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ART IN PROGRESS

ADS AIR

DHANIKA KUMAHERI


down the rabbit hole

We live in a very exciting time of change. As a young architecture student developing design thinking and design skills , this period in time offers us fantastic “adventures”, opportunities, dreams, visions and ideals. Essentially, the revolution of computational and digital tools has lured us down the rabbit hole, to the magnificent Wonderland, full of untapped resources and unexplored possibilities. It is also the cocaine of the self-proclained avantgarde architecture, so far pleasing only a significantly small portion of the international stage, but causing an ongoing addiction for research and progress for its cause. It is the purpose of this semester’s design studio to focus on, and contribute to, this ongoing architectural discourse, and to do so not only through meaningless form-finding, but more importantly in developing mastery in designing with these new tools where creaitivity is not “instant” but traceable and runs through the whole project. What this studio will not be, essentially, is “...an onanistic self indulgence in a cozy graphic environment. Endless repetition and variation on elaborate geometrical schemata with no apparent social environmental and technical purpose whatsoever.” -John Frazer, in M.Burry’s ‘Scripting Cultures’-


CONTENTS

ARCHITECTURE DESIGN STUDIO

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advancing the architectural discourse

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computational innovation CONTEMPORARY SCRIPTING DESIGN PHILOSOPHY


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ADVANCING ARCHITECTURAL DISCOURSE

ARCHITECTURE AS EMOTION Here, Architecture is about emotions. It is about a set of overflowing dialogue of feelings from the object to the subject. Architecture becomes a visual cue for an emotional reaction. More importantly, architecture became a medium for emotional communication. There is a silent, frozen quality in this image that speaks out loud. It is that indecipherable element, much like that of a piece of music, that cannot be accurately described with words, but can be instantly sensed, with emotion. And that is one of the many wonderful enchantments of architecture. One can be tranced with awe, lost in fear, trembling with happiness as one walks into a significant building of one’s choice. Architecture has that potential to overwhelm, drown, evoke, inspire. Through the careful orchestration of elements, light, space, form and composition, architects control, select and dictate certain emotions

design for a viewing screen, 2010. Dhanika Kumaheri


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“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere” - Albert Einstein

ADVANCING ARCHITECTURAL DISCOURSE

ARCHITECTURE AS IMAGINATION

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A significant proportion of archietctural discourse throughout its history relies on teh power of architecturew as an imagery. A piece of powerful driver, a primer, to evoke, produce and ignite new possibilities- new discourses. This type of archietctural discourse has been available long before digital tools became popular. Using digital toools to create these images, however, provide images that are increasingly scary in terms of their resemblance to real life conditions. This very quality allows ecperimentation in digital architecture to have a very solid impact on the way we think and react to new architectural ideas as well as the old architectural entities that we are already familiar with. It forces us to question things like : “Is it real?”, “Is it buildable?”. But more importantly, as a discourse, the question we should be asking is “ Does it matter if it’s real or not?”

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Victor Enrich, “Medusa”, Original Print Size: 124 x 120 cm ( 49” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1

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Victor Enrich, “VEF Remonts”, Original Print

These images are so important because of their raw power to instigate something that could potentially advance archietctural discourse to a whole new level, without being cincerned about it’s applicability, or its pragamtism. It is pure expression. In it seltf, it coudl also be a pure question. One contribution from one individual, to later be taken, analyzed, and pushed forward by others. This particular field of discourse could only be assessed as a chain of progression, as a chain of influence, not against how unrealistic or unpragmatic it may seem.

Size: 120 x 120 cm ( 47” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1 3.

Victor Enrich, “Deportation”, Original Print Size: 120 x 129 cm ( 45” x 51” ) Edition of 1+1

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Victor Enrich, “Tango 1”, Original Print Size: 134 x 120 cm ( 53” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1

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Victor Enrich, “Tango 2”, Original Print Size: 134 x 120 cm ( 53” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1

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Victor Enrich, “Tango 3”, Original Print Size: 134 x 120 cm ( 53” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1

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Victor Enrich, “Tango 4”, Original Print Size: 134 x 120 cm ( 53” x 47” ) Edition of 1+1

What’s interesting about Victor Enrich’s work is that it attempts to make something that surrealreal. In fact, he did so in a rather whimsical way. It is that quality that I think all desgners should have. Project your soul into your work. Your take about life. Your view. Victor Enrich has succeeded in provoking the masses, and getting them thinking about directions of potential gold


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ADVANCING ARCHITECTURAL DISCOURSE

packaging dynamism within static form

Before the invention of structural building frames of steel and curtain walling, façades were characterised by window arrangements, its ornamentations or patterns. They often featured surface relief with architectural elements from the relevant period or style. The structure of the façade also determined the ground plan; the greater the number of window axes in a room, the more public the use, or the more important the

room is. The expression of openings in a building were limited by the construction technology, materials available at that time, and adherance to a certain architectural style and rule. Society changed, innovations sprang up. Larger sheets of glass were produced, enlarging window frames and mullions.Then breakthroughs in the construction industry devised a new way of propping the structure of the building in such a way that will freed the facade of the building from performing a structural load bearing duty. Modernity came, and suddenly, buildings have lost its facade. They all become masks, canvases of experimentation of design intent, a revolution from its structural history.

Kiefer Technic Showroom 8344 Bad Gleichenberg, Steiermark Ernst Giselbrecht + Partner ZT GmbH Graz, 2006-2007. Awarded with the Austrian Architecture Award 2008

Architects like Le Corbusier, Louis Kahn, Tadao Ando and Mario Botta have exploited this opportunity and created inspiring products that are neither facade nor opening, but a romantic tango between the two. However, their work face an inevitable dilemma of being inexplicably static, frozen in the dimensionality and frozen within the time and space of the context of architecture being a product of construction. As a result, building inhabitants were not only powerless to control the amount of sunlight or views they get access to, but buildings also have a static, clear ‘face’ created for it from its birth to all the way to its death.

The result is a building whose façade gracefully morphs in a series of concertina folds depending on the light requirements and warmth tolerance of those inside. The system can be programmed to display countless patterns and configurations, giving what could have been a humdrum office a fascinating animated façade.

The Kiefer Technic showroom came into being to challenge , and possibly answer that dilemma of accomodating the need for dynamism in a static product. This showroom’s facade components can be adapted individualy to changing conditions and needs of the inahbitants, giving a more compliant and flexible architecture.

The final result is a breattaking architecture that morphs and changes, and best of all, reflects teh life, emotions and situations of its inhabitants, fostering a passive social communication with its direct environment.

These façades change continuously; each day, each hour shows a new “face” - the façade is turning into a dynamic sculpture.


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COMPUTATIONAL INNOVATIONS

michael hansmeyer: a new order We are familiar with the use of generative grammars, L-systems or other

recursive procedural frameworks, such as Roland Snook’s swarm based models that references natural processes or organic structures. What is extraordinary about the work of Michael Hansmeyer is the fact that Hansmeyer does not seek to reference the same processes as analytical tools to investigate nature. Instead, Hansmeyer is directly interested in creating an outcome purely for the purpose of synthesizing and producing ornamentation. One can argue that Hansmeyer is in fact taking a geometrical ornamentation path much like that of Islamic religious ornaments that defy any references back to nature, and derive its insipiration, beauty and complexity purely from geometrical forms. In his latest, and most famous work, his structures make reference to the foundational discourse of the architectural order of columns, in which systems of dealing with issues of articulation and junction have been negotiated from antiquity through to the architetcure of the early 20th century. And not just in Western cultures and architecture, but also seen in ither architecture cultures around teh world. And yet, his approach is not intended to add criticisim or to expand or modulate this discourse in any way - he does not intend to seek a modified new order, but rather is interested in something like the orderability, the ability to arrang pareticular orders out of all potential ways of doing so.

How far is Hansmeyer’s work advancing the architectural discourse is rather debatable. While it is true that it is a brilliant innovation from the mundane types of traditional ornamentation, and offers a viewing experience and rich engagement with the viewer’s sense of touch in ways that could never have been achieved without computational tools, let us not forget the fact that it is, in fact, only a shell of fancy ‘clothing’ wrapping around a rather simple and traditional architectural column. A full-scale, BAROQUE DETAILING: RE- 2.7-meter high variant of the columns was fabricated as a layered model DEFINED using 1mm sheet. Each sheet was individually cut using a laser cutter. A SEARCH FOR PURE OR- Sheets are stacked and held together by poles that run through a comNAMENTATION mon core. There is still an apparent disjunct between the column’s traditionality of functioning as a supporting structural element and its new Michael Hansmeyer. “A New Order”. neo-baroque collumn prototype. 2010 state-of-the-art add-on ornamented function, and no effort, despite the advanced computational tool at hand, has been made to marry the two.


COMPUTATIONAL INNOVATIONS

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On this note, Hansmeyer’s columns have failed to launch itself at a more futuristic projection. To a certain extent it has succeeded advancing the meaning, shape, form and feel of what architectural ornamentation in the digital age can potentially be in contrast with its Baroque predecessor. However, for it to really push the architectural discourse forward it needs to advance its attempt of merely ornamenting a structural entity and approach this high level of visual and textural complexity not merely from and aesthetics point of view but also from a structural standpoint. "The shapes of Michael Hansmeyer present themselves, as ornamented columns, very self-confidently as the produces of artificiality - even though there is a strong touch of alien organicity proper to them.''- Vera Buhlmann

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Comprehended like this, as genuinely procedural shapes that articulate a certain figurality of the of the form, evoke a certain alien-like feeling - they indeed share some key features of Baroque rationality - namely the radically abstract interest in aesthetics by calculation. Apart from that, the same love for curvilinear decoration and the same effect of theatricality are achieved.

2 1. Michael Hansmeyer. “A New Order”. neobaroque collumn prototype. 2010 2. Michael Hansmeyer. “A New Order”. neobaroque collumn prototype. Close up zoom 9x. 2010. 3. Michael Hansmeyer. “A New Order”. neobaroque collumn prototype. Tangibility. 2010. 4. Michael Hansmeyer. “A New Order”. neobaroque collumn prototype, on display at Gwangju design Bienalle, 2011.

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manufacturing

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5. A new Order. Initial intersection with line segments 6. A new Order. Formation of Polygons 7. A new Order. Polygon Filtering and vertex adjustment 8. A new Order. Interior offset/ hollowing out

The calculation of the cutting path for each sheet takes place in several steps. First, the six million faces of the 3D model are intersected with a plane representing the sheet. This step generates individual line segments that are tested for self-intersection and subsequently combined to form polygons. Next, a polygon-in-polygon test deletes interior polygons. A series of filters then ensures that convex polygons with peninsulas maintain a mininimum isthmus width. In a final step, an interior offset is calculated with the aim of hollowing out the slice to reduce weight. While the mean diameter of the column is 50cm, the circumference as measured by the cutting path can reach up to 8 meters due to jaggedness and frequent reversals of curvature. The initial prototype uses 1mm grey board. Tests using ABS, wood, as well as metal are under way.


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a frozen piece of music Anisotropia, the design for the new Busan Opera House

This project started with an interesting notion of music and architecture, and how similar they are to each other. However, unlike his earlier predecessor Iannis Xenakis, who composed music for pre-existing spaces and designed spaces to be integrated with specific music compositions and performances, Christoph Klemmt took this idea of merging architecture and music into a further level. With his design for the Busan Opera House, Klemmt reconfigured a musical piece that he wrote and through the use of computational tools, translated it into a façade that wraps the entire opera house in a corresponding harmony of architectural and musical composition. Klemmt has once,and forall,frozen music into architecture.

(top left) Busan Opera House. rendering of great hall. Cristoph Klemmt, 2011. (bottom left) Busan Opera House Rendering of main theatre hall. Cristoph Klemmt. 2011. (bottom right) Busan opera house floor plan. Cristoph Klemmt. 2011

Klemmt’s initial design philosophy revolved around the differences similarities between architecture and music and how he could merge the two. One of the most apparent differences between the two is that architecture eventually manifests itself in form and mass, whereas music is without mass. Despite these differences, he was interested in similar experiential qualities that music and architecture share. At a fundamental level, both architecture and music are art forms that have the capacity to evoke and express emotional response. From a technical perspective, they are both made up of technical or individual components or members that join together to make a coherent composition of elements.


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Having been successful with transforming something that is intangible into something that is spatially tangible, Klemmt was then faced with the most important question in parametrics and computational architecture : “How does one incorporate one’s computational concept into built architecture?”. Klemmt does this in a sinuous, philosophical way. By wrapping this ‘frozen music’ around the building mass, Klemmt created a new symbol for art. He has managed to visualize music into built form, the equivalent to making ghosts visible to the naked eye before the age of computational tools. Klemmt hugged and dressed his building mass in this abstract, interweaving waves that not only just represented music, but embodies it. By doing this, he actually took the understanding and discourse of architectural symbolism further. With the help of computational tools, it is now possible to literally manifest a concept that is previously never possible. Klemmt achieved a literal representation of an abstract concept, music, in an elegant and not so mundane way.

However, architects still face a challenge in how architecture communicates to the general public. There has always been a gap between most building’s conceptual starting point, and the public apprehension of such concepts. The general public concensus is that architectural concept and the way public receives them are incongruent. While this incongruency is good in that it lets different interpretations and meaning be projected onto the built work, it also poses the question of whether or not an architectural concept behind the building needed to be communicated at all. Should it be an architect’s job to make sure that his concept, his personal message be communicated to the world? Or should it not concern the architect at all? Does it matter whether or not the public ‘gets it’? And most importantly, will the public ‘get’this piece of architecture?

A building that is truly a work of art in its nature, essence, physical being an emotional expression. This being so, and I feel that this is so, it must have, almost literally, a life.

They also share a similar way of design representation. Both of these disciplines rely on visual graphics, drawings and annotations to communicate, replicate, and visualize their design, and both have their own codes, systems and rules of representation. The last, and probably most important similarity that Klemmt explored was time. Klemmt was interested in how both disciplines occupy the dimension of time, and it was through this very method that he successfully translated sound into space. In a way, Klemmt transformed the time component in his music into an architectural space.

-Robert Seyfarth The theme of ornamentation is central to this design. And it is important to approach the intention of this ornamental facade critically. The marriage between architecture and ornamentation has had its significant rise and falls. And the public view on how an ornamentation is received is always changing. Ornamentation also brings a central theme of identity, and with it, issues such as place making, or lack thereof.

Klavierstück The musical piece that is behind the conception of Busan opera house facade detail .


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It is curious to note that the architect composed a musical piece in Germany that isn;t an actual ‘music for the ears’. Instead, Klavierstück I is a piano composition written by Klemmt based on a twelve tone row which is repeated and altered by the different voices, in order to create complex rhythmic patterns. One can say that this musical piece was created for the sake of appearnce. Once again, this feels unconvincing. Why not choose a musical piece related to Busan, South Korea, as an interdisciplinary twist on site-specificity? Why not take the wonderful concept and use it to enhance the cultural heritage, the cultural treasures and richness of the site and teh people? Why not make this architectural concept a driver and beacon for cultural identity of the place? At least then the reasons for the origins of the design would fit with the location of the structure.

Sure, beauty by itself can be wonderful to behold, but in the case of a purpose-built building—a cultural center no less—beauty with a reason is often more satisfying. This project manifests the very meaning of computational architecture and its power to visualize abstract concepts in a novel way. Through the use of computation, the design intent was carefully and beautifully executed: “ Translating and freezing music into built form”. It is successful in pushing boundaries of architecture as a literal means of representation, but a question remains unanswered. Will computational design contribute to a further death of site specific identity and richyness? Will it promote sitespecific solutions that are embedded within the heart and culture of the local people? Or will it simply be an empty cocoon of form, waiting for locals toi project a sense of identity to it? Busan Opera house 3D rendering, perspective view, Cristoph Klemmt, 2011

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ADS Journal Week 3  

exploratpry journal of ADS Air