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Digital Design - Module 01 Semester 1, 2018 Katherine Leeson

915576 Studio Tutor: Joel Collins, Studio 19

Week One

Reading: Zeara Polo, A. 2010. Between Ideas and Matters.

According to Zeara-Polo, the diagram does not play a representational role in the design process but provides an organisational and can have a performative quality depending on how it is deployed. Explain how Diagram is different from Signs and Symbols? (100 words Maximum)

Signs and symbols represent or suggest something rather than the object itself, the result of this is that we can all have a different understanding of the meaning behind it. For example, the symbol of the silhouette of a woman, can be interpreted as women’s toilets, women only or it can sign of gender diversity at a street crossing. Signs and symbols depend greatly on context and interpretation whereas, a diagram avoids confusion and helps us to understand information. Diagrams might tell us what something is, describe how a space is used and when or how it is organised. Moreover, a diagram has a performative quality and can include many layers of information including time.


Week One

Precedent Analysis

1. Precedent Photo - Halbe, Roland, Radix, 2012,Divisare, March 4, 2018, projects/209321-aires-mateusroland-halbe-radix 2. Wireframe Plan - positions and size of each geometry 3. Rendered Plan - solids prior to boolean command 4. Rendered Side Elevation - Cube after boolean and interior ellipsoids with facets The modelling process began by assessing the plans and plotting the dimensions and positing of the geometries that form ‘Radix’(fig 2). This was then followed by creating the four solids of the geometries (fig 3), the ellipsoid were then removed from the cube using the boolean command to create the voids. Following on, curves were applied to the interior surfaces to match the facets of the pavilion. The original surface was removed and individual surfaces between the curves were created to achieve the panelled look (fig 4).


Week Two

Reading: Hertzberger H. 2005. The in-between and The Habitable Space Between Things, from Lessons for Students in Architecture. Herzberger discuss how design should not be extreme in its functionality. Use your precedent study to explain how the pavilion allows for an appropriation of use. (100 words Maximum)

Herzberger argues that an informal yet considered approach to the in-between spaces can increase both the functionality and the participation with a space as it gives people the opportunity to occupy and adapt a space to their needs. ‘Radix’ by Aires Mateus has positioned the pavilion to provide shelter, multiple access points and both public and private spaces. As Herzberger discusses “a place to sit offers an opportunity for temporary appropriation,” siting this shell-like interior form on the waters edge supports a longer habitation of the space in addition to showcasing the reflection material of the surface and thus encouraging further interaction with the pavilion.


Week Two


Radix Radix by Aires Mateus is a single volume of simple forms that create a spatial experience which takes advantage of both the site and the materials used for construction. The pavilion is made of one solid and three large voids, which at first appear spherical but upon closer inspection of the plans prior to modelling it is evident that they are ellipsoids. The modelling process to create the base is relatively straight forward, create the cube, plot the placement and size of the ellipsoids, model ellipsoids, then subtract their volume from the cube creating the final form. The internal voids have a ribbed cladding, to communicate this in isometric, the ribbing of the internal voids have been dashed in white where it is hidden by the exterior cube. Installed in Venice on the waters edge for the 2012 Biennale, the pavilion can be accessed by both water and on land. As this context is important informing both the circulation of the space and thresholds both a section of land and water have been included in the isometric. During the research and modelling process, particularly of the internal voids it became evident that there are thresholds we experience as we pass through it, first the exterior surface and structure, then interior surface and form and finally the intensity of our focus shifts from the structure to the water, a natural point attractor. A second isometric of a worm’s eye view of the pavilion has also been included to show how the voids of the internal structure inform the experience of the pavilion.


Week Two Diagrams


Thresholds - Transitions

Movement through space is determined by the size of the voids, arches to pass under from one to another and the site. The open voids allow for loose circulation whereas the archways which must be passed under to take a direct path through the pavilion are tight.

From arrival at the pavilion through it to the water edge and in the reverse direction we experience a change of state. These visual transitions from exterior to interior and from focus on structure to the landscape inform our involvement with the piece.




1. Initial observations and breakdown of geometries that form ‘Radix’. 2. Dimensions and positing notes for the largest ellipsoid - Green, taken from plans and elevations provided

3. Dimensions and positing notes for the medium ellipsoid - Red 4. Dimensions and positing notes for the narrow yet tall ellipsoid - Blue,


Appendix Process

1. Ellipsoid plan with positioning lines to ensure centre points are correctly located. 2. Ellipsoids plan as solids 3. Cube and ellipsoid in plan prior to boolean

4 - 6 Elevations of pavilion with voids

7. Underside of pavilion 8. Facet line prior to ‘project’ command 9. Underside with main two ellipsoids with facet lines applied




10. Exterior and interior with facets modelled, expanded 11. Worms eye view interior, distinct surface change 12. Circulation diagram draft - too much going on, to be simplified 13. Threshold diagram draft - interior to be flipped, re work final threshold diagram 14. Isometric view - worms eye view of pavilion to show reflection of water.


DD_Module 1_K.Leeson  
DD_Module 1_K.Leeson