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AN ISLAND FOR

BEN HOWARD


ARCH 4526 ARCHITECTURE COMMUNICATIONS BOOKLET BRAEDEN MARTEL


“A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.” - Italo Calvino

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” - Marcel Proust


INTRODUCTION

Ben Howard is an English singer-songwriter, musician and composer who has released five records in his career so far. Howards music explores dark themes using atmospheric instrumentals and sometimes haunting vocals. His music takes me to a place I have not yet discovered. Each replay of his songs brings me back here, to this undefined space. A space without rules, people, or outside perception. A space of freedom and comfort, yet a space that is not really a space at all, but a mindset. A temporary installation defined by the soundwaves of a song, changing with the external forces that change our perceptions on the daily. But what would that space be, if it could exist in a physical form? Can a discography produce a vernacular architecture? Religious spaces are designed to hold the hymns within its walls and carry the message of the music itself, but what if the hymns produced the building? These are a lot of questions which I have yet to find answers to. I will not be simply designing a space in which to listen to Ben Howards music, but instead design a space which embodies the same experience as the music itself.

The two quotes I have included above will act as guides as I discover the space that the music trancends me to. Italo Calvino’s quote describes a classic book as never being finished saying what is has to say. So then how can we design architecture to also become a classic through the same idea that it is not finished saying what is has to say? How can we implement re-discovery into a space that we can so easily be brought back to through music, without losing the sense of place? In paraphrasing Marcel Proust, real discovery comes not from seeking new landscapes, but in seeking new eyes. What Marcel means by this, is that the true objective of discovery is to change our own perspectives within. This allows for a change in perspective in other landscapes, and not just the new. The value of such a perception of discovery is one I would like to explore through the design of this space. These explorations will lead me in a difficult but exciting process in which I can begin to interpret music into a space while also exploring some of my own interests as design guides.


MUSIC SELECTION

A BOAT TO AN ISLAND ON THE WALL CONRAD BURGH ISLAND TO BE ALONE


PARTI

Rules for a rule-less world: In order to avoid chaos in the organization of an Island for Ben Howard, rules must be set to achieve a coherent composition of the spaces throughout the island.

Arousal

A system was developed in which spaces could be organized in space by analyzing and categorizing the music techinically as well as atmospherically. The system organizes the shell of the spaces while the overall emotional reaction to the music defines the overall experience of the space. After much research regarding the analysis of music both technically, and emotionally, three terms were chosen which will define the location of the spaces. Arousal, Valence, and Depth will serve as our analytical trio and will aid in plotting these spaces on the island which does not yet exist. These terms are our threedimensional axes.

Depth

Valence


THE PROCESS

1. Drifting - sketching while listening 2. Atmospheric Painting - defining emotion thorugh paint 3. Music Analysis - to compose the space on the island 4. Orthographic drawings - develop drawings/model 5. Ephermeral Evolution - developing details to strengthen emotion

The island for Ben Howard does not yet exist, meaning there is nothing to respond to architecturally. To begin to design the spaces, we must also be designing the island. To do this, each piece of music must have a system developed where the emotion and the story of the song can be translated. From there, we can begin to understand how these spaces are connected, and how the narrative of the island will form.


THE ISLAND

The island is comprised of four buildings, each inspired by a specific song by artist Ben Howard. The buildings are designed to evoke a similar emotional experience through architecture rather than musically. Three characters are present in the island ensuring the themes of rediscovery and freedom of imagination are explored fully.

Mystery Through musical and lyrical analysis, a theme of longing was determined as imperative to the story of the island. Perception is key in the integrated design of this theme, allowing for the theme of rediscovery to occur - important since music is often heard several times.

These characters are the forces acting on the Island.

Nostalgia A sense of history is explored throughout the island in two ways, the first is through the architecture and site design itself. New forms emerge inspired by our real world, which then are translated to the islands ruleless nature. The second form of nostalgia is held within the program of each building. Each building consists of a singular moment or action. For instance, in Conrad, a single chair is placed at the center of the building looking back to he two walkways with an identical experience meeting the building and presenting a single new experience. Why? That is where the imagination of the audience engages with the spaces and manifests themselves as a character on the island.

Water Represents the natural forces present on the island, offering a dimension of unpredictability, and change, both important to the theme of rediscovery. The water stands as a physical and graphic representation of the abundant forces that affect the island. By choosing to represent the flow of water as a character, an interplay can occur between the audience’s imagination and the islands forces.


ONE ISLAND FOUR BUILDINGS THREE CHARACTERS


Isometric Island Render


1:200 Island Plan 1/2


1:200 Island Plan 2/2


1:200 Island Elevation


1:200 Island Section


A Boat to an Island on the Wall

To care, or not to care To be there In the distant and uncertain To be aware In an old Iberian hotel room That the devil Is not behind the curtain She said walk in small steps And fear floating We made a pact A certain approaching Leaned on the sky The smoking cigarette Said it’s late You should be going The wind is howling The house is showing Boat to an island on the wall Hand striking in slow motion Future singing in the field Shooting season’s open

To care, or not care To be aware In your absence an angel chose this for you You’re supposed to laugh Tell your fortune to the sailor This is the black mountain pass These hours the sun shines to moonlight, black Boat to an island on the wall A hand striking in slow motion Future singing in the field Shooting season’s open Boat to an island on the wall A hand striking in slow motion Lied too bad, too long


A Boat to an Island on the Wall Atmospheric Drawing


A visitors maiden experience with the island consists of a building bridging the ocean and the island. The building meets the ocean, offering an entrance to a new world. A large set of steps gently guides the visitor to the Islands ground floor, where, a large view is framed, offering a view of the new world. A second set of steps to the left offers a place of refuge, where, a small porthole window offers a view back from where you’ve come.


CONRAD

Climb out Out to where you see The curl of the world, We’re alone Just like you said Cold cold world, Life lasts Only one thing left to roll Last year to learn, You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad We will never be the change To the weather and the sea and you knew that, You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad Oh I loved you with the good And the careless of me But it all goes back, Oh climb out Out enough to see The curl of the world, Oh we’re alone Just like you said

You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad We will never be the change To the weather and the sea and you knew that, You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad Oh I loved you with the good And the careless of me But it all goes back, You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad We will never be the change To the weather and the sea and you knew that, You were the boat that bridged In the tale of Conrad Oh I loved you with the good


Two pathways each flanked with evergreen trees frame a long walk towards a singular building. As one approaches the building, the scent of evergreen trees and the sound of running water arouse the senses. Once inside the building, one chair is placed in front of an integrated window, offering a view in the direction in which you’ve come. A screen of water falls from the roof offering an interesting view through the water onto the tiny stream that runs infinitely from where you’ve come.


Conrad Atmospheric Drawings


Burgh Island

With brown eyes shining, shore light on the way to go, And the sun tries you’re feeling home, I guess you’re broke And we lost sight of it, and breath tide up in someone’s hold, And I screamed at Burgh Island in sepia tones. And if I was ever to leave, I’d say before I go That you’re the best moment I have ever known.

And if I was ever to leave, I’ll say before I go That you’re the best moment I have ever known. Oh, I bite my tongue, that you maybe the first to the wind ‘Cause I heard each song, the man is a fickle child, The one blowing.

With brown eyes shining, shore light on the way to go,

Oh, I bite my tongue, that you maybe the first to the wind

And the sun tries you so long, And we lost sight of it, and breath tide up in someone’s hold,

‘Cause I heard each song, the man is a fickle child,

And we’ll break for it on Burgh Island in sepia tones.

The one blowing. And the careless of me But it all goes back,


A small building atop the lone mountain on the Island provides two views. The first, a view down into the ocean below, and the second offering a view up into the sky. An integrated bed exists above a small fireplace, offering temporary warmth on cold nights. During a rainstorm the oculus above fills with water, and constellations can be made as water droplets fall onto the small collected body of water. The oculus serves as a temporary canvas for which your memories are projected. It offers a place to see things, or people, within the droplet constellations.


1:50

Perspective Section (Looking Up)


To Be Alone

Falling from high places, falling through lost spaces Now that we’re lonely, now that there’s nowhere to go Watching from both sides, these clock towers burning up I lost my time here, I lost my patience with it all And we lost faith, in the arms of love Where you been hiding lately Where you been hiding from the news? Because we’ve been fighting lately We’ve been fighting with the wolves With the wolves Red tongues and hands

Falling from high places, falling through lost spaces Now that we’re lonely, now that we’re so far from home Watching from both sides, these towers been tumbling down I lost my mind here, I lost my patience with the lord We lost faith, oh in the arms of love Where you been hiding lately Where you been hiding from the news? Because we’ve been fighting lately We’ve been fighting with the wolves With the wolves Red tongues and hands We lost faith, in the arms of love


To Be Alone Atmospheric Drawing


At the edge of the Island, a tall building stands. A long ladder leads one up to the viewing deck, where, the entirety of the island can be seen. As one walks around the viewing deck, views of the disorder and chaos of the ocean are paired with lonesome views of an Island in which you are the only inhabitant.


Island Atmospheric Drawing


Braeden Martel

An Island for Ben Howard  

An architecture communications project exploring the design of an island and its accompanying buildings meant to evoke the same emotions of...

An Island for Ben Howard  

An architecture communications project exploring the design of an island and its accompanying buildings meant to evoke the same emotions of...

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