Legs

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Prancing Golem

Step 4 // Legs

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Air muscles

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Rubber bands

Prancing Golem


Step 1 //

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MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3


Step 4 //

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MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

3.6 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

3.7 Figs. 3.6 – 3.7 Anirudhan Iyengar, Liquan Liu ‘Swimming Golem’ Fig. 3.8 Qianhui Feng, Yingchao Li, Sirou Peng ‘Swinging Golem’. Golems in Jewish folklore are manmade creatures, constructed out of mud and brought to life by mystical incantations. Our Golems are also an attempt to make artificial life from primitive materials, but their magic comes from harnessing open-source hardware. Inspired by Ron Herron’s ‘Walking City’ (1964), Theo Jansen’s ‘Strandbeest’ (1990-ongoing), and Karl Sims’ ‘Evolved Virtual Creatures’ (1994), we’ve developed a way to quickly build structures that walk, roll and jump. This family of creatures includes golems that prance, climb, swim, swing and jump.



MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

3.9 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

3.10 Fig. 3.9 Xue Chen, Junxi Peng, Adi Meyerovitch ‘Prancing Golem’. Fig. 3.10 Keisuke Akiyama, Adi Meyerovitch, Sirou Peng ‘K’. A project which addresses social exclusion in the context of hyper-connectedness and social media. K speculates on the wearable technologies of the near future, from an Orwellian perspective. The wearable helmet has a distance-sensing module which allows intimate conversations for only a brief period of time.


MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3




Figs. 3.11 – 3.12 Ching Lee, Yingchao Li, Yixiao Liang, Wenjie Wu ‘Wings’. The ubiquitous nature of biosensing technology creates a reality in which our biometric data is continually recorded. What if this data could be used to directly affect our environment? Wings is a transformable structure that responds to the visitor’s heart rate and facial expressions. Driven by custom-developed hybrid spring and air pocket actuators, the structure softly folds and unfolds to respond to the aggregated data of its visitors, gently aiming to synchronise the pulse of its inhabitants. Figs. 3.13 – 3.14 Sini Bian, Xue Chen, Xiaoxu Sun ‘Vialumo’. Vialumo is a sensorial and meaning-making journey of choreographed lights and movement. It heightens our awareness to change the way we perceive and embody the world around us.

Developed through a series of light optic experiments and sensing prototypes, the installation invites the audience member to construct their own imagined space through a gesture that changes the light environment.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

3.15 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

3.16 Figs. 3.15 – 3.16 Jiasheng Huang, Liquan Liu, Junxi Peng ‘Simulacrum’, a project researching how human spatial perception works across physical and virtual spaces simultaneously. The disjunction between physically occupied and virtually perceived spaces is explored, to enable users to experience a much larger space while actually constrained to a limited physical area. To achieve this, a custom algorithm based on redirected walking was developed by the team. A 4x8-metre room is used for the algorithm to generate an infinitely larger virtual space. Boundary markers are distributed in the physical space as tactile markers and matched to visual cues in the virtual, allowing users to physically feel the boundaries and to blur the boundary between the virtual and the physical. 39

MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

3.17 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

3.18 3.19 Figs. 3.17 – 3.19 Hisham Hattab, Anirudhan Iyengar, Ioulia Marouda ‘Neural Kubrick’. If cinema was the dominating medium of the past century, one could argue that the computer interface is the one that has taken over the 21st century. Neural Kubrick deconstructs classic filmmaking and reviews it from the scope of new media machine learning techniques. The installation includes three different machinic interpretations of Stanley Kubrick’s films. Fig. 3.17 A Recurrent Neural Network takes on the role of the cinematographer, redefining camera paths that are reshot in virtual photogrammetric space. Fig. 3.18 A Convolutional Neural Network classifies visual similarities between the given scene (in this case a still from The Shining, dir. Stanley Kubrick, © Warner Bros. 1980) and a dataset of hundreds of different 40

movies, to create a parallel visual narrative. Fig. 3.19 A Generative Adversarial Network generates new scenes based on the a scene’s colour and composition. The machine expresses itself in three aspects of cinema, namely cinematographic, scenographic and film narrative.

MArch AD Interactive Architecture Lab / Research Cluster 3

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Design Computation Lab Lab Directors: Mollie Claypool, Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Gilles Retsin, Vicente Soler

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Design Computation Lab develops design methods for the utilisation of computational technologies in architectural design, fabrication and assembly. Despite the use of computers to calculate enormous amounts of complexity, the way we build is still analogue, and therefore our increasing computational power is used in a representational way. The term ‘digital fabrication’ is misleading as well: 3D printing is an analogue process, similar to the way the CNC mill automates an artisanal action. Increased computational power is therefore used for pure representation or shape generation, rather than generating an alternative to the way we have traditionally approached physical production. We believe architecture should be wholly digital – from the scale of the micron and particle to the brick, beam and building – both as a design process and as a physical artefact. Thinking about architecture in a digital way means that we have to think about every element, part or particle as a bit of data that can be computed. Parts therefore take on the properties of a ‘bit’, becoming serialised, standardised and embedded with a simple rule: 0 or 1 (or, connected or not connected). The emphasis on the part as a unit reintroduces the age-old disciplinary notion of part-to-whole relationships, embodying a fundamental shift in architecture and design thinking that is unique to our research and projects, aiming to close gaps between the way we design, fabricate and assemble objects, buildings and even infrastructure. This enables us, as architects and designers, to think evocatively and creatively about the way in which we engage with other disciplines, industries and professions, including robotics, construction, computer science, manufacturing, policymaking and the material sciences.  The lab is unique in the School of Architecture in that it formally includes both research clusters in the postgraduate MArch Architectural Design programme and the MArch 42

Architecture ARB/RIBA Part 2 programme, cross-pollinating across the research-orientated thinking of Research Cluster 4 in MArch Architectural Design and building designorientated thinking of Unit 19 in MArch Architecture. This structure enables us to be holistic and innovative in our thinking. We have cross-faculty partnerships with the UCL’s Institute for Digital Innovation in the Built Environment, and School of Construction + Project Management, in the MSc in Strategic Project Management.

Image: ‘Voxel Chair v.1.0’, Robotically extruded chair detail. Design: Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Gilles Retsin. Fabrication support: Nagami Design, Vicente Soler. Team: Miguel Garcia Jiménez, Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Gilles Retsin, Vicente Soler, Ignacio Viguera Ochoa


Design Computation Lab Large-Scale Discrete Fabrication: Particles, Parts and Meta-Parts Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Gilles Retsin, Vicente Soler

Students Vasiliki Alamanou, Ran Chen, Zhilin Chen, Hung-Da Chien, Ahmed Eltoutngi, Miguel Garcia Jimenez, Andres Gonzalez Molino, Virginie Guillaume, Yen-Fen Huang, Chao Jiang, Yazhu Liang, Gefan Shao, Zhixin Sun, Anna Uborevich-Borovskaya, Mingche Wang, Na Wei, Yanhua Yin, Cheng-Han (Eric) Yu, Tianyun Zhang, Yufei Zheng The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Project teams MetaForm Vasiliki Alamanou, Miguel Garcia Jimenez, Ahmed Eltoutngi, Virginie Guillaume Transfoamer Ran Chen, Zhilin Chen, Gefan Shao, Na Wei RobloX Hung-Da Chien, Yen-Fen Huang, Anna UborevichBorovskaya, Cheng-Han (Eric) Yu Intile Andres Gonzalez Molino, Chao Jiang, Zhixin Sun TimBlock Yazhu Liang, Mingche Wang, Yanhua Yin, Tianyun Zhang, Yufei Zheng Theory tutor Moa Carlsson Thanks to our critics and consultants Isaïe Bloch, Giulio Brugnaro, Mario Carpo, Mustafa El-Sayed, Octavian Gheorghiu, Daniel Koehler, Tim Lucas, Michael Casey-Rehm, Jose Sanchez, Dimitrie Stefanescu, Davide Quayola, Daniel Widrig Thank you to our sponsors Lafarge, Line-X


Architecture has never been digital: despite the use of computers to calculate huge amounts of complexity, the way we build is still analogue, and therefore our increasing computational power is merely used in a representational way. Research Cluster 4 is interested in architecture that is both digital by design and digital as a physical object. Although computer-controlled, most current fabrication technologies are actually analogue processes. These actions are essentially mechanised artisanal procedures, which replicate human modes of production. These techniques can be understood as analogue, as they are based on procedures that continuously add or remove material. Of course the tools are computer-controlled, but they are not in themselves ‘digital’. The project for a ‘double discrete’ – digital by design and by physical organisation – is not only a critical, architectural proposition. There are also more pragmatic, logistical concerns. Continuous systems have fundamental problems with transitions of material, require a lot of time to compute and fabricate, are less adaptive and not reversible. Concepts such as ‘digital materials’, developed at MIT by the Centre for Bits and Atoms, help us understand the implications of the digital organisation of physical matter. This year, our main aim was twofold: to scale up discrete fabrication processes to 1:1 building-scale prototypes, and to develop complete architectural proposals. Scaling up discrete assembly processes with an order of magnitude requires highly engineered parts, with a specific material organisation and structural behaviour. This necessity gives rise to the concept of the meta-part: a large-scale, discrete element composed of many smaller, serialised parts or particles. Students explored different fabrication techniques such as robotic wire-bending, spatial 3D printing, foam-cutting, concrete casting and timber milling. The resultant particles can then be assembled into proper parts and subsequently metaparts. This nested procedure is always based on digital connection schemes and discreteness: the particle is never a derivation of the part and vice-versa.

MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4

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MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4

4.2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 4.1 ­– 4.5 RobloX This project explores the feasibility of construction through the method of discrete digital design. It investigates the potential of pre-cast concrete systems to enable flexibility and adaptability in construction and form generation by producing standardised UHPC (Ultra-High Performance Concrete) building elements where current prefabricated systems are lacking. Due to the obtained complexity of aggregation, the introduction of robotic arms for automatic assembly becomes crucial in this project. It allows the highly standardised building blocks to be robotically assembled into different structures, from different hierarchical building elements up to large-scale buildings. Fig. 4.2 This digital model shows how a set of limited rules can generate a highly efficient aggregation by assembling single

blocks into an architectural structure. This strategy of combinatorial design leads the discrete unit composition with its digital organisation in aesthetics, structure configuration and towards a real digital architecture. Fig. 4.3 A series of laser-cut plywood moulds are used for the serialised production of UHPC blocks. Fig. 4.4 A robotic arm assembles pieces together, easily joining them due to the specially designed interlock system. Automatic assembly increases the productivity and economy of building construction, which also leads to higher accuracy and a reduction of construction errors. Fig. 4.5 A subset of possible discrete configurations.


MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4

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MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4

4.6 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 4.6 – 4.8­­Transfoamer This project tries to achieve high efficiency in discrete digital design by automating the hot-wire cutting of mega blocks made out of high-density polystyrene and robotically assembling them into architectural-scale structures. The image shows an industrial robot holding the vacuum gripper used to handle the foam blocks and the hot-wire cutter used to shape them. The cutting process is fast and precise. It takes three minutes to cut each component and less than ten minutes to cut one block. In order to reduce material waste, the foam that was cut out is reused and assembled back into blocks. Fig. 4.7 The discrete block is based on two tetrahedral grids and a prismatic grid. Three different lengths of blocks exist. The longer blocks are used in parts of the structure that require longer spans.

The polystyrene blocks are coated with polyeura, a type of elastomer that is derived from the reaction product of an isocyanate component and a synthetic resin-blend component, through step-growth polymerisation. This reinforces the structure and protects it from the environment. It offers abrasion resistance, waterproofing and acts as a fire retardant. Even though the coating is only one to two millimetres thick, the end result has high tensile strength. Fig. 4.8 A computational logic is developed which enables the easy generation of multiple design iterations, constrained within the solution space of our parameters. A set of combinatorial rules are defined that allow only for a discrete set of possible design decisions. For every possible combination, a probability factor is computed by relaxing


MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

the discrete optimisation problem to a continuous optimisation problem. Two topological optimisation methods – SIMP, solid isotropic microstructure with penalisation and BESO, bidirectional evolutionary structural optimisation – are used as guides to drive the overall structure of the design.


MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4

4.9 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

4.10 Figs. 4.9 – 4.10 TimBlock This series of diagrams shows the geometrical logic of a single tile and the possible combinations within a bounding box. The last two diagrams show the meta-tile, a larger tile made out of base tiles. This tile allows for the introduction of hierarchical design criteria that work at different scales. Three different scales of meta-tiles are designed to form the various parts of the columns. These columns can be used based on different structural needs. A tetrahedral loop pattern consisting of five meta-tiles is devised to improve structural stability and bracing. This loop becomes a meta-part, an important construct for large-scale designs. The combinatorial system used extends this truss-like logic to larger-scale aggregations. The grooves on the base tiles have several functions. They are used to embed elements, 50

such as the joints that connect the tiles together, cladding or services. Fig. 4.10 The tiles are made out of beech and are fabricated using CNC milling. To be able to machine all faces of the tile, each one is split into two parts that are later glued together. Alignment holes and dowels are used for precise alignment of the parts. To speed up fabrication and accuracy, all features were designed keeping in mind the cutter size and orientation.

MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4


4.12 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

4.13 Figs. 4.11 – 4.13 Intile This project uses additive manufacturing, such as plastic extrusion, to materialise designs based on discrete design principles. This might seem antithetical, but even though the design space is constrained to a discrete set, it is still large enough that fabrication methods used for serialisation are less efficient and cost-effective. Fig. 4.12 The spatial extrusion fabrication method allows architects to create lighter, more efficient forms without any material waste. This process by itself does not allow for the creation of inhabitable spaces as it cannot fulfil all the necessary conditions, such as insolation, waterproofing, acoustic protection and so on. Infinite Voxels uses a hybrid approach that combines the advantages of spatial extrusion with other materials and methods, such as

machined polystyrene. We can create a catalogue of blocks that avoids the habitability problem commonly found in digital architecture. Fig. 4.13 The rise of 3D printing has delivered the concept of mass-customisation instead of massproduction. We propose an alternative way to achieve mass-customisation by allowing a large, but not infinite, set of possible design variations. The voxel can be analogue to a cell. The polymerisation of these cells creates solid units. Each voxel can store unique digital information, such as spatial and material properties. Through a combinatorial logic, the position, volume, and geometry of the materials in the whole structure is customised.


MArch AD Design Computation Lab / Research Cluster 4 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 4.14 – 4.16 MetaForm Catalogue generated from computational tests based on different behaviours. The behaviours are understood as changes in the rule set concerning the specific connections between the two units of aggregation. Based on combinatorics (the study of finite or countable discrete structures), the computational tests result in larger chunks that form architectural elements. These elements can be understood as slabs, columns, enclosed spaces, stairs and so on. Properties of these spaces include differentiated patterns, transparency based on the number of pieces used and characteristics from the connection possibilities used in each iteration. Fig. 4.15 Physical prototype representing a unit of aggregation. Fig. 4.16 Computationally designed space. In this approach the focus is on a bottom-up process derived

from a combinatorial set of connection possibilities between the units. The process is optimised based on a genetic algorithm. Units are connected based on a set of established rules. This criteria tries to optimise for architectural, aesthetic and structural qualities. The process is stopped based on the designer’s decision. In this approach, top-down decisions are not used at all. The designer’s control over the process is limited to selecting optimisation criteria and the combinatorial rule-set. There is no way to predict the generated optimal result.


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Fabricating the Un-Makeable Guan Lee, Daniel Widrig with Stefan Bassing, Soomeen Hahm, Adam Holloway, Igor Pantic

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Students Thomas Bagnoli, Yu Ju Chang, Conglu Fang, Tianyu Guo, Darshan Kamalkant Singhania, Hao Li, Shan Li, Jiamin Lin, Yang Liu, Weiting Lu, Xiyuan Luo, Evgenia Makroglou, Shilpa Mathew, Jin Meng, Xiangheng Min, Kalliopi (Kelly) Mouzaki, Andi Shalahuddin, Jieyu Shi, Bicen Song, Tengxiang Su, Zizhuo Su, Yeonhak Sung, Shuang Tan, Jialin Tang, Yun Hao Tang, Heyoung Um, Runze Wang, Yixuan Wang, Jiawei Xi, Luhan Yu, Baiqiao Zhao, Wenyan Zhao, Xinnan Zhao Student teams Cr[E]stal Yu Ju Chang, Xiyuan Luo, Tengxiang Su, Shuang Tan Clay Robotics: Branching Clay Hao Li, Wenyan Zhao, Jialin Tang, Xinnan Zhao Clay Robotics: Minimal Clay Xiangheng Min, Zizhuo Su, Heyoung Um, Jiawei Xi Ecoire Weiting Lu, Jin Meng, Andi Shalahuddin, Yeonhak Sung, Baiqiao Zhao TransFoam Tianyu Guo, Yixuan Wang, Luhan Yu Fluid Deformation Jiamin Lin, Jieyu Shi, Bicen Song, Yun Hao Tang Composite | Skin Thomas Bagnoli, Darshan Kamalkant Singhania, Evgenia Makroglou, Kalliopi (Kelly) Mouzaki Clay-Cuts Conglu Fang, Shan Li, Yang Liu, Shilpa Mathew, Runze Wang

Materials and processes at the fringes of construction industries, material deemed unusable with little or no value, or production methods not associated with architecture are often starting points for our research projects. This year Research Cluster 5 and Research Cluster 6 have worked together to conduct research in two distinct areas: material innovation and material application. Students working in groups started the year making a choice either to carry on research from the previous year or initiate a new line of design inquiry. Experiments in aluminum casting, copper plating, and coir fibre forming set up future design trajectories, while fabrication research continued in robotic clay printing and fabricformed composite structure. Finding suitable and practical applications for our material investigations is a key method of disseminating our research. Towards this end, we produced over 2000 robotically fabricated ceramic tiles for the shop designed by Adrian Friend at the Victoria and Albert Museum. The same group of students also designed and built ceramic components in collaboration with Clementine Blakemore to produce a sculptural installation at RIBA for UK GBC (Green Building Council). And, for the Milan Design Week 2017, another group of students ran a design workshop to create an installation with in-filled fabric-formed components. Our interest is firmly rooted in materials and their implementation in architecture, both analogue and digital. We see traditional building technologies as a benchmark for experimentation, and are interested in the conventions of fabrication whilst speculating about how digital tools can operate at smaller furniture and building scales. In order to traverse terrain-making architecture, rethinking dominant architectural tendencies is as important as reconfiguring the tools of fabrication. Our investigations with materiality with different architectural operations aim to transcend what is digital or not digital, and what is art or craft.

Theory tutors Ruby Law, Arturo Revilla Thanks to our critics and consultants Jack Chivers, Giles Corby, Jessie Lee, Nam Tran


Thank you to our sponsors Grymsdyke Farm, Rochester Square, London Sculpture Workshop

MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6




Fig5&6.1 TransFoam Aluminium fabricated through lost-foam casting technique. Casting is a process of production often associated with making of copies of identical objects. In the case of lost-foam casting, each cast piece can be different without extra cost or different sets of moulds. The idea is to create patterns using material with a very low melting point. Molten metal is then poured onto the pattern, buried in sand. The liquid metal burns and replaces the pattern during the casting process. This fabrication technique exemplifies our ethos of looking for design opportunities in the process of making. Figs. 5&6.2 – 5&6.6 Ecoire The project objective is to utilise material sourced from nature – coconut fibre, known as coir – and produce a new composite material system. Pure starch-based bio-plastic binds the coir together. Layer upon

layer, this laminated reinforcement system allows the coconut fibre to work between a rigid-to-loose and grid-to-organic system to form a new formal and textural language. The slow curing of this traditional binder also allows for shaping and playing with the coir during the fabrication process. This biodegradable material contains a high percentage of lignin, a material which assists in bending and compressing. Coconut fibre here is no longer a byproduct, but an alternative eco-material.

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6




Figs. 5&6.7 – 5&6.12 TransFoam Cast aluminium with lost-foam casting technique. Typically, this technique uses cut polystyrene blocks as pattern. Here, polyethylene insulation foam tubes are used for pattern-making. These foam tubes are easily cut, twisted, folded inside-out, bent and joined to form unique architectural components. In order to understand this casting technique, tests were carried out with insulation foam submerged in different types of sand, as well as the making of burnt-out moulds using plaster. Multiple tubes can be joined together to create nodes with branches at specific angles. This can be achieved using digitally fabricated frameworks as guides for various branching tubes. These nodes can easily be connected to standard, off-the-shelf tubular materials of different types. This fabrication method

is cost-effective and aluminum itself is lightweight and recyclable. Figs. 5&6.11 – 5&6.12 Wall system and table. With this fabrication technique, we propose a façade system at a large scale and objects at furniture-scale. The project is a rethinking of the relationship between the traditional crafts of metal casting and manual form-making, using digital guides. The boundary of architecture is understood here through process-based material experimentation.

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6


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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

5&6.13 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

5&6.14 Figs. 5&6.13 – 5&6.16 Cr[E]stal Copper deposition onto copper sheet. Using electric current, copper coils are dissolved and redeposited onto thin sheets of copper that are laser-cut and folded. Some areas of the copper sheets are protected to allow for these folded components to be joined together. The copper grown on the surface of the copper sheet is a form of ornamentation governed not by the designer’s hand but a chemical process. The overall design combines rules of growth pattern and computational, parametric design. This design project brings together chemical experiments, hands-on craft and advanced digital design. Figs. 5&6.15 – 5&6.16 In relation to digital research at an architectural scale, the focus of this project is rule-based digital modelling. Through digital means, crystal growth is translated into formal language. Some of the 60

systems explored include: thickness control system, diffusion-limited aggregation system, path system, projecting 2D to 3D system. The relationship between one-to-one experiments and digital modelling through simulation is investigated here, through construction components, to inform design at a larger scale.

MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6


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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6




Figs. 5&6.17 – 5&6.22 Fluid Deformation This project is based on an experimental casting process, pouring molten aluminium into a container filled with water crystal gel (water beads). By systematically controlling and guiding the flow of aluminium, the cast pieces can be both ornamental and functional. Unlike traditional metal casting, pouring fluid metal on water beads allows the metal to cool down and solidify instantaneously. The form is generated by liquid metal flowing into the spaces inbetween the soft and flexible water beads. The outcome is not always predictable but this very quality is also an opportunity for design. In order to guide the flow of the aluminium, we introduced a series of hollow timber components submerged in water beads within a larger container. Holes are also drilled into the timber for the

molten aluminium to occasionally escape and interact with the water beads. When molten aluminium is poured into multiple sections at the same time, the metal acts as a network, linking the timber pieces together. As such, the amorphous cast aluminium is not just ornamental but also acts as a joining mechanism. Figs. 5&6.21 – 5&6.22 Fluid Deformation Architecture. In order to scale up our experimental design technique, we propose using the timber elements as formwork. They can be removed to reveal a continuous aluminium building system.

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6




Figs. 5&6.23 – ­ 5&6.28 Composite | Skin This project creates a flexible and soft material system, a composite that resembles skin of a living creature. The core of this material system is a custom-designed and sewn lycra component. The sewing patterns are chosen from a series of performance-based paths and loops. These lycra components are then filled with polystyrene beads in a controlled manner using a vacuum pump. The final step involves coating the resulted component with clear liquid latex. After several coats, the lycra is transformed into a unique rubber-based material. This composite ‘skin’ is soft to the touch and yet tough and elastic. As a building material, it is lightweight, semi-rigid and self-supporting. The physical properties of this composite system can be exploited for waterproofing or insulation of

spaces. However, the outward appearance is more striking visually, and formally resembles the human body. The bulbous physicality is at once grotesque and unusually familiar. Its materiality engages with the senses at different levels, is spatially convoluted and formally rich.

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6


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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

5&6.29 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 5&6.29 ­– 5&6.33 Clay-Cuts This project uses two techniques for working with clay. One technique is using an industrial robotic arm to cut extruded hollow clay tubes; the other is slip casting. For the clay-cutting experiments, the extruded clay components are shaped by hand before the digital cutting process, squeezing and pinching the clay pieces while they are still malleable. A robotic arm equipped with a metal wire cutter shapes the clay blocks into components that are stackable like a conventional building system. The textural quality of the outcome is unique and to each block. In order to develop this architectural language further, we also slip-cast clay tubes of the same dimension using a digitally produced mould. The project aims to draw inspiration from the historical production of clay pipe-making with digital fabrication as a new

reference point. In both processes, clay extrusion and slip casting, the outcomes are hollowed-out clay components, lighter in weight compared to traditional architectural ceramic. This component-based approach seeks to find a new and yet familiar architectural language.


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5&6.34 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

5&6.35 Figs. 5&6.34 – 5&6.36 Clay Robotics Commissioned by the surface. The extruded clay texture is highlighted when glaze Victoria and Albert Musuem, students designed and fabricated gathers between lines of clay, which is unique to this robotic more than 2000 floor tiles for Adrian Friend’s refurbishment of deposition process. the museum’s main shop. Friend’s design aimed to emphasise the museum’s ethos of supporting the experimental production of artefacts. The project allowed us to pursue the making of these ceramic tiles not only as material exploration but also to pursue aspects of design in a more pragmatic way. It draws upon the outcomes of our research into 3D printing clay using a robotic arm carried out over the last three years, to propose a viable new ceramic product in architecture. The ceramic tiles delivered to the museum were 3D-printed with an industrial robotic arm but the glazes were applied by hand. The key design feature is the pattern and texture on the tile’s top 68

MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

5&6.37 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 5&6.37 – 5&6.41 Clay Robotics: Branching Clay and Clay Robotics: Minimal Clay After the completion of the floor tile project for the Victoria and Albert Museum, the group of eight students were divided into two groups of four to pursue two separate projects, Minimal Clay and Branching Clay. Both projects looked at how the robotic 3D printing process can be developed beyond deposition of horizontal layers of clay. By using plaster moulds and fully utilising the six axes of the robotic arm, the two groups designed and programmed the extrusion process to follow the digitally fabricated mould surfaces. Both projects also explore the possibility of slip casting to complement the robotic 3D printing process. This enables the casting of 3D-printed components, when it is suitable. Minimal Clay is a wall system; Branching Clay is a

lattice structural system. In collaboration with Clementine Blakemore, Minimal Clay will be exhibited at Florence Hall at the RIBA for a UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) event. For this exhibition, timber components will be joined together with the ceramic ones and retitled ‘Composite Assemblies’ to form an architectural and spatial installation.


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MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6


5&6.43 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

5&6.44 Fig. 5&6.42 TransFoam Aluminium casting at London Sculpture Workshop. Fig. 5&6.43 Clay-Cuts CNC milling of foam parts for slip-cast mould in the B-made workshop at The Bartlett. Fig. 5.44 Cr[E]stal Electroplating of copper. Fig. 5&6.45 Clay Robotics Slip casting at Grymsdyke Farm.



MArch AD Research Clusters 5 & 6

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BiotA Lab Lab Directors: Professor Marcos Cruz, Richard Beckett

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

BiotA Lab is an innovative design research platform that merges architecture, biology and engineering. The lab explores new modes of simulation and production in architecture, as well as advances in the field of synthetic biology, biotechnology, molecular engineering and material sciences, and how these subjects are leading towards an ever-increasing multidisciplinary approach to environmental design. The result is a new sense of materiality, new hybrid technologies and unprecedented living forms that are redefining not only building design, but our whole built environment. BiotA Lab’s work is produced between the design studio and laboratory, where innovative building systems are developed with the help of advanced computation. Modelling and simulation tools are implemented in parallel to material testing and organic growth in real laboratory conditions, providing feedback and data for the fabrication of construction components and prototypes. Students and researchers design, grow and build bio-digital prototypes that explore a new ecological model for architecture, responding to specific climates based upon the relationship between environmental conditions and the interfacial properties of materials with microorganisms. In opposition to the traditional complexities and highly costly ‘green architecture’, BiotA explores an alternative symbiosis between buildings and nature that is more computationally sophisticated, and far less costly for buildings in high-density cities. Members of the lab develop unique skills that bridge innovative computational design, materials, fabrication and laboratory protocols. This makes former students and researchers highly desirable in a wide range of architectural practices and laboratories with a particular focus on computational, ecological and bio-integrated design. The cross-collaborative nature of the work allows our students to work individually as cutting edge designers and as part of greater teams that 74

are exploring new design agendas that respond to the ever-increasing environmental challenges of cities. Work produced is also regularly exhibited and presented at international events. This academic year they have included ‘Biofabricate’, Parsons School of Design, New York; ‘SuperMaterial’, Building Centre, London; ‘Ecobuild’, London; Camley Street Nature Park, London; Royal Society, London; Norman Foster Foundation, Madrid; ‘BioTallinn’, Tallinn Biennale, Estonia. Our partners have included ZSL London Zoo; Transport for London; St Anne’s RC Primary School, London; Camley Street Nature Park, London. BiotA Lab includes students from Research Cluster 7 and the Bartlett PhD by Design programme who form part of an internal network of experts in environmentally-led design and novel applications of advanced biotechnologies in architecture, while also developing externallyfunded research.

Image: ‘Acoustic Poché’ (Research Cluster 7), wall prototype with moss growth


BiotA Lab Extreme Materiality Professor Marcos Cruz, Richard Beckett, Christopher Leung, Javier Ruiz

Students Xiao Cao, Marisa Dewi, Hao Ding, Eleni Mirella Dourampei, Sara Eljamal, Hoda Eskandar Nia, Lingyu Gou, Yuan Huang, Yi Li, Jeng-Ying Li, Shengtao Luo, Gang Mao, Leyi (Mia) Qi, Sung Min Rhee, Xu Si, Mu-Ching Tsai, Xinyu Wu, Idil Seren Yucel Inal, Bowen Zhang, Ziwei Zhao, Jian Zhou

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Student teams Acoustic Poché Yi Li, Sung Min Rhee, Xiao Cao, Leyi (Mia) Qi Xylematic Structures Jian Zhou, Lingyu Gou, Xinyu Wu, Gang Mao Bio Photovoltaics Yuan Huang, Hoda Eskandar Nia, Ziwei Zhao, Eleni Mirella Dourampei Bioluminescent Plateau Hao Ding, Jeng-Ying Li, Idil Seren Yucel Inal, Sara Eljamal, Marisa Dewi Bioreceptive Wall Xu Si, Bowen Zhang, Shengtao Luo, Mu-Ching Tsai Theory tutor Shneel Malik Thesis supervisors Paolo Bombelli, Paul Bavister, Mario Carpo, Gary Grant, Ruby Law, Shneel Malik, Sandra Manso Blanco, Luke Olsen, Brenda Parker, Peg Rawes, Nick Westby, Oliver Wilton Partners Paolo Bombelli, Cambridge University; Sofoklis Giannakopoulos, Tropos Design Lab; Brenda Parker, Biochemical Engineering, UCL Thanks to our critics and consultants Martyn Dade-Robertson, Claudia Pasquero, Vicente Soler


Research Cluster 7’s research lies at the crossroads of architecture, biology and engineering. This year students explored novel approaches towards a new paradigm of bio-digital design for extreme environments. Our aim is to pursue architecture that uses principles of biology combined with the latest computational methods for simulation and digital fabrication to create beautiful, usable, tangible, and economically viable building prototypes. Computation and digital simulations, including complex self-generative and procedural growth algorithms, were developed alongside material exploration and analogue making, to include all forms of digital fabrication. Topics this year revolved around themes including material and design engineering, bio-receptive design, environmental sustainability, new rules for structures, cell/tissue growth, novel architectural tectonics and large-scale fabrication. Over the year, students explored how these subjects are leading towards hybrid technologies and unprecedented living forms that are being integrated into our contemporary built environment. The ‘Acoustic Poché’ project explores the designed combination of clay and concrete as a wall condition which encourages the growth of photosynthetic micro-organisms, such as moss, on the substratum of the material. The combination of material, geometrical complexity and species growth produces a self-sustaining, acoustic-absorbent wall. ‘Xylematic Structures’ explores an architecture designed to accept and absorb moisture through a geometrical and material conditions, and delivers this moisture to designed areas of cryptogamic growth including mosses and smaller ferns on the surface of the architecture. The ‘Bio Photovoltaics’ project explores the integration of bio-photovoltaic algae and magnesium phosphate concrete to produce architectural prototypes: building façade elements that, through photosynthetic mechanisms of the species, can produce bioelectricity. ‘Bioluminescent Plateau’ is a bioreceptive urban thoroughfare project for the borough of Camden, London. The project uses the concept of a horizontal platform as a public space where urban greening is achieved through the growth of photosynthetic microorganisms, including bioluminescent mosses, fungi and microalgae as an architectural proposal exploring the intersections of biology and design. Finally, ‘Bioreceptive Wall’ explores the design of discreet bioreceptive components, with embedded moisture and nutrient delivery systems to augment the growth of photosynthetic micro-organisms, including mosses and lichens, on the substratum of the material, as a novel urban greening solution.

MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

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MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

7.2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

7.3 Fig 7.1 Acoustic Poché A bio- and audio-receptive wall for St Anne’s RC Primary School in South London. The wall encourages the growth of photosynthetic micro-organisms, such as moss, on the substratum of a clay and concrete composite. The branching geometries and material condition define growth areas (gaps) and non-growth area (outward branches). The inner structure is composed of five layers, from the back to front are concrete, clay-concrete, clay, clay-concrete, and concrete layer. The clay layer maintains water and directs moisture forward, out through the gaps to supply the moss. Figs. 7.2 – 7.4 Bioreceptive Wall The project uses discrete bioreceptive components, with embedded moisture and nutrient delivery systems, to augment the growth of photosynthetic micro-organisms, including mosses and 78

lichens, on the substratum of the material, to create as a novel urban greening solution. The components are cast with concrete and composed of glass-fibre-reinforced concrete (GRC) as a structural shell, bio-receptive magnesium phosphate concrete (MPC) as a growth substratum and a biopolymer nutrition layer for moss feeding.

MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

7.4 0.0


MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

7.5 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

7.6 Figs. 7.5 – 7.7 Bio Photovoltaics Located at ZSL London Zoo, the project explores the integration of bio-photovoltaic algae and MPC concrete to produce architectural prototypes as building façade elements that, through the photosynthetic mechanisms of the species, can produce bio-electricity. The project employs computational design, material experimentation, novel fabrication techniques and biological methodologies for the encapsulation of algae strains within a hydrogel matrix which can be robotically extruded onto bioreceptive concrete scaffolds. Fig. 7.5 Isolation of chlorella from site environment. Fig. 7.6 Robotic printing of hydrogel with encapsulated algae on to MPC substrate with carbon fibre strands. Fig. 7.7 Bio-photovoltaic prototype cast in MPC concrete. 80

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MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

7.8 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017


7.10 0.0 7.11 Figs. 7.8 – 7.11 Xylematic Structures Computational studies, driven by physical and environmental conditions explore three-dimensional branching systems that define both structural and water delivery pathways. These explorations are applied to an architecture designed to accept and absorb moisture through a geometrical and material conditions, and deliver moisture – through capilliary action – upwards, to designed areas of cryptogamic growth including mosses and smaller ferns on the surface of the architecture. Fig. 7.8 Vertical taxonomies explored as columns. Fig. 7.9 Taxonomies explored as chairs. Fig. 7.10 Environmental analysis of moisture movement for growth areas Fig. 7.11 Xylematic structure prototype for fabrication. 82

MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

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MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

7.12 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

7.13 Figs. 7.12 – 7.14 Bioluminescent Plateau A bioreceptive urban thoroughfare project for the borough of Camden, London. A horizontal platform forms a public space where urban greening is achieved through the growth of photosynthetic microorganisms, including bioluminescent mosses, fungi and microalgae. The project is made up of three main geometrical components that multiply and assemble to form multifunctional zones. The plateau itself consists of three main concepts for its inhabitants: functional walking spaces; biological growth zones; and seating and transitional areas. These differences areas are linked by material specifications and geometric gestures.


MArch AD BiotA Lab / Research Cluster 7

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017





Large City Architecture: Mereologies Daniel Koehler

Students Chen Chen, Leyla El Sayed Hussein, Rania Kaadan, Genmao Li, Wen Liu, Anqi Su, Zixuan Wang, Guangyan Zhu

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Project Teams Meros Rania Kaadan, Leyla El Sayed Hussein, Anqi Su Scendobia Wen Liu, Guangyan Zhu Wa(o)nderyards Chen Chen, Genmao Li, Zixuan Wang Theory Tutor Daniel Koehler Consultants Rasa Navasaityte, Christoph Zimmel Thanks to our critics Alisa Andrasek, Roberto Bottazzi, Mario Carpo, Tommaso Casucci, Stephen Gage, Frédéric Migayrou, Maj Plemenitas, Andrew Porter, Jose Sanchez, Casey Rehm


Research Cluster 8 investigates the effects and potential of digital practices at an urban scale. The concept of being urban – or in other words, of being situated in a city – takes on a new light when combined with the idea that the digital form of a city may be designed by pure quantity: data. Strangely, today’s abundance of information inverts the notion of an immaterialist city. Data becomes the missing link between the human and inhuman parts of the city, making things ‘talk’ by pointing to their origin and author: the technical being. Here the role of architecture becomes crucial, as digital cities are always localised in their quantities, their parts, and their designs. As plot, as compartment wall, as courtyard, as window: with digital representations the city is measured, regulated and moulded into explicit pieces of architecture. The encapsulation of ‘city’ into architectural parts turns common part-to-whole conditions upside down. With digital models, the city is articulated through physical parts of a building, and the building addresses the city. This phenomenon opens the possibility again to articulate the city with architecture. Mereologies We propose the term ‘mereology’, in contrast to the notion of typology, as a methodological framework to design an architectural object, not by reference to content or form, but by the resonance of its parts. Mereologies describe the condition of a building as a city from architectural parts. The three research projects outlined here consider compositional qualities on different scales, such as house of walls, house of rooms, and house of houses. ‘Meros’ investigated large building figurations of AI-driven wall figures based on vernacular building types in Southern China. Their research offers a digital reading of a house as a nesting of enclosures within datasets. ‘Wa(o)nderYards’ sampled courtyards as the classical void-room of a house. Focusing on occupational restrictions, their research shows how shifts of combinatorial granularity enable diversity through the repetition of simple room samples. ‘Scendobia’ reads the house through its spines: the stair, the corridor, and the escalator. Reading the house as quantitative access pattern, their research composes synthetic traffic parts via configurational learning algorithms.

MArch AD Research Cluster 8

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 8


8.3 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

8.4 8.5 Figs. 8.1 – 8.5 W(a)OnderYards The project builds on a collection of courtyard samples extracted from existing buildings. Opposed to the notion of a building’s void, here each sample examines a particular tension between the courtyard and its architectural elements, like its stairs, windows, floors, and roofs. In its repetition, this opens the opportunity to shift the granularity of occupational restrictions, like access, daylight and compartment size from a building’s mass to its parts. This research explores compositional arrangements of explicit part-conditions, termed as mereologies. Each mereology operates at a particular scale, to what we refer as its combinatorial granularity. By overlapping a range of combinatorial granularities spatially, we propose an arrangement at a specific site, the house of rooms. 88

Fig. 8.1 Part-to-part mereology. Computational cluster arrangement considering the occupational overlap between specific walls and floors of units distinct from each other. Fig. 8.2 Part-to-part, evaluative readings. Each coloured drawing counts a particular mereology purely quantitively. The second-from-left image shows the clustering of units to building compartments: one element per compartment is tagged with the colour black, white illustrates large compartments. The third image shows the condition between wall segments and floors, figured here via the number of accessible floors from each unit, blue indicating a separate unit, green highly connected units. The last drawing measures the sun insulation on windows: the red colour marks shadowed windows, a yellow window indicates minimum eight hours’ sun

MArch AD Research Cluster 8 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

8.5 insulation per day on average. Fig. 8.3 Whole-to-parts, sun study. The arrangement of rooms is ordinated to the specific to a particular sun-position on 21 March in Berlin. Left arrangement at 11.00am, middle at 13.00pm, right at 15.00pm. Fig. 8.4 Whole-to-whole arrangement. Generative arrangement from a local-ruleset-based repetition of three courtyard samples. Fig. 8.5 House of rooms, sectional drawing showing the programmatic diversity of an arrangement purely based on the mixture of several mereologies.


MArch AD Research Cluster 8

8.6 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

8.7 Figs. 8.6 – 8.7 W(a)OnderYards Fig. 8.6 Comparative rendering of the house of rooms in a city in the becoming: Medini, Malaysia. Fig. 8.7 Collection of courtyard samples from left to right: Azuma House by Sou Fujimoto, Santa Maria Warehouse by Guillo Architects, Inamori Auditorium by Tadao Ando, Galeria de Casa by Giugliani Montero, EJL Office by Gonzalez Moix Arquitectura, Escada Vazada de Concreto by Xavier Garcia, St. Stephens Church by Patrick Charles Keely, Casa La Sierra by AZ Architects, Gongwang Art Gallery by Wang Shu, Still Courtyard House by Apollo Architects, UnitÊ Habitation Marseilles by Le Corbusier, Villa la Roche by Le Corbusier, Habitate 67 by Moshe Safdie, Apollo School by Herman Hertzberger, Kessel-Lo House by NU Architectuur Atelier, T-Space by Steven Hall, House H by Sou Fujimoto, 90

V House by Abraham Cota Paredes Arquitectos, House I by Peter Eisenman, House NA, House Vision 2 by Sou Fujimoto, Kindergarten Cassarate by Bruno Fioretti Marquez Architekten, Nishinoyama House by Sanaa Architects.

MArch AD Research Cluster 8

8.8 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 8.8 – 8.15 Meros The project starts by looking at a vernacular building typical in rural areas in China, famously described as a ‘house of houses’. Re-reading its hierarchical setup as a house of walls, through the figurations of walls, the project challenges the scalability of clusters from wall, to room, to house, to settlement. By overlapping and nesting datasets the project defines different levels of circulation, convexity, visibility, navigation, and porosity. Connecting this methodology with a stochastic design approach between wall compositions and their combinatorial logic, the research establishes a computational learning model between programmatic encapsulation and formal expression. Figs. 8.8 – 8.10 Axonometric views of entirely computational figurations at the scale of a settlement. 91

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8.11 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

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Figs. 8.11 – 8.14 Meros Fig. 8.11 An alphabet of walls between units in their part complicities. The use of colour establishing a figurative syntax. Figs. 8.12 – ­ 8.13 The figure during the design process helped us to read types, sizes, and its figuration. Two examples from a stack of hundreds of proportions, ratios, and sequences of enclosures. computed figurations. Figures used as compositional parts are shown in the upper left corner. Each figuration is a result of the repetition of one single wall-figure. The intersection between the two scales, the figure and its figuration, allow it to conclude the performative qualities of the wall design itself, namely its level of enclosure, the sequence of enclosures and porosity. Fig. 8.14 House of walls, plan view. From walls to their relation to corridors, courtyards, stairs, adjoining rooms, compartments and other buildings inside the building, the plan shows a potential building figuration that encloses a street block. Each colour indicates an individual and differentiates 92

MArch AD Research Cluster 8

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch AD Research Cluster 8


8.16 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

8.17 Figs. 8.15 – 8.19 Scendobia The project re-reads the notion of a house through its infrastructural traffic. Measuring the navigation of a building using its composition, the research opens new possibilities for urban arrangements. Fig. 8.15 Collection of traffic samples, from left to right: Court House Garden by Coffey Architects, the commons by the DPA, National Gallery of Israel by Rafi Segal, Matan Mayer and Yonatan Cohen, Caixaforum Museum by Estudio Carme Pinós, beach stairs on Maasvlakte by Jan Konings, BBC Scotland by David Chipperfield, National Art Gallery of U.S. by I. M. Pei, S-House by Yuusuke Karasawa Architects. Fig. 8.16 Mereologies of traffic samples. Each composition consists of the repetition of a single part. The part considered as a whole becomes tangible by the recursive repetition of the theme. Fig. 8.17 Synthetic 94

navigation. Navigation as an architectural element is not counted here a priori, through the positioning of a shaft or staircase, but via the mean of all shortest and possible paths between all parts of one composition. With the use of statistical clustering and machine learning, a broad range of such compositions can be compared, weighted and projected as architectural elements. The drawings show compositional arrangements. The red lines indicate all the possible shortest connections between all the parts. Fig. 8.18 House of houses. This reading of navigation reverses the urban composition. The urban form of an architectural element is no longer bounded to the offset of an infrastructural skeleton. With synthetic tension between its parts, the architectural element profits from further extensions of its navigational state. Contrary to

MArch AD Research Cluster 8

8.18 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

8.19 the sectional cul-de-sac pattern of a gridiron city of the last century, such houses seek to attach and intertwine. The city becomes a house of houses. Here, houses are shown through their traffic parts only. Fig. 8.19 Comparable rendering of the house of houses.


Image: B-Pro Show 2016

MArch Urban Design

MArch Urban Design Programme Director: Professor Mark Smout

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Urban design is the study of cities, their form and nature and the complex challenges and opportunities of global urbanisation. Enduring themes, such as environmentalism, land use, population growth and culture inform and guide future development through innovative and creative design strategies. MArch Urban Design is a 12-month studio-based programme that continues to develop and adapt to emerging urban contexts. Students on the programme can choose to work within one of a broad variety of design research clusters that each specialise in different areas of research under the aegis of Urban Design. Each cluster (whose achievements are illustrated here), follows a unique approach with regular intellectual debate, creative exchange, and vibrant discussion. We have made changes this year to broaden the design themes and creativity that the course offers. Two new clusters have been formed: Research Cluster 12 with Luke Pearson and Sandra Youkhana, exploring cities through radical methods of representation and experimental distortions of media, in particular gaming environments; and Research Cluster 13, led by Sam Jacob and Eddie Blake, studying workspaces and the organisation of the city. These new clusters now complement our existing ones, which consider Big Data, housing, periurban landscapes and urban morphogenesis. The MArch Urban Design programme sits alongside the MArch Architectural Design and MSc/MRes Architectural Computation programmes within the overarching structure of B-Pro, led by Professor Frédéric Migayrou, Chair of the School of Architecture. In addition to dedicated teaching and support, the programmes are supported by complementary resources, such as open lectures, subject classes, project reviews, and publications. This year, once again, The Bartlett’s Banister Fletcher Visiting Lecturers, Dan Hill and Joseph Grima hosted a week-long ‘Incomplete 98

City’ workshop assisted by Marco Ferrari, Sandra Youkhana and Urban Design staff. The workshop engaged students from across all the clusters in intense collaboration and production. They were asked to create a city for a population of 12,000 as an evolving assemblage of small-scale ideas, neighbourhoods and infrastructural insertions. Incomplete City was manifested in a collage of mammoth proportions organised into an astonishing ‘city’ of interconnected handdrawings exemplifying networked urbanism, participative design, local urban cultures and alternative models of urban development. As Dan Hill says, ‘The city that emerged on the wall was a true spectacle: a vast, pasted-up, hand-drawn, densely packed town of 12,000 people, which you could stand back and admire, or get so close to that you could count each person and read each street sign.’

Image: Eleni Vagianou (Research Cluster 11), ‘Shifting Homelands’, 2017


The Only Way is Essex Sabine Storp, Patrick Weber

Students Xun Dong, David Guerrero Valenzuela, Minjia Hu, Stavros Kotsikas, Jakir Noor, Ashita Parekh, Stephen Pearcy, Eleni Pourdala, Maria Prodromou, Saood Shariff, Federica Terenzi, Eleni Vagianou, Shalhevet Visner, Xiaobing Zhou, Bowen Zuo Theory Tutor Rae Whittow-Williams The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Thanks to our critics and consultants Samon Adjei, Julia Backhaus, Margaret Bursa, Marta Granda Nistal, Johan Hybschmann, Safia Qureshi, Matt Springett, Paolo Zaide

For the second year running, Research Cluster 11 has been exploring East Tilbury in Essex as the site for a series of urban experiments. In the past Essex has been seen as ‘a place where utopias were imagined’.1 It has been the cradle for British Modernism with the company towns of Silber End and the Bata Estate in East Tilbury, the modernist town of Frinton-on-Sea, as well as iconic buildings like the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club in Burnham-on-Crouch. The whole region was at the forefront of modernist architecture and has been a testing ground for new, experimental community models. But, apart from these modernist gems, the rest of the building stock has been of a very poor quality and the area has suffered from a lack of a coherent planning and visionary urban design strategy. This year, we explored the areas around the old Bata Estate in East Tilbury. Our testbed has been the Negotiated City Table – a collective design tool to explore different design approaches played out against each other on an imaginary site. After this we travelled through India – starting with the step wells in Ahmedabad, the ship-breakers’ yards in Alang, the floating palaces of Udaipur, the fabric villages outside Jaipur, and finally Chandigarh, Le Corbusier’s vision of a modern city, with the embedded village of Burail. We like to cultivate the interests of individual students working on shared collective approaches, developing engaging new urban scenarios and fictions. There has to be a spirit of experimentation to evolve new ideas and concepts and students explore and test their own alternative urban experiments working on a variety of scales. The majority of projects put the communities at the heart of their speculative designs. In Research Cluster 11, the solutions are varied: they range from small-scale interventions into the existing fabric of the old Bata Estate, to community housing experiments, a floating community in the Thames Estuary, and a 2.5-kilometre-long and 500-metre-high independent city in the sky, harvesting the clouds and the wind.

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Fig. 11.1 The Negotiated City Urban interventions can’t be explored and designed in isolation; they are part of a complex network of interactions and negotiations inbetween each other, the inhabitants and users and the environmental conditions of the site. In this group project all students continued their own personal observations from the first stages of the year and started to play them out against each other on The Negotiated City Table. Starting with a negotiation of the territories’ ideas of sharing resources and spaces, various community engagements and specific spatial dependencies have been developed. This project has formed the foundation of the individual research plans and urban design approaches for the rest of the year. Fig. 11.2 Shalhevet Visner ‘Rising Saltwater Settlements’ is a design proposal for

the construction of high-rise settlements based in the future setting of 2109. New Tilbury sits on a coastal landscape, recognised by its extensive saltmarshes. The design project envisages a set of coastal towers creating a new type of inhabitation that responds to the dramatic shifts in environmental conditions. The new high-rise settlements, appearing as ‘vertical saltmarshes’, are designed to first house the population of East Tilbury and eventually the entire population of Essex, following the predicted flooding of the surrounding environment. This new type of inhabitation will grow into a Metropolitan city, functioning as a self-sufficient settlement constructed out of desalinated seawater, salt, and eelgrass. Humidity, light and nature are celebrated through the vertical urban landscape. Saltwater from the desalination


MArch UD Research Cluster 11 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

process drips down the eelgrass walls, modifying the towers and their surroundings and emphasising the fragility of our environment. Fig. 11.3 Minjia Hu ‘The City as a Playground’ project explores a playful approach to the site, interacting with the surroundings. A series of interventions are sought to explore the site through touch, smell, hearing and taste. These elements are placed within the vulnerable landscapes of the Thames Estuary, while using the concrete river walk wall as a structure to connect and ground the proposals in the floodplains. Fig. 11.4 Xiaobing Zhou ‘Climatic Clouding City‘ proposes a self-sustaining city, 2.5km long and 500m high. Within the city, the weather would be controlled by manipulating microclimatic factors, such as sun radiation, temperature, humidity and wind. Bringing the working and

living environments together, the project uses the Bata Estate in East Tilbury as its prototype. In ‘Climatic Clouding City’ each type of service system requires different environmental conditions or provides different types of climatic environments. The adaptability of the climatic environment assumes a central role in city planning in 2090, addressing the effects of urban heat islands and climate change.


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11.5 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Fig. 11.5 Federica Terenzi ‘Bata Town - Where things were different’. The proposal imagines a new, flexible user-generated public space, where front yards become the setting for the public and private to be mixed and shared in a continuous negotiation. By subverting boundaries and breaking rigid rules, the design proposes a toolkit to repair broken spaces, creating a new vision of the urban envinoment. Fig. 11.6 Stephen Pearcy ‘Indigenous Living’. The project explores a floating self-sustaining habitat in the Thames floodplain. The design proposes a solution to flooding, turning the presence of water into an opportunity to reconfigure and expand the urban environment. By providing basic infrastructure and key facilities, the design provides a framework for a more ephemeral urbanism to grow from.

Fig. 11.7 Jakir Noor ‘The East Tilbury Blue Zone’ explores the creation of an inhabited landscape for healthy living. The three main elements are shaped by the site’s landscape, biodiversity and the historic influence of the Bata Estate. Community gardens create social cohesion and improved diet, wetlands and flower meadows improve mental wellbeing and sport and recreation activities improve physical health. Fig. 11.8 David Guerrero Valenzuela ‘Scavenger City’ is a vertical settlement in which the community is imagined as expert scrappers and merchants. Using the tides, the marshes and the morphology of the River Thames they reuse, reduce and recycle obsolete ships in a shipbreaking landscape. The city is located along different artificial transport channels, where inhabited scrap towers are placed.


MArch UD Research Cluster 11

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MArch UD Research Cluster 11

11.9 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Fig. 11.9 Stavros Kotsikas ‘Common Delights in East Tilbury’. Can we reinvent the city through commons? Can the new commons have specific content, programme and form? The proposal develops the ideas of commons and the possibility to visualise their impact for the users. The proposal constitutes a network of small interventions with ‘common delights’ in East Tilbury, ten moments where you can share almost everything described with several programmes, sizes and different durations of time. Fig. 11.10 Bowen Zuo ‘The New Local High Street’. Throughout the centuries, high streets have constantly changed, adapting to economics, politics, technologies, and consumers’ preferences. The recent economic recession in the UK accelerated the pace of change, causing the closure of many retail stores. This project

addresses and questions the death of the local high street and solutions to revive it. Working against gentrification, the new local high street plays with the specific regional characteristics of Essex. Fig. 11.11 Xun Dong ‘The A.N.T. Collective’. This project proposes a new lifestyle for the city, which could support new neighbourhoods and communities. Through an investigation into the Ant Tribe’s living conditions in China, the Alternative Network Territory city is proposed – a new model of high-density, shared-living communities.


MArch UD Research Cluster 11 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

11.12 Fig. 11.12 Eleni Vagianou ‘Shifting Homelands’. This project explores how the contemporary ‘minimum home’ and its flexible typology can compose a whole new city in Essex; a city as the result of the minimum inhabitated space which grows according to the users resources, length of stay, needs and habits. The proposed ‘minimum home’ is a product of an ever-changing construction, which starts as a small structural service core and is developed over time to suit the household financially and socially. Through additions or subtractions of customised plug-in spaces, the results are multiple layers of memory embodied within the core. The produced living units, supported by an exterior circulation space, are ‘trapped’ in the main structure and, as time passes, the private spaces are extended through the structural façade. A common ‘memory

façade’ is used to store personal objects in order to be used by the inhabitants and, subsequently, this dynamic ‘wall’ becomes a mirror of the community’s everyday life, supported by additional public spaces at the centre of the cross. In the long term, the proposed structures aspire to become a new urban fabric, tested against the mudflats of the Thames and the high flood risk. A new housing system, adapted to the ever-changing landscape of Essex, integrates both the landscape and the ‘individual’ memories expressed in the never-ending ‘minimum home’ making process.


MArch UD Research Cluster 11

11.13 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Fig. 11.13 Maria Prodromou ‘Living Pool’ proposes how people could live together in the future, challenging existing norms of habitation and questioning the role of individual housing and domestic spaces. The proposal examines collaborative ways of living, envisioning a new lifestyle based on the concept of sharing as a form of luxury rather than a compromise. ‘Living Pool’ is a manual for a shared future. Fig. 11.14 Ashita Parekh ‘Waste-Land’ explores the idea of Essex being the ‘dumping ground of London’. It challenges the notion of ‘waste’ through an urban design that places waste at the core of creating a new type of socio-economic communal model for living. The proposal makes use of the immense waste resources to create an autonomous society, a prototype for an inhabited landfill. Fig. 11.15 Saood Shariff ‘BATA-Pol’ looks at the self-sustaining

housing clusters in Ahmedabad, which showcase strong social and cultural bonds, bringing together people of similar likes and interests in shared courtyards, places of worship, communal kitchens, etc. The BATA-Pol project demonstrates the new strategies obtained from these ideas. Fig. 11.16 Eleni Pourdala ‘New Pilot Cities’ examines cities as growing organisms, presenting a test ground for the investigation of different types of urban growth. It addresses urban design on various scales, from the individual property and its relationship with the public or shared space, to the neighbourhood and its connection to the city. It speculates on the potential pattern of growth for the future development and expansion of the model, and suggests that we should invest in more experimental projects.


MArch UD Research Cluster 11

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




Back Up City Luke Caspar Pearson, Sandra Youkhana

Students Daniel Avilan Medina, Lu-Ming Chen, Ruxin (Ashley) Chen, Yi (Tintin) Ding, Aradhana Kapoor, Yilin Li, Zhibei (Mica) Li, Min (Alice) Liu, Zhou (Damon) Lu, Sanjana Samant, Shenghan (Hanna) Wu, Wentong (Aran) Xu, Hanrui (Iris) Zhang, Meiwen Zhang, Siyao Zhang Theory Tutor David Roberts The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Thanks to our critics and consultants Laura Allen, Ping-Hsiang Chen, Christina Dahdaleh, Chris Delahunt, Octavian Gheorghiu, Johanna Just, Ness Lafoy, Brook Lin, Gareth Damian Martin, Frédéric Migayrou, Agostino Nickl, Andrew Porter, David Roberts, Luke Scott, Mark Smout

Research Cluster 12 makes video games. Through game spaces we undertake conceptual and fictional design projects as a critical tool to shed light on the complexities of real cities. Our work challenges the conventional means by which cities are planned, designed, represented and experienced. This year we explored the idea of ‘backing up’ a city. We mainly use the verb ‘back up’ to describe making digital duplicates of work for safekeeping, but it might also mean someone coming to our assistance, or retreating from a position once held. New technologies can transcribe entire cities into digital simulations, but we can also preserve their nature through fictional narratives and creative reinterpretations. What is retained and what is lost in a backup has the power to make arguments about our cities and what they mean to us. Game technologies offer designers the ability to dream of new worlds and allow others to experience them as navigable environments. They also offer ways to simulate and prise apart the complexities of the contemporary, hyper-connected city. But game spaces, like any fictional city, are selective and subjective versions of reality. We began by investigating object-scale backups – extending these into methods of preservation for culture and cities. In our second project, ‘RC12 Plays LA’, we introduced the video game as a critical tool for scrutinising urban conditions in response to field work conducted in Los Angeles. Games were used as a tool to collapse the urban environment with the innumerable representations and characterisations of itself. Returning to London, we use games to explore the future of our city and allow the player into our speculative worlds. We use games to pose provocative questions about London’s future. Will the city become a complete surveillance state, with citizens in a constant dance to avoid ubiquitous tracking devices? What if Londoners used augmented reality technologies and the digital economy to ‘opt-in’ to EU membership through e-Citizenships? Might planning notices be reinvented as participatory building environments, or could the whole of London be connected into a giant video game, allowing citizens to shape their city through the playful use of smart technologies? Each of our game spaces invites you into futures yet to come.


MArch UD Research Cluster 12

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Research Cluster 12



The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

12.4 Fig. 12.1 Daniel Avilan Medina, Yi (Tintin) Ding, Sanjana Samant ‘RC12 Plays LA: Consumption’. In this game world, Los Angeles is seen as a city of consumable iconography. As the player navigates through the city, distracted by a series of disorientating landscapes in search of LA’s ‘temples of consumption’, they consume image after image and Los Angeles is rebuilt around them as a series of encounters. The famous sign at Norm’s Diner – its Googie iconography memorably captured by Ed Ruscha – emerges from a soup of symbols to form a new urban monument. The wandering player is drawn through a facsimile Los Angeles where the cultural influence of brands and icons starts to shape the morphology of the city. As they trek up the hill towards the Griffith Observatory and turn to face the city, its logic 112

becomes clear, all this time the player has been twisting and turning through the boulevards and promenades their journey has been tracing a giant set of ‘golden arches’, the McDonald’s logo, a Californian institution and owner of arguably the most recognisable global icon. Figs. 12.2 – 12.4 Zhibei (Mica) Li, Shenghan (Hanna) Wu, Meiwen Zhang ‘The Playable Planning Notice’. This video game challenges the limitations of the UK’s standard Planning Notice by creating a virtual environment that invites the public to propose their own interventions within the limitations stipulated by the planning notice. Using a series of live planning applications across Camden as different levels within the game, a modular toolkit of parts is given to the player, offering physical variables to vague terminology such as ‘plinth’, ‘bust’, and ‘works’. What types of weird and

MArch UD Research Cluster 12

12.5 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

12.6 wonderful structures would still accord to the brief and nebulous description a passerby might read on the laminated papers we see on lamp posts across London? Having submitted their creations for ‘planning approval’, players are invited to upload their proposals, sharing all the alternative futures that might exist within the subjective language of a laminated A4 sheet. These are then shared on site through social media and as an augmented reality overlay, changing how the design of cities is communicated to its citizens. Figs. 12.5 – 12.6 Ruxin (Ashley) Chen, Yilin Li, Zhou (Damon) Lu ‘Welcome to E-London.’ In response to Britain’s Brexit vote, this video game explores the concept of ‘E-Citizenship’, allowing British residents to opt in to Europe through augmented reality. The player experiences a day in the life of a modern Briton,

oscillating between the grey drudgery of a depleted post-Brexit nation, and the exciting connections to Europe manifested only in the digital realm: chintzy tea rooms morph into after-hours Italian caffès and a trip to hospital involves digital consultations with European specialists and remote surgery. Inspired by Estonia’s ‘E-Residency’ programme and the EU’s Digital Single Market initative, the game proposes that emerging technologies could reinvent the concept of national borders and challenge isolationist culture. The surreal world of the game is framed as a ‘demo’: E-London citizens would subscribe to their European connection, like they would for a mobile phone or broadband package. Wearing their ‘Flag of Europe’ glasses, E-Londoner citizens would see more than the Brexiters they share the physical world with. 113

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Figs. 12.7 – ­ 12.10 Ruxin (Ashley) Chen, Yilin Li, Zhou (Damon) Lu ‘RC12 Plays LA: Homestead’. Inspired by Reyner Banham’s writings on Los Angeles houses as homesteads, this video game proposes an alternative series of case study houses that adapt in response to the lifestyle of a modern-day Angelino. A strange new suburbia is created as the player wanders through the neighbourhood altering each house to become greener, sunnier, higher, shadier, more profitable, and even more ‘Instagrammable’. As each house is activated by the player, surrounding buildings inherit their morphology, resulting in a twisted suburbia that grows around the actions of the protagonist. Figs. 12.11 - 12.13 Yi (Tintin) Ding, Min (Alice) Liu, Hanrui (Iris) Zhang ‘Smart Democracy’. This video game proposes that Smart City technologies could be liberated

from the controlling interests of corporations and integrated into a city-wide system for democratic expression. ‘Smart Democracy’ presents a near future where ultra-connected citizens influence their city through a giant urban-scale game environment, communicating their desires and concerns directly to the Mayor himself. Yet playing the game from the perspective of Sadiq Khan, we see the other side of the coin: how can one distinguish the signal in all the digital noise our contemporary cities create? Can smart glass, pollution sensing beacons, or even energy harvesting flying pigs be the secret to a happier London? The game places the player in a quandary, between a future where smart technologies will have an undoubted utility and the incessant need for informational satisfaction we inheret from social media.


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0.0 12.15 Figs. 12.14 – 12.15 Lu-Ming Chen, Min (Alice) Liu, Hanrui (Iris) Zhang ‘RC12 Plays LA: Lost Angeland’. In this video game the player uncovers the historical narrative of LA’s changing landscape, from the man-made to the natural, charting the city’s course from its establishment in 1781 to the present day. By utilising three different tools – ‘greening’ for planting, ‘greying’ for construction and ‘piggy’ for extra-investment – the player is able to terraform their own version of LA by developing land as they please. As history passes over the course of four minutes before the game ends in 2017, the player has the opportunity to create a unique version of Los Angeles given over entirely to development, to return it to the primordial soup of the oil field, or to morph it into what Reyner Banham called a ‘reasonable facsimile of Eden’. 116

Fig. 12.16 Lu-Ming Chen, Wentong (Arun) Xu, Siyao Zhang ‘Decloning Clone Town’. This video game draws on research by the Nef think-tank, which identifies the increasing ubiquity of branded stores on high streets as a cause of lost identity and the ‘clone town’ condition, where everywhere looks alike. The game gives us a tongue-in-cheek experience of the market forces pushing the high street into banal ubiquity. Presented with a London high street, players must manically click to try and stop the inexorable growth of brands across the storefronts. Brands grow from typical shop fronts into palaces of cloned consumerism unless beaten back by the clicking of a mouse. Unless the player is extremely quick, they are quickly overwhelmed by clone town, and trying to fight it off becomes a Sisyphean task doomed to failure.

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12.18 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

12.19 Fig. 12.17 Shenghan (Hanna) Wu ‘Backup Bit: Eduardo Paolozzi’s Tiles’. This video game recreates Tottenham Court Road Underground Station as a virtual space where visitors are able to explore Eduardo Paolozzi’s remaining murals as curious digital caves. Paolozzi’s tiled murals, transcribed into pixels, then become voxelised spaces where architectural space and image space are collapsed. Fig. 12.18 Shenghan (Hanna) Wu, Wentong (Arun) Xu, Siyao Zhang ‘RC12 Plays LA: Autopia’. Inspired by Reyner Banham’s writing about LA as an ‘autopia’, and the Disneyland attraction of the same name, this game imagines a city given over entirely to the logic of the car. The player must live out their daily lives by driving their vehicle around the city but never leaving the wheel. Living, working and playing are all subsumed into the logic of road systems,

challenging our use of networks in the city today. Fig. 12.19 Aradhana Kapoor, Zhibei (Mica) Li, Meiwen Zhang ‘RC12 Plays LA: Ether’. This game takes the player on a route through Los Angeles as a city of ‘ether’ – the term for ineffable cultural power, first coined by Hardt and Negri. The game space becomes a virtual embodiment of the city as inspired by Thom Andersen’s ‘Los Angeles Plays Itself’ documentary: the player navigates through a series of filmic recreations of LA, all the different ways in which the city has been represented to the rest of the world through ether. Picking up symbolic tokens from each scene of LA’s many filmic forms, the player navigates through trails of popcorn to piece together a landscape that seems like a city we know but is very far from reality. 117

MArch UD Research Cluster 12 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

12.20 Figs. 12.20 – 12.21 Daniel Avilan Medina, Aradhana Kapoor, Sanjana Samant ‘Snooper’s Charter’. This video game imagines a near-future London as a surveillance state that has spiralled out of control and now examines every facet of its citizens’ lives at all times. As the hero of the game, the player controls a faceless hacker, fighting to preserve their identity against all the technologies encroaching on their privacy. The game space is developed in response to research examining technologies of surveillance, past, present and future, and the way they are continuing to shape our lives. Will the citizen of the near future be in a state of perpetual tension, worried that giving out the wrong snippet of information that could end their career or friendships? As the player navigates the open-world city they must move in a choreography responding 118

to all the ways they may be seen, from a security camera at a station, to an RFID in a bank card, through to facial recognition software in a supermarket and drone imagery. By co-opting these technologies of control, the player can start to wrest back the city’s overarching powers and start ‘liberating’ areas of London from the all-seeing eye. The player hacks the city through a series of ‘mini-games’, using drones to graffiti buildings, interfering with security cameras or hiding buildings from satellite imagery. The game moves between an aerial view and both first- and third-person perspectives – between the view of tracking and position and the view of human experience – showing the city through the eyes of a citizen as well as through all the inumerable technological ‘eyes’ that regulate our modern cities.

MArch UD Research Cluster 12

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




Work is a Four-Letter Word Eddie Blake, Sam Jacob

Students Anna Axaopoulou, Tasneem Cassim, Shan Chen, Juan Pablo Duarte Macaya, Wenjie Gao, Xingui Kang, Yuexin Liu, Saurabh Mhatre, Ge Mu, Stella Papaspyrou, Frederik Springer, Hong Wan Tong Theory Tutor Amica Dall Teaching Assistants Felicity Barbur, Chloe Lean The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Thanks to our critics and consultants George Bruce, Sumuyya Khader, John McElgunn, Mike Misiewicz, Sara Pereira, Clayton Reeves


This year’s research revolves around the idea of work. At a time when the technologies, structures and deep economics of work are undergoing rapid change, we are engaging in urgent speculation on the possibilities of what workspace might mean now – and how architecture and design might help us to imagine its future. Traditional jobs for life are disappearing, replaced by new patterns of work with flatter hierarchies and portfolio careers. The rise of the ‘precariat’ (a term applied both to those on the hipster fringes of the creative industries and people on zero-hour contracts) has a deep impact on the way our cities work. With flexibility comes with uncertainty and deregulation. We investigate and speculate on the new urban and spatial consequences of this 21st-century condition. Economic changes have a profound effect on the types of places and spaces that we work in. The traditional office is no longer fit for purpose. Workspace is having to evolve fast, and we’re helping it evolve faster! While the cluster looks to the near future, our research is grounded in the history of workspaces. We have looked at the lineage of workspaces: from reconstructions of Iron-Age settlements, to monasteries and universities; from early forms of ideal settlements like New Lanark, to examples of philanthropic industrialism like Bournville, to late 20thcentury examples such as call centres and to the spaces of the new economy – Amazon distribution centres or co-working makerspaces. All of this grounds our speculation. We have considered the wider consequences of work and its effect on the city: how workspaces have organised the city. Downtown, industrial estates, business parks are all urban configurations of work, as are London’s East and West Ends – and out to the suburbs and dormitory towns. Research Cluster 13 presents speculative drawings that propose new forms of organisation. The drawings are tools that allow the projects’ politics to be explored through form, space and materiality, rather than as an add-on. They draw on the history of architectural representation as well as fine art references, but they create works that are completely of our own time. The work marries explosive and striking representational approaches with conceptual and critical approaches. The drawings become arguments and manifestos themselves, far more than illustrations. They are powerful statements where the aesthetic becomes the meaning and the architecture.

MArch UD Research Cluster 13

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Research Cluster 13

13.2 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

13.3 Fig. 13.1 Ge Mu ‘Spatialise the Dream’. The city of Racine becomes the ultimate destination of the Amercian Dream. This project looks at how inextricably linked ideas of progress and production are. With Frank Lloyd Wright and John Hejduk as references, the project imagines a globalised American future, examining in depth how productivity forms a central component of the American landscape and urban as well as the American political experiment. Figs. 13.2 – 13.3 Anna Axaopoulou ‘Connected Lives: Work and Leisure in the Post-digital Era’. In this drawing, André le Nôtre smashes into Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe, as a way of understanding how leisurisation might proliferate in the post-Fordist landscape. The project proposes a near-future London where work has vanished. Fig. 13.4 Hong Wan Tong ‘An Office for Social Media 122

Influencers’. Ipswich is the backdrop for this proposal, which takes Norman Foster’s 1975 Willis Faber & Dumas Building as both the conceptual and physical site. The scheme is an exploration of the future of the office, where production shifts from service industries to content farming. The proposal extrudes and adapts the canonical piece of office design, subverting the mode of office work and turning the space into an ever-changing backdrop for influencers.

MArch UD Research Cluster 13

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Research Cluster 13




The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017


Figs. 13.5 – 13.8 Frederik Springer ‘Recovered Rocks’. This series of drawings envisage a near-future scenario where unemployment has been replaced by endless confidence and skill-building Sisyphean tasks; where petting zoos have taken over the meat markets and being ‘fit for work’ is more important than actually working.


MArch UD Research Cluster 13 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

13.9 Fig. 13.9 Anna Axaopoulou ‘Connected Lives: Work and Leisure in the Post-Digital Era’. A kaleidoscopic study of Soane’s Bank of England.


MArch UD Research Cluster 13

13.10 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

13.11 Fig. 13.10 Juan Pablo Duarte Macaya ‘Vernacular Architecture Museum’. An early gridscape study looking at the composition of urban scales. Fig. 13.11 Yuexin Liu ‘Port Sunlight - Soap Experience’. Digital image. An early study, kaleidoscopically collaging the pre-historic longhouse, the original live-work unit, with Andy Warhol’s Factory. Fig. 13.12 Tasneem Cassim ‘Manufacturing the Museum’. This axonometric drawing explores an abstract spatial organisation of a museum in an urban context, which developed into a proposal for a new Tate-sponsored museum. The provocative scheme explores the relationship between the culture industry, transatlantic slavery and late 20th-century Liverpool.



MArch UD Research Cluster 13

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017


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13.14 Fig. 13.13 Wenjie Gao ‘Workplaces Create New Social Centre’. An abstracted leisure landscape in the form of a grid, potentially extending to the horizon. Fig. 13.14 Shan Chen ‘Delirious Fountains Abbey’. Examining the abbey complex as megastructure, this drawing explores the urban potential of Fountains Abbey, a site for contemporary reuse Fig. 13.15 Wenjie Gao ‘Workplaces Create New Social Centre’. This grid study sits somewhere between Brian Eno’s ‘Music for Airports’ and an endless suburbia.



MArch UD Research Cluster 13

13.16 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

13.17 Fig. 13.16 Xingui Kang ‘Cooperative (Housekeeping)’. The inevitable rise of the robots is explored in this proposal, which is concerned with the urban implications of domestic labour. Fig. 13.17 Saurabh Mhatre ‘Cambourne Content Farm’. A fantasy landscape where no-one ever does any work.



Big Data City: From the Material to the Urban Roberto Bottazzi, Kostas Grigoriadis

Students Siyu Chen, Yu Ge, Shiqi Hu, Zhechun Hu, Alican Inal, Jingwen Li, Yanzhong Li, Rashed Mohammed Almansoori, Xuefeng Shang, David Sparemblek, Siqi Wang, Yanqi Wang, Shiyu Xiong, Siyu Zhang, Tianyuan Zuo

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Student teams Synesthete City Yu Ge, Alican Inal, Yanzhong Li Beneath the Ground Siyu Chen, Shiqi Hu, Yanqi Wang, Tianyuan Zuo Acid Rain Jingwen Li, Rashed Mohammed Almansoori, Xuefeng Shang, Siyu Zhang Flowscape Zhechun Hu, David Sparemblek, Siqi Wang Urban Sponge Shiyu Xiong Teaching assistants Monica Cristu, Adam Holloway Theory tutor Annarita Papeschi Thanks to our critics and consultants Stefania Boccaletti, Susannah Hagan, Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Daniel Koehler, Sofia Krizimi, Enriqueta Llabres-Valls, Frédéric Migayrou, Claudia Pasquero, Andrew Porter, Mark Smout Special thanks to Tom Brooks, Jeg Dudley, Jeroen Janssen


Research Cluster 14 explores the role of Big Data in urban design. Big Data – commonly defined as the possibility to aggregate and mine large datasets by employing computers – is often understood as a series of abstract techniques without spatial or visual qualities. Research Cluster 14 challenges this perception by developing an applied research agenda in which the capabilities provided by increasingly powerful computation to mine data are utilised to question the role of urban design in the light of the ever-thinning distinction between man-made and natural environments. We live in the age of the Anthropocene, the recently discovered geological stratum resulting from the overwhelming influence of human actions on the earth and its biosphere. In this scenario, environmental phenomena such as global warming can no longer be seen as simply ‘natural’ but rather produced by human actions tampering with climatic factors. Previously stable, ‘reductionist’ binaries such as natural/artificial or subject/object melt away and, similarly, linear causality gives way to a more complex, fluid, open, incomplete, encompassing ways to account for the transformations of the urban environment. The consequences of these observations for urban design can be profound. Received notions of type, programme, site, representation, and the purpose of human habitation in such environments, all need questioning. This year the studio concentrated on the Lea Valley, a vast and complex area situated in East London which is undergoing a process of profound transformation. Within a short distance, one of the country’s largest shopping malls, the new UCL campus, major architectural landmarks, large housing complexes, and a vibrant art community – mostly located in Hackney Wick – are linked together by a series of major urban infrastructures, making this area a laboratory to study and speculate on the issues of the post-industrial city. Each project transforms a specific environmental condition – such as water, sound, wind or geology – into materials around which to shape urban proposals. The environment is understood as a dynamic, volumetric construct operating at multiple scales: computational analysis and design not only allows us to produce maps to ‘see’ the site differently, but also to co-design it in conjunction with forces whose complexity far exceeds the power designers have to control them.

MArch UD Research Cluster 14

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Research Cluster 14

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Figs. 14.1 – 14.7 Synesthete City The project aims to rebalance the relation between urban environments and sound. No longer perceived as a problem to simply eliminate by erecting structures, buildings and public spaces are here composed to control and modulate the sonic experience in cities. This is achieved not only by distributing buildings and open spaces, but also through a series of vertical columns. This principle, known as sonic crystal array, allows us to gradually diffuse noise without deploying sound barriers. Fig. 14.1 Physical models exploring different configurations of sonic crystal array. Fig. 14.2 Particle simulations were employed from the very beginning of the research in order to understand buildings and infrastructures from the point of view of sound. Fig. 14.3 The team took 420 onsite recordings

throughout the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, which were digitally analysed to compose an acoustic landscape for the whole site. This quickly became a tool to not only manipulate the acoustic conditions of certain areas, but also to speculate on how sounds could be redistributed in the future. Fig. 14.4 Rapid-propotyped physical model showing the whole proposal. Fig. 14.5 Computational studies exploring the spatial potential of sonic array patterns for outdoor spaces. Fig. 14.6 Study for a tile system: the density, orientation, and materiality of each tile directly responds to the datasets generated through digital simulations. Fig. 14.7 Overall view of a part of the proposal.


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Figs. 14.8 – 14.11 Beneath the Ground Geological data are employed to propose a new, soft method to remediate polluted grounds. Instead of deep excavations and large concrete slabs, the ground is remediated through slow excavation, based on digital models of the pollutants in the ground and by planting mycelium. Small rovers remove the more superficial pollutants, whereas the pilings take care of the deeper ones. The process is deliberately slow, making the conversion of the landscape a spectacle in itself. The structures already present onsite are reconverted into greenhouses, growing the very plants that will complete the landscape: the project is conceived as closed loop. Fig. 14.8 Physical model of the proposal: the existing industrial structures are stripped down and occupied by hydroponic gardens and laboratories

monitoring the remediation process. Figs. 14.9 – 14.10 Laser-cut models of the proposal. The landscape is conceived as a volumetric construct of data: geological, environmental, and biological. Fig. 14.11 Diagram showing the pattern of excavation followed by the rovers. According to the distribution of pollutants in the ground, the algorithm determines the shortest path, directly determining the morphology of the landscape.


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Figs. 14.12 – 14.17 Acid Rain The project imagines a series of urban interventions harvesting rainwater, protecting buildings from the effects of acidity whilst generating small microclimates for public use. Rather than a single proposal, students conceived a system that can be deployed and adapted to both existing spaces and empty plots. The formal and material articulation of these roofs is not only directly shaped by data, but also gives expression to the complexity and richness of water-related phenomena in the city. Fig. 14.12 The rendering shows three interventions in which a large roof spans to connect a series of buildings and infrastructures in Hackney Wick. Fig. 14.13 By overlaying digital simulations on rain precipitations, solar exposure, and wind pressure, the panels on each roof are greatly diversified: not only in terms of

performance, but also material, colour, and transparency. Fig. 14.14 Each proposal not only responds to environmental scenarios but also addresses prototypical urban conditions. The roof system is tested in three separate locations: a public space in Hackney Wick connecting existing buildings, a new structure adjacent to Here East, and finally the refurbishment of a public infrastructure (a school). Fig. 14.15 Physical models test the various structural arrangements for the roofs. The subdivision pattern is directly generated from the datasets of the digital simulations. Fig. 14.16 Detail showing the great diversity and differentiation in the articulation of the roofs. Fig. 14.17 Digital simulation of wind pressure on Hackney Wick.


MArch UD Research Cluster 14

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14.19 0.0 Figs. 14.18 – 14.19 Flowscape The project utilises data on water pollution and biodiversity to speculate on what the future of production will be in the Lea Valley. Rather than the hard industries that have shaped the identity of this part of London, students proposed a form of soft production based on natural filtering, algae, and small cultivations. The course of the canals is diverted to flood part of the site. The landscape is organised through a series of prototypes which help to control the speed of water. The deployment of the full catalogue also allows us to insert spaces for the community, not only to enjoy the landscape but also to cultivate it. Fig. 14.18 Digital simulation of flooding pattern and distribution of potential pollutants. Fig. 14.19 Overall view of the proposal: a series of pathways connects the two sides of the park. 138

MArch UD Research Cluster 14


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Fig. 14.20 Urban Sponge The proposal consists of a series of interventions in order to clean the water pollution in the canals crossing the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. A series of bridges is strategically placed to act as filters: rather than the deck, it is the morphology and arrangement of the pillars that constitute the key element of these structures. Overall rendering of the proposal spanning across two canals. Fig. 14.21 Flowscape + Urban Sponge Data analysis of the conditions of the water in the canal system of the park. Fig. 14.22 Urban Sponge Physical models of the various components of the bridges: decks and pillars.


Urban Morphogenesis Lab Lab Director: Claudia Pasquero

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Urban Morphogenesis Lab experiments with the application of recent scientific findings in unconventional computing to explore multi-scalar realms of architecture and urban design. The aim of its research agenda is to mobilise artificial and biological intelligence in search of a new mode of reasoning, therefore designing within a complex milieu where multiple degrees of stability, instability, as well as diversity, coexist. The shift towards biological intelligence allows us to engage with the current disconnection between matter, information and energy, transforming the act of designing. This raises the possibility of hacking into natural as well as artificial morphogenetic processes in real time, creating novel realms of activity.   Methodologically, the lab operates within a speculative assemblage of objects that we have termed ‘Objects with Universal Relevance’ (OUR). Each OUR aims to enable novel tactics of interaction to emerge, where diffuse models, supported by collective intelligence and distributed spatial memory, suggest universal strategies of intervention. Bottom-up and top-down models of planning become obsolete methods in the wake of OUR. Urban Morphogenesis Lab adopts synthetic design methods – biological and computational, analogue and digital – to draw terrains for negotiation between strategic and tactical forms of intervention. Algorithmic coding enables both the autonomous speculative operation of computation as well as the study of biological models by experimenting and testing with iterative, adaptive and resilient design solutions applicable to a broader eco-social domain. In this sense, the lab generates a multiplicity of responses and effects at scales ranging from the molecular to the territorial, from the quasi-instantaneous to the geological. Recent projects include ‘Solana Open Aviary’ for the Venice Biennale 2016, ‘SuperMaterial’ at the Building Center in London, EXPO Astana’s ‘BioTechHut’ exhibition, 140

the Architectural Biennale of Tallinn, ‘bioTallinn’, as well as a commission for the FRAC Center in Orléans. The Urban Morphogenesis Lab has established a long-lasting collaboration with the European Space Agency exploring the application and algorithmic reading of data from their new satellites Sentinella1, Sentinella2 and Sentinella3 to the architectural and urban design context.

Image: ‘AirFlow BioPlastic’ exhibited at the Building Centre as part of the ‘SuperMaterial’ exhibition, 2017


Urban Morphogenesis Lab Polycephalum City Claudia Pasquero with Tommaso Casucci, Filippo Nassetti

Students Bowen Dong, Shiyi Dong, Hanke Jiang, Yadi Kang, I-Ting Lien, Tianyu Liu, Yu Liu, Jiangmin Qiu, Taraneh Sahban, Chang Su, Hong Su, Chen Wang, Qinlin Wang, Chong Yao, Chi Yu, Heng Zhou

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Student teams Bio.Fibre Hong Su, Qinlin Wang, Heng Zhou Microbial Cellulose Shiyi Dong, Taraneh Sahban, Chi Yu Myco-Binder Bowen Dong, Hanke Jiang, Chong Yao BioPlastic Tianyu Liu, Jiangmin Qiu, Chang Su, Chen Wang S.ALT Yu Liu, Yadi Kang, I-Ting Lien Theory Tutor Emmanouil Zaroukas Thanks to our critics and consultants Roberto Bottazzi, Mario Carpo, Marcos Cruz, Zachary Fluker, Sara Franceschelli, Daniel Koehler, Maria Kuptsova, Guan Lee, Frédéric Migayrou, Ricardo De Ostos, Claudia Palma, Annarita Papeschi, Marco Poletto, Andrew Porter, Mark Smout, Melissa Sterry, Marco Vanucci, Mike Weinstock, Daniel Widrig Special thanks European Space Agency


This year, Research Cluster 16 speculates on the future of a set of urban territories located politically on the borders of Europe (Tallinn, London, Ulcinj) and ecologically at the intersection of natural and artificial landscapes. We carried out our research within an agenda that addressed issues of morphogenesis and metabolisms through a multispectral methodology that we named ‘Polycephalum City’. It aimed to mobilise conventional and unconventional computing methods at scales from the micro-biological to the planetary, to critically question the scale of the urban. The morphogenetic processes and morphological tropes explored this year were formed into what we will describe in our next iteration as ‘Objects of Universal Relevance’, triggering speculative tactics for post-Anthropocenic urban scenarios.      The ‘S.Alt’ scenario operates in Salina Ulcinj, in Montengero, where it deployed a territorial biocomputer using salt to construct an alternative mode of inhabitation in an ecologically, socially and financially deprived area. The ‘Bio.Fibre’ project aimed to explore the possibility of a new spatial organisation for an abandoned Soviet building, the Linnahall, Tallinn, by making operative a spatial articulation co-constructed by silkworms and an algorithmically-grown substratum. ‘Myco-Binder’ observed and abstracted mycelium’s logic of growth, which was deployed both as a 1:1 material system then as an analogue model of colonisation for the Peninsula of Palijassaare, in Tallinn.   By questioning the myopic treatment of waste within London, ‘Microbial Cellulose’ turned the infrastructure of London’s canals into a bio-digestive computer with the capacity to compute and construct urban scenarios in layered morphologies. The metabolic rifts created by the over-exaggerated use of plastic within the urban realm of East London became the starting point of the research for ‘BioPlastic’ which focused on the study and programming of the dynamic behavior of starch-based bioplastic when subjected to external stimuli.                      

MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

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MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

16.3 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

16.4 Figs. 16.1 – 16.3 Bio.Fibre Considering the possibility that new entities could occupy abandoned buildings, this project tries to rethink the relationship between the natural and the urban by exploring scenarios in which human beings and inhuman species such as silkworms (bombyx mori) share occupation, design and construction. Fig. 16.1 Close-up of cocoons and connective fibrous structure spun by silkworms. Before creating the cocoon, the silkworm spins a distributed fibrous tissue to structure its connection to the environment. Fig. 16.2 Silk algorithmic garden. Plan of the Linnahall showing the distribution of bundling threads. Silkworms and human beings would share the same environment, where a multitude of activities is choreographed. The thread substratum allows for the silkworms’ metabolism to take place. Harvested silk would

be used for the production of textiles. Collected cocoons can either be used as food or for the breeding of new silkworms. Figs. 16.3 Detail of material system: silk on substratum. Silk is produced by silkworms and it is one of the strongest fibres in the world. Silk can be found in two forms: distributed structure and spun cocoon. Silkworms interact with the substratum, and the form of silk which emerges is directly related to its morphology. Fig. 16.4 Epsom Salt Crystal growth observation on cotton thread substratum. Following a series of twelvehour observations it was determined that elongated crystals have a tendency to form along the cotton thread with a density which is directly proportional to the substratum connection’s density. 145

MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

16.5 Figs. 16.4 – 16.6 S.ALT Solana Ulcinj is a post-industrial landscape, a salt extraction area, with a conflicted relationship with the local ornithological park. A tool to deal with this conflict at material and strategic level is proposed. The starting point is the reorganisation of the local salt morphologies to tune water flow, bird nesting and energy production. Fig. 16.5 Digital catalogue of growth through a diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA) algorithm. The catalogue was used to extend parallel observation of the material computation of salt crystal growth on different substrata, characterised by varying scales as well as morphologies. The morphology and distribution of crystals at the micro-pattern of the digital simulation was driven by the DLA algorithm, whereas the behaviour of the global pattern was driven by 146

the geometry of the substratum. Fig. 16.6 Digital simulation of the global pattern of crystal growth influenced by water flow direction. The water’s direction in saltworks was mapped using a series of satellite maps focused on the site in Ulcinj. Water flow mapped in conjunction with the DLA’s internal behaviour defined the morphological growth and enabled us to study the global behaviour of salt crystallisation structures on the site.

MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017




MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

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MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

16.8 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

16.9 Figs. 16.7 – 16.9 BioPlastic Bioplastic is a kind of plastic derived from renewable biomass sources, such as starch, agar or gelatin, often derived from food waste. This research suggests a way to locally remetabolise domestic waste and other organic food waste. Morphological features of bio-plastic affected by temperature, gravity, and air force are analysed in relationship to their appearance as well as structural capacities. Wrinkle pattern induced by changes in airflow is one of the most interesting morphological characteristics observed. This project focuses on this aspect of wrinkling and material changes at multiple scales, from the material to the territorial. Fig. 16.7 Digital catalogue of wrinkle formations. A computational simulation influenced by collision strength, wrinkle length and constraint elements is employed

to explore the design potential observed in the material system. Fig. 16.8 Material catalogue of bioplastic. The catalogue shows different types of bioplastic, varying in their composition. Each type has a specific organic binders such as starch, agar, and gelatin while additives such as orange peel, rice, and wood dust contribute to emerging properties of colour and texture in the samples. Fig. 16.9 A prototypical wall of 2700mm x 1700mm was built with 536 components, using 134000ml of bioplastic to test variability in morphologies, thickness, deformation, wrinkling and transparency.


MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



MArch UD Urban Morphogenesis Lab / Research Cluster 16 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

16.11 Fig. 16.10 Myco-Binder There is a conventional way to deal with urban issues, where natural and artificial realms are treated separately. This approach to design may trigger disconnection, cause pollution or create an unbalanced urban metabolism. This project responds to this separation by tracing connections between biosphere and the urban sphere. The site, Paljassaare Peninsula, shares the conditions of an anthropocentric urbanism. By introducing mycelium as both behavioural protocol and binding material, a new possible urban morphology is suggested. Experiments were set up to observe mycelium’s growth at micro-scale and test its capacities as a constructible material at macro-scale. The ‘Dijkstra Algorithm’ is specifically coded to discern the shortest path and therefore the most structurally efficient network.

Circular grids with different densities are used to investigate the growth path. The project builds an urban protocol based on the myco-binder’s logic, focusing on reconnecting resources from both biosphere and urbansphere. Fig. 16.11 ‘London’s Bio-Digestive Canals’ is a project which focuses on remetabolising urban organic waste into layered morphologies. Microbial cellulose is grown in the lab by adding a bacterium, acetobacter xylinum, to organic waste (urban microalgae) which acts as nutrient for the bacteria so they can form cellulose. The microbial cellulose component can be folded and aggregated into a textile. The colour gradient of the material is related to the pigments contained in the different types of organic waste fed to the bacteria. 151


Bridging Across Mass-Customisation Zachary Fluker, Enriqueta Llabres-Valls

Students Nabila Afif, Victor Bustos Vivanco, Xiaodong Chen, Shicheng Du, Miguel Esteban Alonso, Yu Hao, Yuhan Ji, Junlin Luo, Anchal Ganesh Shamanur, Yicong Wang, Zhehui Xu, Jijia Zhang, Lin Zhu Theory Tutor Nuria Alvarez-Lombardero

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Thanks to our critics and consultants Roberto Bottazzi, Bernadette Devilat, Giulio Dini, Manuel Jiménez Garcia, Marcin Ignac, Frédéric Migayrou, Andrew Porter, Eduardo Rico, Mark Smout, Liz Tatarintseva, Emmanouil Zaroukas


Urban design is cornered in a paradox: despite technology being an essential aspect and the most visible component for projects, urban design does not only require technical solutions. Due to its scale and complexity, the urban project requires technologies that are able to sense its materiality alongside human interventions and its consequences at the global scale, process large quantities of data and produce useful information. Furthermore, humanity deeply relies on systems that source the basics for living and process the surplus in an endless cycle. And as weather temperature peaks, settlements are more reliant on artificially enabled environments. If these human settlements only required technical solutions they would demand little or nothing in the way of change in human values or ideas of morality. Technologies of computational learning are breaking through in the form of social innovation, enabling us to reformulate the urban project as a machine learning process with the individual as a key component of its materiality. This learning process requires continuous data input in the form of individual interaction. This individual interaction is explored through the workflow of mass-customisation with designed and constructed customised machines for interfacing between physical and digital spaces. These experimental apparatuses worked through a constant cycle of unpredictable events, digital calibration, and computationally generated spatial constructs. Individual-system interaction can be harvested and catapulted by social media platforms resulting in diverse forms of collective organisations and the development of social capital for the city. Developed from the position of the individual, they have harnessed the invisible parameters that are currently shaping our urban experiences and reworked them into interactive models. Through this research, students began to test the limits and capabilities of providing an open system of public design and how this paradigm shift could develop over time. Questions arose throughout the year dealing with levels of control and change in a mass-customised design, differences in trust and boundaries in virtual and existing environments, and the threshold between mass-customisation and collective customisation. Project outcomes vary from augmented data-negotiated boundaries to hyperarticulated machines controlling pedestrian movement. The realms of the virtual and the ‘real’ collide at an accelerated velocity, creating new scenarios within the practice of urban design.            

MArch UD Research Cluster 18

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



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The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017


Figs. 18.1 – 18.5 Miguel Esteban Alonso ‘Learning Cities. Digital Microurbanisms for Spatial Democratics’. This project suggests a shift from a model based on exploiting the capabilities of digital fabrication to a system that has these technologies embedded within it. It proposes a change of scale, where digital technologies are not just an exempt element that influences the design process – digital design and manufacturing – but an inseparable part of the architectural domain: architecture, as a connected piece of a networked digital system, that defines the city from the interaction of the different elements that compose it. The design proposal is developed through a series of multimaterial 3D printing experiments that construct apparatus with electronic memories embedded within their materiality. 154

MArch UD Research Cluster 18

18.6 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Figs. 18.6 – 18.8 Nabila Afif, Anchal Ganesh Shamanur, Lin Zhu, ‘Negotiating Envelope’. Departing from the idea of materialising urban negotiation in the modern day, this project tries to rethink the façade from a static entity into a dynamic and negotiable boundary within the city. By utilising technology and digital networks to process urban data, the project is an attempt to bridge the digital and physical worlds of city dwellers’ daily interactions with their surroundings. In the process, digital fabrication is introduced to control and change the façade to a certain extent within a negotiation scheme involving people from public, private and environmental spheres.


MArch UD Research Cluster 18

18.9 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

18.10 Figs. 18.9 ­– 18.11 Junlin Luo, Zhehui Xu ‘Inhabitable Space Sharing’. This project applies the model of a ‘sharing economy’ to produce urban micro-zones within London’s urban fabric. The virtual world’s sharing economy helps people build temporary trust to share idle items with others, however, in reality, we rely on boundaries to distinguish public and private spaces in order to keep ourselves safe. This project creates a negotiation system that helps residents to decide whether to share unused space with neighbours and/or the public. Through a series of kinetic components composed of pivoting armatures and anisotropic films, the site automatically adjusts to actions proposed by residents and urban data. Spatial customisation through adaptation accommodates individuals’ desired outcomes for refuge within the city. 156


MArch UD Research Cluster 18

18.12 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

18.13 Figs. 18.12 – 18.13 Yu Hao, Yuhan Ji ‘Ki-net University Campus’. Considering play as a pervasive action within daily life, this project remaps future occupation of the university campus in a playable way. Developed through an amalgamation of proximity, activity and gestural data, Ki-net Campus transforms public university space into a network of engaged relationships of interaction. At the heart of the near-future proposition lies a material system composed of inflatable silicone components, embedded within an exoskeleton. Through a combination of inputs, the system is activated to create potential varied spaces and encourage health and movement in relationship to students’ data. Situated within UCL’s campus, the proposal seeks to generate a campus

environment that supports students’ physical, mental and social wellbeing.


MArch UD Research Cluster 18

18.14 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

18.15 Figs. 18.14 – 18.16 Shicheng Du, Jijia Zhang ‘Gathering Environment’. Air pollution data is central to how the project constructs itself. Utilising real-time PM 2.5 data as its input, the machine knits a specialised composite thread that absorbs particles out of the atmosphere. By spatialising the data of the constantly changing pollutants, the machine and space, it creates becomes a beacon for city dwellers to be informed of the air quality surrounding them. This near-future reworked air pollution monitoring system becomes an active participant in generating knowledge for urban inhabitants.



MArch UD Research Cluster 18

0.0 18.17 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

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Figs. 18.17 – 18.19 Xiaodong Chen, Yicong Wang ‘Playable Soundscape’. Based within London’s Old Street roundabout, this project seeks to create a series of interactive building components for the reduction of noise within the city. Envisioned soundscapes are generated by city dwellers through an interlocking material system in order to create customised public spaces.


MArch UD Research Cluster 18

18.20 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

18.21 Figs. 18.20 – 18.22 Victor Bustos Vivanco ‘Collective Urban Customisation’. The project explores how the actuation of heterogeneous singularities could increase the capacity of the city to change and mutate over time. The sensing apparatus obtains light data from the environment, but also recognises the changeability of the space as the result of the presence of passive or active users and their interactions. The fabrication machine is conceived as an interface between collective negotiations and spatial actuations. The digital dimension of the machine performs as a decoding tool that translates the input data into logics of action. The result is a collaborative process where the final unpredictable outcomes are customised and defined by the emergence of the singularities’ actuation. 160

MArch UD Research Cluster 18

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Image: Open Crits 2017

MSc/MRes Architectural Computation

MSc/MRes Architectural Computation Programme Director: Dr Sean Hanna Incoming Programme Director: Manuel Jiménez Garcia

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Renamed from Adaptive Architecture and Computing and relaunched this year, MSc/MRes Architectural Computation engages and advances the main technologies by which tomorrow’s architecture will be designed and constructed. From parametric design and Computer Aided Design (CAD) to automated manufacturing, to Big Data analytics, computation is increasingly important as a tool in our built environment. The course is designed to provide students with the depth of understanding to exploit computation fully in the context of world-leading design, research and industry. But we also see computation as a technology, driving fundamental shifts in industry and society, and – more radically – one that can change the way we produce and think. To this end, the learning of technical knowledge, such as computer coding, plays a stronger role than in many comparable courses, not only as a skill, but as a framework for thought. This technical knowledge is supported by a broad theoretical understanding of algorithms and philosophies of artificial intelligence and related domains. The taught component of the programme is split into seven modules, split into theory and practice streams. The theory modules set up the use of computation in the design process, ranging from analysis in terms of space and structure, to artificial intelligence techniques to learn about design performance, and ultimately the role of computation in creativity. Practice modules are divided into different studio-based clusters, allowing students to develop their personal interests within a large range of themes, including technologies of interaction, cybernetics, physics simulations, artificial intelligence, automation and robotic manufacturing. A third stream of skills modules teaches research skills and programming, from foundation to advanced level, guiding students through the multiple possibilities that computation offers in design environments. 164

This year’s students have engaged with a wide range of digital media and tools to develop their projects through studio modules, workshops and lectures. The taught modules produced projects that ranged from exploring haptic interfaces to the virtual world, to building an immersive perception study, to creating practical devices for activating dynamic building components. Final thesis projects included the development of artificial intelligence to improve energy use or structural performance, and experiments in navigating higher dimensional spaces. This year’s students also participated in focused workshops in physical computing, robotics and shape-memory alloys for shading devices, supported by alumni of the course. Students Zigeng Fang, Fatemeh Deghani Firouzabadi, Mingyang Han, Parul Jain, Anastasia Katikaridi, Xu Lian, Ishay Rosenthal, Charitini Skaltsari, Martin Stacey, Sherif Tarabishy, Tina Zeng, Jiongliang Zhang, Xinwei Zhuang Teaching staff Sean Hanna, Ava Fatah gen Schieck, Sam Griffiths, Christopher Leung, Martha Tsigkari, Martin Zaltz-Austwick

Image: Fabio Galicia, ‘A Creative Evolutionary Design System’, 2015-16

MSc/MRes Architectural Computation

AC.1 The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

AC.2 Fig. AC.1 Sherif Tarabishy ‘Interactive 3D Cellular Automata’. This application was designed to allow the interactive manipulation of a 3D Cellular Automata system. It was programmed using the open source programming language Processing, coding all aspects of the application without using any external libraries. Users can select multiple points within the 3D space as seeds, and then run the application to see the form come to life. Fig. AC.2 Anastasia Katikaridi ‘Investigating an Adaptive Tensile Structure that Responds to the Dynamics of Rainwater Movement across a Variable Geometry of a Roof Surface: Towards a least energy self-drainage structure’. This dissertation, inspired by the notion of lightweight design and that of active structures, highlights the potentials of such a structure that respond 166

to irregular loads in a dynamic way. The application aims to explore the performance of a structure with variable geometry, as well as the actuation techniques required to control the deformations caused by the rain flows. Fig. AC.3 Charitini Skaltsari ‘Combinatorial Design of Meta-Materials: Towards optimised structural performance’. This thesis project focuses on generating and testing several meta-material voxel configurations in order to be classified according to their individual structural performance and the required material usage. A generative system is created, implementing different topological configurations which are initially confined in a specific volume. The project is divided into three parts: (1) recording each voxel’s structural properties along with the total material-length of each lattice cube, (2) the examination

MSc/MRes Architectural Computation




of different conglomerations of these modules depending on their structural performance, and finally (3) their potential adaptation in a structural element (simple beam). Fig. AC.4 Xinwei Zhuang ‘Space Frame Optimisation with Spectral Clustering’. This thesis project proposes optimising a structure with high complexity by separating it into clusters and optimising the substructures separately, aiming to reduce the computation time while maintaining the optimisation level. Analysis shows that the clustering algorithm not only helps the optimisation process to achieve a higher computational efficiency, but also renders a more stable space frame structure with lower deflection. Fig. AC.5 Jiongliang Zhang ‘Random Tiling’. Computational Synthesis case study project. Muqarnas is a form of ornamented vaulting in Islamic

architecture. It consists of the combination of two types of shapes, square and rhombus, which can be used to create a total of ten different possible initial pieces. A genetic algorithm is used to organise these pieces, generating a variety of patterns. Fig. AC.6 Martin Stacey ‘Collective Knowledge is the Architect’. This project aims to develop a space layout algorithm that understands qualities of spaces from existing designs to later apply that knowledge into automatised floorplan generation. This is achieved by analysing a database of floorplan designs of a particular socioeconomic, cultural, and historic background and then using that knowledge to identify persistent traits which are replicated in automatically generated floorplans.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

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MSc/MRes Architectural Computation




Fig. AC.7 Tina Zeng ‘Muscle Memory Through Haptic Feedback’ Body as interface. This project explores acquiring muscle memory from developing motor skills through haptic feedback training in learning a sequence of notes on the piano keyboard. The subject wears a glove that uses a vibration to stimulate the correct finger to play specific notes. Rigorous testing suggested that developing muscle memory through haptic feedback learning was effective. Fig. AC.8 Ishay Rosenthal ‘HyperLocal’ City as interface. Hyperlocal collects and employs users’ location data to visualise and gain insight on their loci and interaction with the city. The project uses a participatory approach to the data collection: the user is not a part of a test group or trial, but is engaging in a beneficial activity. By merging the concept of a personal neighbourhood with

a subjective map, augmenting the user’s interests over her personal neighbourhood, a personal map of the city is created. Figs. AC.9 – AC.10 Mingyang Han, Parul Jain ‘Breathing Cells Façade’. Material computation. An intelligent double-layer façade promoting air exchange between interior and exterior. The prototype is inspired by organic skins that would open up or constrict to control the necessary flow of light, matter and temperature between the inside and outside. The façade works by increasing or decreasing the volume of the prototypes that are arranged across the surface. As parameters change, the facade takes on a sculptural spirit that makes it look like a kinetic installation.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017



Image: MArch Architectural Design, Research Cluster 4 crits

B-Pro Staff Biographies

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Professor Frédéric Migayrou B-Pro Director Frédéric Migayrou is Chair and Bartlett Professor of Architecture at The Bartlett School of Architecture and Deputy Director of the MNAM-CCI (Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre de Création Industrielle) at the Centre Pompidou, Paris. He was founder of the FRAC Centre Collection and of ArchiLab, the international festival of prospective architecture in Orléans. As well as recent publications and exhibitions at the Centre Pompidou (De Stijl, 2011; La Tendenza, 2012; Bernard Tschumi, 2013; Frank Gehry, 2014; Le Corbusier, 2015), he was also the curator of Non Standard Architectures at the Centre Pompidou in 2003, the first exposition devoted to architecture, computation and fabrication. More recently, he co-organised the exhibition Naturalising Architecture (ArchiLab, Orléans, 2013), presenting prototypes and commissions by 40 teams of architects working with new generative computational tools, defining new interrelations between materiality, biotechnology and fabrication. In 2012, Frédéric founded B-Pro, a family of three advanced postgraduate courses at The Bartlett. Andrew Porter B-Pro Deputy Director Andrew Porter studied at The Bartlett School of Architecture, winning the Bannister Fletcher Medal and the RIBA Silver Medal for his graduation project. He has collaborated on projects with Sir Peter Cook and Christine Hawley CBE, and was the project architect for the Gifu Housing project in Japan. He practises with Abigail Ashton as Ashton Porter Architects and has completed a number of award-winning commissions in the UK and abroad. Andrew is Design Tutor for Unit 21 of The Bartlett’s MArch Architecture programme and has been a visiting professor at the Staedel Academy, Frankfurt and guest critic at SCI-Arc, Los Angeles and Parsons New School, New York. 170

Sean Hanna MSc/MRes Architectural Computation Programme Director Sean Hanna is Reader in Space and Adaptive Architectures at The Bartlett School of Architecture and a member of the UCL Space Syntax Laboratory, one of the UK’s leading groups for research into the built environment. Sean’s research is primarily focused on developing computational methods for dealing with complexity in design and the built environment, including the comparative modelling of space and the use of machine learning and optimisation techniques for the design and fabrication of structures. Manuel Jiménez Garcia MSc/MRes Architectural Computation Programme Director (incoming), Design Computation Lab Director, Research Cluster 4 Tutor Manuel Jiménez Garcia is the co-founder and principal of madMdesign, a computational design practice based in London, and the co-founder of Nagami, a robotics manufacturing start-up based in Spain. Manuel’s work has been exhibited worldwide in venues including the Centre Pompidou, Paris, and the Royal Academy of Arts, London. As well as directing the Architectural Computation programme, directing the Design Computation Lab and leading Research Cluster 4, Manuel also curates Plexus, a multidisciplinary computational design lecture series at The Bartlett. Gilles Retsin MArch Architectural Design Programme Director, Design Computation Lab Director, Research Cluster 4 Tutor Gilles Retsin is the founder of Gilles Retsin Architecture, a young award-winning Londonbased architecture and design practice, investigating new architectural models that engage with the potential of increased

Alisa Andrasek Research Cluster 1 Tutor Alisa Andrasek is a director of Biothing and Bloom Games. She is a Reader at The Bartlett, Professor at the European Graduate School and Professor at RMIT University, Melbourne. Alisa has taught at the Architectural Association (AA), Columbia, Pratt and the University of Pennsylvania. Her work has been exhibited at the Centre Pompidou, Paris; New Museum, New York; Storefront, New York; FRAC, Orleans and TB-A21, Vienna. She curated exhibitions for the Beijing Biennial 2006, 2008 and 2010, and was a co-curator of the PROTO/E/CO/LOCICS Symposium in Rovinj, Croatia, in 2013. Nuria Alvarez Lombardero Research Cluster 18 Theory Tutor Nuria Alvarez Lombardero studied Architecture and Urbanism at the Superior Technical School of Architecture, Madrid, and the Architectural Association. She co-founded Canales & Lombardero after working for Machado & Silvetti Associates in Boston. Nuria has taught at the Architectural Association, University of Cambridge, Tec Monterrey and the University of

Stefan Bassing Research Cluster 6 Tutor Stefan Bassing is an architect and designer based in the UK, educated in Stuttgart, Sydney and London. His work is focused on contemporary design methodologies involving advanced modelling techniques and computation to comprehend and respond to architecture and industrial design on a multiplicity of scales. Having previously worked for Zaha Hadid Architects, Stefan is currently Director of Computation and Advanced Technologies at Studio Ross Lovegrove whilst also being an Architectural Design Tutor at The Bartlett School of Architecture. Richard Beckett BiotA Lab Director, Research Cluster 7 Tutor Richard Beckett is a lecturer, tutor and lab director at The Bartlett School of Architecture, currently leading an AHRC-funded project, ‘NOTBAD’, which investigates the impact of architectural design on the spread of AMR microbes within buildings. He has a multidisciplinary background, having studied biochemistry before going on to study and teach architecture. His investigations into architecture have remained crossdisciplinary, focusing on digital architecture and novel fabrication alongside the impact of biotechnology on architecture and, more specifically, investigations into the use of living or semi-living materials in our built environment. Professor Peter Bishop Professor of Urban Design Peter Bishop was Director of Design for London, advisor to the Mayor and deputy CEO of the London Development Agency. He has worked on regeneration projects including Kings Cross and the London 2012 Olympics. He is a director at Allies and Morrison and co-author of The Bishop Review and The Temporary City (Routledge, 2012), an exploration of temporary urbanism. 171

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Professor Mark Smout MArch Urban Design Programme Director Mark Smout is Professor of Architecture and Landscape Futures at The Bartlett, where, in addition to directing MArch Urban Design he also leads MArch Architecture Unit 11 with Laura Allen. His design research practice, Smout Allen, focuses on the dynamic relationship between the natural and the man-made and how this can be revealed to enhance the experience of the architectural landscape. Smout Allen have produced awardwinning designs, they have won the prestigious Royal Academy Award for Architecture and represented the UK at the Venice Biennale in 2012 and 2015, and the Chicago Architecture Biennial in 2015. Mark has held notable Professorships in Denmark and California and regularly lectures around the world.

Seville. Since finishing her PhD on the dissolution of boundaries traced by modern urban planning, she has published various articles in international magazines and more recently in the awardwinning books Politics and Digital Fabrication: an ongoing debate (Ediciones Vibok, 2016) and ArquitectAs: Redefining the Practice (Recolectores Urbanos, 2016).

B-Pro Staff Biographies

computational power and fabrication to generate buildings and objects with a previously unseen structure, detail and materiality. He graduated from the Architectural Association Design Research Lab in London. Prior to founding his own practice, he worked in Switzerland with Christian Kerez. His work has been exhibited internationally, and is part of the collection of the Centre Pompidou, Paris.

Eddie Blake Research Cluster 13 Tutor Eddie Blake is an Urban Design Tutor at The Bartlett School of Architecture. He has written about architecture for Icon, Architects’ Journal, Blueprint and Vice among other publications. He studied at the Architectural Association, University of Westminster and Glasgow School of Art. Before joining Sam Jacob Studio, Eddie was part of Studio Weave where he worked on diverse schemes ranging from masterplanning to pavilions for clients such as the National Trust, City of London and local authorities. Previously, Eddie worked for Sauerbruch Hutton, Berlin, where he worked on large-scale mixed-use commercial developments.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Roberto Bottazzi Research Cluster 14 Tutor, Urban Design Report Coordinator Roberto Bottazzi is an architect, researcher, and educator based in London, having studied in Italy and Canada. His research analyses the impact of digital technologies on architecture and urbanism. He is the author of Digital Architecture Beyond Computers: Fragments of a Cultural History of Computational Design (Bloomsbury, 2017) and editor of Walking Cities: London (Camberwell Press, 2017). Roberto has lectured and exhibited internationally. Daghan Cam Research Cluster 1 Tutor Daghan Cam is the CEO and co-founder of Ai Build, a London based company that develops artificial intelligence and robotics for large-scale additive manufacturing. He is also a visiting lecturer at The Bartlett, focusing on robotic fabrication, 3D printing and parallel algorithms with GPU computing. Having studied at the Architectural Association, Daghan has worked at Zaha Hadid Architects and now runs his own architectural design practice. Mollie Claypool Design Computation Lab Director Mollie Claypool is a historian, theorist and critic of architecture. Mollie is one of the codirectors of the Design Computation Lab as well as being BSc Architecture Programme Director and a Design Unit Tutor for MArch Architecture Unit 19 at The Bartlett. Previously, Mollie has lectured in History and Theory Studies at the Architectural Association and was a tutor in the Design Research Laboratory there. Her research 172

interests include the history and theory of design computation, including design, fabrication and assembly methods and techniques. Professor Marcos Cruz BiotA Lab Director, Research Cluster 7 Tutor Marcos Cruz is Professor of Innovative Environments at The Bartlett School of Architecture. He has led The Bartlett’s MArch Architecture Unit 20 for over 18 years and was Director of The Bartlett School of Architecture between 2010 and 2014. Marcos has taught at UCLA, University of Westminster and is currently a visiting professor at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in Barcelona. He has lectured and been published widely and is co-founder of the architecture practice marcosandmarjan. Marcos’ research on neoplasmatic architecture won the RIBA Research Award in 2008, and between 2015 and 2017 he was the principal investigator of an EPSRC-funded ‘Design the Future’ research project entitled ‘Computational Seeding of Bioreceptive Materials’. Ava Fatah gen Schieck MSc/MRes Architectural Computation Tutor Ava Fatah gen Schieck is Associate Professor (Reader) in Media Architecture and Urban Digital Interaction at The Bartlett. She leads the Embodied and Embodied Technologies Unit (Body as Interface; City as Interface studios) within the MSc/MRes Architectural Computation programme. Her research focuses on the integration of architecture, interactive design, augmented reality and ubiquitous computing. Since 2011, she has been the principal investigator of ‘Screens in the Wild’, which explores the potential of networked urban screens for communities and culture with a unique living ‘Media Architecture’ lab environment. Ava is also a chair and member of the committee for the Media Architecture Biennale 2012, 2014 in Aarhus, 2016 in Sydney and 2018 in Beijing. Zachary Fluker Research Cluster 18 Tutor Zachary Fluker is an architect with a background in industrial design and cabinetmaking. He is a graduate of both Emily Carr University of Art and Design and the Architectural Association. His research into interfacing digital and physical environments and computational fabrication has led him to collaborate with several practices in the UK and Canada.

Kostas Griogriadis Research Cluster 14 Tutor Kostas Grigoriadis studied architecture at UCL, followed by a Master’s in Architecture and Urbanism at the Architectural Association. Kostas has taught at the Architectural Association since 2011 and worked as an external examiner for the University of East London since August 2015. He has previously worked for Foster + Partners and held a visiting lectureship at the Royal College of Art where he also completed a PhD by Project in June 2017 that focused on multimaterial design methodologies. Kostas is also the editor of Mixed Matters: A Multi-Material Design Compendium, published by JOVIS Verlag in 2016. Soomeen Hahm Research Cluster 1 Tutor, Research Cluster 6 Tutor Founder of SoomeenHahm Design Ltd, Soomeen Hahm is an architectural designer, researcher and educator based in London, teaching at the Architectural Association and The Bartlett School of Architecture. Her research attempts to tackle issues associated with the computational paradigm in architecture across multiple scales and through education, research and practice.

Jessica In Research Cluster 3 Tutor Formerly an architectural designer at Heatherwick Studio, Jessica In is responsible for the production of Google Campus in Mountain View and the Hudson Yards Vessel sculpture projects in New York. She currently teaches on The Bartlett’s BSc and MArch Architecture programmes as well as on the MArch Architectural Design programme. Sam Jacob Research Cluster 13 Tutor Sam Jacob was a founding director of the practice FAT Architecture, where he was responsible for a range of award-winning projects for clients including Igloo, Urban Splash, Selfridges in London and the BBC as well as local authorities and private clients. Alongside his commercial work, many of Sam’s projects have been exhibited at leading galleries and museums including the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, MAK in Vienna and at the Venice Architecture Biennale. He continues to design, write and curate, often in partnership with other agencies or institutions. Matt Jakob Research Cluster 3 Tutor Working between experience design and advertising, Matt Jakob’s professional portfolio includes clients such as Apple, IBM, The London Science Museum, Burberry, Paramount Pictures and Google. At Nexus Interactive Arts since 2014 and previously at Imagination, Matt has been directing many technologically advanced projects with teams of designers, technologists and coders.


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Ruairi Glynn Interactive Architecture Lab Director, Research Cluster 3 Tutor As a practising installation artist, Ruairi Glynn has exhibited internationally, with recent shows at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, the National Art Museum of China, Beijing, and Tate Modern, London. He has worked with institutions including the Royal Academy of Arts, the Medical Research Council and the BBC, and built public installations for commercial clients including Twitter, Nike, Arup, Buro Happold, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He often works collaboratively with artists, architects, and choreographers. Ruairi is Programme Director for MArch Design for Performance and Interaction, a new programme at The Bartlett.

Adam Holloway Research Cluster 5 Tutor Adam Holloway is an architect and computational designer, whose work focuses on the intersection of art and science, applying principles from natural and technological innovation to extend the scope of human creative potential. Adam studied at the Architectural Association, and previously worked at Future Systems, Wilkinson Eyre and Exploration, before setting up his own practice, AHA. He also runs an MArchD studio at Oxford Brookes University and teaches a computational design module at the University of Westminster.

B-Pro Staff Biographies

Professor Stephen Gage MArch Architectural Design Report Coordinator Stephen Gage studied at the Architectural Association and has worked in the UK and the USA. Stephen has taught at The Bartlett School of Architecture since 1993, where he is currently Professor of Innovative Architecture. He has been an external examiner at the University of the Arts and the University of Liverpool and he is part of the RIBA architectural course validation panel.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Daniel Koehler Research Cluster 8 Tutor, Research Cluster 8 Theory Tutor Daniel Koehler is a design and theory tutor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, a research associate at the University of Innsbruck and a co-founder of the Lab for Environmental Design Strategies. Daniel is the author of The Mereological City (Transcript, 2016), a study on the modes of part-to-whole relations between architecture and its city during modernism. Daniel’s recent research investigates the architectural implications of digital logistics.

in Barcelona with a Master’s in Local Economic Development from the London School of Economics. From 2003 to 2008, she worked for ETH Zurich professor Josep Lluis Mateo, winning several international competitions. In recent years, Enriqueta has been a design critic and lecturer in Landscape Architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and directed the computational urbanism group at the Berlage Institute. Enriqueta is co-founder of the award-winning practice, Relational Urbanism, and her work and research have been published worldwide.

Ruby Law Research Cluster 5 Theory Tutor Ruby Law currently works with Studio Seilern Architects as a Project Architect. She studied architecture in Hong Kong, Beijing, and Massachusetts before graduating from The Bartlett. Her previous work experience includes Heatherwick Studio and Zaha Hadid Architects. She is interested in digital fabrication and material engineering. Her work has been exhibited in Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Rome, Venice, and London.

Andy Lomas Research Cluster 1 Tutor Andy Lomas is a digital fine artist and Emmy award-winning supervisor of computer-generated effects. Andy studied mathematics at Trinity College Cambridge, and spent 25 years working on visual effects and animation productions including Walking With Dinosaurs, The Matrix: Reloaded, The Matrix: Revolutions and Avatar. His artwork explores the creation of form through morphogenetic processes. In 2014, Andy won the Lumen Prize Gold Award. His work is in collections including the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Guan Lee Research Cluster 5 Tutor Guan Lee is an architect, lecturer, and director of Grymsdyke Farm. He studied at McGill University, Montreal, the Architectural Association and The Bartlett School of Architecture, where he completed his doctoral studies on the relationship between architectural craft, making and site. In his own practice, Guan explores digital fabrication in conjunction with hands-on building processes using a range of materials, including clay, concrete and plaster. Christopher Leung Research Cluster 7 Tutor, AC Tutor Christopher Leung trained as an architect at The Bartlett School of Architecture and returned from practice to earn an engineering doctorate for research into passive thermal actuators for dynamic building façades. He designs and makes machines and instruments for studying physical interactions between materials and environments. Enriqueta Llabres-Valls Research Cluster 18 Tutor Enriqueta Llabres-Valls is an architecture graduate of Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya 174

Igor Pantic Research Cluster 6 Tutor Igor Pantic is an architect and researcher, currently working as a lead designer for Zaha Hadid Architects in London. He received his Master’s from the Architectural Association, and has taught computational courses and algorithmic design workshops in the UK and internationally. Igor’s current research is focused on the exploration of generative design methodologies and research into material and behavioural systems informed by algorithmic logic. Annarita Papeschi Research Cluster 14 Theory Tutor Annarita Papeschi is a practising architect and researcher, with an MArch in Architecture and Urbanism from the Architectural Association. After nine years at Zaha Hadid Architects, she co-founded FLOW Architecture and joined as director in 2016. Annarita has worked both on the development of iconic designs and their translation into built reality. Her research engages with systemic design and has a focus on novel participatory processes through Big

Luke Caspar Pearson Research Cluster 12 Tutor Luke Caspar Pearson is a lecturer in architecture at The Bartlett School of Architecture and one half of the design and research practice You+Pea, alongside Sandra Youkhana. He is currently undertaking a PhD in Design in Architecture at The Bartlett, exploring video games and architecture, and was awarded the UCL Graduate Research Scholarship for this work. Luke is a co-founder of the Drawing Futures conference and curator of the REALMS symposium, as well as teaching Unit 4 on the BSc Architecture programme. His writings have been published internationally including in Architectural Research Quarterly, CLOG, Interstices, Inflection Journal, OFFRAMP Journal, and Drawing: Research, Theory, Practice. Maj Plemenitas Research Cluster 2 Tutor Maj Plemenitas is an innovator, scientist and academic focused on cross-scale relations in architectural, urban and landscape contexts. As well as leading Research Cluster 2 he is the founding director of the research organisation LINKSCALE. Maj lectures internationally at institutions including the Harvard Graduate School of Design, the American Institute of Architects, New York, and the Center for Architecture, New York. He has received a range

David Roberts Research Cluster 12 Theory Tutor Dr David Roberts is Architectural History & Theory Tutor and Research Ethics Fellow at The Bartlett School of Architecture. Alongside his work at UCL, he is part of collaborative art practice Fugitive Images and architecture collective Involve, using poetry and performance to explore the relationship between people and places. His collaborative research, art and cultural activist practice engage with community groups whose homes and livelihoods are under threat from urban policy, and extend architectural education to primary and secondary school children. His PhD thesis in Architectural Design, Make Public: Performing public housing in regenerating East London, won a RIBA President’s Award for Research in 2016. Javier Ruiz Research Cluster 7 Tutor Javier Ruiz is a design tutor for Research Cluster 7 and MArch Architecture’s Unit 20 at The Bartlett, where he develops computational techniques and design strategies for experimentation in architecture. He has previously worked at Grimshaw Architects, Foster + Partners, CRAB Studio and Eralonso Arquitectos. Javier has also collaborated with marcosandmarjan. Vicente Soler Design Computation Lab Director, Research Cluster 4 Tutor Vicente Soler consults and lectures as a specialist in computational design and digital fabrication. He has worked with several practices, participating in multiple internationally recognised projects. At the European University in Madrid, he worked as a researcher in robotics applied to architecture and taught on several postgraduate architectural programmes. Now at The Bartlett, Vicente co-directs the Design Computation Lab, coordinates the Architectural Design technical skills module and offers support in computation and robotics. He develops software for the programming and control of industrial robots that is used in architecture schools and other institutions.


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Claudia Pasquero Urban Morphogenesis Lab Director, Research Cluster 16 Tutor Claudia Pasquero’s work operates at the intersection of biology, computation and design. She is Director of the Urban Morphogenesis Lab, Co-Director of ecoLogicStudio, Professor of Landscape Architecture at Innsbruck University and a senior staff member at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia. Claudia is also Head Curator of the Tallinn Architectural Biennale 2017. Her work has been published and exhibited internationally: at the FRAC Centre in Orléans, the Venice Architectural Biennale, ZKM Karlsruhe and the MilanoExpo2015 among others. Claudia has recently completed the BioTechHut Pavilion for Expo Astana 2017, HORTUS Astana 2017, Urban Algae Folly Aarhus 2017 and she is now working on a new commission for the FRAC Centre in Orléans.

of international awards for his research and has exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts, Venice Biennale, and London Architecture Festival. Maj has recently been selected as the author and head researcher for the Slovenian Pavilion at the 2018 Venice Biennale.

B-Pro Staff Biographies

Data analytics. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Architectural Design at The Bartlett.

Sabine Storp Research Cluster 12 Tutor Sabine Storp is a registered architect. She studied in Venice IUAV and Politecnico di Milano, Italy, before completing her studies at the Art Academy in Stuttgart. Since 2003, Sabine has taught at The Bartlett School of Architecture and at London Metropolitan University, where she became Year 1 Coordinator, Academic Leader and Deputy Head of the School of Architecture at the CASS. For the last three years, Sabine has been coordinating short courses at The Bartlett and, since 2016, she has also directed them. StorpWeber Architects have internationally published and won several awards.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Yuri Suzuki Research Cluster 3 Tutor Sound artist and electronic musician Yuri Suzuki produces work that explores the realms of sound through exquisitely designed pieces. Yuri was born in Tokyo in 1980. Between 1999 and 2005, he worked for Japanese art unit, Maywa Denki, where he developed a strong interest in music and technology. In 2005 he moved to London where he has developed his own successful artist practice. He has also taught on both the Information Experience Design and Design Interaction programmes at the Royal College of Art. Martha Tsigkari MSc/MRes Architectural Computation Programme Tutor Martha Tsigkari is a partner and a member of the Applied Research and Development group at Foster + Partners. She is a specialist in a wide range of areas including performance-driven design and optimisation, interfaces and interaction, design-to-production and fast feedback and integration. Martha has provided solutions for diverse projects, including the new airport for Mexico City, Lusail Iconic Stadium for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the new metro stations in Jeddah and the Sheikh Zayed Museum. As well as teaching at The Bartlett, Martha has taught, lectured and been published internationally. Patrick Weber Research Cluster 12 Tutor Patrick Weber studied at the Art Academy in Stuttgart and The Bartlett School of Architecture. For the last 19 years he has taught on the BSc and MArch Architecture programmes at The Bartlett. He was the Year 1 Co-Director for twelve years. Together with Sabine Storp he founded 176

StorpWeber Architects; they explore conditions and ideas for living, housing and new habitats in an urban context. Rae Whittow-Williams Research Cluster 11 Theory Tutor Rae Whittow-Williams is an architect and teaching fellow who studied at The Bartlett School of Architecture. With over ten years’ practice experience working across architecture, urbanism, research, planning and regeneration, Rae has first-hand knowledge of the challenges that face contemporary urban development. In 2014, she contributed to the AHRC-funded Equalities of Wellbeing UCL/ University of Aberdeen research project, and has recently co-led a design think tank for the London School of Architecture. Her research interests are focused on the design of space at multiple scales, and how this can evolve within the contexts of 21st-century society and development. Daniel Widrig Research Cluster 6 Tutor Daniel Widrig founded his studio in London in 2009. After graduating from the Architectural Association, Daniel worked for several years with Zaha Hadid during which time he was involved in designing some of Hadid’s most iconic buildings and products. His studio now works across a broad range of fields including art, fashion design and architecture. Daniel has received international critical acclaim and has been published and exhibited internationally. He is a recipient of the Swiss Arts Award, the Feidad Merit Award and the Rome Prize. Sandra Youkhana Research Cluster 12 Tutor Sandra Youkhana is an architectural designer practising in London. She has worked as a research assistant at The Bartlett School of Architecture for a number of years and has taught on various programmes including MArch Urban Design and MArch Architecture. Sandra is one half of the design and research practice You+Pea with Luke Caspar Pearson. Their work challenges various media to create new methods of engagement, ranging from immersive drawings, public installations and participatory video games to interactive devices, architectural ‘toys’ and 1:1 experiments.

B-Pro Staff Biographies

Emmanouil Zaroukas Research Cluster 16 Theory Tutor Emmanouil Zaroukas holds a diploma in Architecture from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He is an architect, researcher and educator. He is completing his PhD at the University of East London, where he explores the creative capacities of artificial neural networks and machine learning in architectural and urban design. Fiona Zisch Research Cluster 3 Theory Tutor Fiona Zisch is a researcher and lecturer at the University of Innsbruck and the University of Westminster. She is finishing a transdisciplinary PhD by Design in Architecture and Neuroscience at UCL. Her research focuses on how neural mechanisms represent space and construct architectural experience.

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017 177

Staff, Visitors & Consultants

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

A Thomas Abbs Wes Aelbrecht Visiting Prof Robert Aish Prof Laura Allen Kit Allsopp Dr Kinda Al-Sayed Nuria Alvarez Lombardero Alisa Andrasek Sabina Andron Marcela Aragüez Escobar Max Arrocet Abigail Ashton Gregorio Astengo Edwina Attlee B Julia Backhaus Edward Baggs Stefan Bassing Paul Bavister Richard Beckett Johan Berglund Prof Peter Bishop Izzy Blackburn Eddie Blake Isaie Bloch William Bondin Prof Iain Borden Dr Roberto Bottazzi Visiting Prof Andy Bow Matthew Bowles Eva Branscome Pascal Bronner Giulio Brugnaro Mark Burgess Bim Burton Matthew Butcher C Joel Cady Dr Graham Cairns 178

Daghan Cam Blanche Cameron William Camilleri Barbara-Ann Campbell-Lange Dr Ben Campkin Moa Carlsson Dr Brent Carnell Prof Mario Carpo Martyn Carter Tommaso Casucci Eray Cayli Megha Chand Inglis Prof Nat Chard Laura Cherry Izaskun Chinchilla Moreno Dr Evengelia Chrysikou Mollie Claypool Prof Marjan Colletti Fenella Collingridge Emeritus Prof Peter Cook Hannah Corlett Paul Crudge Prof Marcos Cruz D Christina Dahdaleh Amica Dall Xavier de Kestelier Ricardo Carvalho de Ostos Dr Edward Denison Bernadette Devilat Dr Ashley Dhanani Simon Dickens Alice Dietsch Paul Dobraszczyk Inigo Dodd Oliver Domeisen Elizabeth Dow

E Gary Edwards Sevcan Ercan Ruth Evison Dr Eve Eylers F Ava Fatah gen Schieck Marco Ferrari Zachary Fluker Emma Flynn Prof Adrian Forty Visiting Prof John Fraser Prof Murray Fraser Daisy Froud G Prof Stephen Gage Octavian Gheorghiu Stelios Giamarelos Jorge Gil Emer Girling Ruairi Glynn Dr Jon Goodbun Kevin Green Evan Greenberg Dr Sam Griffiths Kostas Grigoriadis Visiting Prof Joseph Grima Visiting Prof Nicholas Grimshaw Peter Guillery H Michael Hadi Soomeen Hahm Tamsin Hanke Dr Sean Hanna Dr Penelope Haralambidou Colin Herperger Prof Jonathan Hill

Visiting Prof Dan Hill Prof Bill Hillier Thomas Hillier Bill Hodgson Tom Holberton Adam Holloway Oliver Houchell Francesca Hughes Dr Anne Hultzsch Maxwell Hutchinson Vincent Huyghe Johan Hybschmann I Jessica In J Sam Jacob Matt Jakob JunHa Jang Jang Carlos Jiménez Cenamor Manuel Jiménez Garcia Steve Johnson Helen Jones K Mara-Sophia Kanthak Dr Kayvan Karimi Dr Jan Kattein Jonathan Kendall Simon Kennedy Honorary Visiting Prof David Kirsh Daniel Koehler Fani Kostourou Sofia Krimizi Dirk Krolikowski Dionysia Kypraiou L Jonathan Ladd Chee-Kit Lai

N Filippo Nassetti Ho-Yin Ng Thi-Phuong Nguyen Hikaru Nissanke Tim Norman

P Mattia Pagura Dr Garyfalia Palaiologou Igor Pantic Annarita Papeschi Salumeh Parekh Jacob Paskins Claudia Pasquero Thomas Pearce Luke Pearson Prof Alan Penn Dr Barbara Penner Mads Peterson Frosso Pimenides Maj Plemenitas Andrew Porter Arthur Prior Dr Sophia Psarra R Caroline Rabourdin Robert Randall Prof Peg Rawes Sophie Read Luis Rego Dr Aileen Reid Prof Jane Rendell Gilles Retsin Arturo Revilla Charlotte Reynolds Harriet Richardson Kimberly Riley Aleksandrina Rizova Dr David Roberts Gavin Robotham

Jonathan Rock Indigo Rohrer Dr Jonathan Rokem Javier Ruiz S Dr Kerstin Sailer Prof Andrew Saint Dr Sahed Saleem Joanna Saxon Carina Schneider Peter Scully Dr Tania Sengupta Dr Miguel Serra Sara Shafiei Anthony Shawcross Prof Bob Sheil Naz Siddique Sayan Skandarajah Amy Smith Paul Smoothy Prof Mark Smout Vicente Soler Eloy Solis Matthew Springett Brian Stater Emmanouil Stavrakakis John Steadman Dimitri Stefanescu Tijana Stevanovic Rachel Stevenson Sabine Storp Greg Storrar Michiko Sumi Yuri Suzuki T Martin Tang Dr Lusine Tarkhanyan Huda Tayob Philip Temple Colin Thom Michael Tite Martha Tsigkari

Freddy Tuppen Tomas Tvarijonas V Melis Van Den Berg Kim van Poeteren Dr Tasos Varoudis Prof Laura Vaughan Emmanuel Vercruysse Viktoria Viktorija Dr Nina Vollenbroker W Prof Susan Ware Bill Watts Patrick Weber Nick Westby Alice Whewell Visiting Prof Mark Whitby Andrew Whiting Rae Whittow-Williams Daniel Widrig Graeme Williamson Dr Robin Wilson Oliver Wilton Nicholas Winnard Katy Wood Y Umut Yamac Sandra Youkhana Michelle Young Z Paolo Zaide Martin Zaltz-Austwick Emmanouil Zaroukas Fiona Zisch Stamtios Zografos


The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

M Shneel Malik Arthur Mamou-Mani Dr Yeoryia Manolopoulou Jonathan Martin Adriana Massidda Emma-Kate Matthews Alexander McCann Prof Niall McLaughlin Visiting Professor Jeremy Melvin Visiting Professor Josep Mias Stoll Michael Bartlett Prof Frédéric Migayrou Jeffrey Miller Sarah Milne Tom Mole Ana Monrabal-Cook Ana Moutinho

O Jamie O’Brien James O’Leary Brian O’Reilly Bernie Ococ Luke Olsen Jakub Owczarek

Bartlett School of Architecture Staff & Consultants

Ruby Law Dr Guan Lee Stefan Lengen Lucy Leonard Dr Christopher Leung Amanda Levete Ifigeneia Liangi Prof CJ Lim Enriqueta Llabres-Valls Rebecca Loewen Thandi Loewenson Andy Lomas Alvaro Lopez Tim Lucas

Bartlett Lectures

The Bartlett International Lecture Series Attracting guests from across the capital, our International Lecture Series has featured over 500 distinguished speakers since its inception in 1996. Lectures in this series are open to the public, free to attend and have proven extremely popular. All of the lectures are recorded and made available online via the School’s Vimeo channel. This academic year’s speakers included: The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Nigel Coates Peggy Deamer Odile Decq Yvonne Farrell + Shelby McNamara Murray Fraser Simon Herron + Suzanne Isa Dan Hill + Joseph Grima Jonathan Hill Charles Holland Louisa Hutton Sylvia Lavin Lesley Lokko Thom Mayne Nicholas de Monchaux Farshid Moussavi Eva Prats Wolf D. Prix Jose Sanchez Felicity Scott Kjetil Traedal-Thorsen Bernard Tschumi The Bartlett International Lecture Series is generously supported by Fletcher Priest Architects.


A range of smaller lecture series attracted a wide range of speakers, including: Bartlett Plexus The Plexus Project is an open-to-all initiative that brings together the creative talent of emerging architects, engineers, programmers, game designers and visual artists to share techniques, solve problems and build networks. Recent speakers have included: Jeroen van Ameijde, Guilio Brugnaro, Dagham Cam, Jan Dierckx, Moritz Doerstelmann, Jelle Feringa, Mathias Gmachl, Alvaro Lopez, Josef Musil, Casey Rehm, Luis Rodil-Fernandez, Roland Snooks, Aldo Sollazzo, Dimitrie Stefanescu, Satoru Sugihara, Claudia Tanskanen, Daniel Widrig Situating Architecture Situating Architecture is an architectural history lecture series, affiliated with our renowned MA Architectural History and designed for both current students and members of the public alike. Recent speakers have included: Dr Kuba Szreder, Dr Polly Gould, Professor Mark Swenarton, Dr Jacob Paskins, Dr Michal Murawski, Dr Karen Burns, Dr Shahed Saleem, Dr David Roberts

Our Programmes

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

Every year we welcome students from around the world to study with us. Each of our current programmes is renowned for a unique and rigorous approach to architecture and related disciplines and we look forward to pushing more boundaries with our two new programmes in Bio-Integrated Design and Landscape Architecture.

Undergraduate programmes BSc Architecture (ARB/RIBA Part 1) BSc Architectural and Interdisciplinary Studies MEng Engineering and Architectural Design Graduate programmes MArch Architectural Design (B-Pro) MArch Urban Design (B-Pro) MSc/MRes Architectural Computation (B-Pro) MArch Architecture (ARB/RIBA Part 2) MRes Architecture and Digital Theory MA Architecture and Historic Urban Environments MA Architectural History MArch Design for Manufacture MArch Design for Performance and Interaction MA Situated Practice MSc/MRes Spatial Design: Architecture and Cities New from 2018 MArch/MSc Bio-Integrated Design New from 2018 MLA/MA Landscape Architecture MPhil/PhD Architectural Design MPhil/PhD Architectural History & Theory MPhil/PhD Architectural Space & Computation MPhil/PhD Architecture & Digital Theory Professional programme PgDip in Professional Practice & Management in Architecture (ARB/RIBA Part 3)


Bartlett Space

Image: 22 Gordon Street. Architects: Hawkins\Brown; contractor: Gilbert Ash. Photo by Jack Hobhouse

Here East Occupying over 100,000 square metres in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Here East is one of London’s most exciting new developments. A home for individuals and companies ranging from start-ups to some of the best-known companies both in the UK and globally, Here East offers unparalleled infrastructure for innovation and excellence. In 2016, UCL took over 3,000 square metres of 10-metre-high studio space at Here East, which will be used to undertake groundbreaking research in areas that include architecture, infrastructure, transport, robotics, healthcare, manufacturing and environmental measurement. The Bartlett, UCL’s Faculty of the Built Environment, and UCL Engineering will be expanding into these premises in late 2017 with teaching across four new programmes: MEng Engineering and Architectural Design, MA Situated Practice, MArch Design for Performance and Interaction and MArch Design for Manufacture. The scale of The Bartlett at Here East will enable UCL to strengthen its interdisciplinary research and teaching, as well as promote greater engagement with the local community, in advance of the opening of UCL East at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in the 2020/21 academic year. 183

The Bartlett School of Architecture 2017

22 Gordon Street In early 2017, we moved back into our transformed home at 22 Gordon Street (formerly Wates House) on UCL’s Bloomsbury Campus. The £30 million refurbishment and extension, carried out by architects Hawkins\Brown as part of UCL’s Bloomsbury Campus Refurbishments project, provides additional space and a fresh environment for the School. The new building has an additional floor and an expansion to the south that includes an exquisitely crafted black steel stair. It contains superb new studios, new social and café areas, a contemporary exhibition space and expanded workshops. The building has proved popular not only with students and staff, but also with the wider architectural community. It has already won a prestigious 2017 RIBA London Region Award, and has been shortlisted for the coveted 2017 AJ Building of the Year award. With its atmosphere of openness, spontaneity and collaboration, the new building is transforming how the School of Architecture works as cohesive body of over 900 students and 200 staff.

Publisher The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL Editor Laura Cherry Editorial Assistant Ruth Evison Graphic Design Patrick Morrissey, Unlimited Executive Editors Laura Allen, Frédéric Migayrou Photography James McCauley, Richard Stonehouse Copyright 2017 The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL and the authors No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. We endeavour to ensure all information contained in this publication is accurate at the time of printing. ISBN 978-0-9954819-8-5

For more information about programmes at The Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment, UCL, visit The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL 22 Gordon Street London WC1H 0QB +44 (0)20 3108 9646 Twitter: @BartlettArchUCL Facebook: Instagram: bartlettarchucl Vimeo:

ISBN 9780995481985

9 780995 481985

The Bartlett B-Pro Book 2017  
The Bartlett B-Pro Book 2017  

The B-Pro Book showcases work carried out in 2016-17 by students on The Bartlett's B-Pro programmes: MArch Architectural Design, MArch Urban...