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{ Joscelin Margaret Cooper Master of Architecture California College of the Arts

Joscelin Margaret Cooper e. p. [650] 255 9233


The blankness draws my breathe. This

devoid of human development

place is not only

but where living things stop too. This is the closest I can get to visiting the moon or the far reaches of an oceanic trench. I am spellbound by this place. It is uncomfortable, and arouses a dark longing,

Telescoping House: A house for twins

I imag ine that must have a keenorawareness ofhuman’ time,and People canphysicists call a machine an ‘artificial intelligence’ ‘personalized and as ifphrasings they were in it. both couldswimming accurately to solving a problem. I imagine computer scientists thinking in algorithms { that sort not only dry data, but human experiences like relationships, or the- likeli

Harvard Graduate School of Design Career Discovery 2010

loneliness more profound than I’ve ever known, an ache for its solitary beauty. I want to go back there.

The Foldable Plaza: A mixed-use space for Boston City Hall Plaza Harvard Graduate School of Design Career Discovery 2010

describe the machine’s approach

hood of rain on a Tuesday. I imagine architects having the formula for space, for

demarcating it and endowing it. I imagine that relationships between obects in three dimensions unfold themselves elegantly, and that while architects have

by what novel ways people will invent once they inherit said space.

deas about how people will use space, they are constantly surprised

I imagine that physicists must have a keen awareness of time, as if they were swimming in it. I imagine computer scientists thinking in algorithms that sort not only dry data, but relationship status, or the likelihood of rain on a Tuesday. I imagine architects having the formula for space -- for demarcating it and endowing it. Objects unfold into three dimensions elegantly. Rather than try to dictate how space is used, I imagine an architect delighting in the novel ways people will invent to live in the space they inherit.


Lamp Pastoral: A landscape lamp Personal project undertaken with sculptor Elaine Hanowell

Prototypes: Drawings, paintings, collage Personal projects and paintings from ‘Painting the Series’, California College of the Arts Extended Eduducation, Fall 2010


As a former literature student I am curious about the possibilities for narrative expression within the discipline of architecture.


Poetry Science

+environment Design + Experiments


Everyone enjoys a good story. Since the beginning of time humans have told themselves stories by inventing creation myths, by linking actions into sequential causal relationships and by passing down oral histories. I know a thing or two about telling stories through writing and words. I want to learn to tell stories through visual language and spacial logic.

Telescoping House: A house for twins Harvard GSD Career Disco

This portfolio is an early attempt to tell the story of the designer I’d like to become. Like any story, it has beginnings, middles and ends, though not necessarily in that sequence.

spanish interlude (The Plot Thickens) Literary theory

[texture and atmosphere collage]

Intro - 2


Telescoping House

1. I assemble a series of 12 boxes of specific dimensions and

conjoin them, six per set. I set out to explore specific spatial logics defined by the verbs ‘weaving’ and interlocking’, creating two ‘structures’ of six boxes. By removing panels and sides, rotating and reconfiguring the boxes, I create conditions within.

Folded Boxes

2. By observing the spatial conditions created by weaving and interlocking the six boxes, I perceive conditions of light, public and private, and circulation possibilities throughout the boxes that are analogous to conditions in an actual building.

With layered section diagrams, I explore active spaces versus spaces for stasis and rest (left), public and private realms (right) and light and shadow (left and right bottom).


3. Penrose Tesselation Program Diagram: By activating

various ‘tiles’ that comprise the tesselation, I explore possible adjacencies of pieces of program, and positioning within the given site.

A timeline reveals patterns of cohabitation for shared spaces and determines the positioning for public and private space.

The clients’ somewhat contradictory needs for a shared space are considered through a nuanced character narrative.

The spatial logic of Telescoping House unfolds.

Tesselation Diagram

12:00: 14 steps to a landing and M.’s foray into Bahian cuisine assaults the senses with the wafting sting of chilis. 13:00: J. peruses Shuman’s blog for the photos he snapped of him last week in Tribeca. The sartorialist was understandably drawn to J.’s nonchalent pairing of Tom Ford boots with a working man’s canvass cargos. 14:00: J. is increasingly convinced that his 24 inch monitor is robbing him of the ability for critical thought and exchanging it for pixels. He imagines his 8-bit cerebral cortex pulsing in protest. 16:00 Anti: To be against, to oppose. The prefix recalls the static energy of opposing forces. Two walls oppose one another, support a roof and direct force downward. Anithesis, Antimatter. Anticlimax. 23:30: M excuses himself from his guests and retreats to the observatory. A wobble observed in HD 10180’s rotation signifies the remarkable presence of 5 exoplanets. To M. the spectrograph data points to new worlds in the neighborhood of southernly Hydra. 4:30: The Pleiades are known as Matariki to the Maori, Sorayya to the Persions and Tianquiztli to the Aztecs. Though sitting low on a dusky horizone Asterope and Stereope are luminous.


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a g o y p

e Sle k o o c

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/d e r o



ain t r te




h bat

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g n u lo

/ eat

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ve r e bs

6:00: pariṇāma tāpa saṁskāra duḥkhair guṇa vṛtti virodhāc ca duḥkham eva sarvaṁ vivekinah 7:00: Orchidaceae is a fickle monocot, thought M. Their petulant tounges waggle in the filtered sun. 8:00: M. ferments her own nattō as she considers a four letter word for “What may start climactically.” 9:00: Chiles derive their heat from the compound capsaicin. Capsaicin content is measured in Scoville heat units. M.’s Malagueta peppers rate at around 80,000 units, modest compared to the impertinent Scotch Bonnets. 12:00: She serves lunch in the roof garden. The moqueca recipe is authentically Salvadorean, triggering a curious synesthetic experience. The red hue is clear enough,though she can’t quite make out the words to the letter slipped under the door. 15:30: Phenomenon: An orchid employs mimicry to resemble the Thynnid wasp in a pseudocopulatio ploy for pollination. 19:00: Who brings a botanist supermarket Astramaris as a housewarming gift?” M. sniffs. 23:00: An inadmissable aural cue during charades (a few hummed bars of ‘Quizas’) and M. recalls both the cinematic reference and the singular lines in the discarded love letter.

Tesselation Diagram

4. Arraying the boxes rather than stacking them

However, site analysis shows that the house must telescope upward rather than outward horizontally

is more conducive to the goal of bringing the clients together to share space and segregating them when privacy is called for. ‘Telescoping’ is a more accurate verb to describe the spatial logic of the house than ‘weaving’ or ‘intersecting’. The house should center on a ‘hinge’ and telescope outward, each ‘joint’ comprising an increased level of privacy. I explore telescopng with rough study models.

Telescoping Study Model

Site Analysis

“The Foldable Plaza”

Revitalizing space with fluid and solid forms Harvard GSD Career Disco

Final model and collage: collage dividing model into separate, telescoped ‘wings’ and shared program

Final Model and Diagram

[diagrams of early study models investigate program and circulation ‘ranges’]

The Foldable Plaza

public and private (blue)


desired circulation

Massing 1.



1. The site is City Hall Plaza in downtown Boston.

super-public epicenters

circulation now

While the southern corridor of the plaza is welltrafficked because of spillout from the T subway stop and the proximity of historical landmarks, the expansive northern side of the plaza feels remote and isolated.

Private spaces:

2. Through massing models, I investigate how to

use form to reactivate the plaza’s dead zone. I place emplasis upon creating intimate, habitable spaces that mirror the popular, well-trafficked corridors on the south side of the plaza, and on providing a means for movement along Court Street toward the open, northern space.

Mapping the Plaza

Landscape intervention:

Street level

Mid levels

Upper levels

Clockwise from top: a diagram examining potential allocations of private spaces within the site footprint, massing models for two potential forms

Early massings

Precedent Studies




Spring street 4th avenue


5th avenue

Madison avenue

ground floor through third

third through sixth

sixth through ninth

I look at three precedents but focus on the Seattle Public Library. Site diagrams of (clockwise): public transit, entrances/exits, public/private, adjacent institutions

Precedent Studies

3. Precedents inform the proposed intervention: Study models and diagrams exploring fluid (white) and immutable (tan) forms.

Fluid and Solid Forms Intersect

Circulation Diagrams

Plan, Section and Program Diagrams

Program Residential

fluid space


Retail Classrooms/ Studios


concealed/revealed views

4. Through 3-D circulation diagrams, I investigate how circulation flow between

events should dictate how the built space unfolds. Instead of attempting to direct traffic by arranging program, instead I choreograph movement through a series of revealed and concealed views, drawing habitants through curated and uncurated spaces.

Circulation Diagrams

Theater, Cafe, Promenade

Plan and section drawings, axonometric diagram of various conditions of the built intervention

Axon program and circulation drawings

Semi-Private Public Public

solid space


circulation path through curated space

Lamp Pastoral+Prototypes Drawings, paintings and mixed media

California College of the Arts “Painting the Series� and personal studies

Final massing model in the site context [antebellum homes, Newnan, Georgia]

Final Massings

Old School

Lamp Pastoral: a lamp as a folded landscape

I sculpt a clay mold around a wood armature. The sculpted form emerged as an expression of the maleability of the material, and was further informed by the practical use as a pendant lamp: it had to hang without a tilt, and both diffuse and focus light. The form was inspired by a classic bellshaped lampshade whose corners had been pushed and squeezed directionally, analogous to a landscape shaped by natural forces. The resulting form was a pushed and pulled landscape, folded upon itself. The sculpture was cast in plaster and cracked open. I laid paper in the mold for a rough prototype. I wanted to experiment with texture and fabric so the subsequent iteration (in progress) is made with burlap.

Left to Right: Lamp mold in progress, burlap in the mold, lamp landscape diagram, prototype 1 in paper

Lamp Pastoral

Lamp Pastoral

The Marriot Marquis lobby, Atlanta, Georgia

The High Museum of Art, Atlanta Georgia

Marriot Marquis Lobby, John Portman

High Museum of Art Addition, Renzo Piano

One subject, three interpretations: a waterfall in watercolor and pastel, as a model, as a study in oils

Calf Creek Falls, Utah

One subject, three interpretations: a house studied in various oil paintings

Newnan, Georgia

Materials Library Telescoping House:

Marriot Marquis Drawings:

Boxes:chip board Diagramming: vellum, pen, pencil, colored pencil, magazine pieces Telescoping Early Model: bristol paper Final Model: museum board

Drawings in pen, pencil and watercolor

Foldable Plaza: Intro Diagrams:pen, pencil and marker on bristol paper Early Massings: bristol paper Fluid and Solid Forms Intersect: chip board, bristol Circulation Diagrams: chip board, bristol, acrylic sheet Final Drawings: lead on vellum Final Model: museum board in two colors

High Museum: Drawings in pencil and calligraphy ink, collage in pen, pencil and cut maps Calf Creek Falls, Utah Large painting: pastel on gator board Model: museum board, foam board Small painting: oil on canvas panel Newnan, Georgia: All paintings are oil on canvas panel with some collaging

Lamp Pastoral: Mold base: wood armature, nails, clay, plaster, acrylic spray Lamp 1 Prototype: Japanese Masa paper, sautered wire, gel medium Lamp 2 Prototype: soaked burlap sacks, sautered wire, gel medium

{ Joscelin Margaret Cooper e. p. [650] 255 9233



portfolio march