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CAF - Clemson University




Charles E. Daniel Center for Building, Research and Urban Studies Students at Forte Sperone, Genova


Students Undergraduate: Tori August Elizabeth Clarkin Alex Darsinos Evan Goodwin Meagan Hoffman Katie Kirby Andrew McCall Alison Martin Dylan Perkinson David Stone Yuki Takeshima Grace Walters Doug White Calvin Wright


Landscape Architecture: Reid Bagwell Carlin Bartlett Gradey Grumman Graduate: Lauren Boulier Chen Fang Carolyn Woods

Faculty Henrique Houayek* Professor in Residence Luca Rocco Alessandro Rocca Giuditta Poletti Saverio Fera Administrator Silvia Siboldi Staff: Cristina Lagomarsino Lucia Ruggiero * Spouse Kelly Houayek

Students, faculty and staff at the Villa Party February 17th 2012 5

This book is dedicated to the Daniel family and all the donors for their generous support over the years. Mr. William H. Pelham (Pelham Architects, LLC) Mrs. Anne Landsman Isenburger Mrs. Jeanne G. Fowler Mr. J. Kendall Gallaugher (Little and Associates Architects) Mr. Charles C. Mickel Mrs. Minor H. Mickel Mr. Raymond Stainback (Thompson, Ventullett & Stainback Associates) Mr. Charles M. McGee Jr. Mrs. Olivia Jackson McGee Mr. & Mrs. Harrison Forrester Mr. Frederick George “Fritz� Roth Mrs. Eva L. Holmes Mr. David S. Spell Mrs. Minor M. Shaw


Students Sketching at Chiesa di San Stefano, Genova 77

Roma; Coliseum

Lyon, Opera House

Sienna Cathedral

Firminy, Saint-Pierre Church

Sienna, Piazza Del Campo

Barbecue at the Villa


Como, Casa Del Faschio

Vanice, Fondazione Querini Stampalia


Carolyn Woods Architecture Graduate

Life in the villa is full of new friendships and new experiences. When I arrived at the villa, I only knew one other person and by the time I left, I had new friends that I was excited to see back in Clemson. Our semester was filled with moments that I will never forget, from hanging out on the balcony and watching the sunset to late nights in studio to backyard barbeques. Living in one house together brings about a new form of camaraderie between everyone. We live, travel, eat, and work together, which is more time spent with one another than anyone had experienced. But it worked; we were all sharing a new experience, and when you’re in a country where very little of you speak the language, it naturally brings you together. Our backyard barbeques were a very special treat from our live-in professor Henrique. We would spend the afternoon in the garden, eating and drinking together, enjoying many delicious meals that included delicious steak, sausage, and cinnamon pineapple. The staff in the villa: Silvia, Cristina, and Lucia, are absolutely amazing and complete the experience. I will miss them all dearly but will always remember catching them singing Italian pop songs in the kitchen and having them laugh at our sleepy faces in the early morning. Overall, the villa is an amazing experience that I know I will miss; being surrounded by friends, delicious meals, and of course, endless cappuccinos.


Elizabeth Clarkin Architecture Graduate

While living in the villa in Genoa I learned a lot about Italian culture, the people I was living with, and how to coexist with a group of peers. The villa not only forced me to meet new people and adapt to new situations but in a way it gave me a second family, the Villian family as we called it. Like any other family we had meals together, fought for the bathroom, and did almost everything together. Unlike other families we were a little unique as was our living situation, living in a house with nineteen other students and one of your teachers made villa living unlike anything I will ever experience. The villa lifestyle allowed you to have a close knit group of people who could you talk to about school, play soccer tennis with, or just hang out on the balcony; you gained a family and friends who were always there for you. Every week day we had lunch in between classes as a whole; all the students and most of the faculty. Here we experienced new food and common Italian eating habits which included the order to eat your meal, what bowl to put it in, etc. Lunch offered an escape from school work and other stresses and allowed students to unwind telling stories or talking to the teachers all while enjoying some of the best food I have ever had in my life! Lunch is just one aspect of living in the villa, when you are living with your peers you become very close. I gained friends that I could have potentially never met through this experience and even though living with nineteen other students can be difficult at times none of us will ever forget the experiences we shared in the marble villa tucked away in the hills of Genoa.

Living at the Villa

Student experiences in Genova

Laura Lynn Hutton Architecture Graduate

When my taxi pulled up to the villa for the first time and I saw that the front door was literally set 12 inches off of the narrowest street imaginable, I knew it would be an exciting semester. From the first day I was spoiled by the beautiful views of the Mediterranean and the sprawling seaport below Castelletto. Initially, I was nervous about spending so much time in close quarters with so many people, but it was truly was interesting how all of our relationships developed. Very quickly we became accustomed to fresh focaccia in the morning, pasta for lunch and family-style dinners. I’ve never had a large family, but if I did I’d imagine it would looks something like life at the villa. Sure, sometimes we annoy each other, and we aren’t always in perfect harmony, but, at the end of the day we’ve all shared an incredible experience with one another, which are memories we will have forever. I will never forget my time spent in Italy, Genova and the villa; one day I also hope to be able to give back to the villa in the way others before my supported my journey abroad.

Tori August Architecture Undergraduate

Villa life is sharing a room with three, living upstairs with nineteen, spending everyday with twenty-three, and having zero alone time. It is an experience I had never had before Genoa and will probably never have again, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I am from a big family so I’m used to being around people constantly, but this semester took it to a whole other level. The constant classes, many meals, and being together 24/7 brought us all to be really close quicker than I ever thought possible. Looking back, we were like kids at summer camp on a rigorous schedule (especially with the lunch/dinner bell) yet we made the most of everyday. While we all always tried to do our own things, we would usually end up back together somewhere in the villa. Outside of studio, we had barbecues, did Korean workout videos, learned Aikido, played fruit baseball, watched movies, played jackpot, and did some of the most random stuff imaginable. We had so much fun doing the oddest things, and I’m going to miss being able to goof off constantly and making bad jokes with all the ‘villains’ whenever I want. I’m excited about going home to my own room but it’s going to be pretty weird having to leave my house in order to hang out with other people. It’s bittersweet that we are all about to leave Genoa for good because although it was hectic at times, I can’t imagine going through this semester in any other way. The villa culture provided me with an experience I will never have again and will definitely never forget.


Carlin Barlett Landscape Architecture Student

One of the best parts of studying in Genova is experiencing Italy as a whole. Traveling with the class gave us the opportunity to experience Italian cities far beyond the touristic level. Having our Italian field studies professor Giuditta and other Italian private tour guides on the group trips allowed us to learn first-hand more about each place than we could have on our own. Learning about a place or a building while you are there brings learning to a whole new level. You can relate to the space you are in and gain a much better understanding than can be reached in the classroom. Genova’s location in northern Italy facilitates traveling to other European countries as well. During independent travel, actually seeing some of the buildings we learned about in our Contemporary European Architecture class allowed me to gain a new appreciation for them, especially in their urban contexts. Over the semester, the experiences I have gained traveling have significantly influenced me as a student and personally as well. It has opened doors for me, encouraging me to keep traveling and discovering new places in the future.


Laura Lynn Hutton Architecture Graduate

A common misconception regarding studying abroad is that it is essentially a vacation for a semester. Well, I can assure you that the previous statement is anything but true. If you don’t believe me, just tag along for one of our 10-day group travels. Our trips consisted of early mornings, arduous train rides, sprints through countless train stations, incredible monuments, famous museums, and an abundance of information courtesy of the day’s leader. During my semester in Genova, we visited 19 cities and took over 50 trains, just within Italy and not including independent travel. Don’t have too much pity on us, however, we were in Europe, having the time of our lives. At the end of the day, I’ve personally laid my eyes on the works by some of the most famous architects, artists and designers the world has ever seen from Roman times to present day, which will allow me to be a better architect once in professional practice. I’ve also developed my sketching, drawing and watercolor skills and discovered my own personal style, which perhaps the most valuable tool I’ve acquired while in Italy. I could have never seen and experienced all of the sights and cities I’ve seen this semester on my own, and am eternally grateful to everyone involved in the program for making it happen.

The Trips

Student experiences in Genova

Meagan Hoffman Architecture Undergraduate

“Meet in the lobby tomorrow at 9:00 am ready to go, not 9:05, not 9:02, 9:00!” The familiar phrase rang out as we trudged up to our hotel rooms on our first group travel trip. Each day was at least 9 hours and packed with amazing sites. From seeing the ruins of Pompeii to the statue of David to the Palladian villas and Le Corbusier’s work, our first group trip included the south of Italy and our second focused on the northern section and part of France. Over the course of the semester we take two 9-day travel trips as a group, as well as a day trip every week. We are also allotted 9 days to travel independently in between the other trips as well. The opportunity to travel in Europe with our group and independently over the course of the semester is truly the strength of the program. Each day is constructed to show us the most a city can offer, and by most I mean all, we move all day, every day… But the group trips are by far the best teaching tool to highlight all the architecture that Europe has to offer. On the second group trip, we spent a day making our way from Venice to Vicenza, taking a tour of the Palladian Villas and several Carlos Scarpa works. We saw Castel Vecchio in Verona, and several Corbusier works in Lyon, France. This trip was one of the many highlights of the semester. On my plane back to America I will be able to say I visited 8 countries, skied the Italian alps, sketched Michael Angelo’s David (and about everything else in Europe), climbed the Eiffel tower, biked the coastline of Spain, ate my weight in gelato and many more amazing memories- a truly life changing experience

Evan Goodwin Architecture Undergraduate

This semester was a very eye-opening experience for me, and the semester wouldn’t have been the same without the three weeklong travels we took. Being able to finally see in person all the buildings and artwork we’d been studying for several years now in studio and art history was really cool, especially in cities like Rome, Florence and Venice where the art culture has been so strong for hundreds of years. The culture of the cities themselves was really incredible too, particularly so in the smaller cities like Siena, Perugia and Vicenza. The independent travel week was a change of pace from all the architecture we saw in Italy, since I was fortunate enough to be able to go to Berlin, Vienna and Prague. The contemporary buildings of Berlin served as a great parallel to our Contemporary European Architecture class with Professor Rocca, and the contrast between the old and new architecture of Berlin and Vienna was interesting to see from a studio perspective. I learned so much from every city we visited thanks to Professor Poletti’s history lessons and Professor Houayek’s field sketching class, and I know I’ll take all I’ve learned with me to apply in studio and in projects in the future.


Genova Piazza The structure of the Piazza Piazzas are among the most spectacular architecture works of the medieval city; its trace and position of its buildings represent principle functions of communal life and civic unity. In this drawing exercise students are encourage to experience Genova’s medieval city piazzas and understand its architectural structure, scale, orientation and architecture. The proposed exercise requires students to choose and investigate, on site, a medieval piazza dimension and scale - its form is reproduced in plan with its building’s facades. The following Piazzas were reproduced:

1 3

1 1

1 Piazza della Meridiana 2 Piazza San Lorenzo 3 Piazza della Anunziatta 4 Piazza San Matteo 5 Piazza Fontane Marose 6 Piazza del Ferro 7 Piazza Luccoli 8 Piazza Banchi 9 Piazza di San Donato




5 1 6



15 11


Students Sketching at Piazza di Ferrari, Genova 17

Piazza di Banchi Carlin Barlett 18

Piazza di Ferrari Chen Fang 19

Piazza di Banchi Tori August 20

Piazza di San Lorenzo Lauren Boulier 21

Piazza di San Lorenzo Andrew McCall 22

Piazza Della Meridiana Carolyn Woods 23

Piazza Della Maddalena Grace Walters 18 24

Piazza di Banchi David Stone 25

Field Studies: Sketches

On Drawing: Design as an aesthetic practice

The process of graphic transformation of the environment onto a two dimensional page, acts for architecture students as an explicit and remarkable analytical tool. The focus of the Field Studies/Sketch course in Genova is to sharpen the student’s ability to see, understand, and record, through drawing their experiences while studying abroad. Traveling, walking and discovering new environments becomes an aesthetic practice. As for an architecture student there is no better learning experience than to train his or her visual sensibility - the capacity to explain it graphically is to reach control over architectural forms. The unique character and advantage of the “field sketch� is to allow a concentrated amount of time to focus attention onto a specific place or building in order to discover, analyze and record its complexities. Such analytical inquiry may have a reciprocal effect of interpreting the subject and, through the drawing itself, illustrates the process of how the subject is revealed, providing insightful information and reveals otherwise hidden information about the subject rather than only depicting stenography. This class procedure is very simple: students must draw nearly every day, a process which builds confidence and skill in observation and graphic presentations. Most important these drawings should help students in their own design process. Design becomes the conclusion of the chain of associations, analysis, observation and connections to existing architecture and their exploratory experiences. The following pages bring a sample of the variety of sketches and drawings done throughout the semester. Divided by city and theme, these pages present visions and discoveries while in Genova and traveling around Europe. 26


Field Studies: Sketches



Calvin Wright 30

The Villa

Visions of the Genovese home

Carlin Barlett 31

David Stone

Yuki Takeshima

Laura Lynn Hutton

Katie Kirby

Meagan Hoffman

Chen Fang

Andrew McCall

Doug White

Alex Darsinos


The Villa

Visions of the Genovese home

Gradey Grumman

Alison Martin

Tori August

Evan Goodwin

Carolyn Woods

Grace Walters

Lauren Boulier

Elizabeth Clarkin


Piazza di Ferrari Alex Darsinos 34


Harbor and historical center Lauren Boulier 35

Catedrale di San Lorenzo Chen Fang 36


Castello Bruzzo Right: Calvin Wright Top Left: Grace Walters Bottom Left: David Stone


Teatro Carlo Felice Top: Chen Fang Bottom Left: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Right: Carlin Barlett 38


Piazza di Ferrari Calvin Wright


Left: Convento di Santo Agostino: Chen Fang Middle top - Chiesa si San Pietro ai Banchi: Evan Goodwin Middle bottom - Chiesa San Giovanni Battista: Meagan Hoffman Right Chiesa di San Lorenzo: Carolyn Woods



Left: San Lorenzo: Yuki Takeshima Right top: Chiesa di San Stefano: Grace Walters Right bottom, Chiesa di San Matteo: Grace Walters


Museo Del Tesoro Top Left: Yuki Takeshima Bottom Middle: Yuki Takeshima Bottom Left: Reid Bagwell 42


Pallazzo dei Tursi Evan Goodwin


Top Right- Piazza de Ferrari fountain: Dylan Perkinson Top Left- Piazza de Ferrari: Yuki Takeshima Bottom Left - Harbor: Carlin Barlett Bottom Right - Cemetery: Reid Bagwell



Porta Soprana Right: Lauren Boulier Left top: Alison Martin Left bottom: Dylan Perkinson 45

Left: Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II: Tori August Right top - Sforza Castle: Tori August Right middle - Chiesa di S. Ambrogio: Grace Walters Right bottom - The Cub: Tori August 46


Duomo: Doug White


Top Right - Baptistry of St. John: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Right - Piazza dei Miracoli: Dylan Perkinson Right - Cathedral and Tower: Carolyn Woods 48


Left - Leaning Tower: Calvin Wright Right - Cathedral: Katie Kirby 49

Top Left - Novocomum: Alex Darsinos Bottom Left - Apartment building: Doug White Right - Sculpture: Carolyn Woods


Right - WW I Memorial: Doug White Top Left - WW I Memorial: Dylan Perkinson Middle Left- Casa Del Faschio: Grace Walters Bottom Left - Casa Del Faschio: Doug White




Forum Top: Lauren Boulier Bottom Left: David Stone Bottom right: Doug White

Pompeii Group Trip 1

Street and Houses: Evan Goodwin



Top left - Basilica di Santa Maria Novella: Tori August Bottom Left - David: Calvin Wright Top right- Santa Croce: Doug White Bottom Right - Column detail: Lauren Boulier


Group Trip 1

Ponte Vecchio and Arno river: Lauren Boulier


Left - Chiesa di Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza: Doug White Top Right - St. Peters Basilica: Grace Walters Bottom Right - Castello di St. Angelo: Chen Fang 56


Group Trip 1

Top Left - Pantheon: Calvin Wright Bottom Left - Palazzo della CiviltĂ : Yuki Takeshima Right - Piazza Navona: David Stone 57

Top: Grace Walters Bottom: Katie Kirby 58


Group Trip 1 Coliseum

Doug White 59

Left - Palazzo Pubblico: Chen Fang Top Right - Baptistry: Alison Martin Top Left - Pallazzo Pubblico: Alex Darsinos



Group Trip 1

Top Left - Palazzo Pubblico: Doug White Bottom Left - Palazzo Pubblico: Carolyn Woods Right - Palazzo Pubblico and Piazza Del Campo: Gradey Grumman


Top Left - Berlin Philharmonic: Tori August Middle Left - Berlin Philharmonic: Evan Goodwin Bottom Left - Berlin Philharmonic: Alison Martin Right - Berlin Wall: Doug White 62


Independent Travel

Top - Reichstag: Doug White Bottom Left - Jewish Museum: Elizabeth Clarkin Bottom Right - Charlottenburg Tor: Reid Bagwell 63

Top Left - Berlin Cathedral: Dylan Perkinson Top Right (2) - Olympic Stadium: Doug White Bottom Left - New National Gallery: Doug White Bottom Right - New National Gallery: Alex Darsinos


Top - Olympic Stadium: Evan Goodwin Bottom - Neus Altes Museum: Grace Walters


Independent Travel


Top Left - St. Charles Church: Andrew McCall Bottom Left - Secession: Doug White Top Right - Vienna Cathedral: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Right - Gloriette Schonbrunn Palace: Doug White 66


Independent Travel

Top Left - Muller Building: Evan Goodwin Middle Left - Muller Building: Doug White Bottom Left - Karl Marx hoff facade and door detail: Alison Martin Right - Business Park Building: Alison Martin 67

Left - Galata Tower: Lauren Boulier Top Right - Blue Mosque: Grace Walters Bottom Right - Cistern: Lauren Boulier



Independent Travel

Istambul skyline: Lauren Boulier


Top - Notre Dame: David Stone Bottom Left - Villa Savoye: David Stone Bottom Right - Villa Savoye: Doug White



Independent Travel

Top Left - Notre Dame Glass: Meagan Hoffman Bottom Left - Eiffel Tower: Doug White Bottom Right - Dotre Dame: Yuki Takeshima


Tyn Church facade: Evan Goodwin



Independent Travel

Top Right - Cathedral: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Right - Villa Mueller: David Stone Top Left - Fred and Ginger: Reid Bagwell Bottom Left - Tyn Church: Grace Walters


Lisbon Landscape: Gradey Grumman



Independent Travel

Top Left - Lisbon Landscape: Gradey Grumman Middle Left - Lisbon São Jorge Castle: Gradey Grumman Bottom Left - Lisbon São Jorge Castle: Gradey Grumman Right - Praça do Rossio: Gradey Grumman


Left - Sevilla Palace: Chen Fang Top Right - Sevilla, Metropol Parasol : Chen Fang Bottom Right - Alhambra: Chen Fang 76


Independent Travel

Top - Casa Mila: Chen Fang Bottom - Santa Creu Hospital: Yuki Takeshima Right - Sagrada Familia: Yuki Takeshima 77


Left - Szecheny Bath, Budapeste: Alex Darsinos Top Right - Belinzona Castle: Andrew McCall Bottom Right - homage to Van Gogh, Amsterdam: Reid Bagwell

Miscellaneous Places Independent Travel

Top - Einstein Tower: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Left - Chartres Cathedral: David Stone Bottom Right - Kosciol Wojciecha Church: Tori August




Group Trip 2

Venice Landscape: Alex Darsinos Opposite Page Top Left: David Stone Top Right: Evan Goodwin Bottom Right: Grace Walters 81

Top - Basilica di San Marco: Dylan Perkinson Bottom - Basilica di San Marco: Carolyn Woods Right - Doge’s Palace Courtyard Facade: Grace Walters 82


Group Trip 2

Chiessa Della Salute Top Left: Grace Walters Bottom Left: Evan Goodwin Right: Calvin Wright


Top - Venice Landscape: Dylan Perkinson Bottom - Piazza San Marco Landscape: Dylan Perkinson 84

Top - Piazza San Marco Landscape: Grace Walters Bottom Left - Doge’s Palace: Lauren Boulier Bottom Right - Chiessa Della Salute: Calvin Wright


Group Trip 2


Top - Villa Valmarana: Alex Darsinos Bottom - Villa Cornaro: Alex Darsinos Bottom - Palladio Sculpture: Alex Darsinos 86


Group Trip 2 Palladian Tour, Veneto Region

Top - Villa Valmarana: Grace Walters Bottom - Villa Cornaro: Dylan Perkinson 87

Top: Chen Fang Bottom Right: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Left: Lauren Boulier



Group Trip 2 Villa Rotonda, Vicenza

Top: Calvin Wright Bottom: Yuki Takeshima


Top: Yuki Takeshima Bottom Left: Carlin Barlett Bottom Right: Grace Walters


Carlo Scarpa

Group Trip 2 Cimiterio Brion, Veneto Region Top Right: Gradey Grumman Top Left: Tori August Bottom Right: Evan Goodwin Bottom Left: Carolyn Woods

91 71

Top: Chen Fang Bottom Left: Carolyn Woods Bottom Middle: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Right: Evan Goodwin


Carlo Scarpa

Group Trip 2 Castelvecchio, Verona

Top Left: Reid Bagwell Bottom Left: Grace Walters Bottom Right: Chen Fang 93

Left - Modulor Man: Doug White Top Right - La Tourrete: Evan Goodwin Middle Right - La Tourrete: Alex Darsinos Bottom Right - La Tourrete: Alex Darsinos


Le Corbusier Group Trip 2

Top - Unité d’habitation, Firminy: Doug White Bottom - Maison de la Culture:, Firminy: Doug White


Top Left: Dylan Perkinson Bottom Left: Reid Bagwell Top Right: Chen Fang Bottom Right: Gradey Grumman


Le Corbusier

Group Trip 2 Saint-Pierre de Firminy Church

Top : Lauren Boulier Bottom Left: Evan Goodwin Bottom Right: Alex Darsinos




Group Trip 2 Lyon Saint ExupĂŠry Station

Opposite Page Opera House: Calvin Wright Top - Basilique: Calvin Wright Bottom Left - Basilique: Alex Darsinos Bottom Right - Cathedral: Lauren Boulier

Opera House: Calvin Wright


Top: Reid Bagwell Bottom Right: Yuki Takeshima Bottom Left: Doug White



Group Trip 2

Chen Fang


Contemporary European Architecture

The CEA (Contemporary European Architecture) seminar focused on a selected number of relevant personalities, projects and theories of the European architectural culture. Through the critical examination of some architectural samples, we have explored the different ideas and theories about space, technology, and lifestyle. The period of observation is fragmented through the last ninety years. The course will treat the works of some European masters of the Twenties and Thirties of the last century; architects, theories and works of the second half of the last century; and buildings, projects and new topics of the first years of this century. A part of the course was dedicated to the thinking, designing, writing and editing of an architectural book - a personal production where the students were asked to fix and discuss ideas, concepts and critical observations suggested from the topics treated in class. The books show a clearly organized collection of illustrations, texts, drawings and any kind of architectural material. They also report about other topics experienced during the trips and visits made throughout the semester.


unconditioned unconditioned SPACE SPACE 1


Studio Projects


Luca Rocco Controlled Provocations During their four months in Genoa the students from Clemson make three one-week lasting travels (one to central-southern Italy including Florence, Rome and Naples, one to northern Italy, including Venice, Verona and Vicenza, one independent usually towards European places), every week they visit different sites in Genoa or they make day trips to near towns, they attend to different seminars about sketching from real places, European contemporary architecture or Italian rationalist movement and participate to a short course of Italian language. Nonetheless most of their time, three days a week, is dedicated to the design studio, where we try to make them compete with the historical reality of the architecture and with the urban development of Genoa. Students are from different degrees about their educational project and follow different courses of study but in Genoa, due to the restricted number of them, they share the same syllabus; for many of them it’s their first visit in Europe. There is not a chance for specialized classes about restoration, in the traditional meaning of the term, or about Genoese historical building technology or about urban history. Main theme is design and the challenge is exciting: make them be aware of our architectural and urban history and put this knowledge in comparison with a contemporary architectural project. During these years we have chosen for the design studio sites laying inside or close to the historical centre or to the harbour of Genoa, trying to underline and to drive the attention to the relationship with the existing buildings, whatever was the architectural language that each group wanted to explore. The Forte Sperone project is a particular variation on the theme. With a complication, coming from the true reality. What to do about Genoese forts? There it is, beyond the difficult theme about recovering these old and particular buildings, a more difficult challenge: to invent a new use, a new life for them. There architectural design begins and develops itself: putting together a new destination with a modified image of the existing: the fort not as a container to be recovered but as a generator of a new architecture.whether volume or empty space, whether path or resting place, whether a different way to think of landscape, the wish of places modification proposal layered on the mere conservation of the manufacture. This is not all. Whether cause or consequence of a different relationship between the site and the town, little by little it seemed to every student that the modifying design might have passed through a new way to approach and to get to the site and that this way would have conditioned the design process itself. That being stated, even the most minimalist idea seem to become out of scale, crossing the line, a kind of controlled provocation: maybe this is a way (of course it is not the only one) to give new life to such difficult places, so metaphysically locked into their stern austerity. In sum the final theme of the design studio, that took Forte Sperone as an experimental ground, could resume the seven different ideas in just one title: feasibility study of a utopia.

Alessandro Rocca

Henrique Houayek

Programming Utopia

Evolution of the Design Process

The Righi mountain is an utopian non site, a no man’s land which is the opposite of the dense city below. It makes forty years that the students of the Clemson School of Architecture visit and study the city of Genoa. For these young Americans, most of them grown in the rural environment of the Southern States, Genoa is the theater of a close experience of the urban European and Mediterranean culture. In the last two years, since it is at work this team of teachers, we elaborated architectural projects for different places in the historic center of the city: piazza Caricamento, piazza Campetto, via Quadrio, the Hennebique silo in the old port. And we asked the students, who stay in Genoa for four months, to quickly understand the specificities of these public places and of their buildings, often very old and heavily manipulated, with hundreds of years of modifications, enlargments of any kind and repairs. The results were always surprising. In the diversity of the technical and cultura skills – among undergrads, grads and landscape students – the projects witnessed that now, in the States, the culture of the urban project, the capacity of connecting and developing the urban complexity, is absolutely acquired. It is still more difficult the relationship with the existing architecture, with the refined texture and the functional mix of the historic city, so far from the simplified patterns of the contemporary suburbs and downtowns. With the Sperone project, elaborated in the Spring semester of 2012, we wanted to suggest to the students a peculiar problem, facing a building which is very complicated and as large as a small town, but which has, in respect to an urban context, a very simple and heavy structure. With the further problem that it is in a state of complete abandon, with heavy injuries and a problematic accessibility. The city, the sea, the Bisagno valley, the countryside, form the borrowed landscape, while the close context is the wild ambience of the Righi hills, uninhabited and out of any maintenance, and of the old historic walls system, which counts other eleven forts which, for the most part, stay in the same situation of unusefulness and abandon of the Sperone. In my opinion, the projects prepared by the twenty students, organized in seven teams, are all interesting and, every team following a peculiar path. Their first asset is the interpretation of such a huge and complicated fabric and, at the same time, the capacity of producing new and brave visions. They went at the boundaries of utopia, but remaining always in field of the possible and the feasible. To offer these projects to the attention of the Genoese people means, in our intentions, to share thoughts, studies and proposals focused on a place that is important, in the history and in the landscape of our city. A place that now is still looking for a future, for an escape from the abandon and from a process of decay which, in the next years, risks to make it lost forever.

The most important consideration for this semester’s studio is the relationship between design process and a city’s urban context, its history and evolution over time. Genova’s exceptional characteristics create interesting and unaccustomed situations ideal for the practice of a young future architect. Forte Sperone, an important historical military fort, becomes the theme of intervention, as it affords important cultural and social connections within the city. The studio challenges students to understand these many factors and immerse themselves into an intensive and decisive design process. The studio’s agenda defies seminal questions at the heart of architecture’s history and theory, uniting Vitruvius First Principles and today’s Design Ecology, Ethics and the Making of Things . Theoretical questions initially propose to students are: - How to start the design process? - What is the significance of architectures creative process? -And what constitutes a correct architecture? Such questions embody important and decisive cognitive processes which will guide students into their own design evolution, developing a methodology capable of adapting to different circumstances. As future designers, students must be ready to react to these unexpected challenges; and as architecture educators, we the professors, must promote a sociological, ecological, technical and aesthetic state of awareness and engagement for our students. Working with a historical site creates opportunities to employ multiple arsenals of design strategies: attachment, in between, on top, next to it, deviations, ruins and re-growth , important concepts which characterize the relationship between old and new, interior and exterior. These conditions are very “Genovese”, they represent an opportunity to design in an area where the main forces are not traditional. Another important aspect of this project is to design the public space that connects the city to this new area. The most significant aspect of the design is how to connect these new programs to the existing city life. The challenge is to design more than just a program.Young designers have a ethical role to help create a positive wholeness in this city area. Every “act of construction has just one basic obligation: it must create a continuous structure of wholes around itself”, describes Christopher Alexander, “every increment of construction must be made in such a way as to heal the city.” The evolution of the design process is connected not to any specific style of technique; the evolution of the architect will come by the increasing connection between architect, city and society. 105


Final Presentation

at Loggia di Banchi, Genova Historical Center


Lauren Boulier Yuki Takeshima Doug White



The Esqueleto Educativo is an educational campus focused on agricultural studies and culinary arts relating to the surrounding landscapes and culture within the Liguria region and all of Italy. The campus ultimately houses four educational facilities along with various exhibition spaces such as the aquaponics farm and living library. These are: School of Horticulture, School of Culinary Arts, Community Learning Center, and the Children’s Sustainability Center. Forte Sperone as an educational campus will draw people from all age groups, not just with our educational facilities but with the open learning experience that will be available throughout the site. The applied canopy that sweeps across the site in strategic locations originates from the uppermost open area of the site and reaches toward the new funicolare stop along the western wall. Some of the negative spaces created by the beams of the mega structures are covered to provide shading from the harsher western sun exposure in the summer months as well as shielding the outdoor spaces from the northeastern wind in the winter. With vines and trees bridging the gap between the two surfaces of ground and canopy, the space between these two places will be the key focus in our new design of Forte Sperone.


Carolyn Woods Andrew McCall Alex Darsinos

CONSTELLATION GENOVA Constellation Genova’s goal is to repurpose Forte Sperone by creating a space that can host a variety of interactive events that give back to the people. By reprogramming the fort with public & private venue space, an observatory, and a boardwalk, our aim is to reconnect the people of Genova with Forte Sperone. The boardwalk connects the three sections of the castle that were previously divided, by winding through the programs and through varying levels, allowing a new path of circulation. By doing this, we have created an experience that one can enjoy several times over, each time, finding a new and interesting space.



Meagan Hoffman Alison Martin Katie Kirby


The Forte Sperone Theater Center develops, presents and produces live performances through collaboration between artists, staff, and audience. Through its unique approach to performance creation, the Center provides artists with the space, funding, mentorship, profile, and sense of community in order to explore an idea and develop new artistic styles. The free nature of the theater program allows for a wide range of genres – theatre, dance, music, forum discussions, installation, performance art, film and new media. The Center also supports local artists in other fields with quarterly art exhibits that are sold to support the theater. The Theater Center houses a large auditorium, seating 800, and a smaller black box theater, which seats 110. The facility also includes a large outdoor theater space as well as a smaller single performer venue used during warmer months. The theater supports unique performance creation through its numerous rehearsal studios, music rooms, set shops, recording studios, and production spaces. It also houses community spaces, like a rooftop restaurant and rentable venue space.


Evan Goodwin Grace Walters Tori August

The Forte Sperone Theater Center develops, presents and produces live performances through collaboration between artists, staff, and audience. Through its unique approach to performance creation, the Center provides artists with the space, funding, mentorship, profile, and sense of community in order to explore an idea and develop new artistic styles. The free nature of the theater program allows for a wide range of genres – theatre, dance, music, forum discussions, installation, performance art, film and new media. The Center also supports local artists in other fields with quarterly art exhibits that are sold to support the theater. The Theater Center houses a large auditorium, seating 800, and a smaller black box theater, which seats 110. The facility also includes a large outdoor theater space as well as a smaller single performer venue used during warmer months. The theater supports unique performance creation through its numerous rehearsal studios, music rooms, set shops, recording studios, and production spaces. It also houses community spaces, like a rooftop restaurant and rentable venue space. 114


Chen Fang Calvin Wright

The Forte Sperone Theater Center develops, presents and produces live performances through collaboration between artists, staff, and audience. Through its unique approach to performance creation, the Center provides artists with the space, funding, mentorship, profile, and sense of community in order to explore an idea and develop new artistic styles. The free nature of the theater program allows for a wide range of genres – theatre, dance, music, forum discussions, installation, performance art, film and new media. The Center also supports local artists in other fields with quarterly art exhibits that are sold to support the theater. The Theater Center houses a large auditorium, seating 800, and a smaller black box theater, which seats 110. The facility also includes a large outdoor theater space as well as a smaller single performer venue used during warmer months. The theater supports unique performance creation through its numerous rehearsal studios, music rooms, set shops, recording studios, and production spaces. It also houses community spaces, like a rooftop restaurant and rentable venue space.



David Stone Elizabeth Clarkin Dylan Perkinson

Forte Sperone was designed and used for war and violence. After decades of abandonment, the fort has fallen in to decay requiring a new vision to save a major part of history for Genova, Italy. Our design focuses on repurposing the fort as a place for relaxation and meditation. In order to achieve this, a variety of spaces from thermal bathes to meditation pods were created to allow for congregation and seclusion to focus on one’s self. During your journey through the fort you will experience places for contemplation in between your destinations. The Fort offers a rare opportunity to completely escape the commotion of Genova and experience silence and solitude. Thus, a space of abandonment and anger becomes a place to rediscover yourself.


Forte Sperone: Repurposing militaria as a place for relaxation and meditation


Gradey Grumman Carlin Barlett Reid Bagwell


To bring the city into the fort, a gallery/exhibit space and event space have been introduced as cultural amenities. The gallery space is accompanied by necessary amenities such as ticket office, coat room, administration offices, a gallery shop, and café. Small flexible outdoor plaza spaces are interwoven into the lower gallery floor to provide exterior event space as needed. The event space in the upper level of the fort allows for more flexibility and is connected to a large exterior event space. A café on the upper level provides services for both events and the general public. To build upon the existing nature of the fort, greenhouses are incorporated as a means to produce vegetation that can be sold for profit and integrated back into the city, bringing the natural context of the fort back to the city. Main greenhouses are located on the upper levels of the castle, providing opportunities for research at both student and faculty levels, while a showroom and shop are located further down for easy public access. The open spaces of the fort have been maintained and transformed to capitalize on the green spaces developing the fort further into the role of a public park. The conservation of the fort’s structure remained a priority. Minor adjustments were made to meet program needs and improve the circulation throughout the fort. Water features are introduced throughout the fort, creating an overall connection back into the entry plaza. As the entry plaza reflects Genoa’s port, a key element in the city, the connection of water features seeks to reflect the connection of the fort as it relates to the city and the port. The accessibility of the fort is further developed with an additional funiculare stop and trails leading up to and around the fort. Within the fort, accessibility is increased with the addition of staircases and elevators. Private circulation in the gallery spaces and greenhouse administration spaces are separated from public circulation, so the fort is easily accessible to the public during private events.


This book has been produced by Henrique Houayek, director in residence during the Spring 2012 semester. Over the course of last two years I had the privilege and honor to be the resident director of the Genoa program. The opportunity to work and share the villa with the students was one of the greatest and most rewarding experience I had has an architecture educator. The four volumes produced over this period of time testify the work by the students while studying abroad. Their purpose is to present a sample of the work produced over the semester, moreover, I hope this encourages and inspires students and future architects into their personal quest and studies and continuous search for a better way of design. 122


The Charles E. Daniel Center for Building, Research and Urban Studies was founded in 1972 by Harlan Ewart McLure and Cesare Fera as one of the first architecture programs in the US to establish a satellite program in Europe. Since its creation, the Genova program has served as a home for Clemson University, captivating and inspiring countless architecture students. The program balances studio experience with studies of Italian architecture, contemporary design, urban practices, culture and field sketching. Students spend about a third of the 15-week semester traveling around Italy and Europe. A resident professor from Clemson is assisted by Italian professors who also practice architecture in Genoa. Visiting critics and lecturers from Italy and Europe come to the center on a regular basis to lecture and critique student work. 124

This book presents the work produced during the Spring semester of 2012 with particular emphasis on students’ sketches and field studies.


This book presents the work produced by Clemson students while studying abroad at the Genoa Program during the Spring semester of 2012 with...


This book presents the work produced by Clemson students while studying abroad at the Genoa Program during the Spring semester of 2012 with...