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James Clark Academic Portfolio Newcastle University Stage 3


Primer 10 Graduation Project 37 Charrette 149

Learning Summary

Following on from thoughts in the Stage 2 Learning Summary, the three main interests/ disciplines I highlighted was; my passion for contextually embedded design which fits in with its surrounding environment, spatial organisation development and thinking particularly in plan form and conceptual thoughts behind a design. In many ways, these aspects have found themselves invariably relevant, consciously or unconsciously, in this year’s (Stage 3) design projects.

Primer With the main emphasis being on conceptual thinking and pushing this as much as possible to relate the micro side to the macro design response, I feel this was a great exercise to expand on my conceptual thinking skills. Not only this but by researching a site’s history mixed with my conceptual emphasis on cultural collective memory, my interest in community design and installation design was heightened.

Graduation Project With the allowance of being able to choose the site/ theory/ programme almost entirely from scratch, a process of; site and cultural history research, theory research and exploration and programme development and alterations proved an intense and enduring process but ultimately a very rewarding developmental process by which the final design response of The Platonic Meditational Rooms & The Aristotelian Lindisfarne National Nature Reserve Conservation Research Facility & Astronomical Observatory was formulated. This all- round project touched upon the Primer and its emphasis on the thoughts being a design response especially in relation to a journey of reinstating a cultural collective memory. From my final crit and on- screen presentation, I feel that with having a split design response, and ultimately having 5 technically different rooms and a large main building, there were moments where my final design was not wholly explained and formulated as much as I had known myself but had not fully displayed at the time due to trying to summarizing the rooms as well. I have included developmental work which was not shown in the presentation in the portfolio and made additional works for the main building to make this connection with the development of thought and the realization of the final design response and spaces more aware. I found this project extremely exciting and wholly enjoyable, tackling various architectural thinking behind the traces of a design response and in relating the theory of Plato & Aristotle to ultimately having a series of architectural events with each meditational room making sense in their settings and a main facility which makes sense in its context. On the whole I am proud of the conceptual narrative and architectural output I have produced in the process and also in the final design responses and I fully believe that my main building would function well, contextually, socially and environmentally if was actually built.

Degree as a Whole To reflect, the degree has been difficult and troublesome at times with my confidence fluctuating but in the long run has been extremely rewarding and beneficial for my future. At the beginning my interest in architecture was naĂŻve however a gradually noticeable personal interest in contextually relevant design has become key and touched upon throughout my design experience. To conclude, the design process and the skills and lessons I have learnt over the past three years has changed the way I think, not only in architecture but in everyday life, and I hope to apply this knowledge in practice.

An Introduction

Studio Trace

The studio focuses on man-made traces – the marks, indications and imprints that we make across a multitude of scales and their relationships to human experience; placing large emphasis on the theory and thoughts behind the two projects, Primer and Graduation Project.

“Collective Memory is essentially a reconstruction of the past in the light of the present” In both design projects, the traces of cultural collective memory have found a relative importance in regards to the design development and narratives. In each project and in their conceptual narrative, I attempt to respond to this deep cultural collective memory of either, industrialisation and the nostalgia & the sense of community (Primer in Gateshead) to the reinstating of asceticism and conservation/ observation of nature and the world around us (Graduation Project in Lindisfarne). In the Primer, transition 1 & transition 2’s juxtaposition of function and location focuses on the in-between journey and as a whole ‘celebration’ of re-instating a cultural collective memory. In my Graduation Project, the design strategy of fragmentation of smaller meditational spaces leading to a large permanent building also focuses on the traces of a collective journey, functionally attempting to re-instate primitive cultural values.


- consisting of two parts or elements or having two like parts - the division of something conceptually into two opposed or contrasted aspects, or the state of being so divided Both projects use dualism to inform or inspire an architectural response. Primer is split into; micro everyday processes which informs the (macro) design, both of which have two sub- sides, in fracture/ backstreets (micro) and transition 1/ transition 2 (macro). The graduation project uses philosophical dualism in its narrative through the opposing philosophical views of Plato and Aristotle to inspire my design.

Video A medium of which has become consequential in which I could explain my conceptual thoughts and narrative is video. Backstreets, a video resembling a blurred collective memory of row- terraced housing in Jesmond provides a feeling of deep cultural melancholy. Transitions & Opportunities spawned from this idea, an endeavor into future possibilities for the currently disused site. In the Graduation Project, various site analysis and conceptual videos provided me with a feeling for each site of the Platonic Meditational Rooms.

MEMORY fracture



YEM temporary

community NOSTALGIA









creativity VESTIGE





INSTALLATION superimpose















order craft














MEANDER intervention



Micro - Macro By investigating everyday micro tasks of; physiotherapy I have to perform regularly on my right arm (fracture) and tracing my walk to the metro and thus studying the back streets I pass (backstreets), I was able to transfer concepts and ideas over to the design of my macro project, Factory of Nostalgia & Craft. Micro Tasks: Fracture: The wire around my elbow in my arm acts as a structure which binds the bones together over time, thus healing the bone, and is removed once healed. In the same way, a temporary structure is placed on a post- industrial site which acts as a tool for creativity and opportunity for the people of Gateshead, which can be removed when a well thought out development is realised for the site. Simple investigations of arm movement provided me with the idea of designing mobile architecture which transitions and moves across the site in the form of two transitions. Backstreets: This investigation, along with the video, is a visual interpretation of our ‘collective memory’ of a familiar place. Now, this collective memory may be an individual experience of memory but alternatively, may have a joined cultural resonance and significance with communities. In this video I have tried to portray this double meaning, expressing both my own individual memory of my walk everyday with a deeper cultural collective memory/ nostalgia of the north-east town.

Macro Concept Through reading ‘Urban Constellations: Reading Contemporary Cityscapes with Benjamin and Baudrillard, Ch. 5: The Sage, or Erasing the Traces, Tracing Erasures by Zoe Thompson’ she analyses the idea that the Sage possibly simultaneously erases and evokes, eradicates and re- inscribes notions of cultural memory and belonging through a structure which does not merely cover over traces and impose itself, but its very existence creates the possibility of such traces returning. “Further, buildings such as the Sage, as key markers of reinvention and economic progress attest to a double forgetting: erasing the ruins of an industrial past and superimposing that past’s traces with their own footprint: in the case of the Sage, a footprint measuring 8584m”. Rather than following out its supposed rhetoric of creating public spaces and urban culture, it can be argued it does the opposite; instead, closing its crisp shiny skin off for the elite with ‘public spaces’ acting as a continuation of the building’s means. “Drawing a contrast with the Newcastle side of the river and in apparent criticism of the Sage, BALTIC and the Hilton Hotel sites on the Gateshead side, the Urban Initiatives’ report states that “the Urban tissue on the Gateshead side of the Tyne appears fragmented… dominated by large footprint buildings set in large undefined, open spaces that generally discourage use by pedestrians.”

With this in mind, my aim was to propose a temporary structure which does not interfere with the trace of the site, but act as an installation which celebrates local, cultural heritage as well as the sense of community. The openess of the site will be kept to preserve its essence of an open public space and to encourage walking of pedestrians.



Elbow X-Rays


Physiotheraphy Movement



My video documents the backstreets of terrace row housing I pass everyday in Jesmond, where abstract visuals of a familiar place mutate and blur in concurrence with ambient sounds provoking a double meaning, of an individual memory of my walk everyday with a deeper cultural collective memory or nostalgia of the north-east coal mining town, or industrialisation of the area; a time where communities were particularly tight.


Snapshots from Backstreets Video

Abstract Sketch


Abstract Model

This Model represents an abstraction in the topology of terraced row housing and the outline which can be produced from slightly varying viewpoints. This play of meandering lines influenced transition 2 whereby temporary angled walls create an abstraction of a ‘street’, where each row is slighly different for the pedestrian and creates a series of changing forms.


Maiden’s Walk & Hawk’s Road- Gateshead

Area & Buildings


Buildings & Roads





1932-1942 Historic Traces of the Site

Archive Drawings of Possible Changes to Iron Works


Maiden’s Walk & Coal Drops


Open Unoccupied Site


This collage portrays a Thompson, Z inspired anti- architectural critique of the Sage, being that it attempts to reinstate traces of a cultural collective memory of the people of Gateshead and the area of Bottle Bank. It also highlights design concepts of repopulating the disused public space with the people and communities of Gateshead to this ‘factory of nostalgia & creativity’, consisting of workshops and galleries of local industrialisation ph archives; reinstating familiar cultural collective memories.

Conceptual Collage

Jimmy Floyd Painting

Norman Cornish Painting

Flying Scotsman Tender

Murton Colliery

These paintings and photographs portray/ celebrate the industrialisation of the north east. My proposal will house local photographs and artwork, some of which may have been largely un-celebrated; so that the people of Gateshead can enjoy and reminisce, instigating a collective memory.


Abstract Diagrams of Site Proposal


Factory of Nostalgia & Craft Proposal Transition 1: A series of coal- tender like form shipping containers sit in the coal drops and have multiple stall/ workshop type functions. A series of expressive graffiti walls elaborate on the existing art scene. These closed off structures separate the once heavily industrial site opposite which provides ‘maiden’s walk’ a new purpose as being a walkway of vibrant interest for the locals to pass through to and from the quayside, thus repopulating the existing hardly used route. Transition 2: The ‘Tenders’ drift over onto the site and act as hubs for the creative people of Gateshead to work and collaborate in, these can be joined to form larger structures which act as galleries for exhibitions with local artwork and historic photographs; celebrating the heritage of Gateshead and North- East industrialisation. The once closed off walls are freed and angled to form meandering separators for the Tenders, creating a division of street like spaces, whilst keeping its essence of a large open public space; for pedestrians to walk around, visit the public rooms, in the process, observing the ground marks, provoking cultural collective memory, thus reinstating local pride. This temporary installation acts as a catalyst for a well thought out future development for the site. Existing, to provoke local creativity and cultural pride so that the new structure can respect the site’s past and provide opportunity and accessiblity for the people of Gateshead.


Transition 1 Proposal Diagram

Transition 1 Model


Transition 2 Proposal Diagram


Transition 2 Model

Transition 2 Collage


Future Opportunities To highlight the idea of this being an indeterminate site where varying structures and activities may take place and change, I have layered and analysed group members’ site proposal drawings and looked at the remaining key marks or traces. This made me contemplate the idea of having additional aspects/ designs which could be linked with the two transitions.

Proposal Disjointed/ Healed Arms: A series of disjointed arches/ structures which come from the upper carpark reaching towards the site, and a monument/ art sculpture in the middle of the site, making pedestrians look over to this piece, using it as an indication that transition 2 is about to occur. The arms then change form into a linear formation in the final transition, when the factory is present, to indicate a sense that they have been ‘healed’; along with the site. The realisation of the form of the ‘factory’ was realised as an outcome of the video Transitions & Opportunities.

Palimpsest Layered Site Proposals


Snapshots from Transitions & Opportunities Video

Most common marks & moves from group members’ proposals

This graphic highlights the most frequent marks left by members of the group and the imprints which are left on the site or perhaps in the memory of the people of Gateshead.


Disjointed/ Healed Arms

Transition 1 Intermediate Transition (Disjointed Arms of Anticipation) “As I approach Maiden’s Walk, I see looming structures over me, they are reaching out from the Coal Drops as if they are wanting me to follow it’s point of view. I look over in this direction over onto the barron mass of land to see a beautiful piece of art standing in solitude.” Transition 2 The Final Transition (Healed Arms & Factory of Nostalgia & Craft) “These structures are no longer in discontinuity, but seem to have a linear sense now... As I walk through this tunnel like passage I look over and see large volumes of geometric shapes stand. Is this a new Iron Works?”



Graduation Project

Plato | Aristotle The symbolic narrative of the opposing philosophical views of founding Fathers of Western Philosophy, Plato and Aristotle informs my design strategy. According to Plato, the soul is eternal and the body is a hindrance to the soul as it holds us back in our flight to the upper regions of the idea; we must liberate the soul as much as we can. He was a transcendentalist, believing that in understanding truth we must go beyond this world to a higher realm where true concepts/ forms exist. Therefore, this makes it necessary to be ascetic to find this truth; to be able to ignore the sensory distraction of the body. Aristotle opposed Plato’s view of this world being inferior and argued instead that this physical world, observable through our senses, is important. Aristotle encompasses that knowledge need not be of the unchanging but instead can be gained through observing the world around us, thus becomes the forefather of the naturist thought in philosophy; studying natural occurrences in the world and nature in order to gain knowledge.

The Holy Island of Lindisfarne There is a sense of almost spiritual disconnection from the rest of the mainland. My design response takes inspiration from the rich historical, cultural and religious influences the Holy Island of Lindisfarne has consisted of for centuries, since Aidan came from the Island of Iona and brought with him the first traces of Christianity. It addresses our innate human presence of spirituality but also our connection with the cosmos and nature around us. The tale or myth of the project being that the building/’s could be mysteriously stumbled upon by walker’s through to the north side of the island- a less populated area of the island- thus a higher sense of myth.


Isolation- The Holy Island Of Lindisfarne


Land & Geology Maps Largely Limestone, Till & Windsill






Lime Kilns and Nessend Quarry provided industry for the Island until the end of the 19th Century, burning lime with coal transported from Dundee, Scotland. Horses carried Limestone from the Quarry on to the kilns along the waggonways- of which the traces are still visible today.

2010’s Cattle Grid


Cuthbert’s Way- A Pilgrimage In the same way St. Cuthbert’s Way is a pilgrimage for walkers travelling over the causeway to the island, the idea of a journey or experience itself being of importance is imperative to my design response.


Cuthbert’s Way


Culture. Materiality. Serenity. The island contains traces of past and present cultures from the Celts, to the Scandinavians to the folk of today

Site Visit Photographs- a showcasing of culture, material & landscape

The Birds Fly High in the Sky There is a greater sense of connection with nature once solitude on the island

Snapshots from Forces of Nature / Brent Geese video

Pale Bellied Brent Goose A variety of wintering waterfowl come to the mudflats. the Brent Goose, which breed in Svalbard arrive in substantial numbers around September. The Reserve is the largest wintering site in Britain, holding approx half of the world’s population.

Grey Seal Mainly located on the opposite Farne Islands, however are seen to move over on to Holy Island.

Short Eared Owl Can be seen on occasion on and around the island. hunting is usually at night, but is also known to be diurnal. It tends to fly near ground level on open fields but hunting swooping down.

Dark Green Fritillary A beautiful butterfly, found mainly on the outer edges of the island.

Notable Habitat of Lindisfarne Nature National Nature Reserve


Marsh Helleborine This is only found on Lindisfarne. The abundance of it finds useful for insects and moths, such as the Dark Green Fritilliary.

Pirri Pirri Bur These can become a nuisance to walkers and dog walkers who choose to explore far ends of the island as they stick to clothing causing them to be transferred from place to place.

Coralroot Orchid Named as its roots are meant to resemble that of a coral- a bright plant which can grow up to 60cm.

Round Leaved Wintergreen Can be found in good numbers in the dune slacks.

Notable Plants of Lindisfarne Nature National Nature Reserve


Choosing The Immediate Sites

The Links (& The Snook?) The site location will be in the transitional sand dunes on the low/ un populated area of the island- a place of mystery. A place of historically humanly lived in and laboured in (due to 19th century lime kilns & a quarry); remains of these activities are gradually disappearing as sands roll by and the earth retransforms itself. The idea will be that the building can retreat as the coast changes and performs as a building which exists, just like the Priory, for centuries to come, due to its physical attachment to the limestone of the island. On the contrary, if a series of divided buildings/ or two separate buildings, it may be a good idea to possible locate ‘The Plato Building/’s’ and ‘The Aristotle Building/s’ in (a) different location/’s with heavier or varying wildlife habitation. This way, there is a clear distinction in the forms and concepts of each structure/ building.



The Links





The area once consisted of Nessend Quarry- a trace of industrial human activity in the now protected area.


Trio of Linking Structures

Protruding structure(‘s) from The Links area which links up with the Emanuel head pyramid to the east and the coastguard watch towers to the south to form a trio of navigation points around the island.


Sand dunes on the north side of the Island

Sand dunes

The vast 3 mile long landscape of shifting sand dunes is the area of particular interest & of which the site/’s are for my design response.


Traces of pathways due to human activity

Imprints of Pathways

A series of ‘pathways’ or routes have been created over the years due to the regular activity of people walking and moving wagonways coming to and from the previous kiln and quarry. These ‘pathways’ determine the journeys experienced by walkers & influence the interweaving positioning of my multiple design responses.


1. Site for Platonic Meditational Room 1 2. Site for Platonic Meditational Room 2 3. Site for Platonic Meditational Room 3 4. Site for Platonic Meditational Room 4 5. Site for Platonic Meditational Room 5 A. Site for Aristotelian Building

Screenshots of the ideal sites from the pathways using the traces of my own journey.

Exploring the idea of living vicariously through previous walkers or pilgrims, and portraying their journey, I used video as a medium to directly record the traces of my own journey through these pathways, recording a memory of an experience whilst visualising a collective memory of a walker’s experience. Screenshots of ideal locations found embedded into the dunes from the pathways, highlight the idea of using the traces of my experience or journey to inform a design response. The idea being that walkers stumble upon these meditational rooms, hidden into the dunes.


Snapshot from Stumbling Upon Site/ Room 1 video


Snapshot from Stumbling Upon Site for Room 2 video


Snapshot from Stumbling Upon Site for Room 3 video


Snapshot from Stumbling Upon Site for Room 4 video


Snapshot from Stumbling UponSite for Room 5 video


Perfect Setting for an Observatory

Northumberland has some of the darkest skies in Europe. The Links area has 360 degree uninterrupted panoramic views of the sky, southward views to the Town & Castle and oppositely overlooking the North Sea- a perfect site for an observatory.


Dark Skies of Lindisfarne

360 degree un-interrupted views of the sky

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Site Model


Site Analysis for Initial Aristotelian Building Location


Programme Development

The Platonic Design Response Meditational functions, ignoring the sensory distraction of the body and this inferior world- freeing the soul to a higher realm.

The Aristotle Design Response Lindisfarne National Nature Reserve conservation and observatory functions- a response rooted in the physical nature and cosmos as observed by our senses.



A single 1500m2 building combining both academic research facilities & public functions. A building of both Aristotle & Plato functions.

Two 750m2 buildings combining both academic research facilities & public functions. Left building Aristotle, right building Plato.

Two 400m2 academic research facilities & eight 87.5m2 public functional buildings. Left buildings Aristotle, right buildings Plato.


Two 500m2 buildings with academic research facilities & five 100m2 public functional buildings. Left building Aristotle, right building Plato, middle buildings ‘both’.

One 750m2 building with academic research facilities & six 125m2 public functional buildings. Right building ‘both’, separate buildings ‘both’.

Fifteen 100m2 building with small academic research facilities & public functions displaying a mixture of both Plato & Aristotle functions. Early Programme Fragmentation Possibilities


Fragmentation Decision From investigating different sized programme strategies and locations I came to the conclusion that it would be most logical to have a main building of Aristotelian functions in the Links area with both public and research facilities and a series of smaller building’s/ rooms of Platonic uses (i.e meditation) spread out in the dunes.

An Initial Design Idea A main building with both astronomy & nature conservation research centres (in one building), with possibly a large star gazing platform on the roof. This building will have a protruding spire/ form which can be seen above the dunes.



Building Prototypes Thoughts on the design responses & their materiality in situ with precedent research, partly inspired by Oslo field trip

Opposites Very loose idea of categorising famous modern architects as according to a ‘Plato’ philosophical view or an ‘Aristotle’ philosophical view. The Plato building’s A building/’s based on the universal application of the international style. A building which represents Plato’s ‘ideal forms’- a true and single understanding.

The Aristotle building’s A building/’s which recognises individualistic architectural expression of style and the vernacular. A building which represents Aristotle’s view that people’s concepts are due to individual perception and experience.

The Exception A project which is based on the cohesion with itself and nature in form and essence, fully embedded in it’s context, in its inherent sense of place.


Plato (International)

Aristotle (Individualist)

Le Corbusier Venturi Eisenmann

Rogers Kahn Rossi Mies van der Rohe Chipperfield


Piano Libeskind Nouvell



Sverre Fehn Zumthor Pallasmaa Heidegger Aalto


A Material Basis Nessend Quarry was connected to the lime kilns and jetties around the island due to a wagonway. The trace of the existence of the routes can still be seen today. These routes can be seen as unused or only partly ever used as walkways. In my design these routes are celebrated as are the dunes, in a design which is embedded in it’s context, both structurally and aesthetically. This will be done by using the local materials of Northumberland for both the ‘main building’ and the ‘multiple rooms’.



North East/ North West Quarry Locations


Nearest Material Drop off Points to Dunes Collected Stone to Site Diagram


The Multiple Rooms Travelling over the sand dunes, an indigenous hut like form appears around the corner. What is it? I ask as I enter.. A series of light holes punch through it’s envelope creating a natural disco ball, I sit and ponder and bask myself in this space. I leave this room after a time of contemplation and carry on across the dunes. I come across a further object, a different geometric shape. What is it? I ask as I enter...


Bruder Klaus Chapel

Hut Type Designs

Oslo Museum Of Architecture Models

Field Trip Spatial Photos (Oslo)

Victor Meditation Hut, USA A light space for meditation with views of the rippling water below.


Bruder Klaus Field Chapel, Germany (Atmosphere, Materiality) Vertical Light punches down into this secluded space, constructed by a tree trunk wigwam being placed and pouring concrete over it.

Outdoor Fireplace, Trondheim, Norway (Light, Materiality) Inside/ Outside structure. A dome of timber slats create filtering light like a disco ball.

Kielder Skyspace, UK (Atmosphere, Light) An installation dome structure creating an optical illusionary experience of the sky from inside.

Outer Hedrides Cleits, Scotland Use of dry stone walls. Enclosed spaces of ancient belongings.

(Materiality, Form)

Timber Joint



The Main Building A projecting structure on the far side of the island looms over the sand dunes like a lighthouse gazing over the ocean. It is curious, it communicates with the other peering structures around the island. As the people approach its mysterious existence, more of this form begins to unfold as a living creature of the dunes. It’s skin and essence is almost camouflaged with it’s home, shades of greys and creams protrude from the floor. It’s forms and structures appear dislodged and moved by the earth’s forces, slight geometric forms interweave in and out of the sand dunes. Tens of people locate atop it’s large rooftop. Inside the structure are light and expansive clean spaces of well executed craftsmanship.


Therme Vals

Mortensrud Church

Boler Church

Hedmark Museum

Top Left- Stone Carving Process Top Right- Finished Sandstone Slab Left- Concrete Moulds Middle- Finished Mould Bottom Right- Mixing Mortar Process

During Thinking Through Making Week I focused on working hand on with materials I aimed to employ in my building, namely stone and concrete. I participated in a workshop of masonry carving where I learnt the craft of chamfering and carving a sandstone slab & underwent a concrete moulding and colouring workshop. The main output of my week was in the making of a 1:1 outer leaf corner of a random rubble, stone and mortar wall.


1:1 Stone and Rubble Wall



prefab concrete slabs gabions on concrete frame quarried articulated limestone slabs recycled aggregate sheep’s wool insulation randon- rubble wall

Early Structural Diagram

Initial material strategy of using local and simple but culturally rich materials like collected/ reclaimed masonry and sheep’s wool.


Early Parti Diagrams for Building


Programme alterations

Alterations of programmes and spaces and through making variants on volumetrics helped me to develop a proposal with the concept of being embedded into its landscape and the turrets being the obvious protruding forms.



Embedded Forms Concept Models

Diagrammatic alterations in embedding a form into the landscape immitating a sand dune


Amorphic Form

The building’s form will morph in ways which directs different users into different entrances.


Developmental sketches

Here, the building’s form is more apparent where the three main volumetric components of research facility to the left, a central public triple height space and to the right a three storey cafe/ accommodation/ observatory manifests itself. I have elevated the observatory accommodation providing views out to the North Sea.


Precedent Hedmark Museum

Sverre Fehn’s Hedmark Museum is a key precedent for its sense of material continuity between stone, concrete and timber. Also for it’s use of concrete walkways & ramps, providing gradual movement from space to space.



Continuation of a journey concept model

Using walkways and ramps for uninterrupted journeys through the and into the building.


Precedent Kielder Observatory

Nearby Kielder Observatory is a replica, in a way, of a modern observatory which moves away from the dome form, with a pier which strikes through the landscape. It’s pier form maximises accessibility creating a series of architectural events incl. a viewing platform turned daytime belvedere. By exemplifying a familiar architecture for the Northumberland star gazers, a reinstating of a collective memory of space creates a comfortable environment for the people to exert their hobby.


Precedent Villa Savoye

Flat plate concrete structural system allowing open plan flooring and large glazing for views and for playing with inside/ outside space. Also for its minimal concrete facade, allowing a form to strike horzontally through the landscape.


Precedent Delft University of Technology

A large sloping turfed roof wrapped around an entrance point which the public can access.


Building Volumetric Model


The Platonic Meditational Rooms

Five meditational rooms for liberating the soul to a higher realm, are based on the five platonic solids; located within the sand dunes. Each room is likened to its Platonic element, in form and materiality, spiritual rooms, somewhat symbolising the various cultures once populating the island. The meditational spaces re-instate a cultural collective spiritual memory, since in today’s society, technology, with smartphones and computers, are blurring our spiritual identity; we must reconnect with and liberate our souls, like the monks and hermits of the island did.

Octahedron Air Room 1


Icosahedron Water Room 2

Dodecahedron Aether Room 3


Earth Room 4

Tetrahedron Fire Room 5

Nearest Carpark Locations

Meditational Rooms’ Locations


Room 1- Air

Snapshot from Air video


Room 1- Octahedron (Air) approx. 15m2 A cairn in an unusual shape. Inside, the upper half is white where an open square projection provides views to the sky whilst allowing the sound and presence of wind to infiltrate. Materials: Concrete, stone, white infill panels Precedent Above: Kielder Skyspace


Site Model

Perspects shadow showing Pathways



Room 2- Water

Snapshot from Water video


Room 2- Icosahedron (Water) An amorphic structure which reflects its environment by reflective cladding. Materials: Steel frame, polycarbonate panels, stainless steel cladding Precedent Above: Kielder Belvedere

approx. 15m2


Site Model



Room 3- Aether

Snapshot from Aether video


Room 3- Dodecahedron (Aether) approx. 15m2 A stargazing/ meditational pavilion where the bottom half of the structure is a domed bench- so the visitor can meditate with the outer cosmos. Top half the form is an open frame, keeping the sense that you’re still in a room/form. Materials: Timber frame, timber sheathing Precedent Above: Kielder Stargazing Pavillion


Site Model



Room 4- Earth

Snapshot from Earth video


Room 4- Cube (Earth) approx. 15m2 An ancient looking structure of a solid and heavy mass embedded into the dunes. A dark space with an upper square window lighting up the meditative zone. Materials: Timber frame, clay, water, straw Precedent Above: Refuge En Terre


Site Model



Room 5- Fire

Snapshot from Fire video


Room 5- Tetrahedron (Fire) approx. 15m2 A tall charred structure with a high window. A dug out in the sand in the corner so the visitor can make a fire- a flue extracts the smoke. Plywood inside glows red from fire. Materials: Timber frame, charred timber cladding Precedent Above: Fire Shelter by SHJ Works


Site Model



The Arisotelian Nature Conservation Research Facility & Astronomical Observatory An on-site Lindisfarne Natural Nature Reserve Conservation Research Facility for Natural England focusing on research / demonstration & direct management of the Nature Reserve with a key focus on climate change indicators and impacts and strategies for the future conservation of the reserve. An Astronomers’ Observatory with accommodation so that folk of Lindisfarne & Northumberland can re-instate their spiritual connection with the outer cosmos. “the golden mean is the desirable middle between two extremes, one of excess and the other of deficiency� An expansive triple height Golden Mean Equilibrium Space for public galleries with local landscape art and educational workshops providing a balance between the light timber observatory and the heavy concrete and stone nature reserve research facility. A large glazed cafe overlooking the North Sea allows walkers of the dunes to stop from their journey & take in the surrounding environment.


Route from Carpark to Site Building Location

Site Location



Building on Site Model

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The coastal route strikes through the landscape and building where the observatory horizontally frames the building across the landscape. The research part is both excavated like the former Nessend Quarry on the site and gradually elevating acting as an amorphic artificial sand dune.


The form is inspired by the sense of direction which is lost when walking through the pathways in the sand dunes. It is both protruding and embedding, striking and calming, there is a dichtomy between the geometries of the building and a juxtaposition between materials in their weight.

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Amorphic green roof with planted marram grass which collects sand, acting like an artificial sand dune

Waterpools either side acts as the golden mean providing equilibrium on overhead journey to observation deck

Continuation of coastal route through building & gradually in/ up into spaces via walkways

Views from public journeys into research spaces


Two rotating protruding forms linking with protruding landmarks on the island

Rising stone & mortar walls striking through landscape typical of Northumberland

Dynamic weight massing for each programme




Perspective Section looking South- West

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2. 1. 4.


Second Floor Plan Astronomical Observatory

(not to scale)

1. Observation Deck/ Daytime Belvedere 2. Main Observatory Turret 3. Warm Room 4. Secondary Turret


Observation Deck

9:30pm: The Aurora on the Observation Deck A stargazing platform allowing visitors to explore the dark skies of Lindisfarne, using the building’s telescopes or their own private telescopes. It transforms itself during the day, functioning as a walker’s belvedere, overlooking the North Sea and oppositely providing views towards Lindisfarne Castle and Town.

4. 1.

First Floor Plan Astronomers’ Accommodation 1. Double-Bed Rooms 2. Four-Bed Room 3. Six-Bed Domitories 4. Astronomers’ Communal Area



(not to scale)


Views out to Sea

Visitors staying overnight at the observatory can observe the ebb and flow of the waves with expansive views out to the North Sea



2. 1.

Ground Floor Plan (not to scale) Astronomers’ Entrance & Walkers’ Cafe 1. Accommodation Entrance Lobby 2. Walkers’ Cafe 3. Bar 4. Kitchen




Uninterrupted Walkway Walkers are able to continue their journey through the coastal route and look down either side to the public space or research labs, getting a first hand experience of the functions of the building.


100mm deep guttering 150mm stone & mortar external wall

250mm engineered soil with planted marram grass 200mm sheep’s wool insulation 1m glu- lam beam

150mm pre-fab concrete internal wall

waterproofing membrane

100mm sheep’s wool insulation

densely compacted backfill

drainage pipe

450 x 600mm concrete raft

Floor/ Wall/ Roof Detail in Research Facility





2. 6.


7. 8. 5. -1 Floor Plan (not to scale) Golden Mean Equilibrium Space Nature Reserve Conservation & Research Facility 1. Public Galleries & Workshops 2. Nature Reserve Conservationsits’ Entrance Lobby 3. Research Labs 4. Shared Offices 5. Management Offices 6. Shared Kitchen/ Lounge 7. Storage 8. Plant Room with Water Collection Tank 9. Plant Room with Water Collection Tank



Abstract Sketches

Triple Height Space Perspective

Setting up the exhibition Triple height versatile space for landscape art galleries, open workshop spaces & group talks. The sequencing of columns creates a journey for the public and a diffusing of daylight.


Natural Daylight enters through skylights

Thermal Massing of concrete floors, walls and columns releases stored heat at night


Stack ventilation in central triple height zone with cross ventilation from each side

Water collection tanks on each side of the sloped roof collects rainwater & excess water from water pools from guttering and is pumped to toilets and sinks





Charrette Week

At the start of each academic year, the School of Architecture participates in a week of group design activities, easing us into the year ahead and allowing us to collaborate with students from different stages. This year, I was a member of the Nu Baroque group.

Extract from Brief: ‘In the late 16th century the Baroque was born out of the triumph of the absolutist state and the church. It was synonymous with extravagance, rich decoration, irregularity, and complexity. The materials of architecture, art, and fashion were re-purposed to express this glorious and indulgent time. The Baroque was spectacle for spectacle’s sake. Over 500 years later, the charrette is set at the moment of state collapse, the beginning of post- capitalism, the point at which the power of the state and the establishment is rejected and freedom is reclaimed by the people. If the Baroque was a celebration of the state’s superiority, Nu- Baroque is a celebration of the emancipation of the population from that superiority after decades of austerity and poverty. The continued resistance of those worn-down by an oppressive big-business-serving state is nally rewarded with a sense of freedom felt not since the middle of the 20th century. Finally released from the shackles of zero-hours contracts and asphyxiating economic policy, the mood of the population is lifted and people seek to express their freedom in a spectacular and highly visible way, like butter ies emerging from a cocoon of cuts and controls. The charrette will challenge students to create spectacle from the mundane - reusing and upcycling waste materials to create human-scale wearable items of beauty, intrigue, and to express their hope for the future. Outputs may be driven by the choice to work in and explore one material, colour, texture or repetitious form. Conversely students might take a more kaleidoscopic approach and nd beauty in a more eclectic range of media. The week will culminate with an end of week show, hosted within the University - a true spectacle of Junk Couture.’


Our Design




Stage 3 Portfolio BA (Hons) Architecture Newcastle University  
Stage 3 Portfolio BA (Hons) Architecture Newcastle University