[En]Coding Architecture THE BOOK Edited by Liss C. Werner
[EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE THE BOOK
[En]Coding Architecture THE BOOK Edited by Liss C. Werner
Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture, Pittsburgh
COLOPHON This edition fi st published 2013 ÂŠ 2013 Carnegie Mellon University, School of Architecture Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture 5000, Forbes Avenue Pittsburgh, PA, 15213, USA
Liss C. Werner All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilized for commercial purposes in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers and a clear reference to the source.
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Michael S. Jeffe s
Design, Layout, Page Editing Lena E. Tesone Liss C. Werner
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS [EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE 2013, the conference, fi st and foremost was made possible through the generous support, trust and engagement from Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Fine Arts and the School of Architecture, mainly Steve R. Lee, Professor and Head, and Dan Martin, Dean of CMU College of Fine Arts. I also would like to mention and thank Prof. Alfred Jacoby, Head of DIA, Dessau International Architecture Graduate School, Anhalt University of Applied Sciences, for encouraging me to approach the position as Visiting Professor and George N. Pauly, Jr. Fellow, within which I could create, organize and chair the conference [EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE 2013. Many thanks to Madeline Gannon, who advised before, during and after the conference, ran a workshop on scripting, and also helped editing this book. The book itself was partly financed by a grant from the Frank-Ratchye Fund for Art @ the Frontier. Organization of the event was only possible with the help of volunteering students and highly supportive administration staff. Many thanks to the Studio for Creative Inquiry, run by Golan Levin for helping out with space and logistics. I was very happy that one day of the conference could be held within the Kresge Recital Hall, and therefore would like to thank Carnegie
Mellon University’s School of Music. Many thanks to the workshop leaders, Madeline Gannon (as mentioned for scripting), Golan Levin for running the Daniel Shiffman ‘Nature of Code’ workshop (since Daniel could not attend due to a snow storm); thanks to Daniel Schiffman for conferring during the abovementioned workshop. Thanks to Jeremy Ficca, Josh D. Bard and Wes Mcgee running workshop on using industrial robots in architecture, and Gill Wildman, who offe ed a workshop on ‘The Future Architect as Entrepreneur’ and Illah Nourbakhsh for his contribution as Professor of Robotics at CMU . Most authors presented in this book were chosen through a call for projects, and also presented and/ or were exhibited at the conference; others were specifical y invited. In this respect I would like to specially thank Marjan Colletti and Niccolo Cassas for their excellent contributions to this book, since they could not attend the event. Finally, many thanks to all who supported the conference in a variety of other ways, especially Zack Jacobson-Weaver, Gill Wildman, Michael S. Jeffe s, Jordan Parsons, Jeremy Ficca, Lena Tesone, Marge Myers, Spike Wolff and he team of student volunteers..
Liss C. Werner
[EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE 2013
THIS PUBLICATION HAS BEEN FUNDED BY
WAS GENEROUSLY SUPPORTED BY...
A GRANT FROM:
The Frank Ratchye Fund for Art @ the Frontier SPECIAL THANKS TO...
Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture Carnegie Mellon University School of Music Frank Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry Dfab Lab CoDe Lab Joshua D. Bard Jeremy Ficca Madeline Gannon Linda Hagar Michael S. Jeffe s David Koltas Steve R. Lee Golan Levin Dan Martin Marge Myers Rob Sutherland Lena E. Tesone All who helped and assisted with the conference All participants and attendees of the conference All contributors to this book
PREFACE Liss C. Werner Dessau International Architecture Graduate School Carnegie Mellon University The architect is no longer an organizer of matter and space, but a designer of systems with multilayered components and complex relationships. [EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE - THE BOOK was put together after a conference on the autonomy of architecture, code, fabrication, material morphology, robots, machinic desire and computation held at Carnegie Mellon University, School of Architecture in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in February 2013. The event focused on the ongoing paradigm shift in architecture and the role of the designer/architect in the age of code, beyond linear communication channels or a a clear diffe entiation of disciplines, which has dominated the profession of architecture since the second industrial revolution. The event brought together rising superstars, experienced researchers and designers to present experimental work, and thoughts, derived through computational thinking and digital making. Lectures by Sanford Kwinter, Neil Leach and Warren Neidich elevated the conference subject and furnished debates with new constructs. The book presents an overview of what [En] Coding in Architecture may consist of, how it can be defined and which way a new language and new tools, namely the language and tools of computer sciences influence computational thinking for architecture and the built environment. [EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE 2013 positions the field of architecture as an alloy of programming, digital tooling, art, and science. The book synthesizes new trajectories for the profession in a cybernetic context of tectonics, cultural philosophy, architectural theory and geopolitics. Despite focusing on computation, the conference specifical y avoided to indulge in only one particular strand of the profession and discipline. Instead it aimed at triggering a conversation and debate between various of topics, ranging from material morphology via physical and cerebral interfaces to politics. Along with the paper presentations and panel discussions the conference also featured fi e workshops: two on industrial robots in architecture, two on scripting and one on the subject of â€˜The Architect as Entrepreneurâ€™. Furthermore the conference was accompanied by an exhibition featuring some of the projects contained in this book. A call for papers encouraged an international group of approximately 200 architects, architectural students and researchers to submit papers and/
or projects to accompany the keynote lectures of the conference. Due to common ground, articles in this book partly overlap in the subject matter; the book, however, is structured in eight chapters: INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS, CRITIQUE IN CODE, MATERIAL, ROBOTS, INTERFACE, BUILDING, POLITICS and VISIONS. In that sense, the book spans from factual and theoretical understandings of architecture via matter and making, to critical observations of global phenomena in architectural development, culture and technology. The chapter INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS describes a general overview of the subject, including theory, philosophy and practice. CRITIQUE IN CODE emphasizes on how code can be understood, used, and translated as architectural vocabulary as well as how code triggers questions about architectural education and craft. The chapter pushes the boundaries of code from a spatial, non-linear, and dynamic coordinate system towards a tool for circular feedback, stigmergy, and self-organization. MATERIAL focuses on issues such as morphogenesis, biomimetics, a novel understanding of space and surfacearticulation, and a cross-disciplinary research approach. ROBOTS presents an introduction into how industrial robots can be used in architecture, as form-finding tool, or as interface/learning devices between code and operation. INTERFACE is specifical y concerned with activities between the architect as designer, the hard- and software involved, and the diffe ence or similarities between atoms and bits. This chapter also touches upon locating current streams within cultural studies and cinematics. A number of projects are combined in the chapter BUILDING; these projects act as case studies, and are aimed to encourage research beyond the laboratory. POLITICS, and VISIONS present the two final chapters in [EN]CODING ARCHITECTURE - THE BOOK. They mirror on one hand an earnest and critical view towards spatial and urban design, integrating opportunities for code and computational design strategies, on the other feature utopian visions, equally politically charged. Undeniably, there is a global desire to re-discuss architecture now. Liss C. Werner
INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS Madeline Gannon Warren Neidich Neil Leach Gill Wildman MONAD Studio Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg
After 50 Years of Computer Aided Design Computational Architecture and the Statisticon Machinic Processes The Future Architect as Entrepreneur
Rhythm as Code
CRITIQUE IN CODE Marjan Colletti
An Example of [En]coding Neo Materialism: ProtoRobotic FOAMing
Digital Décadence: The Fractal Dimension
Fleet Hower Zack Jacobson-Weaver
Collateral Intricacy Mastery and Apprenticeship in the Digital Divide: De-Mystifying Code Through Craft
MATERIAL Sean Ahlquist
Exploration and Fidelity in Material Computation: Evolutionary Means for the Articulation of Textile Morphologies
Robert Trumbour and Aaron Willette
Jose Luis Garcia Del Castillo, Christian Ervin, and Krista Palen Jenny Sabin
Social Gravity: Where Analog Means Intersect With Digital Intent WX myThread Pavilion commissioned by NYC Nike FlyKnit Collective
ROBOTS Wes Mcgee and Brandon Clifford Alexandre Dubor and Gabriel Bello Diaz
Zuliang Guo, David de CĂŠspedes, Justin Tingue, and Andrew Wolking Harold Solie, Bennett Scorcia, Mark Wright, and Ning Zhou Michael S. Jeffers and Jordan Parsons Andreas Trummer
La Voute de Fevre Magnetic Architecture: Communicating with Material Vertical Territories of Recursion
Recursionism Mill to Fit
INTERFACE Benjamin Rice Madeline Gannon
Vivarium Reverberations Across the Divide: Connecting Digital and Physical Contexts The Environment as a Signal: The Architect as a User Cerebral Hunt
BUILDING Stefano Arrighi and Pierpaolo Ruttico Hironori Yoshida Jacob Douenias
Bence Pap and Andrei Gheorghe
Responsive Patterns on Double-Curved Surfaces Scan to Production Algal Architecture: Integrating Biological Symbiosis The Architecture Challenge 2012
POLITICS Rocker-Lange Architects Ingeborg M. Rocker + Christian J. Lange
Deren Guler and Xiaowei Wang Andrea Rossi and Lila PanahiKazemi
[En]coding and [Re]coding Architecture: From Proto Types and Parametric Types Revisiting the Building Bulk in Hong Kong FLOAT_Beijing Spatializing the Social
VISIONS Matteo Taramelli Alex Woodhouse and Leah Zaldumbide Matteo Maraviglia Maj Plemenitas
Galileo Morandi and Silvia Bertolotti
Alchemic Psychosis Desert Driftboat the allHOLE Project Cross Scalar ] LINK [ Complex Heterogeneous Systems Living Nature
BIOS Editors Authors
INTRODUCTORY ESSAYS Madeline Gannon Warren Neidich Neil Leach Gill Wildman MONAD Studio Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg
After 50 years of Computer Aided Design Computational Architecture and the Statisticon Machinic Processes The Future Architect as Entrepreneur
Rhythm as Code
After 50 years of Computer Aided Design Madeline Gannon, Computational Design Lab, Carnegie Mellon University [En]coding Architecture 2013 presents a cross-section of the ideas and artifacts currently surrounding computation and the built environment. The following pages explore how cutting-edge researchers, practitioners, and students are harnessing the computational medium to investigate new modes of form-finding, fabrication and assembly, simulation and analysis, visualization, interaction, and theory. Contributors engage the theme of encoding from a variety of viewpoints: some are crafting novel hardware and software, some are translating digital bytes into physical matter, and others approach encoding as a theoretical framework to interpret the world. As you progress through the book, these diverse strands of exploration coalesce into a collective understanding about the central role computation now plays within the domain of architecture. Computational design is often seen as a juvenile field of research in the architectural discipline; a mere 20 years old.1 However, the tools and techniques of digital design have a much longer
legacy: modern CAD environments date back to 1963, with Ivan Sutherlandâ€™s pioneering computer program Sketchpad; and we have been questioning the creative potential of the computational medium since 1967, with Jasia Reichardtâ€™s exhibition Cybernetic Serendipity. So before we dive into the current state computation and architecture, letâ€™s revisit these two foundational moments to understand the historical context upon which the work contained in this book is built. By doing so, we can calibrate our understanding of computational design within a contemporary context, and, perhaps, rediscover potent ideas that still elude computer aided design today.
Although analog computers have existed for centuries, our relationship with modern day, digital computing developed from WWII era code breaking machines.
EARLY HUMAN COMPUTER INTERFACE
Although analog computers have existed for centuries, our relationship with modern day, digital computing developed from WWII era code breaking machines.2 Early modern computers were primarily used as tools for automation by a specialized group of scientists and mathematicians. Machines, such
Design constraints define a framework for what the user intends to create, rather than what they explicitly create in the program environment. Communication through these design constraints gave the computer an understanding of the users intentions ...
However, when an objective is ambiguous, like in the nebulous process of design, this communication model breaks down...
as the ENIAC, were developed to rapidly calculate mathematical tasks in pattern recognition and physical simulations. These computers enabled lengthy repetitive tasks, such as encoding or decoding messages and calculating firing tables or missile trajectories, to be executed more reliably, precisely, and quicker than a human counterpart.3 Though the mechanics and methods of computation developed rapidly in the subsequent decades, the perception of computers as automation machines remained engrained as a fundamental typology for the design and use of computers. In 1963, A.P. Yershóv described this automation typology as the director-agent model of interaction. In this one-way ‘closed chain of transfer and processing [of] information’, the human director commands a machine agent to execute a directive.4 This is articulated in the Yershov Diagram, where we see the thinking human, sensing and sending information to the machine on the right.
The machine is a closed black-box with a portal for incoming and outgoing information. In the diagram, the onus is on the human to distill the creativity and imagination of the mind into simplified commands that the machine can process. Once processed, the results are sent back to the human, returning to the mind for creative interpretation. Today, our primary means of interacting with CAD programs is still this director-agent model from the 1960s — the command-line, the mouse, and even the script editor are all input devices to give a computer explicit directions to execute. This command-based approach to human-computer interaction is very useful when a desired outcome is well defined, like in tasks of automation. When the human understands what information to send, the speed, accuracy, and robustness of the computational machine can be leveraged to execute complex tasks. However when an objective is ambiguous, like in the nebulous process of design, this communication model breaks down. If the human does not know what information to send to the machine, Yershóv’s ‘closed chain’ of communication stagnates. The scope of the machine’s usefulness, therefore, is limited by the mind of the human.
In contrast to Yershóv’s model of human-machine interaction, Ivan Sutherland’s Sketchpad (1963) made it possible for ‘man and a computer to converse rapidly through the medium of line drawings.’5 Through Sketchpad, Sutherland translated the complexities of computation into an interactive and visual interface. Its interface was one of the fi st that separated programming a computer from using a computer, and it demonstrated how computing could become accessible to graphicbased professionals, such as artists, architects, and designers. Sketchpad’s interface was composed of two separate components: the light pen and a dock of push buttons. The light pen, a predecessor to the mouse, was used for coordinate input when drawing graphics and demonstrative input for pointing to and selecting graphics. The dock of push buttons were used to switch between drawing functions, geometric operations, and constraint behaviors. By coordinating light pen movements with push button commands, Sutherland was able to package the program’s complex code into hidden subroutines dynamically triggered by these tangible input devices. Therefore, a user could directly manipulate the contents of the program without writing code. Sketchpad enabled a user to sketch 2D and 3D graphics directly on the computer screen and is recognized as the fi st Computer-Aided Design (CAD) tool.6 Its sketches are not simply digitized drawings, however. The graphic objects in a sketch are embedded with layers of topological intelligence — internal data structures that can store complex relationships. For example, rather than defining a line by two endpoints, it can also be defined by its relationship to other graphic objects: parallel to, perpendicular to, same length as, and so forth. These topological structures allow users to add design constraints within their sketch. Design constraints define a framework for what the user intends to create, rather than what they explicitly create in the program environment. Communicating through these design constraints gave the computer an understanding of a user’s intentions, not just their actions. Sketchpad could interpret and readjust a graphic model to fit what the user intended to make, and not just what they directly input. Therefore, a user could begin with a vague idea of the final graphic object, then collaborate with the computer to layer in design constraints and iteratively refine the desired output. As shown here, Sutherland is quickly drawing the arcs and lines of rivet-like graphic object. Rather than carefully drafting the graphic object, he layers a series of design constraints that communicate to the computer what he intended, but didn’t actually draw. Sketchpad then interprets and readjusts the graphic object to match Sutherland’s intention (right).
Sketchpad illustrated a vision that anticipated and inspired the future of human-computer interaction, and many of its concepts have been adopted and improved on over the last half century. The Graphical User Interface (GUI), Object Oriented Programming (OOP), and Computer-Aided-Design (CAD) were all developed on foundations that Sutherland built through Sketchpad.7 What has yet to be improved on, however, is Sutherland’s notion of ‘conferring with our computers’. Sketchpad proposed a way for the computer to extend the human imagination. Through its constraint system, it could diffe entiate between a user’s intentions and their actions: the program was able to internalize an abstract idea of what the user wanted to achieve, and it could interact and collaborate with the user to reach that goal. In a rudimentary way, Sketchpad was an environment where man and machine could have a shared
state of mind. This connection between human and computer made it possible for an abstract idea to develop into something initially unforeseeable by the human
The term cybernetic is derived from Greek for ‘steersman’, and was appropriated for the metascience Cybernetics in the mid-twentieth century. Norbert Wiener formalized the field in 1948 as ‘the scientific study of control and communication in the animal and the machine.’8 Cybernetics provided a model for understanding complex behaviors as simplified systems of regulatory information exchange. It reduced ‘the animal and the machine’ down to the messages and signals it sent through an environment. As Wiener writes in The Human Use of Human Beings: ‘When I give an order to a machine, the situation is
Cybernetics provided a model for understanding complex behaviors as simplified systems of regulatory information exchange.
Man and machine become a part of a single continuum in an environmental context, blurring the dichotomy between the natural and the artificial.
not essentially diffe ent from that which arises when I give an order to a person. In other words, as far as my consciousness goes I am aware of the order that has gone out and of the signal of compliance that has come back. To me, personally, the fact that the signal in its intermediate stages has gone through a machine rather than through a person is irrelevant and does not in any case greatly change my relation to the signal.’9 Here, Wiener describes a man-machine system, where communicative fields replace the physical or biological boundaries of each entity. Man and machine become a part of a single continuum in an environmental context, blurring the dichotomy between the natural and the artificial 10 This ambiguity was the subject matter of Cybernetic Serendipity, an exhibition organized by Jasia Reichardt twenty years later, in 1968. For the exhibition, Reichardt invited a hybrid group of artists, engineers, mathematicians, and architects to submit work that demonstrated the creative possibilities engendered by contemporary technology.11 The collection of computers, electronics, art, poetry, and machines translated scientific advances in cybernetics into sociocultural speculations on nascent relationships between man and machine. The exhibited artifacts proposed ways for computational machines to form dynamic and interdependent bonds with humans — not as tools for automation, but as a medium for connection. Chuck Csuri’s Sine Curve Man (1967), for example, was one of the fi st examples of an artist using the computational medium to extend there own creativity. The plotter drawing was generated by programming an IBM 7094 with the X and Y point coordinates of the outline of a man. The Y coordinates of the original outline were then successively altered by a sine function, while the X coordinates remained constant. The resulting oscillated portrait was then plotted with a Calcomp 563 drum plotter. Unlike Sutherland’s Sketchpad, Sine Curve Man was generated using very conventional computer interfaces and programmed with standard punchcards. This portrait, however, is the artifact of a profound new relationship between artist and computational platform. The cybernetic serendipity of Sine Curve Man is derived from the artist and machine’s connection throughout the process of creative discovery. As Csuri writes: ‘The question is not one of hand skills versus machine skills. The problem is one of conception, wherein the mathematical transformations made possible by the computer present a new dimension to art.’12 The connection between artist and machine occurs at an abstract level, through machine language. Csuri grafts the conceptual framework of the artist onto the logic of the plotter to create a shared state of mind between man and machine. By binding his creative output to the underlying abstractions of the plotter’s processes, both artist and computer/plotter collaborate with equal agency
in informing the final image. The specific graphic output, be it Sine Curve Man or Cosine Curve Man, is somewhat arbitrary. What remains important is how artist and computer combine to extend the limits of human creativity.
Over the past half century, the development Computer-Aided Design has ineffaceab y altered the design disciplines; from pedagogy to practice, CAD tools mediate how and what we create. Yet despite the relative ubiquity of digital design, our means of interacting with these computational tools have remained largely unchanged since the 1960s. We still operate, rather than collaborate, with our digital design environments through WIMP (Window Icon Menu Pointer) interfaces. The 1960s gave us visionary prototypes. Both Sketchpad and Sine Curve Man demonstrate that it is possible for a computer to participate in the process of design, and not just be used to execute a design. They forego the director-agent model for a cybernetic model of human-computer interaction. As a result, each are able to craft a shared state of mind between human and computer: Sketchpad provided the computer with a model of the user’s abstract intentions, whereas Csuri was able to infuse an archetype of artistic expression (the portrait) with the essence of computation (the algorithm) when creating Sine Curve Man. As we continue to explore new frontiers in computational design, it is important to understand the historical context in which we create; not only to ensure that we are building new knowledge (and not just than reconstituting existing knowledge,) but to also challenge assumptions about how a technology should behave or perform. [En]coding Architecture 2013 profiles computational approaches to diverse fields of in erests within architecture. The following pages demonstrate how the computer is not just a tool for digital representation (drafting, drawing, rendering, etc.) It is also a medium for reconfiguring our existing relationships to the built environment. And, although this book is a static moment within a larger context of dynamic technological change, I hope the artifacts and ideas contained in [En]coding Architecture 2013 will inspire excitement for the creative possibilities and provocative futures of architecture.
CITATIONS / NOTES / REFERENCES
1. Mario Carpo, The Digital Turn in Architecture, 1992-2002, Chichester: Wiley, 2013, p.8. 2. Jasia Reichardt, Robots: Fact, Fiction and Prediction, New York: The Viking Press, 1978, p.35. 3. Saul Rosen, ‘Electronic Computers: A Historical Survey’ in ACM Computational Survey, 1, 1, March 1969, 7-36. DOI=10.1145/356540.356543 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/356540.356543 [accessed September 2013] 4. A. P. Yershóv, ‘One View of Man-Machine Interaction’ in ACM 12, 3, July 1965, pp-315-325. DOI=10.1145/321281.321283 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/321281.321283 [accessed September 2013] 5. Ivan E. Sutherland, ‘Sketchpad: a man-machine graphical communication system’ in Proceedings of the May 21-23, 1963, spring joint computer conference (AFIPS ‘63). ACM, New York, NY, USA, pp.329-346. DOI=10.1145/1461551.1461591 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1461551.1461591 [accessed September 2013] 6. Gabe Johnson, et al. ‘Computational Support for Sketching‘ in Design: A Review’, Foundations and Trends in Human-Computer Interaction, 2, 1 (January 2009), 1-93. DOI=10.1561/1100000013 http://dx.doi.org/10.1561/1100000013 [accessed September 2013] 7. William Buxton, et al. ‘Interaction at Lincoln laboratory’ in The 1960’s: looking forward — looking back, CHI ‘05 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA ‘05). ACM, New York, NY, USA, pp. 1162-1167. DOI=10.1145/1056808.1056864 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1056808.1056864 [accessed September 2013] 8. Norbert Wiener. Cybernetics: Or, Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine, 2nd ed., New York: MIT Press, 1961, p.10. 9. Wiener, Norbert, The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1950, pp.16-1 10. Katherine Hayles, ‘How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies’ in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics, Chicago, Ill.: University of Chicago Press, 1999. 11. Jasia Reichardt, Cybernetic Serendipity: The Computer and the Arts, New York: Praeger, 1969. 12. Charles Csuri, James Shaffe , ‘Art, computers and mathematics.’ in Proceedings of the December 9-11, 1968, fall joint computer conference, part II (AFIPS ‘68 (Fall, part II)). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 1293-1298. DOI=10.1145/1476706.1476759 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1476706.1476759 [accessed September 2013]
p. 16: Sine Curve Man by Charles Csuri, 1967, created with an IBM 7094 and Calcomp 563 drum plotter. p. 18: Yershov Diagram, 1963, Director-agent model of human-machine interaction. p. 19 top: Ivan Sutherland’s Sketchpad, 1963, First Computer-Aided Design Tool. p. 19 bottom: before (right) and After (left) applying design constraints to a graphic object in Sketchpad.
Computational Architecture and the Statisticon Warren Neidich The recent connection of neuro-biopolitical inquiry to post-Operaist ontologies has created new linkages towards a deeper understanding of the causes, mediations, and cures of Cognitive Capitalism and has opened a new form analysis to an activist readership. I would like to continue this conversation by moving forward the process I started in Cogntive Architecture: From Biopolitics to NooPolitics1 and The Psychopathologies of Cognitive Capitalism Part 12 to produce a new language with which to understand the political and cultural consequences of digital architectures upon our contemporary brain and minds. I want to suggest a new opening for critical architecture, in opposition to the post-critical or projective practices, which maintain the uncritical status quo, by suggesting an alternative locus for the repercussions of avant-garde architecture and architectural theory that is the neuroplastic potential of the brain. An approach I might add is nonreductive or cognitivist but culturally biased and ontogenic. Like Michael Hays and Alicia Kennedy
I see the role of theory as multiplex: Firstly it is selfrefl xive and creates a time, space and language to assess what the field has accomplished and what it might do in the future. Secondly it provides a space for a creative practice untethered by the forces that keep buildings standing or causes them to fall down for in the minds eye, where architecture can and must be envisioned, utopian visions abound. Finally the written word samples architecturesâ€™ meaning in ways that building practices cannot. Writing about architecture uncovers other conditions of architecture, which collegial mimesis, other architects copying the forms and styles of colleagues, fails to accomplish.3 The theory of cognitive architecture that I would like to realize here stands firm y in the camp of those theoretical approaches that are unconcerned whether or not architecture and designed space generate platforms for practice in the neoliberal world of commoditized forms and environments. Rather, instead of creating spaces and buildings that potentiate the efficiencies of neo-liberal market
I want to suggest a new opening for critical architecture, in opposition to the post-critical or projective practices, which maintain the uncritical status quo, by suggesting an alternative locus for the repercussions of avant-garde architecture and architectural theory that is the neuroplastic potential of the brain.
Politic Political architecture like political art is unpopular with the titans of industry whose activities generate the very core issues that such resistance reacts against.
[...] it is a called to arms for those architects out there who need a reason to believe in something else beyond the flat screens they are chained to.
networks, this work concerns its critique and as such its destabilization. Political architecture like political art is unpopular with the titans of industry whose activities generate the very core issues that such resistance reacts against. I want to provoke another space for architectural and design discourse to operate in the age of information and cognitive capitalism by understanding its power to provoke new organs of perception and new possibilities for thought. Fredric Jameson, when explaining his initial experience of the Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, implicitly understood this when he stated, ‘I am proposing the notion that we are here in the presence of something like a mutation in built space itself. My implication is that we ourselves, the human subjects who happen into this new space, have not kept pace with that evolution: there has been a mutation in the object unaccompanied as yet by any equivalent mutation in the subject. We do not yet possess the perceptual equipment to match this new hyperspace, as I will call it, in part because our perceptual habits were formed in that older kind of space I have called the space of high modernism… The newer architecture therefore-like other cultural products I have evoked in the proceeding remarksstands as something like an imperative to grow new organs, to expand our sensorium.’4 Since 1991 when Jameson wrote these prophetic words the landscape of understanding of the neural plastic potential of the brain and its entangled relation to cultural plasticity has changed considerably, and as such our understanding of the above statement with it. This discussion of architectures’ power is not a re-iteration or re-enactment of Modernist bravado of architectures’ ability to change the world. Rather it is a called to arms for those architects out there who need a reason to believe in something else beyond the flat sc eens they are chained to. Three essential ideas will be elaborated concerning architectural responses to the new conditions of cognitive capitalism. First I will tether computational architecture to the other regimes and practices of cognitive capitalism. Second I want to reboot the idea of the apparatus/dispositif delineated by Michel Foucault and link it to recent discussions concerning extended cognition in which cognition is not something limited to a process going inside the head but is tethered to material agents and practices that operate as cognitive assists or exograms in built and designed space. I want to argue that architecture is no longer about static material space but it also concerns mobile and dynamic fields and that we now have a whole host of apparatuses, like smart phones, navigation devices and composite smart buildings that operate in and determine the conditions of these field conditions. These devices form the new dispositifs of cognitive capitalism and their actions are directed from the laboring body towards cognitive labor and the
production of the knowledge laborer or Cognitariat. (Stan Allen would suggest ‘a field is a metaphor through which to understand the city better as infrastructural elements linked together in open ended networks.’5 Later interpreting Michel Serres he suggests, ‘More then a formal configu ation, the field condition implies an architecture that admits change, accident and improvisation. It is an architecture not invested in durability, stability, and certainty, but an architecture that leaves space for the uncertainty of the real.’6). In this regard I want to introduce the term Neuropower, which delineates the new conditions of power in cognitive capitalism. Neuropower concerns the ways and means that capitalism intervenes upon the neuroplasiticity of the brain in order to produce a perfect consumer. This happens through bottom-up processing and activating the primary cortices of the brain; like the occipital or visual cortex and the auditory cortex. To this form of power it adds another direct action upon the frontal cortex, which through top-down processing, affects choice and prognostication.7 In my concluding remarks I want to tether this form of power to: construct a new model of archipower called the Statisticon. This term describes an ongoing process of subjectivication and subjection that commences with the panopticon continues through the synopticon and has recently emerged as the Statisticon in which architecture and designed space are entangled in synchronous and diachronous datascapes. In the world of data mining the negative side effects of total datafication of the built environment will be investigated. NEUROPLASTICITY There are two kinds of cultural neural modulation: the generational and transgenerational models. Time does not permit a deep explication of both so for the present text I want to focus on the generational form after giving a short definition of both. Both models describe a process of epigenesis in which the environment interacts with an apriori genetically inscribed unfolding of the matter of the brain. In the generational model as the name implies this process is related to events that are occurring in the life of that subject and the changes occur in the microarchitectures of the brains basic units of function, its neurons mostly at the axondendrite junctions or synapses, a process called selective stabilization.8 In the transgenerational model recurrent events occurring consistently over the course of many generations are reflec ed in changes in the organs of the brain as in the case of the development of reading systems in the brain responding to the modification of the cultural space as a result of the development of symbolic culture. ‘I postulate that cultural acquisitions are only possible insofar as they fit within this fringe, by reconverting pre-existing cerebral dispositions for another use. Accordingly,
THE EXOGRAM-ENGRAM ASSEMBLAGE ‘Buildings, however, are not oases from history… but rather relays in a comprehensive cultural system of management, administration, and engineering of human affect and historical unfolding. Like the coils of an anaconda, loop after loop of the soft-infrastructural mesh is drawn daily around us, not to crush, but merely to restrict expansion in unsanctioned directions, to guide movements subtly but uncompromisingly toward other ends.’11 Recently archeologists have begun to adopt a theory, called Neuroarcheology, that seeks to describe and explain the long-term relationship between the ontogeny of the interaction between ancient material forms, like Miconean beads, and the effect they had for processes and the growth and change of human cognitive abilities.12 13 The mind can be located within and outside the skin and human cognition is locationally uncommitted; committed in other words to being uncommitted, distributed and decentralized. Important for us here and for what is to come is that material engagement takes place along a continuum extending between theories of internalization (inside the brain) and externalization (in the environment).
It is that continuum as it becomes asymmetric in contemporary cognitive capitalism, as we move into a world of exographic excess, that is important for contemporary theories of contemporary built space. Let me clarify these terms further. The exogram-engram system is a distributed networked system that does not respect the boundaries of the material world, the body or the brain. It forms the basis of a developmental approach to distributed cognition in which ‘from birth the rapidly growing human brain is immersed in a massively distributed cognitive network: culture.’14 Importantly, as we have moved in the past fi ty years from an extensive, analogue and linearly mapped world to one that is intensive, non-linear, and self-organized, the nature of engrams and exograms have followed suit, mutating separately and together. As we saw above, through generational and transgenerational plastic changes this change is registered in the brains material nature. An engram is a memory record stored in the head. There are at least fi e dissociable engrams or memory systems:
cultural plasticity is not unlimited, and all cultural inventions should be based on the pre-emption of pre-existing evolutionary adaptations of the human brain. It thus becomes important to consider what may be the evolutionary precursors of reading and arithmetic.’9 For our purposes here I would like to leave this transgenerational model, and focus on the fi st approach, the generational model. As the name describes neural plasticity, which modifies the unfolding of the genetically inscribed neuroontogenic process in the here and now. Neural plasticity is linked up with the term epigenesis. In the restricted sense of the brain, epigensis refers to the way that cultural influences affect the course of development of the genetically determined unfolding of the brain. When one considers brain function in this context, the term neural plasticity is used. Neural plasticity delineates the ability of the components of the brain, its neurons, their axons, dendrites, synapses and neural networks, referred to as its fir ware, in addition to its dynamic signatures, oscillatory potentials which allow distant parts of the brain to communicate with each; to be modified by experience.10 These dynamic oscillations are most effec ed when they are the resultant of a process of the synchronization of stimuli, which cause neural entrainment in which independent systems fall into step and become linked together. Effecti e naturally occurring and culturally designed distributions of sensibility bind and bundle stimuli together in synchronous packages that elicit synchronous neural oscillatory potentials; which, as we will see further along, have neuromodulatory capacities.
1. Motor skills like writing, driving and playing video games. 2. Conditional emotional responses like anxiety created by the sight of a rival or autistic ones defined y detachment 3. Perceptual learning as it relates to learning catagories of things like fl wers or faces but also parametrically curvilinear buildings. 4. Semantic memories that tend to abstract generalizations encoded as language. 5. Episodic memories that relate to the memory of personal experiences in ones life.15 Exographic systems have important properties absent in natural memory systems that have implications for human cognition. Examples include totems, masks, knotted cords, built environments, cave paintings, stone circles and burial mounds that operate as astronomical measuring devices, trading tokens, written records, works of poetry, mathematical notations, architectural drawings, libraries and archives, scientific instruments, moving pictures and electronic media, and recently smart phones and robots.16 Basic to any understanding of engrams, exograms, brain-artefact interfaces is the primordial ‘theory of parity’ according to which if part of the world, e.g. a software program, ‘functions as a process, which were it to go on in the head, we would have no hesitation in accepting it as part of the cognitive process then that part of the world [for that time] is in fact a cognitive process.’17 In other words portions of the external world can operate as a kind of memory store, either as a remembrance of an event or a process that exhumes and constitutes it as an assemblage in time. However the idea of parity implies that the exogram and the engram
One needs to think of engrams and exograms not as crystallized entities but as intensive interactive folded and plicated membranes.
are in some way mimetic in their forms, evolution, state relations, and inherent processing operations. Recently the term parity has given way to a theory of complementarity.18 The term complementarity underscores the lack of exact correspondence between an inner cognitive memory repertoire, engram, and its external cognitive relation, exogram. For instance, ‘the reformatable nature of exograms allows for information to be altered and then re-entered into storage in ways that an engram clearly can not afford ’19 In this regard the idea of things in motion, or cultural memory as they travel through diffe ent epochs and social constructs, taking on diffe ent meanings and uses, is interesting for us here. Furthermore, in order to comprehend the subtleties of the relationships engram and exogram, as singular entities or as classes of things, it is essential to consider their idiosyncratic diachronic, biographical and historical aspects.20 There lack of superimposition, due to a distinctive individual and dyadic character, is related to their inherent developmental asynchronicity and asymmetry. One needs to think of engrams and exograms not as crystallized entities but as intensive interactive folded and plicated membranes. Exograms are polyvalent fields not simply equipontial and as such morphing contextual and contingent cultural tableaux create instabilities in them that produce spiking singularities to emerge. These singularities, when they are strong enough, produce catastrophic changes, which require morphogenetic restructuring of the form in its internal tectonics and external morphology. This I would argue is where the methodologies of aesthetic form production, where use value is not a priority, and the processes of purposeful tool production, linked as it is to a specific job and use, diverge. As I am describing it here, artistic and architectural production in their most utopian condition, unfettered by for instance client requirements, as knowledge production embraces the catastrophe and the variable uncertain forms it yields. The becoming-cultured brain calls for on one hand a sympathetic historical materialism of a dynamic and active brain-artefact interface (BAI), which has enabled human beings to further optimize their environments for a more efficient habitation of their world and on the other realizes that mutual engagement can lead to destabilized results as well.21 The power of architecture, to continue positivist progression endemic to theories of the ontogeny of tool production, is countered by its other potential as a creative and destabilizing force. In an architectural context BAI could be defined as a specified and engineered technological mediation; be it a material structure, process, congregation of objects, socio-material apparatuses or process, that facilitates the arrangement of a dynamic relationship or tuning
between neural and cultural plasticity.22 Importantly in cognitive capitalism BAIs are a subset of a whole host of arrangements under the heading of Cognitive Ergonomics through which design platforms optimize cognition-tool interfaces to optimize cognitive laboring.23 I question the politics of this univocal concept of BAIs, as proposed here, through an understanding of the importance of noisy forms at odds, with this positivistic ontogeny. BAIs and the material engagement approach they are embedded in must be open as the Becoming Cultural Brain model is to the power of noise, chaos, and entropy. For every exogram and engram contains with it unfulfilled promises and possibilities that emerge at points of instability such in phase changes. It is these instabilities as they morph into singularities that have the potential to disrupt the conditions that create the presentation of the exogram or the engram. That in fact allows them to become other. For a normalized exogram, at the service of govermentality, is a synchronized assemblage of parts, an ecology of epistemic agents of thought externalized, which are complexified in specific relational conformations and proportionalities to each other and to the cognitive processes that are implicitly in use by regimes of subjection. They are like fraternal twins and their desire to maintain the web of relations that constitue their relationship creates a field of checks and balances which stabilize their codeterminant structure. In the process of subjection the machinery of control becomes incorporated in the subjects thinking process as automatic selfregulation. MODIFICATION OF THE COGNITIVE LIFE OF LIFE OF THINGS Two quick illustrations should hopefully suffice to show how architecture might deregulate this selfregulation by acting to delink and disassemble the crystallized condition of the engram-exogram assemblage. Rem Koolhaas’ Junkspace (2001) offe s a radically diffe ent idea of understanding the condition of space than the model of Malafouris. For Junkspace is the apotheosis of Modernization with its rational program, based, as it is, on science and universality. ‘Junkspace is its apotheosis, or meltdown…although its individual parts are the outcome of brilliant interventions, hyper technical, lucidly planned by human intelligence, imagination and infini e computation, their sum spells the end of Enlightenment, its resurrection as farce, a low grade purgatory… Junkspace is the product of the encounter between escalator and air-conditioning, conceived in an incubator of sheetrock…Junkspace is…a colossal security blanket that covers the earth, the sum of all decisions not taken, issues not faced, choices not made, priorities left undefined, contradictions perpetuated, compromises embraced, corruption tolerated.’24 And what are the
field of space and time relations. As such a crisis and state of exception of thought occurred and a crisis of governmentality resulted. What is the state of exception and how can this theory be of use to us here? As George Schwab states in his forward to Carl Schmitt’s Political Theology, ‘In short, ‘the exception’, said Schmitt, ‘is that which can not be subsumed.’ A state of suspension of government ensues, and a state of exception is produced.26 REFORMATTING ARCHITECTURE IN THE AGE OF COGNITIVE CAPITALISM Computational architecture is not an isolated sphere of knowledge but in fact linked to a field of similarly inflec ed discourses in which digital processes have become essential. As such architecture is but one expertise that has retooled itself for the contemporary demands of neoliberalism as a global system. In modern western countries the cross-disciplinary adaptation to digital machinic technicity has had other effects on other functional systems such as the ascension of information and knowledge based economies in which mass production and industrialization has been subsumed by a performative and communicative based economy, so called Semiocapitalism, which ‘takes the mind, language and creativity as its primary tools of production of value.’27 In other words, as labor becomes cognitive the machinery of the mind and brain and their attributes, like memory and attention, are the new focus of the capitalist exploitation. Memory and attention form the foundation of contemplation and understanding. The terms communicative capitalism and cognitive capitalism had until recently been somewhat interchangeable. As a result of the outcome of two recent conferences entitled The Psychopathologies of Cognitive Capitalism Part 1 and Part 2 held in Los Angeles and Berlin respectively the signifying ecology of these terms has shifted.28 I would like to argue that the transition from architecture as a form of organization to one of enacted articulation to one of intense datafication, re-enacts an altered history of architecture and urbanization as an ontogeny of the optimization of extended cognition. Where architecture becomes a method of capturing data and that this data is used to track and subjugate subjectivity and as a result the now algorithmic denotation of scripted built space acts as a means to inscribe algorithmic logics upon the malleable architectures of the brain. In the age of congnitive capitalism this forms the relationship between cognitive (A)rchitecture and cognitive (a)rchitecture. Furthermore I would like to suggest that this transition,in fact, follows the transition occurring already in an expanded political-cultural field. I have already argued elsewhere that along with this transition has evolved new fors of biopower. The disciplinary
apparatuses of Junkspace. What are its engramexogram assemblages? Is there a positivist treatise on their design history? According to Koolhaas there is no design but only creative proliferation that in the end produces an alt history of things in transition. ‘Where once detailing suggested the coming together, possibly forever, of disparate materials, it is now a transient coupling, waiting to be undone, unscrewed, a temporary embrace that none of its constituent parts may survive.‘25 The second example concerns the role of paradigm shifts on the secondary manifestations, those that have to do agency and mindedness rather then those primarily political, on conditions perpetrated by the Egyptian Spring. The causes of which can be traced back to an urban and architectural model. The use of social media has created a technological divide between digital natives, those born after the introduction of digital technologies, and internet immigrants, those that were born before the introduction of digital technologies. It allowed for a catastrophic field change with important consequences for those who only understood urban space in the form of a static model, defined by its buildings and plazas, and those who understood it as a fluid and dynamic field, defined similarly to a mobile phone, as a place to roam and congregate. As such the points of powers radiation no longer emanated from public buildings, Murabak Head Quarters were set ablaze, but rather from mobile hubs and their constantly reconfigu ed net-landscape. As such, these mobile hubs and the exographic interconnectivities, they formed fields of dynamic modulation in which transient consubstantiation of interactivity created morphing complexified exographic interfaces; sampled by one population but not the other produced a crisis in surveillance of the government and therefore a disruption in their information gathering capabilities. As such the digital natives were able to creatively reconstruct the fields of meaning as dynamic manifolds in the urban and architectural designed spaces thereby gaining control of the city. Importantly this disruption of the crystallized and instrumentalized distributions of sensibility and their consubstantiated engramic memory fields came under siege, and a state of emergency ensued. Policing forms of normalization that had used certain systems of control and depended upon the engram-exographic system of fl ws, historically set in place, and who themselves were constituted by those systems, as means to engage in a specified form of understanding, were at a neurologic disadvantage. They were neurobiologically blind for as we saw in the opening remarks by Jameson they had not grown the organs of perception necessary to understand the new hyperspace or in this case the new dynamic fields of communication. Their neuroplasticity had been sculpted by a less dynamic and non-topological
As such the digital natives were able to creatively reconstruct the fields of meaning as dynamic manifolds in the urban and architectural designed spaces thereby gaining control of the city.
As such architecture is but one expertise that has retooled itself for the contemporary demands of neoliberalism as a global system.
society of Michel Foucault based as it was on Betham’s panopticon transitioned to the society of control of Gilles Deleuze in which the static, enclosed organized architectural frame was by one more incessant, dynamic and modulatory.29 As we moved to advanced technologically inflec ed, infrastructurally dominated designed space two further permutations in powers methodologies occurred.
I would like to argue that the transition from architecture as a form of organization to one of enacted articulation to one of intense datafication, re-enacts an altered history of architecture and urbanization as an ontogeny of the optimization of extended cognition.
NOOPOLITICS AND NEUROPOWER Noopolitics was an outcome of moving into what is called as the attention economy where value transitioned to valorization in which the number of eye balls watching an event, the amount of chatter in gossip and social networks became an indices of profit. Noopolitics took memory and attention as its new territory for exploitation. Neuropower piggy backed upon Noopolitics’ focus with attention and memory but concerned itself more with the consequences of attention upon the configu ation of neural networked configu ations during critical period for the scripting of the brains neural plastic potential consistent with its own logics and truth fields. Architectural adaptations trace the story of a static and enclosed surveillance mechanism of the Panopticon where one, the guard, watches many, the prisoners, to a more distributed and open variation of the Synopticon in which many watch a few in the age of television era in which many are watching a few (celebrities) from their domestic setting. Whether incarcerated in a cell or a domestic setting both of these models require a stabile subject. I would like to suggest that in the last thirty years architecture and urbanism have had to adjust to the mobile and topologic conditions of the digital age. First as it manifests itself in folded and later curvilinear surfaces and later on in the new mobility of the subject in the post-Internet digitalized domain where mobile phones, IPads, smart glasses have made the subject an active rather then a passive entity. Parametric and digital architecture produced an updated model, which I would like to call Statisticon in which dynamic architecture morphs into a pure information system and tracking and collation become its newly attained political condition. Datascapes and their interactive modum have two faces, fi stly the potential for personalized immersive and situated environments and secondly as data collection agencies. NEUROPOWER AND THE STATISTICON Neuropower plays an important role in the Statisticon. For now let us understand that it is a form of power that fi st finds its roots in a form of power called noo-politics by Maurizio Lazzarato in which memory and attention became the new focus of administration in which power is manifested in forms of distributions of sensibility. To this has been
added methodologies of direct neural intervention upon the subjects neural plasticity in ways already alluded to as well as direct interventions, resulting from research in consumer neuroscience upon the powers of decision making and prognistication in the frontal lobe.30 Essential to the expression of Neuropower over Noo-politics is what is referred to as top-down processing. As opposed to bottomup processing in which varied stimulations inscribe themselves on what are referred to as the primary cortices of the brain, like visual and auditory cortex, where the initial processing of incoming information is begun, top-down processing refers to how this incoming data is modulated by higher brain centers like frontal lobe. In this way incoming information can be deemed as important or unimportant to the organisms future contingent activity and acted upon to be either intensified or edited out. ‘Indeed, there is ample evidence that the processing of stimuli is controlled by top–down influences that strongly shape the intrinsic dynamics of thalamocortical networks and constantly create predictions about forthcoming sensory events. We discuss recent experiments indicating that such predictions might be embodied in the temporal structure of both stimulus-evoked and ongoing activity, and that synchronous oscillations are particularly important in this process.’31 In bottom-up processing the distributions of sensibility is essential as these primary areas are directly linked to the sensorial distributed field, which in our consumer society is designed to attract constituted desire. In Neuropower topdown processing is focused upon especially the frontal cortices responsible for decision making and prognostication.32 33 In both cases through what are referred to as re-entrant processes specific networks are stimulated repetitively and by highly synchronized activity. ‘Re-entry is defined as the recurrent parallel exchange of neural signals between neuronal groups or maps taking place at many diffe ent levels of brain organization: locally within populations of neurons, within a single brain area, and across brain areas. The importance of reentry as a mechanism of neural integration has been realized.’34 This type of activity has the greatest sculpting effect on the neuroplastic potential of the brain and as such forms of governmentality have added this effect of top-down processing to their armamentarium. I would like to speculate that re-entry is an intracerebral and inter-cerebral mechanism, and when seen in the context of extended cognition, does not respect the skull as a boundary of its operation. In fact in the context of dynamic process oriented engram-exogram complexes re-entry in the apparatus that binds the two together. In a dynamic and mobile informationalized world the importance of mechanisms of the dynamic neural intergration is ever ascending.
The tracked movements are diffe ential equations that create maps of individuals and populations that can be sold as information. The Statisticon is an advanced condition of data mining, some of which is already here and some yet to come, where upon data mining is no longer limited to the internet and World Wide Web, in which it is used by Google and Facebook to track users, and this information is sold to corporations, but is a generalized condition of living and operating in the designed and built space of cities. Since the advent of smart phones apps that track corporeal function, e.g. credit card swiping trackink shopping profiles, have been added a) Google glasses that monitor gaze of mobile agents and b) new kinds of smart buildings, that create new information vistas to gaze upon but also create environments of data tracking and hunting. What does this mean for future of architecture? When built space becomes a totally interactive and monitored datascape characterized by smart buildings, smart roads, smart transit systems ad infinitum, data collection possibilities
will abound and the idea of crowd sourcing will have new meaning. The perfect consumer is no longer someone who is the perfect shopper, whose mind now is self-regulated and constantly on the lookout for discounts and shopping events. The perfect consumer of the future will be a cognitive laborer whose contemplation and the decision making processes produce actions and thoughts that produce data as well. Will designed software agents, which are connected to datascapes that produce simulated realities, produce environments tailored to our data profiles? As such the engramexogram complexes be folded into the data scape in which the brain-mind-environment becomes a single interactive condition of data productionstorage-retrieval-analysis. Andy Clark in his book Mindware intuits the implication of the early conditions of search engines and data analysis in the Age of Google. ‘Imagine that you begin using the web at age 4. Dedicated software agents track and adapt to your emerging interests and random explorations. They then help direct your attention to new ideas, web pages and products. Over the next 70 years you and your software agents are locked in a complex dance of coevolutionary change and learning, each influencing and being influenced by the other. In such a case, in a very real sense, the software entities look less like part of your problem-solving environment then part of you. The intelligent system that now confronts the wider world is biologicalyou-plus-the-software-agents. These external bundles of code are contributing rather like the various subpersonal cognitive functions active in your brain.’38 Infini e Data Mining (IDM), a condition I would like to suggest is the future of the extended mind, has implications for surveillance and individual subjection. In our moment of exogram excess populated by all kinds of intelligent apparatuses, soft wares programs, and intelligent wet ware of which architecture itself is a form, cognitive assists will be incorporated into this data intense system both as a data producer and a data modulator. Just as we have software agents monitoring our on-line Google Searches, and providing us with searches consistent with choice inspired profiles, future data intense environments characterized by IDM, in which users wearing devices such as Google glasses, link up with folded and embedded intensively activated assemblages of exograms. Their consubstantiated sculpted analogic neural architectures might create individualized virtual worlds of monadic life cinemas.
FROM THE DATASCAPE TO THE STATISTICON ‘Articulation is concerned with orientation and is framing communication cognitively. Articulation is guiding movement and interaction via atmospheres, and perceptual as well as semiotic clues.’35 Articulatory architectonics is a necessary prelude to the total quantification and intensive datafication of the designed space and as such is linked to an advanced condition of articulation which is prognostication. Articulated environments allow one to make assumptions of what paths to follow in order to facilitate future encounters. Neuropower is concerned not with the production of subjectivity in the present but in the creation of a perfect consumer of the future. Articulation has moved from proscribed architectural determinations of set pathways to promote social encounters within space to that of proscribed contemplative decisions of epistemic trajectories in the minds eye. Interactive datascapes and computationally designed spaces like suggested by Winy Maas, The Why Factory, TU Delft, also have the potential to create an electronic tracking organism, as individuals moving in algorithmic environments, using their smart phones, and searching in the datascapes’ either with apparatuses like Google glasses or just compressing new materials that are digitally linked to massive external hard drives become data generators rather then simply new forms of built expression. ‘Imagine a city that is described only by data. A city that wants to be explored only as information. A city that knows no prescribed ideology, no representation, no context. Only huge, pure data. Overall, datascapes can also be described as highly sophisticated 3D data-maps that resemble or allude to urban form or landscape surfaces and spaces. They extrapolate quantifiable data, turning information into abstract spaces.’36 37
When built space becomes a totally interactive and monitored datascape characterized by smart buildings, smart roads, smart transit systems ad infinitum, data collection possibilities will abound and the idea of crowd sourcing will have new meaning.
CONCLUSION Computational architecture does have the potential for abuse but as Michael Hardt suggested for affecti e labor operating in the global economy the same can be said for Neuropower, ‘on the contrary, given the role of affecti e labor as one
Infinite Data Mining (IDM), a condition I would like to suggest is the future of the extended mind, has implications for surveillance and individual subjection.
of the strongest links in the chain of capitalist postmodernization, its potential for subversion and autonomous constitution is all the more greater.’39 As I have shown in the example of Rem Koolhaas’ Junkspace, and as the result of the analysis generational divisions between digital natives and immigrants, such as was found in the analysis of the Egyptian Spring, architecture can act directly upon the configu ations of spacer, and react to intensify the generational competencies in the latter. Architecture has the potential as a methodology of emancipation in the biopower/ neuropower networks. Architects have the potential to create, modify the distributions of cognitive assists and the datascapes they imply. Every new technology presents conditions beyond its original purposes. With the knowledge described here it is my hope that architects will resist the negative potentials of computational architecture while at the same time embrace its positive possibilities.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES 1. Cognitive Architecture. From Biopolitics to Noopolitics, ed. by Deborah Hauptmann, Warren Neidich, Rotterdam: 010 Publishers, 2010. 2. The Psychopathologies of Cognitive Capitalism, Part 1, ed. by Arne Deboever, Warren Neidich, Berlin: Archive Press, 2011. 3. Michael Hays, Alecia Kennedy, ‘After All, or the End of ‘The End of’, Assemblage, 41, Cambridge: MIT Press, 2000. 4. Fredric Jameson, Postmodernism or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism, Durham: Duke University Press, 1991, p.38. 5. Stan Allen, ‘Field Conditions’, in Constructing a New Agenda, Architectural Theory 1993-2009, ed. by A. Krista Sykes, NY: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010, p.119. 6. Ibid., p.131. 7. Warren Neidich, ‘Neuropower is Resistance Fertile’, in Foucault Biopolitics and Governmentality, ed. by Jakob Nilsson, Sven-Olov Wallenstein, Södertörn, Pilosophical Studies, Flemingsberg: Södertön University, 2013, pp.133-144. 8. Jean-Pierre Changeux, The Neuronal Man, NY: Princeton University Press,1985, pp.205-249. 9. S. Dehaene, J. R. Duhamel, M. Hauser & G. Rizzolatti, From Monkey Brain to Human Brain, Cambridge MA: MIT Press, 2004. 10. Gerald Edelman, The Remembered Present, New York: Basic Books, 1989, p.49. Signaling
in either a phasic or a continuous fashion across reentrantly connected maps permits temporal correlation of the various selections that occur among neuronal groups within these maps. These correlations are driven initially by the signals arriving at primary cortical receiving areas from stimulus objects (in the world, my words) at a given time and place; selections in all higher-order maps related to the presence of an object are correlated through reentry with these primary areas. 11. Sanford Kwinter, ‘Mach 1 (and other Mystic Variations)’, in Constructing a New Agenda, Architectural Theory 1993-2009, ed. by A. Krista Sykes, New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010, p.81. 12. Lambros Malafouris, How Things Shape the Mind, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2013, pp.37-38 13. Lambros Malafouris, “Neuroarchaeology”: exploring the links between neural and cultural plasticity, Prog Brain Res. 2009, 178:253-61. 14. Merlin Donald, ‘How Culture and the Brain Mechanisms Interact in Decision Making’, in Better Than Conscious? Decision Making, the Human Mind, and Implications for Institutions, ed. by Christoph Engel, Wolf Singer, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008, p.195. 15 Merlin Donald, ‘The Exographic Revolution: Neuropsychologial Sequelae’, in The Cognitive Life of Things: Recasting the Boundaries of the Mind, ed. by L. Malafouris, C. Renfrew, Cambridge, UK: McDonald Institute Monographs, 2010, pp.71-
produced a whole of slew psychopathologies like Attention Deficit Disorder, Insomnia, Panic Attacks and free floating anxi ty. 29. Ibid., Warren Neidich, pp.219-268. As I argued this transition from the disciplinary society to the society of control was related to, on one hand, the crisis of the architecture of enclosure resulting from extensive bombing as well as the rise of new technologies of communication like the telegraph, radio, and film early on and television, later, that did not respect physical boundaries of space. 30. Ibid., Tiziana Terranova, ‘Ordinary Psychopathologies of CognitiveCapitalism’, pp.45-69. 31. Andreas K. Engel, Pascal Fries, Wolf Singer, ‘Dynamic Predictions: Oscillations and Predictions in Top-Down Processing, Nature Reviews Neuroscience, Vol. 2, October 2001, DOI: 10.1038/35094565 , p.704. 32. Michael Platt, Camillo Padoa-Schioppa, ‘Neuronal Representations of Value,’ in Neuroeconomics; Decision Making and the Brain, ed. by Paul W. Glimcher, Colin F. Camerer, Ernst Fehr and Russel A. Poldrack, London: Academic Press, 2009, p.442. 33. Michael Platt, ‘Neuronal Correlates of Decision Making’ in Better Than Conscious? Decision Making, the Human Mind, and Implications for Institutions, ed. by Christoph Engel and Wolf Singer, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008, p.125. 34. Giulio Tononi, ’Reentry and Cortical Integration,’ in Selectionsim in the Brain, ed. by Olaf Sporns and Giulio Tononi, San Diego: Academic Press, 1994, p.129. 35. Ibid. 36. http://www.unlvddc.org/mapping-invisibles [accessed 12 September 2013] 37. In NASA’s new Sustainability Base wireless sensors will measure CO2 levels, temperature, lighting and air fl w as well as turn the heat on when it gets cold. Motionloft storefront analytic systems are extending web analytics originally used to monitor how long a visitor stays on a website to real world applications via sensor systems, machine learning and image recognition technologies that enable building owners and store managers to better understand pedestrian and vehicular activity patterns during the day. In each of the above cases digital interactivity processed through the datascape produces effects that are monitoring real life situations. We know from the recent events occurring at the National Security Agency that the abuse of data is something that will and does happen. In each of the above cases especially the last case the fine line between interactivity and data collection and data mining is thin. Smart buildings and environment will soon be machinic assemblages of data collection. 38. Andy Clark, Mindware, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001, p. 115. 39. Michael Hardt, ‘Affecti e Labor’ in Boundary 2, Durham: Duke University Press, 1999, pp. 89-100.
79. http://psycwww.wp.queensu.ca/MerlinDonald/ Publications/01_Exographic.Rev.2010.pdf [accessed September 2013]. 16. Ibid., p72. 17. Clark, A., Chalmers, D., ‘The Extended Mind’, Analysis, 58, 1998, pp.7-19. 18. Lambros Malafouris, C. Renfrow, ‘The Cognitive Life of Things: Archeology, Material Engagement and the Extended Mind’, in The Cognitive Life of Things: Recasting the Boundaries of the Mind, Cambridge, UK: McDonald Institute of Monographs 6, 2010. 19. Ibid. 20. John Sutton, ‘Material Agency, Skills and History: Distributed Cognition and the Archeology of Memory’, in Material Agency, Towards a NonAnthropocentric Approach, ed. by C. Knappet, L. Malafouris, New York: Springer, 2008, pp.37-55. 21. Lambros Malafouris, ‘The brain-artefact interface (BAI): a challenge for archeology and cultural neuroscience’, Social Cognitive Affecti e Neurosciences, Volume 5, 2010, p.265. 22. Ibid., p.26. These sort of bidirectional dynamic coalitions that lie at the heart of BAIs can take many forms (eg. hard assembled (stable) /soft assembled (reconfigu able) epistemic/pragmatic, invasive/non-invasive, representational performative, transparent/non-transparent, constitutive/instrumental, etc.) and can be empirically observed through diverse examples ranging from the early stone tools to the more recent symbolic technologies such as calendars, writing, and numerals as well as pencils, and papes. One could add that brain machine interfaces (BMI’s) that make now possible for a monkey or human to operate remote devices directly via neural activity. 23. Warren Neidich, Blow-up: Photography, Cinema and the Brain, NY DAP and the University of California, Riverside, 2002, p.22. 24. Rem Koolhaas, ‘Junkspace’, in Constructing a New Agenda, Architectural Theory, 1993-2009, ed. by A. Krista Sykes, NY: Princeton Architectural Press, 2010, p.137. 25. Ibid., p.140. 26. Carl Schmitt, Political Theology: Four Chapters on the Concept of Sovereignity , trans. by George D. Schwab, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005. 27. Franco Berardi,The Soul at Work, From Alienation to Autonomy, trans. by Francesca Cadel and Guiseppina Mecchia, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2009. 28. Arne Deboever, Warren Neidich, The Psychopathologies of Cogntive Capitalism, Part 1, Berlin: Archive Books, 2013. There has been a ‘cognitive turn’ in cognitive capitalism in which the software and hardware of the brain and its neural plasticity have become its new focus producing normalized subjects and perfect consumer/ workers. The shift has not been without its tragic side as it has
MACHINIC PROCESSES Neil Leach, USC What are we to understand by the term machinic? For sure it does not refer simply to the machine in the sense of the mechanical, understood within a positivistic framework to signify the world of engineering. Of course, in the context of an exhibition of digital fabrication it does include the use of mechanical processes of production. But it is not reducible to them. The term machinic processes is a reference to the work of the French philosopher, Gilles Deleuze, and his collaborator, the French psychoanalytic theorist, Félix Guattari. Deleuze and Guattari use the term machine in a quite unique way. Philip Goodchild defines the machine in Deleuze and Guattari, as ‘an assemblage of parts that works and produces.’1 The machine is anything that operates, and is conditioned by material fl ws. The machine therefore extends beyond any earlier distinction between the mechanical and the organic, to include both domains. In other words, human beings could also be described as machines. As John Marks observes, ‘Everything is a machine, and everywhere there is production. For Deleuze and Guattari, the machine is not a metaphor; reality is
literally machinic. The concept of the machinic is set against the traditional opposition between vitalism and mechanism. . . In short, there is no diffe ence between categories of living and the machine.’2 Most importantly for Deleuze and Guattari the machinic is associated with desire: ‘A direct link is perceived between the machine and desire, the machine passes into the heart of desire, the machine is desiring and desired, machined.’3 They see desire as a process: ‘Desire is not form, but a procedure, a process.’4 Moreover, in opposition to those who subscribe to the logic of Lacanian psychoanalysis and see desire as an imaginary impulse based on absence or lack, they see it is as a positive, productive force based on reality. By machinic process we should therefore understand a positive, creative process that inscribes human beings within a logic of desire. There is, however, a genealogy to the concept of the desiring machine in the work of Deleuze and Guattari. Owing partly to the persistent confusion that the term desiring machines seemed to generate, eventually Deleuze and Guattari replaced it with the term, assemblage. An assemblage depends on the capacity or
The ‘machine’ therefore extends beyond any earlier distinction between the mechanical and the organic, to include both domains. In other words, human beings could also be described as ‘machines’
By ‘machinic process’ we should therefore understand a positive, creative process that inscribes human beings within a logic of desire.
An ‘assemblage’ could be defined as a loose affiliation of individual components that have come together to form a single body — but a body that is never stable or unified.
For Deleuze and Guattari, the machinic phylum is ‘matter in flux, in variation, and both simultaneously.
capability of an element to form assemblages with other elements, whether organic or inorganic, but is not reducible to them. A good example of an assemblage would therefore be the relationship formed between an animal and the ground on which it is walking, constrained as it is by the forces of gravity.5 The notion of assemblage remains connected with the machine, as in the ‘machinic assemblage’.6 In fact the full name for an assemblage is a machinic assemblage of desire. As Deleuze and Guattari write: ‘All we know are assemblages. And the only assemblages are machinic assemblages of desire and collective assemblages of enunciation. . . An assemblage establishes connections between certain multiplicities.’7 Indeed desire does not exist outside of an assemblage: ‘There is no desire but assembling, assembled desire.’8 An assemblage could be defined as a loose affiliation of individual components that have come together to form a single body — but a body that is never stable or unified. An assemblage is a collection of things brought together in a single context, yet a collection that resists stratification. It functions, as Ansell Pearson observes, ‘as an acentred multiplicity that is subjected to continuous movement and variation’.9 Importantly, it makes connections and relationships; it forms a symbiosis or sympathy: ‘What is an assemblage? It is a multiplicity that assumes many heterogeneous terms and which establishes connections, relations among them, passing through diffe ent ages, sexes, species - natures. Thus, the only unit of an assemblage is that of co-functioning: it is a symbiosis, a sympathy. What is important, there are never the filiations, but the alliances and mixtures;
not the heredities, the genealogic lineages, but the contagions, the epidemics, the wind.’10 Another related term in Deleuze and Guattari that echoes the logic of assemblage and is connected with the machinic is the phylum, as in ‘machinic phylum’.11 For Deleuze and Guattari, the machinic phylum is ‘matter in flux, in variation, and both simultaneously; it is matter as a conveyor of singularities’.12 The machinic phylum refers to the potentiality for matter in the universe to cooperate, once it meets a certain critical threshold. An example would be the capacity of termites in a colony to collaborate on the building of a nest. Matter should be understood here within the logic of morphogenesis, with a tendency for self-organization. According to Manuel DeLanda, the term machinic phylum can refer ‘both to processes of self-organization in general and to the particular assemblages in which the power of these processes may be integrated. In one sense, the term refers to any population (of atoms, molecules, cells, insects) whose global dynamics are governed by singularities (bifurcations and attractors); in another sense, it refers to the integration of a collection of elements into an assemblage that is more than the sum of its parts, that is, one that displays global properties not possessed by its individual components.’13 What becomes clear is that the key theme uniting these terms is connectivity. For Deleuze himself is ultimately a thinker of connectivities. As Deleuze comments, ‘Strictly speaking, what makes a machine are connections’.14 Ultimately then machinic processes refer to systems or relationships. If then – instead of the mechanical per se - we speak of mechanisms of social relationships, we will get closer to Deleuze and Guattari’s intentions behind the term. It is
Deleuze and Guattari illustrate the rhizome with the interaction between a wasp and an orchid. The example is a familiar enough one – of an insect being attracted to a plant, and thereby serving to cross-pollinate that plant.17 The wasp is of course being housed by the orchid, thereby giving the description a certain architectural relevance. But what interests Deleuze and Guattari most of all is the interaction between wasp and orchid. The orchid has developed attributes that attract the wasp, but so too the wasp has developed a pattern of behavior that serves the orchid. As Deleuze and Guattari observe, wasp and orchid enter into a mutual reciprocity, such that the wasp has adapted to the orchid, no less than the orchid has adapted to the wasp. Deleuze and Guattari refer to this as a form of mutual becoming. The wasp becomes like the orchid, and the orchid becomes like the wasp, or – more precisely – the wasp has evolved in response to the orchid, just as the orchid has evolved in response to the wasp. Importantly, for Deleuze and Guattari, we must perceive both wasp and orchid in terms of a multiplicity. As Greg Lynn explains: ‘The multiple orchids and wasps unify to form a singular body. This propagating unity is not an enclosed whole, but a multiplicity: the wasps and orchids are simultaneously one and many bodies. What is important is that there is not a pre-existing collective body that was displaced by this parasitic exchange of sexual desire but rather a new stable body is composed from the intricate connections of these previously disparate bodies. Diffe ence is in the service of a fusional multiplicity that produces new
perhaps the related concept of the rhizome that we can best understand the logic of connectivity that informs Deleuze’s philosophy. The rhizome is a conceptual tool that is taken from the biological model of the rhizome as a root system that spreads endlessly not according to an arborescent model with vertical and linear connections, but with horizontal and trans-species connections. Grass would be an example of a plant that exhibits rhizomatic behavior in its capacity to spread. Another example would be felt as a matted mass of discontinuous non-hierarchical fibe s compressed into a single mass, in opposition to a woven fabric that is hierarchical and controlled. The rhizome has to be understood as diffe ent to the organism, which always threatens to become totalizing, molar and stratified in its organization. Instead of the organism Deleuze and Guattari celebrate what they call the body without organs. Ansell Pearson describes the term as follows: ‘The body without organs refers to the body of the energies and becomings of the earth that gets permeated by matters which are highly unformed and instable, characterized by free-moving fl ws, free intensities and nomadic singularities.15 The problem of bodies with organs are not the organs as such, so much as their organization within an organism. One way to think of the body without organs is as a form of crowd or swarm: ‘A body without organs. . . is distributed according to crowd phenomena, in Brownian motion. . . [It] is a body populated by multiplicities.’ 16 What makes the rhizome so suggestive is that it is always relational. It has to do with an interaction.
The rhizome has to be understood as different to the organism, which always threatens to become totalizing, molar and stratified in its organization.
more precisely – the wasp has evolved in response to the orchid, just as the orchid has evolved in response to the wasp.
But it should be stressed that the rhizome is not a form of representation. The rhizome steps beyond the limits of representation.
When we speak of desiring machines, then, the key question is the connectivity afforded by those machines.
stable bodies through incorporations that remain open to further influence by other external forces.’ 18 Deleuze and Guattari describe this process as forming a rhizome: ‘Wasp and orchid, as heterogeneous elements, form a rhizome.’19 The logic of the rhizome should be distinguished from that of the tree. As John Marks explains: ‘The model of the tree is hierarchical and centralised, whereas the rhizome is proliferating and serial, functioning by means of the principles of connection and heterogeneity. . . The rhizome is a multiplicity.’20 Central to the concept of the rhizome is the principle of ‘becoming’, of forming a relationship with the other, as in the case of wasp and orchid, where the one deterritorializes the other: ‘The wisdom of plants: even when they have roots, there is always an outside where they form a rhizome with something else — with the wind, an animal, human beings (and there is also an aspect under which animals themselves form rhizomes, as do people, etc).’21 The classic example of the rhizome is perhaps the book. The rhizome achieves a sense of becoming. It effects a form of correspondence between the self and the other. But it should be stressed that the rhizome is not a form of representation. The rhizome steps beyond the limits of representation. Writing, for example, does not represent the world. It forms a rhizome with it: ‘The same applies to the
book and the world: contrary to a deeply rooted belief, the book is not an image of the world. It forms a rhizome with the world, there is an aparallel evolution of the book and the world; the book assures the deterritorialization of the world, and the world assures the reterritorialization of the book, which in turn deterritorializes itself in the world (if it is capable, if it can).’22 When we speak of desiring machines, then, the key question is the connectivity afforded by those machines. Even if they are mechanical machines, their purpose is to connect. They form a rhizome with the world – a symbiosis, a symphony. Moreover, the nature of this connectivity is dynamic. It is based on free fl ws and nomadic intensities. But, above all, machines can be seen as the conduits of desire, where desire is construed as a positive, creative act. MACHINING ARCHITECTURE Deleuze and Guattari refer to machines in terms of abstract machines, and connect them with the concept of the diagram: ‘An abstract machine in itself is not physical or corporeal, any more than it is semiotic; it is diagrammatic (it knows nothing of the distinctions between the artificial and the natural either). It operates by matter, not by substance; by function, not by form. . . The abstract machine is pure Matter-Function – a diagram independent of
the form and substances, expressions and content it will distribute.’23 This opens up the obvious possibility of connecting the notion of the machine in the work of Deleuze and Guattari to architecture through the use of the diagram. Importantly here the diagram should be understood not in the literal sense of a sketch that represents what is already existing. As Deleuze and Guattari comment: ‘The diagrammatic or abstract machine does not function to represent, even something real, but rather constructs a real that is yet to come, a new type of reality’.24 We must therefore understand the diagram as an entity that operates within the realm of the virtual (i.e. that which has not been realized), and that has the potential to actualize the virtual within the realm of the material. Furthermore, the concept seems to imply the potential for processes of autopoesis or self-organization. Deleuze refers to the ‘diagram or abstract machine’ as ‘the map of relations between forces, a map of destiny, or intensity, which. . . acts as a non-unifying immanent cause which is co-extensive with the whole social field. The abstract machine is like the cause of the concrete assemblages that execute its relations; and these relations take place ‘not above’ but within the very tissue of the assemblages they produce.’ 25 In his book, Machining Architecture, Lars Spuybroek has taken the notion of the machinic
and applied it to the world of architectural design.24 Here Spuybroek outlines a process of design that depends upon selecting a system, and from that developing a machine that will generate some form of architectural morphology: a. We need to select a system and create a configu ation for the machine based on this selection b. We need to mobilize the elements and relations in that system c. We need a phase of consolidation to final y have the system d. Result into an architectural morphology.27 The machine therefore serves as some form of diagram. It is based on analysis. This analysis produces information, and then the machine has to operate as a way of processing this information in order to generate a design. The design then operates as a formation that is literally formed machinically by the processing of that information: ‘In short, for self-generative design techniques we need empirical (since it all happens within the real) research of alreadyexisting forms, then we need to construct bodyplans out of this research through analysis, then these machines need to be able to process information (or diffe ence) through a mobilization of its topologically connected components, then
As Deleuze and Guattari comment: ‘The diagrammatic or abstract machine does not function to represent, even something real, but rather constructs a real that is yet to come, a new type of reality’.
The design then operates as a formation that is literally formed machinically by the processing of that information.
these need to be able to consolidate and take on a form, fi st as a design and then as a real building.’28 If, however, we understand the world itself as consisting of machines, we can see that the notion of the machine can operate at three diffe ent levels. First, some aspect of the material world – an initial machine - is selected and analyzed to provide information that is subsequently processed through a second machine – a design machine to produce a design that is eventually realized in a third machine - a building machine. But the problem, perhaps, is that the comment has been judged at face value. It has been supposed that the house for Le Corbusier should be mechanical in the literal sense.
Just as science can be viewed through the lens of science fiction, so the mechanical can be understood in terms of a somewhat romantic, mechanical fictions.
we should not overlook the role of design in facilitating the absorption of the technological within human consciousness.
A MACHINE TO LIVE IN
This opens up an interesting connection with the famous comment of Le Corbusier, ‘The house is a machine to live in’. For many this comment exposes the poverty of Modernist architecture where functionalism is promoted over concerns for human existence. But the problem, perhaps, is that the comment has been judged at face value. It has been supposed that the house for Le Corbusier should be mechanical in the literal sense. If, however, we rethink the notion of the ‘machine’ not within a positivistic discourse of the mechanical, but as a desiring machine, as an object, in other words, that engenders and promotes desire, we can reassess Le Corbusier’s comment. The house, for Le Corbusier, should be a machine that channels the fl w of desire.29 But even if we understand the machine to live in the literal sense of the mechanical, there is still another reading possible. Le Corbusier, of course, could never have read the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari. Indeed it is questionable whether he read any philosophy in great depth. But he was certainly involved heavily in artistic circles. If we look at the treatment of the machine in Surrealism – as, for example, in the ‘bachelor machine’ of Marcel Duchamp - there is another reading to be found, one that sees the machine not as antithetical to human existence, but deeply embedded in it, and inscribed, moreover, within the very realm of fantasy that constitutes the human imagination.30 We might even talk then of the mechanical in almost fantasy terms. Just as science can be viewed through the lens of science fiction, so the mechanical can be understood in terms of a somewhat romantic, mechanical fictions. Whatever Le Corbusier might have intended by his notion of the house as a machine to live in, it is quite clear that the house of today is deeply reliant upon the technological – from the televisions, videos and sound systems in the living room to the refrigerators, micro wave cookers and dishwashers in the kitchen. Moreover it is clear that we human beings have begun to treat technological items – our computers, cellphones or other personal devices – as extensions of our bodily operations, so that, just as when we drive a car, and are barely aware of the actual operations of driving – braking, steering, changing gear and so
on – these devices have become absorbed within our unconscious, and have become prostheses of our own existence. Indeed the assumption has been made by cybertheorists such as Donna Haraway that the interface between the human and the non-human is being eroded, as increasingly the technological colonizes the space of our imagination.31 As a result we are developing increasingly into a mutant generation of cyborgs with a form of hybrid human-technological identity. It is as though the technological has been not only been embraced as a prosthesis to human operations, but also absorbed into our very consciousness. We should therefore be suspicious of the discourse of those such as Martin Heidegger, who see technology as alienating, and who fail to take account of the capacity of human beings to absorb the new – including the technological – into their horizon of consciousness.32 What is most important, however, is that we should not overlook the role of design in facilitating the absorption of the technological within human consciousness. For it is precisely design that facilitates the connectivity that lies at the heart of machinic processes, and lubricates the processes themselves. And it is design that fosters the sensuous correspondence with the world, that fla es up at that vital moment of assimilation afforded hrough aesthetic expression.33 This article is illustrated with two projects, Hyperzoic Vesica by Philip Beesley and Alloplastic Architecture by Behnaz Farahi. From the evidence of these two projects we can now detect a crucial shift in the treatment of digital techniques. It was not so long ago when attention was focused almost exclusively on the techniques themselves. Such was their novelty that they had become objects of fascination. It would seem that we have now transcended this fascination, and entered into a new paradigm where technique has been enthused with a sensuousness never seen before. Not only do these projects challenge the all too common assumption that technology is antithetical to the human condition, but they also provide eloquent demonstration of the capacity of design to improve the human condition and to connect us with the lifeworld.
1. Philip Goodchild, Deleuze and Guattari, An Introduction to the Politics of Desires, London: Sage, 1996, p.218. 2. John Marks, Gilles Deleuze, Vitalism and Multiplicity, London: Pluto, 1998, p.98. 3. Deleuze and Guattari, Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1983, p.285. 4. Deleuze and Guattari, Kafka: Towards a Minor Literature, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1986, p.8. 5. See Manuel DeLanda, Intensive Science and Virtual Philosophy, London: Continuum, 2002, p.72. 6. For a more detailed discussion of ‘assemblage’ see: Deleuze and Guattari, Kafka, pp.81-90. I am grateful to Dana Vais for her advice on this subject. 7. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987, pp.22-23. 8. Ibid., p.399. 9. Keith Ansell Pearson, Germinal Life, London: Routledge, 1999, p.156. 10. Gilles Deleuze, Claire Parnet, Dialogues, Paris: Flammarion, 1977, p.84 11. For a discussion of the machinic phylum and its relationship to urbanism, see Peter Trummer, ‘Morphogenetic Urbanism, Digital Cities, AD, vol. 79, issue 4, September 2009, pp.64-67. 12. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p.409. 13. Manuel DeLanda, War in the Age of Intelligent Machines, New York: Zone, 1991, p.20. The idea that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts seems to echo to the principle of emergence. 14. Deleuze, Kafka, as quoted in Rajchman, The Deleuzian Connections, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000, p.7. 15. Keith Ansell Pearson, Germinal Life, p.153. 16. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p.30. 17. Deleuze and Guattari appear to be referring to the digger wasp (Gorytes mystaceus and Gorytes campestris) and fly orchid (Ophrys insectifera). It is curious that they do not refer to the particular sexual nature of this relationship. Usually an insect is attracted to a fl wer by the promise of nectar. Here, however, the sole attraction for the wasp is the potential of copulation. The orchid looks and smells like a female wasp. It attracts the male wasp, whose excited behaviour serves to dislodge pollen from the plant on to the back of the wasp, which then transfers it to another orchid as it seeks gratification elsewhere. Biologists refer to this process as one of ‘pseudocopulation’. See Friedrich Barth, Insects and Flowers, trans. MA Biederman-Thorson, George Allen and Unwin, London, 1985, pp.185–192.
18. Greg Lynn, Folds, Bodies and Blobs, Brussels: La Lettre Volée, 1999, p. 139. 19. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p.10. Deleuze and Guattari’s opposition to signification is an integral part of their theoretical position. Signification subscribes to the discourse of ‘binary oppositions’. Moreover, it belongs to the realm of ‘representation’ rather than ‘process’, and can therefore never account for the complexity of the rhizome. 20. John Marks, Gilles Deleuze: Vitalism and Multiplicity, London: Pluto, 1998, p.45. 21. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p. 11. 22. ibid. 23. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, London: Athlone, 1988, p.141. 24. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p.142. 25. Gilles Deleuze, Foucault, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1988, p.37. 26. Lars Spuybroek, Machining Architecture, London: Thames and Hudson, 2004. 27. Ibid., p.9. 28. Ibid., p.10. 29. Perhaps in Le Corbusier we could even see that sense of desire sublimated or masked within the realm of the mathematical - the logic of ‘sensed’ mathematics. 30. Among others Francois Roche is deeply influenced by the ‘bachelor machine’, and his selection of Architects’ works for ABB2010 ‘Machinic Processes’ reflect his influence 31. Donna Haraway, ‘A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century,’ in Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature, ed. by Simian, New York: Routledge, 1991, pp.149-181. 32. For a critique of Heidegger’s approach to technology, see Neil Leach, ‘Forget Heidegger’ in Designing for A Digital World, ed. by Neil Leach, London: Wiley, 2002. Clearly, we need to include human beings within the category of machinic in order to understand the complex relationships that structure human existence. As Félix Guattari comments on the subject of technology: ‘Far from apprehending a univocal truth of Being through techné, as Heideggerian ontology would have it, it is a plurality of beings as machines that give themselves to us once we acquire the pathic or cartographic means of access to them.’ Félix Guattari, ‘Machinic Heterogenesis’ in Rethinking Technologies, ed. by Verena Andermatt Conley, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1993, p.26. 33. On the potential for design to foster a sense of ‘sensuous correspondence’, see Neil Leach, Camoufla e, Camb., MA.: MIT, 2006.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
p.32: Philip Beesley, Hyperzoic Vesica, Installation, Wellington, New Zealand, 2012. pp.34-35: Behnaz Farahi, supervised by Alvin Huang, Neil Leach and Michael Fox, Alloplastic Architecture, USC, 2012. A dancer dances with an installation consisting of a dynamic tensegrity structure whose movement is actuated by Shape Memory Alloy springs controlled by an Arduino control board. The structure is itself able to move in response to the dancer whose movement is tracked through the use of Kinect motion capture device. The structure thereby helps to overcome the alienation of the environment through technological means, thereby challenging the once popular Heideggerian view that technology is itself the source of alienation. pp.36, 37, 38-39: Philip Beesley, Hyperzoic Vesica, Installation, Wellington, New Zealand, 2012.
THE FUTURE ARCHITECT AS ENTREPRENEUR Gill Wildman, Plotlondon ‘Among recent college grads in the US, architecture majors by far have the highest unemployment rate at 13.9%. That’s according to a new report from the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce.’1 These are difficult times for architectural graduates, indeed, creating conditions, that challenge not just the architectural profession in itself, but also how our graduates creatively extend the field and deal with the situation. Take an underpaid job? Or fill shelves while they wait out the recession? My question is - can they afford to wait that long? Or, could they create their own jobs, through a more entrepreneurial approach in addition to the traditional architectural consultancy model? There are precedents: Matt Jones at Berg London; Nina Marie Barbuto at Assemble and I Made it Market in Pittsburgh; or Lori Cheek at Cheekd NYC. All had to step outside of the established path, and mark their own territories. They point to alternative ways of being successful. There is a new set of forces on
contemporary architects that previous generations and current educators have not encountered nor experienced. Digital methods of design became the norm. The Internet affords sharing and collaboration across projects and time-zones. New tools and services for creating and managing businesses give us ways of connecting production to distribution. Ponoko, a platform, online factory and distributor for product designers, makers, and DIYers ‘reinvented’ the traditional design, manufacturing, delivering process with what they call ‘the world’s easiest making system’,2 using laser-cuts from locations around the world. Diffe ent kinds of fabrication and prototyping lie within reach in the form of new robotic tools for cutting, welding, foaming, creating a whole new set of affordances. But with ease of duplication come new challenges. Examples of building information models on Pirate Bay and Zaha Hadid’s Wangjing SOHO come to mind.3 In a recent article, Foster + Partners explores the possibilities of 3D printing buildings on the moon using lunar soil. This generation shows
Or, could they create their own jobs, through a more entrepreneurial approach in addition to the traditional architectural consultancy model?
This generation shows signs of wanting to do more than simply work for a consultancy.
This is not about replacing traditional architectural practice, nor ignoring the professional experience needed to practice, but extending what new architects could do.
signs of wanting to do more than simply work for a consultancy. At Carnegie Mellon University, School of Architecture we are seeing forays into new materials and fabricating; new ways of animating space with speculations on shared living; design for the other 99%; and thoughts on sustainable spaces that delightfully combine conservation, conjecture, and tourism. Others explore infrastructure solutions for the crisis-stricken. All of these are directions by which architecture moves beyond the design of built form. The potential for making a successful living derived from any of these new directions is huge, yet the means by which to get there is not yet encouraged, taught nor articulated as a new choice within Architecture. In the meantime, other design disciplines are developing the attitudes, skills and behaviors to become entrepreneurs as well as designers. Where else but in a conference exploring the edges of computational architecture could we embed a workshop about these new kinds of opportunities for architects? This is not about replacing traditional architectural practice, nor ignoring the professional experience needed to practice, but extending what new architects could do. Which is not necessarily about waiting for the right consultancy slot, but actively creating new opportunities. During the
workshop â€˜The Future Architect and Entrepreneurâ€™, held during the conference [En]Coding Architecture 2013 at CMU, we explored the work that workshop participants - students and practitioners - had done over the past three years. We were looking for examples of anything that they had designed or researched that had opportunistic potential. These could derive from designed systems, or particular components, or new materials they developed, or old materials used in new ways, or new processes they had developed for working or communicating ideas. Who might want these? What would they be for? What would they do? What kinds of opportunities show up? In our workshop, three very early example ideas for businesses emerged: recyclable shoe services; new forms of rapid prototyped food products; and a new process for working together. Traditionally, Architects know how to design it, how to make it, how to get it made in multiples, and how to scale it. Now they can explore how to get it to the people who want it and get them to pay for it, taking their systems, their processes, their components and putting them into a market, or even designing a whole new market.
Laurene Vaughan, Pierpaolo Ruttico, Aaron Wilette, Dana Cupkova, Dale Clifford, Robert Trumbour, and others.
PHOTOGRAPHS And this is about moving ideas on and outside of the traditional architect-as-consultant model. It’s not for everyone - nor should every idea become a business – and it takes a huge change in self-perception from being in service to being an author. It takes self-belief, strong support and the right kinds of entrepreneurial skills. These can be learned, and improved upon. So should we start to think about architects thinking and acting entrepreneurially as well as working in consultancies? Defini ely. I think what we’re going to see is this generation, in the next 10 years, at the helm of the biggest, brightest and most successful companies we’ve ever seen.’1
Photographs were taken during the workshop ‘The Future Architect as Entrepreneur’ run by with Gill Wildman Gill Wildman at [En]Coding Architecture 2013.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES /NOTES
1. Gen Y: The Startup Generation? Posted on September 1, 2011 by Larry Smalheiser in Entrepreneurs By Matt Torres of TriNet’s Public Relations team, Trainer Communications 2. Annalyn Censky CNN Money January 4, 2012. 2. Zaha Hadid vs. the Pirates: Copycat Architects in China Take Aim at the Stars, Kevin Holden Platt, Spiegel Online December 28, 2012. 3. http://www.fosterandpartners.com/news/foster+-partners-works-with-european-space-agencyto-3d-print-structures-on-the-moon/
RHYTHM AS CODE MONAD Studio I Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg Rhythmic Code highlights the role of computation as catalyst for a new spatial sensibility related to the codification of rhythmic perception. It proposes a novel understanding of architecture based on the capacity of digital design to supersede its normative instrumental role, demonstrating the potential to engage in deeper, critical issues of the discipline and to invigorate/shake a discourse of part-towhole relationships through the lens of rhythmic affect. Pulsation introduces the fundamental animate capacity of spatial organizations and critically reshapes the character of our perception across multiple scales of a project, codifying digital inception and craft through fabrication.
THE SINGULARITIES OF RHYTHMICS AFFECT
â€˜According to Lyotard in any given rhythm, the condition for repetition - formal identity and
regularity - must somehow be vested in a matrix object whose aim is to collapse such regularities and smash such identities in its own drive toward bad form. The beat itself, composed of both extinction and repetition, is the form of this bad form. It is the violence lying in wait for form, as it is the form of violence. Within high art, form is constructed so as to ward off the violence of this beat, to achieve the permanence of the configu ation, its imperviousness to assault. It is, on the contrary, through the lowest and most vulgar cultural forms that the visual is daily invaded by the pulsatile: the blinking lights of neon signs; the flip books through which the visual inert is propelled into the suggestive obscene; the strobe effects of pinball machines and video games â€“ and all of this undergirded by the insistent beat of rock music surging through the car stereos or leaking voicelessly through portable
Pulsation situates the discussion of architecture practices that make extensive use of the fundamental operational capacity of digital design to unveil affective-perceptual qualities of space by means of rhythmic articulation.
Baroque architecture and the Art Nouveau are only part of an extensive lineage of a sensible knowledge infused by sensual overtones and spatial innuendo.
Rhythm (that is, architecture) inhabits thought like a matrix prerequisite to all thought.
headsets.’1 Pulsation situates the discussion of architecture practices that make extensive use of the fundamental operational capacity of digital design to unveil affect-pe ceptual qualities of space by the management of rhythmic articulation. There is a paradigm shift in spatial perception due to the intense use of computational techniques in architecture and the capacity to process and manipulate massive amounts of data, whereby rhythm is now perceived as playing an active role in the formation of space and the tectonic articulation, claiming the foreground figu al field and not just merely embedded or indexed in the structure. The pulsating activity that results from intense digital design is not just revealed through structural or programmatic constraints but is now taking a much more important presence in the articulation of the topology and internal diffe entiation of buildings, creating patterns that operate to transition the diverse scales of representation; reinvigorating the capacity of emergent ornament to provide character and induce moods, ambiance and atmosphere through the modified, re-tuned lens of swerving perception and affecti e alliances. A close reading of digitally-driven, contemporary design reveals sensations oozing from pulsating rhythms in the articulation of surfaces in architecture, energized by the beat surging from an increased awareness of detail within a sensibility of topological tectonics; rhythmic effects accentuate the afterimage of detailed ornament as a trace, an index of activity registered upon architectural membranes which codify spatial transformation and diffe ence. Baroque architecture and the Art Nouveau are only part of an extensive lineage of a sensible knowledge infused by sensual overtones and spatial innuendo, requiring a cyclical readjustment to situate a drifting paradigm of perception.
A THROBBING CODE OF SENSUAL PERCEPTION
Given its lineage of motion-based spatial paradigms, Pulsation creates an awareness of sensual perception related to movement, an enigmatic relationship between space and eroticism, not unlike the obscure relationship between philosophy and sex. In sex can be found the history of a cry, a rhythm, a syncope, a word wrenched from the body, scorched by jouissance. It is the history of the rhythms that crop up in speech well below the level of words but that constitute the history of speech, its soul, as is said of the very fine threads wound around a thousand times inside the sheath of a rope and that may break without appearing to weaken the strand. This rhythm is the intimate order of thought, its silent architecture, its main reason for being. Merleau-Ponty put it this way: ‘my body and the other person’s are one whole, two sides of one and the same phenomenon, and the anonymous existence of which my body is the ever-renewed trace henceforth inhabits both bodies simultaneously.’2 These two sides of the same phenomenon cause a sequence, a musical scansion, to appear; where the body begins and ends is where space begins and ends. The whole history of encoding is about rendering this rhythm, making it give up what it has swallowed, as it were, so that the rhythm can charge the architecture with something other than the meaning of a word, a sentence, a story. Philosophy has exiled itself once and for all from the question of rhythm and of all ‘architecture’, the architecture that is fi st of all a rhythm, a step; architecture as the genius of spacing within matter, between words, within words, in space, words that come to scan silence, to stop it. Concerning this architecture, philosophy can only gloss, interpret,
wonder why rhythm is present as soon as there is thought. Rhythm (that is, architecture) inhabits thought like a matrix prerequisite to all thought. Encoded within all architecture there is a cry, there is speech extracted by force from silence or from screams. But architecture cannot accede directly to this speech either through meaning or through language; it can more effecti ely do it spatially, viscerally. Philosophy, for its part, has taken up a position in the vicinity of this muted music. It can neither join in the music nor stifle the sound, since philosophy, too, as language, has its origins in that same music. What philosophy envies in sex is precisely the fact that sex inhabits this rhythm. Nothing structures sex but the primordial relation to rhythm-body, skin, blood, mixtures, saliva, suffering, pleasure - that contains the initial pulsation of the living - in the place where space is born, in the place where the earliest stammering mingles with the body and with the world, with the soul and with matter. This primordial notion of rhythm is harnessed by contemporary design practices concerned with the singularities of beat as a fundamental condition to spatial perception, an agency for the production of synthetic part-towhole codes in architecture.
WHAT IS RHYTHM? DURATION, REPETITION AND DIFFERENCE IN ARCHITECTURE
Pulsation also applies to sound and rhythm, where a pulse provides a guideline for articulation, a thread to pull, which pushes back and pushes forward, a locus to navigate around and through. Rhythm appears as regulated time, governed by rational laws, but in contact with what is least rational in human being: the lived, the carnal, the body. Time and space, the cyclical and the linear, exert a reciprocal action, they measure themselves against one another; each one makes itself and is made a measuring-measure; everything is cyclical repetitions through linear repetitions. Rhythm is born of moments of intensity, incommensurable accents that create unequal extensions of duration. Whereas meter presumes an even division of a uniform time, rhythm presupposes a time of flux, of multiple speeds and reversible relations. The paradox: rhythm seems natural, spontaneous, with no law other than its unfurling. Yet rhythm, always particular (music, poetry, dance, architecture, etc.) always implies a measure. Everywhere where there is rhythm, there is a measure, which is to say law, calculated and expected obligation, a project.
Whereas meter presumes an even division of a uniform time, rhythm presupposes a time of flux, of multiple speeds and reversible relations.
Everywhere where there is rhythm, there is a measure, which is to say law, calculated and expected obligation.
continuous progress of the past which gnaws into the future and which swells as it advances. Duration involves a process of repetition and diffe ence, it is irreversible since consciousness cannot go through the same state twice; we cannot live over and over a single moment. The notion of duration is embedded in rhythmic, throbbing, vibrating strategies for the articulation of membranes, which extend the tectonic qualities to the spatial experience; a multitude of synchronized components that radiate micro-alliances between parts, distributing ornamental patterns that give character and atmosphere to the architecture.
RHYTHM AND NOIUS: SITUATING GRADIENT OF RHYTHMIC SINGULARITIES
Periodic repetition encodes a milieu, but one must distinguish the measure (or meter) of such repetition from the rhythm that occurs between two milieus, or between a milieu and chaos (as the milieu of all milieus). Measure implies the repetition of the Same, a pre-existent, self-identical pattern that is reproduced over and over again, whereas rhythm is the Unequal or Incommensurable, always in a process of trans-coding, operating not in a homogeneous space-time, but with heterogeneous blocks. Rhythm is diffe ence, or relation - the in-between whereby milieus communicate with one another, with themselves (as collections of sub-milieus), and with chaos. Rhythm is not a secondary by-product of a milieu’s measure, but a primary constituent of that milieu. Consider the human body. Its internal milieu is made up of various elements - the heart, lungs, brain and so on- each with its own rate of periodic repetition. The rhythms of the body, however, take place between various milieus and submilieus, the heart’s regular measure for instance, fluctuating in response to neural and hormonal stimuli, changes in breathing rate, alterations in the external environment, and so on. In a sense, the heart’s periodic repetition produces rhythm, but not by reproducing an identical measure and not in isolation from other milieus. Its regular meter is a vital pulse, not a reproduction of the same, whose regularity and variability are inseparable from the inter-milieu rhythms of diffe ence. Hence Deleuze and Guattari assert that ‘a milieu does indeed exist by virtue of periodic repetition, but such repetition only has the effect of producing a diffe ence through which the milieu passes into another milieu. It is diffe ence that is rhythmic, and not repetition, which, however, produces it; but that productive repetition has nothing to do with a reproductive measure.’3 We know that a rhythm is slow or lively only in relation to other rhythms, but each rhythm has its own and specific measure: speed, frequency, consistency. Our sensations and perceptions, in full and continuous appearances, contain repetitive figu es, concealing them. We contain ourselves by concealing the diversity of our rhythms: to ourselves, body and flesh, we are almost objects of periodicity. According to Deleuze, a succession of instants does not constitute time any more than it causes it to disappear; it indicates only its constantly aborted moment of birth. Time is constituted only in the originary synthesis which operates on the repetition of instants, and concerns a living present in which past and future do not designate separate instants but rather dimensions of a present that are involved in contraction. The architecture of pulsation celebrates duration, enhances our awareness in terms of time-passage indexed in the form; for Bergson duration is the
Within the range of architecture, design, and art practices of pulsation there exists a range of distinctions that diffe entiate them, according to the specific spatial effects being pursued, originated in generative design techniques such as cellular aggregation, single-surface, smooth modularity, adaptive behavior, etc. To the untrained eye, all digitally driven practices look alike. And yet the encoding logic of each one of these techniques and methodologies produces a unique range of spatial and material effects, driven by seemingly subtle methodological and technical diffe ences but producing radical diversity in the architectural outcome. Even though it has been abused as metaphor, a valid comparison can be made with the field of music and the-sometimes-polemical diffe entiation between sound and noise. Pulsating architecture practices often times stretch this diffe entiation, exploring the full range of potential that resides in the gradient, straddling that line and risking, as it were, the assumption that ‘it is just noise.’ Musicians and musicologists often employ a very narrow technical notion, under which a sound is a noise only if its originating frequency is non-periodic and thus of no determinate pitch, or at least random relative to human perception. In such cases the sound wave appears as irregular, seeming to offer a determinate pitch in relation to other sounds. Sounds are normally distinguished from noises according to the richness of timbre: Selective electronic amplification is the best means of bringing about enriched overtones while preserving determinate pitch. The resulting music can thus conform to expectations of melody and harmony while expanding in another dimension. Rock musicians exploit technology for new and richer timbres while still maintaining recognizable melodic contours. Similarly, digitally savvy designers are able to control complex operations of codification that drive surprising architectural conditions far beyond the limits of representation, and into the realm of direct 1:1 material explorations facilitated by processes of digital fabrication. Rhythm is involved in the genesis as well as the
According to Deleuze, a succession of instants does not constitute time any more than it causes it to disappear;
ultimate materialization of atmospheres that affect our sensual perception and our experience of space. Pulsation seeks to examine and bring forth the practices that participate in such primal, rich, and intensive discourse of rhythmic perception, a subject as old and fundamental to the field as the relevance of part-to-whole relationships, now coming back with a vengeance! digitally savvy designers are able to control complex operations of codification that drive surprising architectural conditions far beyond the limits of representation
MONAD STUDIO AFFECT OF DECAY: A PROVISIONAL CODE FOR ATMOSPHERES OF PULSATION
A special case of pulsation, the affect of ‘decay’— which can be understood as systemic, atmospheric aggregation—propagates the deployment of generative modules indexing duration but more importantly, inducing a telegraphed dissipation of discrete qualities in order to gain a collective
perception of multiplicities distributed throughout a milieu. Part-to-whole relationships form the basis of such synthetic codification, potentially mediating natural and artificial systems as productive feedback loops. What is at stake is rhythmic transmission, a type of re-qualified notion of decay understood as a positive mechanism of communication between volumes, a type of vibrational pulsation capable of supreme engagement between parts, subsuming any preconceived top-down hierarchies. Three main categories of rhythms substantiate the notion of Pulsation in the work of MONAD Studio: 1. ANASTOMOSIS RHYTHMS:
As proliferating web, it results from the smooth aggregation of parts or branches of tubular structures that make or become continuous. It produces robust tectonics, multiplicities of seamless
scalar transitions operating in synchronic fashion, connecting separate parts of a branching system to form a network. It refers also to the connection of any two structures, organs or spaces. Performance/Robustness: A fundamental feature of evolvable complex systems. Robustness is often misunderstood as ‘staying unchanged’ regardless of stimuli or mutations, so that the structure and components of the system, and therefore the mode of operation, is unaffec ed. In fact, robustness is the maintenance of specific functionalities of a system against perturbations, and it often requires the system to change its mode of operation in a fl xible way. In other words, robustness allows changes in the structure and components of a system owing to perturbations, but specific functions and elasticity thresholds of joints are maintained. 2. FLICKER RHYTHMS:
Flicker refers to the notion of persistence of vision, which is the ability of the eye to retain the impression of an image for a short time after the image has disappeared. The evidence of this effect is the afterimage generated by multiple components lined up along curvilinear trajectories, yielding an image that persists after the visual stimulus causing it has ceased to act. Such stimulus is the embodiment of the aggregation logic of the geometry.
Performance/Gradient Modularity: A system of break-down of scales is established, in order to produce taxonomic relationships between parts as they effect a cosmology of continuous feedback across the components of the architectural assemblages and their strategic aggregation into surfaces, at diffe ent scales.
3. STRIATION RHYTHMS:
Smooth and striated geometries articulate topological surfaces, alternating the constraining effects of compression and expansion along curvilinear trajectories. Striation operates at diffe ent scales, diversifying and organizing program and circulation by means of grafting functionalities along interconnected swaths. Surface aperture is regulated along ‘unzipping seams’ that bifurcate fold lines and synchronize vector gradients across the geometric field
Performance/Weak Form: Disparate systems
The evidence of this
become activated by tenuous, remote and yet robust sets of affiliations by the discipline of surgically articulating edges between parts. A strategy of seaming borders at times provides and subverts hierarchies of architectural systems, giving way to sensation + geometric affect
relationships form the basis of such synthetic codification...
effect is the afterimage generated by multiple components lined up along curvilinear trajectories.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Rosalind E. Krauss, ‘Pulse’, in Formless: A User’s Guide, ed. by Yve-Alain Bois and Rosalind E. Krauss, New York: Zone Books, 1997, p.164. 2. Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Phenomenology of Perception, trans. by Colin Smith, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1962, p.354. 3. For an overview of the development of these ideas, see Chapter 1, ‘Musica Naturans: Deterritorializing the Refrain’ in Ronald Bogue’s, Deleuze on Music, Painting and the Arts, New York and London: Routledge, 2003, pp.16-18.
p.46: Rhythmicity Installation, South Florida Art Center, Miami Beach, MONAD Studio I Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg. pp.48, 49: all images are from Wolfsonian Museum Pavilion in Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, MONAD Studio I Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg. p.50: Segui Tower, MONAD Studio I Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg. pp.52-53: all images are from the Memorial for the Victims of the Tsunami, Phuket, Thailand, MONAD Studio I Eric Goldemberg + Veronica Zalcberg.
CRITIQUE IN CODE Marjan Colletti
An Example of [En]coding Neo Materialism: ProtoRobotic FOAMing
Digital Décadence: The Fractal Dimension
Fleet Hower Zack Jacobson-Weaver
Collateral Intricacy Mastery and Apprenticeship in Digital Divide: De-Mystifying Code through Craft
CRITIQUE IN CODE
AN EXAMPLE OF [EN]CODING NEO MATERIALISM: ProtoRobotic FOAMing Marjan Colletti, Innsbruck University, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture In 1968, David Campion rightly anticipated, albeit
with some scepticism, the use of computers within the architectural practice: â€˜It is perhaps still too soon to foresee all the ways in which computers will eventually be used by architects; there is, however, little doubt that they will become indispensable to the architect of the future. Since architects are trained to use their imagination it should not be so difficult for them to use their imagination in applying computer techniques and technology.â€™ 1 In the last two to three decades a quantum leap in computing power and availability, as well as the fl xibility and adaptability of computer-aided design (CAD) software packages, has made computers more than indispensible tools to the discipline of architecture. They have ambitiously revolutionized the design process, widened the formal vocabulary and fast-forwarded the theory of architecture into the 21st century. Nowadays we are entering a post-digital age of what may be called New Materialism, focused mostly on
finding ways of translating digital design into real life prototyping. The research here describes how CNC technologies and in particular industrial robots can cope with, and boost, the realization of the raising complexity of architectural forms generated by designers, and how they can lower the levitating costs of bespoke shapes, fabrication and assembly. Rethinking the way buildings are made can have a considerable impact on costs: it can save shipping and personnel costs, lower energy and time loss. The study of fabrication and assembly protocols, shapes and joints, structures and skins goes hand in hand with material research: its production, behavior, properties, parameters and capacities. ProtoRobotic FOAMing investigates how digital and computational design techniques and robotic fabrication technologies, in combination with novel material use (in particular foam) can be improved to achieve the synthesis of material aesthetics (e.g. shapes, ornamentation) and performance (e.g. structure, insulation).
They have ambitiously revolutionized the design process, widened the formal vocabulary and fastforwarded the theory of architecture into the 21st century.
The study of fabrication and assembly protocols, shapes and joints, structures and skins goes hand in hand with material research.
On account of new demands of the economical and ecological crisis it is understandable that architectsâ€™ subjectivity and idiosyncrasy are questioned.
I would argue that the history of architecture is also a history of materials, material innovation, material assembly and fabrication (as well as many other parallel histories) and how they have drastically changed the discipline. It applies to the material integration of stone, concrete, steel, glass, digital matter and will apply to hitherto unknown material discoveries of the future. In a contemporary debate, materiality as a driving force of innovation is reflec ed in a post-cyber, post-virtual, postfluid and post-digital paradigm shift towards Neo Materialism. Neo Materialism marks the ambition to escape from the socially and environmentally unsustainable, virtual and cyber architectural visions of the early days, as well as from the standardized, off- he-shelf and environmentally
and financial y unsustainable architectural production methods of the past towards innovative applied theories, techniques and technologies. On account of new demands of the economical and ecological crisis it is understandable that architectsâ€™ subjectivity and idiosyncrasy are questioned. However, I will not subscribe to a total dismissal of these values! An over-rational misguidance of the discipline throughout these paradigm changes can bring architecture to lose its open and dynamic nature, which sets it apart from the building industry. Despite the bewildering variety of the contemporary digital architectural debate, the most pressing questions today are no longer concerned with providing theories of cyberspace or virtuality, but with providing a novel practice and theory of actual applicability. After the initial
CRITIQUE IN CODE
period of definition and discovery of disembodied virtual realities, data-scapes and cyberworlds, the endeavour and challenge for this generation of creative thinkers is to fully engage with the actuality of digital technologies. For example: social media and telecommunication technologies do not exist in a detached, virtual and cyber sphere. They are a fully integrated part of everyday living, they are fully tactile: swiping on a smartphone’s screen is a physical experience. Initially, cybernetics and virtual reality had brought forth a belief in architecture underpinned by the complete disembodiment of cyberspace, culminating in an almost quasi-religious myth of total liberation from physical limitations (think of the famous goggles or data gloves for example). The liberation from the body allowed artists and architects to dream of unheard potentialities.2 However, early 21st century architectural design postulates material truth (partly disguised by a non-humancentric design agenda) and parametric certainty as core functions of design, rather than cyberworlds. By rethinking real and physical processes of design and fabrication, architecture itself has performed a u-turn. In the tug of war of actual body versus virtual phantom, body wins. Matter matters, more than ever. Because of this trajectory from matter to substance, from virtual imagery to machinic fabrication etc., the terms post-digital and Neo Materialism could be used to define this era of real-world physical production and a new digital paradigm based on evolving processes (including file- o-factory protocols and biotechnologies).
It is safe to say that some of the most relevant research in contemporary architecture is targeted at the translation of digital aesthetics (e.g. formal exuberance, geometric complexity, parametric ornamentation), via post-digital ethics, in particular environmental sustainability, low carbon impact etc., to the implementation of Neo Material design and fabrication processes (computer numerically controlled [CNC] machines, Rapid Prototyping [RP] technologies and industrial and soft robotics) in architecture. However, architecture has not encompassed robotic automation yet. Industrial robots are mechanical handling devices – advanced automation systems – controlled by computers and software. They are particularly useful in a wide variety of tasks such as assembly, material handling, product inspection, and of applications such as welding, laser cutting, painting etc. Thanks to the advances of digital systems, computational power, and programming techniques, more complex tasks can be processed, making robots more fl xible, multi-functional, multi-axial, reprogrammable, precise, and indefatigable. The automotive industry has been the fi st and largest employer of industrial robots (the fi st, Unimate, joined General Motors in 1961). In 2011 the World Robotics report gave an estimate of 1.3 million industrial robots operating in the factories world-wide by the end of 2014.3 Most probably an underestimate, according to the increase in sales in the last years. Surely
Swiping on a smartphone’s screen is a physical experience. Initially, cybernetics and virtual reality had brought forth a belief in architecture underpinned by the complete disembodiment of cyberspace.
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the number will increase soon, and drastically. Architecture, which has deeply embraced digital and computational technology, is therefore ready to assimilate robotic intelligence into the design and fabrication processes of architecture, such as assembly, material handling, product inspection, and a plethora of application such as welding, laser cutting, painting etc. Moreover, ProtoRobotic FOAMing is an attempt to find an innovative technique for implementing industrial robots into novel fabrication processes. Robots and foam have been used before. Of course CNC milling of foam is per se a widely used subtractive process, for example in the nautical, car and aero spatial industries, as well as in product design and architecture (milled foam is in fact often used to produce moulds and formworks for casting). But rarely it has been used as final product, taking advantage of its insulation qualities, ornamentability and translucency, as in ProtoRobotic FOAMing. Robots are also generally used to hot-wire cut foam boards to minimize material waste (e.g. the 2010 Periscope Foam Tower by Matter Design). This is a subtractive process, too, which eliminates residual material. Robots are used for additive processes as well; either as assembly of individual entities (bricks etc.) or as layering of continuous material (such as concrete or clay). Furthermore, robotic spray-layering additive processes with foam have been attempted elsewhere. However, the process implemented in ProtoRobotic FOAMing is unique. It is neither a subtractive nor additive process. It is an analogue real-live simulation of natural growth and self-organization algorithms – since the resulting prototypes resemble biological and natural
structures, such as bone structures, plants, tissue, sponges, corals… Therefore, FOAMing could be seen as a Neo Materialist example of encoding and decoding complex analogue formation processes by observing, computing and controlling material behavior. So far, ProtoRobotic FOAMing’s computational focus is on ‘MultiMove coordination’ to develop novel robotic production techniques. The manufacturer describes MultiMove as ’a function embedded into the software that allows up to four robots together with work positioners or other devices, to work in cooperation including fully coordinated operation’.4 REX|LAB at the Institute for Experimental Architecture at the University of Innsbruck, Austria consists of a fl xible and open 16-axes ABB MultiMove Coordinated Robotsystem with 3 IRB 2600 robotic arms. It allows for a marketleading performance in terms of accuracy, speed, cycle-time, programmability and synchronisation with external devices. The system controlled by RobotStudio, ABB’s software together with HAL, an integrated Grasshopper plugin (developed by Thibault Schwartz), provides a more direct link between 3D modeling and the robot controls. It is world-wide the only MultiMove system with this particular configu ation.
... the process implemented in ProtoRobotic FOAMing is unique. It is neither a subtractive nor additive process
In most general terms, this research is situated in the field of digital design-research. In this particular instance, this includes [en]coding morphogenesis (drafting, modelling, scripting, programming) in conjunction with material research (foam), as well as fabrication workfl ws and technologies (CNC, robotic MultiMove). The title summarizes the twofold
objectives of this arts-based design-research: ProtoRobotic: The project looks at the potential of earliest forms (from Greek prĹ?tos) of robotic fabrication in architecture in the attempt to start bridging the gaps in scale, price and expertise between relatively simply achievable RP models and 1:1 architectural production by CNC equipment (i.e. milling machines, multi-material 3D printing machines) as well as multi-axial MultiMove robotic systems, such as REX|LAB.5
FOAMing suggests that an architecturally more challenging and original alternative may be found to the Passive House guidelines, which for example recommend thick layers of insulation to be sandwiched between cavity walls or hidden behind
render. The research investigates the possibilities of design freedom and morphological manipulation that result from freeing and extroverting an insulation material such as blown foam boards from these cavity walls. This research proposes how we could take advantage of the enormous geometric potential given by digital design tools and CNC technologies to apply ornamentation, geometry and texture onto these large surfaces, which could partly be indoors, as well as outdoors. This would open up new possibilities to architects and designers to design facades in more 3D terms, as the thickness of the foam allows for more complex shapes and textures. Furthermore, this approach makes the retro-fitting of badly performing buildings more design-attentive and precise: with the implementation of thermal-imaging
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and 3D-scanning, precise bespoke facades can be designed to accurately fit existing conditions. More importantly the research investigates foam as agile malleable and soft material (as found in regular tubes). Mixed with additives, such unstructured mass can be stretched into stiff yet light, filamen ous and porous and fragile structures. The combination of the openness of fully controlled robotic movements, semi-controlled material mixtures and unpredictable morphogenetic behavior is challenging. However, clear pattern of biomimetic formations emerge, with stunning similarities to natural biological systems. Simply put: FOAMing seems to decode in an analogue way encoded complex accelerated biological growth algorithms – as can be seen in the prototypes developed at the University
of Innsbruck, Smartgeometry 2013 in London, Architecture Challenge 2013 in Vienna. But we should not misunderstand such processes of [en]coding patterns, forms or processes as mere simulation or mimicry – especially with foam: certainly considered a ‘non- materials or environments’ (think of fun parks and many replica grottos around the world) – or as proper scientific endeavour. It is and remains a creative, and therefore approximate, act of design. The creative act of [en]coding production, behavior, properties, parameters, capacities, affordances and constraints of natural, biological or chemical materials by the aid of advanced digital, computational and robotic processes goes beyond simulation. It enters a world of production. Of cultural production through machinic – robotic – production.
FOAMing seems to decode in an analogue way encoded complex accelerated biological growth algorithms.
p.56: Detail of quasi-fractal self-organization of filaments. Ph tograph by Marjan Colletti. p.58: Detail of self-structured bifurcation filaments. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. p.59 left: Self-supporting filamen ous foam structures (by Y1 students at the Institute for Experimental Architecture. Hochbau and by the workshop participants of the Smartgeometry 2013 Robotic FOAMing cluster). Photograph(s) by Marjan Colletti. p.59 right: Detail of self-structured bifurcation fil ments. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. p.60 top: REX|LAB at Smartgeometry 2013 at the Bartlett School of Architecture, in the process of stretching soft foam into self-supporting filamen ous structures. The Smartgeometry Robotic FOAMing cluster was run by Marjan Colletti, Georg Grasser, Kadri Tamre and Allison Weiler. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. p.60 bottom: Architecture Challenge 2013: Andrei Gheorghe, REXLAB Georg Grasser, Kadri Tamre, Thibault Schwartz. Optimization of internal bending moments. Structural Analysis in Karamba and Formfinding wi h Galapagos p.61: REX|LAB at Smartgeometry 2013 at the Bartlett School of Architecture, in the process of stretching soft foam into self-supporting filamen ous structures. The Smartgeometry Robotic FOAMing cluster was run by Marjan Colletti, Georg Grasser, Kadri Tamre and Allison Weiler. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. p.62 top: Architecture Challenge 2013: Andrei Gheorghe, REXLAB Georg Grasser, Kadri Tamre, Thibault Schwartz. Optimization of internal bending moments. Structural Analysis in Karamba and Formfinding wi h Galapagos p.62 bottom: Detail showing quasi-fractal selforganization of filaments. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. p.63: REX|LAB at Smartgeometry 2013 at the Bartlett School of Architecture, in the process of stretching soft foam into self-supporting filamen ous structures. The Smartgeometry Robotic FOAMing cluster was run by Marjan Colletti, Georg Grasser, Kadri Tamre and Allison Weiler. Photograph by Marjan Colletti. pp.64-65: Detail of the Molly Wally exhibition stand at the Royal Festival Hall Southbank Centre London, for the ICE group, London Centre for Nanotechnology & Department of Chemistry UCL, by marcosandmarjan. CNC flipped-milled foam installation with notched MDF structure. Photograph by Marjan Colletti.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. David Campion, Computers in Architectural Design, London: Elsevier Publishing Company, 1968, p.300. 2. Perhaps it is not a coincidence that books on the topic VR use the term ‘dream’ in their titles: Neil Spiller, Digital Dreams: Architecture and the New Alchemic Technologies, London: Ellipsis, 1998. Other examples: Paul and Charla Devereux’s updated classic Lucid dreaming. Accessing your Inner Virtual Realities etc. 3. World Robotics News: ‘IFR: All-time-high for industrial robots. Substantial increase of industrial robot installations is continuing’. Frankfurt, 1 September 2011. http://www.worldrobotics.org/index. php?id=home&news_id=259 [accessed September 2013] 4. ‘ABB MultiMove functionality heralds a new era in robot applications’, MultiMove technical article.doc ABB – 2004-03-01, http://www05.abb.com/global/ scot/scot241.nsf/veritydisplay/734fb908d1c8ee50 c12576dd005b69d0/$file/abb%20multimove%20 functionality.pdf [accessed September 2013] 5.REX|LAB at the University of Innsbruck consists of a fl xible and open 16-axes ABB MultiMove Coordinated Robotsystem with 3 IRB 2600 robotic arms. This unique piece of equipment is directly controlled via the HAL Robot Programming & Control plugin for Grasshopper (designed and written by Thibault Schwartz)..
CRITIQUE IN CODE ‘Décadence’ (from theLatin word Decidere - to fall down) refers to the gradual loss of
DIGITAL DÉCADENCE: THE FRACTAL DIMENSIONS Niccolo Casas, Accademia di Belle Arti, Bologna, Bartlett School of Architecture Décadence is a process of disintegration of the whole where the particular acquires autonomy and incrementation of visibility by shirking from the functional subordination of the whole. It is about the process of disintegration of an organism, of a society or a culture and, more generally, it concerns the process of fragmentation of a system of relations. In the French dictionary, Larousse, the word Décadence (from the Latin word Decidere - to fall down) refers to the gradual loss of strength and quality of a civilization, culture or organism; the beginning of the fall, of the degradation: the beginning of decay. There is a significant diffe ence in meaning between the French word Décadence and the English word Decadence. The Oxford Dictionary actually translates the word Décadence as ‘decline’ or ‘degradation’: the word describes the beginning of the degradation of a structure of relations, cultural or biological. The English word, on the other hand, has acquired an ethical hint referring to the lack of moral standards and behaviors (moral or cultural
decline as characterized by excessive indulgence in pleasure or luxury - Oxford Dictionary). Charles Baudelaire, as a poet and critic of art, was one of the most important representatives of the esprit of Décadence.1 For the French writer, beauty becomes supreme the moment it incorporates the fi st signs of decline. Furthermore, downhill, ultimate beauty emerges from the understanding of its temporariness, melancholy and sadness being the essence of it. He writes: ‘I can barely conceive of a type of beauty in which there is no Melancholy’2, and in the famous Sad Madrigal3: ‘What do I care if you be wise? Be beautiful... and sad!’ To understand the meaning of Décadence we need to start from the essay, ‘Theory of Décadence’4 written by the French critic and novelist Paul Bourget5 in 1883 and dedicated to Baudelaire. This essay, commonly considered the fi st manifesto of Décadence, it is part of a series of ‘Essais’ for the Nouvelle Revue with the title ‘Essais de Psychologie Conteporaine’. Paul Bourget as the romanian critic Calinescu6 evidences in Five
strength and quality of a civilization, culture or organism; the beginning of the fall, of the degradation: the beginning of decay.
For the French writer, beauty becomes supreme the moment it incorporates the first signs of decline. Modernism, Avant Garde, Decadence, Kitsch, Postmodernism established an analogy between the social evolution toward individualism and the individualistic manifestation of artistic language which are typical of the style of Décadence.
Décadence is a process of disintegration of the whole...
Décadence is not only the decomposition of the social and biological organism but also the fulfillment and the gratification that is derived from it.
‘...And your heart, bruised like a peach, Is as ripe as your body for sophisticated love. Are you the fruit of fall, when flavor is supreme?’ Charles Baudelaire
Faces of Modernity: Modernism, Avant Garde, Decadence, Kitsch, Postmodernism, established an analogy between the social evolution toward individualism and the individualistic manifestation of artistic language which are typical of le style of Décadence.7 Therefore Décadence is stated as a process of decomposition of an organism (human and social) that enables the cell to be freed from the hierarchy and subordination of the whole: a society needs to be assimilated into an organism where the individual is the social cell. Décadence is a process of disintegration of the whole where the particular gains autonomy and by shirking from the functional subordination of the whole it produces an incrimination of visibility. ‘One law governs both the development and the Décadence of [the] organism, which is language. A Style of décadence is one in which the unity of the book breaks down to make place for the independence of the page, in which the page breaks down to make place for the independence of the sentence and in which the sentence breaks down to make place for the independence of the word.’8 When Bourget talks directly about Baudelaire, the idea of Décadence is even better delineated. Décadence is not only the decomposition of the social and biological organism but also the fulfillment and the gratification that is derived from it, it incorporates a morbid complacency toward everything that is ending: ‘[Baudelaire] has realized that he arrived late in an aging civilization. And instead of deploring this tardy arrival, like La Bruyère and Musset, he would have been delighted - I almost said honored by it.’9 The Decadent is interested in the Décadence itself, in the melancholic charm of ending civilizations, even the body when sick and senescent acquires a supreme fl vor. The beauty of woman appeals to Baudelaire only when it is precocious and almost macabre in its thinness,
with the elegance of a skeleton under adolescent flesh, or else late in life, in the state of decline that comes with ravaged maturity: ‘...And your heart, bruised like a peach, Is as ripe as your body for sophisticated love. Are you the fruit of fall, when fl vor is supreme?’10 Décadence is connected to the passing of time and its positive and negative implications. The time of décadence is the time of the almost over. In other words, it is not the end but the ending that intuits a new start. Décadence, on the other hand, amounts to the ideas of reformation and regeneration and to the dynamic transition that leads to a renewal. As David Weir, in his book Décadence and the Making of Modernism11 suggests, Décadence incorporates both decline and renewal: ‘Transition may be the simplest synonym for Décadence.’12 Is there a possibility to codify, to regulate and final y
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to simulate this process? Is there a mathematic and a geometry capable of regulating Décadence? If we consider Décadence as a state of dynamic transition leading to the fragmentation of the whole, it is the fractal geometry that articulates this process. Nature’s unpredictable behavior is usually a consequence of a random sequence of events (disorder). However, in 1960 while looking at weather, Lorenz noticed that this behavior had a pattern, albeit with disturbances - a kind of orderly disorder. Lorenz found that in contrast to fully random systems, chaotic systems can be explained by simple, exact equations. But it was
with the French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot that the theory of fractals was completely elaborated and the embedded order of nature’s fractured irregularity fully revealed. Richard. P. Taylor states: ‘Chaos theory tells the story of the dynamical process whereas fractals are the spatial images left behind as records of the process.’13-14 The relation between Décadence and Fractals was evidenced by the French philosopher Jean Claude Chirollet15, in La question du détail et l’art fractal.16 Chirollet, analyzing Baudelaire’s The Salon of 1846, evidences how for the French poet the smallest fragment of corpuscular matter
it was with the French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot that the theory of Fractals was completely elaborated and the embedded order of nature’s fractured irregularity fully revealed.
The ‘detail in the detail’ tends to repeat itself at every scale.
constitutes, by itself, the crystallization of the whole world. The ‘detail in the detail’17 tends to repeat itself at every scale, showing countless fragmentations or amplifications. It is the concept of depth that represents the trait d’union between decadent and fractal theories: Fractal geometry is essentially concerning depth explains Professor S. Banerjee of The Department of Electrical Engineering at IIT of Kharagpur; ‘the complexity of natural elements is preserved at any scale’18. In the same way, Baudelaire was convinced that every object and detail reveals its significance
at the moment in which space loses its common flatness revealing consecutive depths: the large scale vision or the microscopic vision - the details of cartographic or molecular scales19 - reveals the natural harmonies of geometry. Depth and vision are so much of an obsession to the decadent poet that he scientifical y indulges in drugs such as Opium and Hashish as a medium to expand space and alter time. ‘A mysterious but only temporary state of the mind develops itself; the profoundness of life, hedged by its multiple problems, reveals itself entirely in the sight’.20 The theory of
p.66Turbulence p.68 top: Turbulence, back view p.68 middle: Turbulence, top view p.68 bottom: Turbulence, front view p.69 top: Black Turbulence, back 1 p.69 bottom: Black Turbulence, back 2 p.70 top: Analogy, side view p.70 bottom: Analogy, front view p.72 Analogy, detail
TURBULENCE Turbulence is a necklace designed in collaboration with the fashion designer Leyre Valiente and 3D printed at Materialise. Turbulence was part of the Leyre Valiente collection, Malleus Maleficarum, and was presented at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in Madrid in March 2013. Turbulence is the result of the combination between the simulation of fractal systems, part of my research on Digital Décadence, and an interest in ‘extreme symmetric conditions’ (as symmetry of animated components) that are currently part of a music/design investigation. BLACK TURBULENCE Black Turbulence is the second necklace generated via fractal system simulations. It pushes the boundaries of the research on extreme symmetric conditions that started with the white Turbulence, by introducing a second model that is the twin of the fi st one. The basic equation that describes the general dynamical system, using complex number - Z(n+1) = Zn2 +C -, remained the same for the white and black turbulence whereas the parameters related to the component data and their overall symmetric disposition changed radically. When compared, the two designs look symmetrical at fi st, but in a second glance they reveal all their diffe ences. ANALOGY Analogy is the result of the process of investigation on the aesthetics of Décadence. If we consider Décadence as a state of dynamic transition leading to the fragmentation of the whole, it is the fractal geometry that articulates this process. Analogy is about the simulation of a fractured system in which the whole decomposes making singularities emerge. Analogy concerns the process of fragmentation of a system of relations and it is the expression of the corrupted complexity generated by simple iterations. Charles Baudelaire foresaw that the discontinuity and irregularity of natural shapes directly relates to the dynamic and mutable status of nature itself. Furthermore, he identifies in its irregularity the emergence of mathematical harmonies that reveal analogies between scale and subject changes: only those analogies possess an unaccustomed liveliness; they penetrate and they envelop; they overwhelm the mind with their masterfulness. Musical notes become numbers; and if your mind is gifted with some mathematical aptitude, the harmony to which you listen, while keeping its voluptuous and sensual character, transforms itself into a vast rhythmical operation, where numbers beget numbers, and whose phases and generation follow with an inexplicable ease and an agility which equals that of the person playing. The Playground of the Seraphim - The Poem of Hashish, Charles Baudelaire.
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Mandelbrot demonstrates that the fractal structure (ruled by Chaos dynamics and Information-based complexity) drives several physical and human phenomena: Meteorology, climatology, geography, turbulence (vortex, cyclones and hurricanes), biological rhythms, lungs, the vascular system, market trends, computer networks, demography, microphones and cosmology are just a few examples. Mandelbrot demonstrates that natural shapes and Fractals are characterized by selfsimilarity. This is the tendency to reveal the same statistical properties at diffe ent scales: the whole is exactly or approximately similar to a part of itself. Similarly, Baudelaire foresaw that the discontinuity and irregularity of natural shapes directly relates to the dynamic and mutable status of nature itself. Furthermore, Baudelaire identifies in its irregularity the emergence of mathematical harmonies that reveal analogies between scale and subject changes: ‘Only those analogies possess an unaccustomed liveliness; they penetrate and they envelop; they overwhelm the mind with their masterfulness. Musical notes become numbers; and if your mind is gifted with some mathematical aptitude, the harmony to which you listen, while keeping its voluptuous and sensual character, transforms itself into a vast rhythmical operation, where numbers beget numbers, and whose phases and generation follow with an inexplicable ease and an agility which equals that of the person playing’.21 The importance of fractal geometry lies in the possibility to characterize and describe the degree of fragmentation of natural forms: the morphological irregularity is defined by an index, the fractal dimension, that is a theoretical measure of the formal complexity of irregular configu ations. Fractals tend to occupy space without fully filling it. Therefore, the fractal dimension, also known as the covering dimension, is a parameter that stands between integer topological dimensions. While Décadence relates to the disintegration and the transition process from a whole to a new one, the fractal dimension describes the complexity and richness of the fractal pattern and its geometric proximity to the boundary integers. In other words, fractals can be used to structure Décadence and the fractal dimension indicates the degree of it.
Depth and vision are so much of an obsession to the decadent poet that he scientifically indulges in drugs such as Opium and Hashish as a medium to expand space and alter time.
the morphological irregularity is defined by an index, the fractal dimension, that is a theoretical measure of the formal complexity of irregular configurations.
1. Charles Baudelaire (French; April 9, 1821 – August 31, 1867) was a French poet who produced notable work as an essayist, art critic, and pioneering translator of Edgar Allan Poe. His most famous work, Les Fleurs du mal (The Flowers of Evil), expresses the changing nature of beauty in modern, industrializing Paris during the 19th century. 2. Charles Baudelaire, My Heart Laid Bare, X,1887 3. Charles Baudelaire, Sad Madrigal, V, 1868, from The Flowers of Evil, III edition 4. Paul Bourget,’ Theory of Decadence’. in Décadence, Essais de psychologie contemporaine, 1883. 5. Paul Bourget (French; 2 September 1852 – 25 December 1935) was a French novelist and critic. In 1883 he published Essais de Psychologie Contemporaine, studies of eminent writers fi st printed in the Nouvelle Revue. 6. Matei Calinescu (1987). Five Faces of Modernity: Modernism, Avant Garde, Decadence, Kitsch, Postmodernism, Durham: Duke University Press, 1987, p.170. 7. Matei Clinescu (June 15, 1934, Bucharest – June 24, 2009, Bloomington, Indiana) was a Romanian literary critic and professor of comparative literature at Indiana University, in Bloomington, Indiana. He attended the Ion Luca Caragiale High School in Bucharest, taking his diploma in 1952. He emigrated from Romania to the United States in 1973. Until recently an Emeritus Professor at Indiana University. He lived with his wife in Bloomington, Indiana. 8. Paul Bourget, ‘Theory of Décadence (1883) in Francesca Manno, Paul Bourget Décadence Saggi di psicologia contemporanea, Torino: Aragno, 2007, p.19. 9. Ibid., pp.18-19. 10. Charles Baudelaire, ‘The Flowers of Lies’, XCVIII (1857) from ‘The Flowers of Evil’, in Charles Baudelaire I Fiori del Male e tutte le poesie (XCVIII. L’ Amour du Mensogne) ed. by M. Colesanti, Roma: Newton Compton Editori, 2010, p.244. 11. David Weir, Decadence and the Making of Modernism, Amherst: University of Massachussets Press, 1995, p. 5. 12. David Weir is Professor at Cooper Union the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences, he received his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from New York University. He is the author of Decadence and the Making of Modernism, University of Massachusetts Press, 1995. 13. Richard Taylor is Professor of Physics, Psychology, and Art at the University of Oregon. 14. Richard Taylor, Chaos Fractal, Nature A new look at Jackson Pollock, Eugene: Fractals Research, 2006, p. 62. 15. Jean Claude Chirollet is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Strasbourg.
16. Jean Claude Chirollet, La Question du Détail et l’art Fractal, Paris: Editions L’Harmattan, 2011 17. Charels Baudelaire, ‘Salon de 1846’ in Baudelaire, Critique d’Art, ed. by C. Picholis, Paris: Editions Gallimard, 2005, p. 83. 18. Professor S.Banerjee of The Department of Electrical Engineering at IIT of Kharagpur in Lecture - 14 Introduction to Fractals (2009). Lecture Series on Chaos, Fractals and Dynamical Systems, Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT Kharagpur. http://nptel.iitm.ac.in. 19. Charles Baudelaire in Charles Baudelaire, l’oeil microscopique de l’artiste, Chirollet, J., La Question du Détail et l’art Fractal, Paris: Editions L’Harmattan, 2011. 20. Charles Baudelaire, ‘The Man God - The Poem of Hashish’ in Colesanti, M. (2011). Charles Baudelaire Paradisi Artificial (L’uomo), Roma: Newton Compton Editori, p.73. 21. Charles Baudelaire, The Playground of the Seraphim - The Poem of Hashish in Colesanti, M. (2011). Charles Baudelaire Paradisi Artificiali, Theatre de Seraphins, Roma: Newton Compton Editori, p.63.
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CITATIONS / NOTES
M. Colesanti, Charles Baudelaire Paradisi Artificial , Roma: Newton Compton Editori, 2011. C. Pichois, Baudelaire, Critique d’Art suivi de Critique Musicale, Paris: Editions Gallimard, 2005 P. Charvet, Baudelaire selected writings on art and artists, Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin Books, 1972. L. Constable, D. Denisoff, M. Potolsky, Perennial Decay On the Aesthetics & Politics of Decadence, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999. R. Calasso, La folie de Baudelaire, Milano: Adelphi, 2008. R. Pignoni, Benoit B. Mandelbrot Glioggetti fracttali, Forma Caso e dimensione, Torino: Einaudi, 2000.
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COLLATERAL INTRICACY Fleet Hower, RPI [Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute] Collateral Intricacy is a proposition for a new Gothic architecture that combines the logic of traditional Gothic geometric operations with the abilities and precision of contemporary computation. By encoding specific, quantifiable operations such as conditional subdivision and proliferation of detail that are present in Gothic form, a radically new architecture emerges. Qualitative conditions such as light and the relationship between structure and form also find their way into the code, resulting in conditional formal manipulation, ensuring that such hallmarks of Gothicism are present and integral to the projectâ€™s development from the very fi st step onwards. Collateral Intricacy began by questioning the possibility of contextualizing generative design research by using its encoded impetus as an established architectural lineage. The pursuit of this answer led to a series of research investigations into the formative process of Gothic geometry while a parallel development of computational studies encoded said operations. As pure research objects the generative studies,
using Gothic pattern logic, revealed a potential to meet and push beyond the formative threshold of existing formations in Gothic architecture. In order to understand geometric formations, investigations were conducted on a cross-scale basis: from that of planar organization to the development of detail on a local level around entryways and apertures. This small scale Gothic formation can be seen as an infla ed solid that produces fractal-like subdivisions when sufficient levels of curvature are reached. Such operations occur most commonly around significant topological variation in a cathedral, such as an opening or the introduction of a significant structural member. The relationship between existing Gothic form on this scale and the generative studies is evident. An understanding of conditional formal proliferation served as the basis for the quantifiable research that became embedded into the project. Straightforward understandings of geometric expansion, degree of curvature, and subdivision are numerically translated into programming language. Qualitative conditions are more difficult to identify. Encoding Gothic qualities
Collateral Intricacy is a proposition for a new Gothic architecture that combines the logic of traditional Gothic geometric operations with the abilities and precision of contemporary computation.
Encoding Gothic qualities of relative height, light, and the relationship between structure and ornament presented the challenge of quantifying phenomena that are experienced qualitatively.
By encoding Gothic characteristics, both quantitative and qualitative, potential is present from the outset of the design process, conditionally put into action according to environmental conditions.
The encoded residueâ€™s source of influence is often unclear, it is Collateral Intricacy.
of relative height, light, and the relationship between structure and ornament presented the challenge of quantifying phenomena that are experienced qualitatively. Many errors were made in developing the language of phenomenal effects; hence a strategy that involved an extended period of evaluation and adjustment was of great help for developing knowledge about the implications of how seemingly abstract inputs can impact on the result of nonlinear generative processes. This workfl w also revealed the necessity for significant reciprocity between the generative process and explicit design decisions and evaluations. When considering the phenomenal effects above, the desired result was architecture that operated sensually and functionally as it does in Gothic architecture, not as formal representation. Coding became a more abstract exercise tied closely to human evaluative decisions, necessitating and producing a mutually beneficial ongoing relationship between the designer and generative computation. The fusion of coding with underlying Gothic pattern logic led to more than simply expanded capabilities in the realm of computerization and production. What has been discussed thus far is a translation of research into encoded language, capable of linear simulation but not yet taking advantage of a non-linear formative process that computation offe s. In Collateral Intricacy the Gothic was chosen because of its specific traits discussed above and an interest on the part of the designer,
but also because of a belief that a contemporary non-linear design process has a contribution to make. First among these is the realization of a more synthetic design product. By encoding Gothic characteristics, both quantitative and qualitative, potential is present from the outset of the design process, conditionally put into action according to environmental conditions. These characteristics demand myriad of behaviors including growth, subdivision, height, space-finding, bundling, and others. They emerge, disappear, and influence each other, as the system grows larger. Depending on environmental conditions each agent is capable of being influenced by any, all, or none of the encoded characteristics, or a division of several at once. Time is eliminated as a hierarchical organizer as decisions are made conditionally by the system understanding itself, not temporally with a past and present. It is a multi-agent system where there is no inherent premium on size or cleanliness but on the inter-relationship and negotiation between multiple Gothic characteristics. The resulting project is the product of these characteristics and the residue produced by their interactions. The encoded residueâ€™s source of influence is often unclear, it is Collateral Intricacy. An important lesson to learn from Collateral Intricacy is that the creation of an encoded system with autonomous intent requires a great degree of design in itself. The project is not an objective translation but an interpretation of established
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archetypes for suitable use with contemporary methodologies. This is especially the case in dealing with qualitative characteristics that must be evaluated by sensorial understanding rather that numeric logic. Design is also present in the behavior of the systemâ€™s influence by diffe ent functions, pushing them to adopt or reject certain characteristics. There is subjectivity here, and room for an individualâ€™s aesthetic nature to present itself. The system proliferates quickly and functions blur into one another, becoming ambiguous. This growth is complex in its many conditions, at times
redundant, unclear, or fully vacant. Such a profusion of material is a break from pre-packaged linear parametrics, rejecting preconceived neatness for an emergent possibility with the potential to produce results that have yet to be imagined. But the looseness allowed does not mean that result is coincidental or that precision has been sacrificed. Collateral Intricacy is deliberate, an orchestration of code encompassing Gothic language and personal preference, a reading of something established through fresh lenses and therefore producing something new.
p.54: Nave Elevation p.56: Fractal Study p.57 top: illustration of west front study p.57 bottom: illustration of nave study pp.60-61: Longitudinal section
CRITIQUE IN CODE
MASTERY AND APPRENTICESHIP IN THE DIGITAL DIVIDE: De-Mystifying Code Through Craft Zack Jacobson-Weaver, Carnegie Mellon University Definition 1: Creative Computation: In the arts, the creation and application of computer programs as a component of designed artifacts or as artifacts in themselves. Definition 2: Pre-Digital: belonging to the knowledge base preexisting the re-examination of all human affai s through computation, i.e. non-digital-native. The role of master and apprentice in creative computation is becoming inverted over the largely generational line of pre-digital masters and digital- native apprentices. Open-source programming environments, accessibility of code languages, concepts and applications (via Coursera, Open Processing, M.I.T. Open Courseware) enable young coders to quickly surpass the skill of their teachers at time when we need to create a robust foundation under a rapidly evolving media field. Where creative computation students are skilled beyond the master, who reasserts the fundamentals of becoming an amazing artist, architect or designer? Who is the master? Must students only rely on the pedagogy of computer science and be left to reconcile concepts? Or will artists, designers, and architects actually shape the future of computation and how it is taught? How can we proceed at a time when the masters of the arts are largely unfamiliar with the process and material of computation? While computer science, as a discipline, has long established a method for creating more computer scientists, that methodology does not necessarily suit the sensibility of instructors or students in the arts. Moreover, teaching artists as computer scientists counters early potential for computation to be reinterpreted through the arts. The obvious answer to a shortage of masters is to quickly promote or augment instructors with computationally savvy proxies. But there remains a potential schism in the proxy’s sense of design and the pre-digital master’s sense of integral computation. Nevertheless, in the scramble to remain competitive, the code-
savvy apprentice is being entirely overindulged. These computer whizzes may mistake the design master’s ignorance as apathy or worse, as incompetence. This raises doubt in the mind of the apprentice, perhaps, rightfully so. How can we approach the real need: fi st that master designers must understand and incorporate code-level computation, and second that code writers are not exempt from long venerated principles of cohesive design? Without both, the evolution of creative computation is stymied. How do we reconcile these areas of expertise? The philosopher Michael Polanyi asserted, ‘To become an expert, you must go through a long course of experience under the guidance of a master.’ 1 This is the method for synthesizing objective and subjective knowledge. Polanyi did not have, nor could he have truly anticipated the Internet, a world of instant, free information. Malcolm Gladwell went on to refine this notion replacing a master’s guidance with a time frame within which one may achieve mastery independently: 10,000 hours of dedicated practice.2 Indeed, as a new type of master one must create the knowledge and understanding of ones craft. If the master/ apprentice dynamic shifts as presumed above, however, what becomes of the knowledge of pre-digital design experience? How and where do we pass on heuristics and create opportunities for tacit learning? How do we convince the new practitioners not to reinvent the wheel, as it were? To quote Malcolm McCullough, ‘Despite the benevolence with which we bestow the next generation of designers with digital competence, are we missing the end game of creating an ever evolving design?’3 Who shall bestow what upon whom as this relationship continues to shift? Right now, in higher education one finds plenty of creative computation justified by the use of bewildering digital textures and geometries rather than cohesive design. This flourishes as the critics lack the ability to evaluate this ‘new’ media, or so they think. They are reluctant to learn coding as if they lack the wit or will or are resigned that the
Where creative computation students are skilled beyond the master, who reasserts the fundamentals of becoming an amazing artist, architect or designer?
Moreover, teaching artists as computer scientists counters early potential for computation to be reinterpreted through the arts.
Right now, in higher education one finds plenty of creative computation justified by the use of bewildering digital textures and geometries rather than cohesive design.
Soon the same people will be talking about the post-computation- next-big-thing like biologic-neuro- genetic design having never learned to code.
‘Only through the possibility and limitation of structured substance does expression come into being. Otherwise it remains only inspiration..’
Master designers must understand that creative computation is not so different from paper, pencil, steel or clay. Even then, a bug may not appear until a program has cycled several times. This is a hell of a splinter, but a splinter nonetheless.
Does code, like wood, have particular behaviors specific to its material? Yes. Code is the material of computation.
pervasiveness of computation has replaced them too, now. Worse, they parrot the necessity of code without criticism, particularly when they are too old to have grown up with it and too young to ignore it. Soon the same people will be talking about the post-computation-next-big-thing like biologic- neuro-genetic design having never learned to code. These imaginations are critical to the evolution of design thinking but only require so many thinkers. Are we suggesting artists, architects and designers must also be computer scientists, geneticists and neuroscientists? No. This is inspiring, fantastic design but a further mystifying distraction when what is also needed is for young apprentices entering a hybrid pre- digital/digital age to have direction. The arts cannot afford to produce philosophers alone. Practitioners are needed. From this practice, a philosophy will emerge with more deliberate selection, toward truth. But how? I would suggest that pre-digital thinking of creative processes such as casting, carpentry and metal fabrication appropriately temper the unnecessary deification of computation. Through material constraints and affordances we can more readily invite heuristic and tacit knowledge and a less corruptible system of evaluation for creative computation. Again McCullough, ‘Only through the possibility and limitation of structured substance does expression come into being. Otherwise it remains only inspiration.’4 Expressive creative computation alone removes what David Pye referred to as ‘the workmanship of risk’: creations at risk of quantitative and qualitative failure at every touch of the craftsperson’s hand.5 This is a robust theory of evaluation in the material arts. Through years as an art and design maker I’m assured that in many cases myself, and my students grasped certain concepts of craft best, through quantitative failure. Only by making things that can truly break can we learn to appreciate the craft involved in creating something that didn’t. A digital object or computer interaction can be evaluated qualitatively and quantitatively. This appreciation is crucial to the master / apprentice dynamic. Code, however, operates on a more abstract level. As does appreciation of whether it is truly good or not in the master’s eye. Creative computation, therefore, must find another way to describe, as well as manifest, the medium of computation. Master designers must understand that creative computation is not so diffe ent from paper, pencil, steel or clay. This perspective allows the pre-digital generation not only to describe computation as another color on the palette but also to confront it as such, personally. Yes, code is like paint. This is the conceptual equivalent of the master painter permitting the student to explore beyond shades, tints and mixtures of primary colors. Nothing more. It demystifies the code of computer code. The
processes of coding and traditional making aren’t so dissimilar. With physical materials one works basically like so: Problem - Material - Test - Tool/Jig - Execute Rough - Evaluation - Finish. Writing code has one important distinction: a lack of apparent material. This poses an interesting problem in that the material of computation is exceedingly difficult to extract tacit knowledge from, particularly as complexity can increase rapidly, with just one line of code. How might one simply recast this in terms a predigital master could appreciate? More importantly, how can these masters present code in a way that allows both master and student to establish a critical discourse? What, for example, can we learn from a splinter? A wood splinter is the result of any number of things in the process of working wood. The wrong tool, the wrong amount of pressure or speed with that tool can make a splinter. The wrong type of wood for a given performance can render a splinter. Wrong grain, wrong hardness: a splinter. Like a splinter, a ‘bug’ in a computer program can be embedded and very irritating. In addition to this, a bug isn’t necessarily visible until you make it so with debugging tools like print-lines. Even then, a bug may not present itself until certain conditions are met within a program. Locating it may require the monitoring of multiple variables in particular order. Even then, a bug may not appear until a program has cycled several times. This is a hell of a splinter, but a splinter nonetheless. Now, do pre- digital masters and creative computation students need to get a splinter to understand how to debug a program? No. Does the metaphor imply that the failure should be assessed in a measured way? Yes! That is surely understandable across the arts. Does code, like wood, have particular behaviors specific to its material? Yes. Code is the material of computation. A bug is where the material of code numerically begins to disconnect from the whole, for a multitude of reasons. with Gill Wildman To think of it another way wood, clay, metal and plastics and the processes by which they are shaped are a code. In programming, a function is a point within a process when it is necessary and appropriate to perform a specific task. In woodworking, steam bending is a function that must be performed at a moment both necessary and appropriate to an overall process: a program. A program operator may call for an addition, subtraction other comparison to reconcile a current state with an emergent state. Forms and fasteners are the operators of the steam bending process reconciling the current structure of the material with the desired structure of the material. Yes, code is like wood. Only through mastery, in any medium, do craftspeople understand a code simultaneously as the constraints and affordances of the material itself and those of the act of working
and design. Fundamentally, creative computation should be learned as integral to craft. It is not a skill of coding alone, but in coding with the sensitivity and workmanship of masterful, material craftsperson. Fantasy beyond evaluation is the reward of established masters. Perhaps, through this lens, pre- digital craftspeople can rejoin the shaping of the near future of creative computation. The evolution of the arts would be better for it. Perhaps the results will afford a new sensibility of creative computation if not a new computation altogether.
CRITIQUE IN CODE
it. The conscious act of breaking those is the evolution of art and design. If you’re going to teach creative computation, you should be able to do it. There are dwindling reasons not to. But, why should designers be taught to think like computer scientists? Programming environments have become increasingly designer-friendly creating the possibility to invent custom tools tailored to one’s craft (a.k.a. tooling/jigging). That is to say, it no longer needs to be the computer scientist’s role to describe wood for a woodworker’s computer tool, nor clay for a sculptor’s computer tool. While the physics of that material can be codified, the computer scientist cannot anticipate what the artist will do with it. It is the role of art, architecture and masters to understand how computation affects their medium and vice versa: how one’s medium could affect computation. Without the sensitivity of pre-digital mastery embedded in creative computation the next generation of designers is doomed to toil with recreating what is already known, in ones and zeros. Understanding traditional materials whether wood or concrete significant y increases ones success in hybrid and digital fabrication processes relevant to the arts. Like strategically adding colors to the palette, this is building upon a strong foundation. Digital fabrication, if one is dedicated and has had enough of GUI software, inevitably leads to custom computational design tools including simulation built upon material knowledge. With an understanding of material and advanced fabrication techniques, one may tailor code to account for the meeting of real materials with real process producing designed‐objects wholly subject to a pre‐digital master’s nuanced evaluation perhaps with never-before-seen results. Suggesting the use of high-level, designer-friendly programming environments predictably leads to skepticism over the merits of approach. While I cannot criticize pedagogy of computer science, I do know that traditionally trained computer scientists do not wholly consider the tools of creative computation as valid. For example, tools like Processing and Arduino are somehow ‘playing at computation’. These tools are often, but not exclusively, used for prototyping: sketching with software and, in the case of Arduino, sketching with computer hardware. It is the artists’, designer’s and architect’s province to sketch and to iterate and, indeed, to play! They are accustomed to working with feedback on multiple levels: tactility, contour, color, scale and so on. It stands to reason visual and interactive physical computing are the entry point to computation versus console command and print lines. This, again, recasts code as medium designers can manipulate with pre-digital mastery and skepticism should be ignored. No matter how quickly creative computation tools change, it’s products will never be exempt from evaluations of good and bad art, architecture
[...] it no longer needs to be the computer scientist’s role to describe wood for a woodworker’s [...] computer tool
Without the sensitivity of pre-digital mastery embedded in creative computation the next generation of designers is doomed to toil with recreating what is already known.
It is the artists’, designer’s and architect’s province to sketch and to iterate and, indeed, to play!
Fundamentally, creative computation should be learned as integral to craft.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Michael Polanyi, Personal Knowledge: Towards a Post-Critical Philosophy, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974, p.54. 2. Malcolm Gladwell, Outliers: The Story of Success, New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2011, p.40. 3. Malcom McCullough, Abstracting Craft: The Practiced Digital Hand, Cambridge: MIT Press, 1996, p.21. 4. ibid., p. 202. 5. David Pye, The Nature and Art of Workmanship, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1978, p.20.
MATERIAL Sean Ahlquist
Exploration and Fidelity in Material Computation: Evolutionary Means for the Articulation of Textile Morphologies
Robert Trumbour and Aaron Willette
Jose Luis Garcia Del Castillo, Christian Ervin, Krista Palen Jenny Sabin
Social Gravity: Where Analog Means Intersect With Digital Intent WX
myThread Pavilion commissioned by NYC Nike FlyKnit Collective
EXPLORATION AND FIDELITY IN MATERIAL COMPUTATION: Evolutionary Means for the Articulation of Textile Morphologies Sean Ahlquist, Taubman College University of Michigan
The distinction, within the matrices of formation/ operation and
Material computation, in exploring diffe entiated textile morphologies, posits the fidelity of process as the degree by which the matrices of formation:operation and material:behavior are negotiated. In this case, negotiation is of a materialâ€™s fib ous organization to the imposition of structural forces. While a state of structural equilibrium is the desired homeostatic condition, the defining performance is the articulation of spatially diffe entiated architectures. Prototyping, as an agent of process and material form via
means both virtual and real, provides a construct by which the computation of fundamental behaviors can be transferred into instrumentalized specific material operators. The computation of material morphologies assumes inclusive processes of formation and operation and their inexorable feedback. Both conditions perform as a repercussion of computation, a collection of generative and comparative mechanisms. Such is a condition, of both, the virtual and the real where architectures are formed of specific material-inherent logics.
virtual/real, exists where the virtual computes fundamental principles of relational logics and the real executes resulting reciprocities through highly specific material and contextual constructs.
The distinction, within the matrices of formation/ operation and virtual/real, exists where the virtual computes fundamental principles of relational logics and the real executes resulting reciprocities through highly specific material and contextual constructs. A translational synchronicity binds the fundamental to the specific. The virtual does not simulate the real, rather the translation of the relative serves to define the absolute. Fidelity is evaluated by the granularity of which translation can resolve and predict the materialization of the systemâ€™s behavior. Granularity in computation arises through prototyping as an iterative exploratory process. In simple terms, the prototype is an exemplar, a sample from a particular configu ation of constraints encoded in specific parameters. As an encapsulation of knowledge, the prototype is not the physical entity but rather the
processes shaping the generative constraint space. Prototyping serves as an active evolving agent in accumulating procedures and methodologies towards systems of increasing relational complexity. Prototyping serves the expansion of embedded knowledge where relations are evolved across diffe entiated prototype scenarios. In this sense, the virtual space is charged through the evertransforming and expanding fitness of the real, where the prototypical morphologies span varied constraint configu ations. As such, prototyping defines the movement from
MATERIAL As an encapsulation of knowledge, the prototype is not the physical entity but rather the processes shaping the generative constraint space.
fundamental to specific as cyclical and interleaving, a constant expansion of the real condition to validate or invalidate the advancing virtual proposition. The exploration of force-active textile morphologies, by necessity, implements such a progressively cyclical framework. In particular, prototyping serves to unravel the intimate relation of textile structure, in the minute description of fiber organization, and force implementation, in the diffe entiation of tensile and compressive magnitudes and vectors. In a series of sequential yet overlapping studies, the
matrices of structure/behavior and force/material are unfolded to explore the means in which the virtual behaviors project real materializations. Virtual behavior is generated via components of tensile and compressive force. Varied amalgamations of such components define increasingly complex behaviors from pure tensile surfaces to elastically deforming elements. Instrumentalization of complexity mirrors that granularity of the process. Unitizing the relative is a consequence of prototyping, where controlling the scale of the unit is synonymous with controlling the morphological nature of the material system.
In a series of sequential yet overlapping studies, the matrices of structure/behavior and force/material are unfolded to explore the means in which the virtual behaviors project real materializations.
ILLUSTRATIONS pp.86, 88 centre: Hyper-Toroidal Deep Surface Prototype. Boyan Mihaylov, Viktoriya Nikolova, Institute for Computational Design (Sean Ahlquist, Prof. Achim Menges), University of Stuttgart, 2011. p.88 top: M1 Textile Hybrid at La Tour de Lâ€™Architecte in Monthoiron, Merkus Bernhard, David Cappo, Celeste Clayton, Oliver Kaertkemeyer, Hannah Kramer, Andreas Schoenbrunner, Institute for Computational Design (Sean Ahlquist, Prof. Achim Menges), Institute for Building Structures and Structural Design (Julian Lienhard, Prof. Jan Knippers), University of Stuttgart, 2012. p.89: Cylindrical Deep Surface Prototype. Peter Pelzer, Christine Rosemann, Institute for Computational Design (Sean Ahlquist, Prof. Achim Menges), University of Stuttgart, 2012. p.88 bottom, pp. 90-91: Semi-toroidal textile hybrid. Doctoral research by Sean Ahlquist. Institute for Computational Design (Sean Ahlquist, Bum Suk Ko, Prof. Achim Menges), University of Stuttgart 2012.
MATERIAL [EN]CODING Dale Clifford, Carnegie Mellon University Encoding is the rule-based process of converting information for the purpose of communication. [En]coding Architecture, implies that architecture itself can be more responsive and communicative. The title infers that architecture will increasingly embody energy and information fl ws to become more communicative, and perhaps more adaptive. A shift towards responsiveness is emerging as architects, designers and engineers develop technologies and design strategies that are environmentally sensitive. One of the pathways towards this goal is the design application of the energy harvesting and storage capacity of responsive materials to enable architecture to interact with environmental change. All materials have the ability to store electrical, mechanical or thermal energy. Responsive materials - those that change their properties significant y in response to external stimulus - are of particular interest due to their degree of formal change during the storage and release of energy. The Bio_Logic Design Group at Carnegie Mellon University is directed toward understanding the porous boundaries between living and non-living systems through the lens of responsive materials. Predicated on the exchange information between the natural and the artificial, the group develops building technologies that operate in accordance with the biologic condition of homeostasis (the ability for an organism to maintain equilibrium in response to fluctuating environmental conditions). Much of the work is located at the building envelope, the interface between interior and exterior. The intent is
to design the building envelope as a selective fil er that, through passive means, registers fluctuations in heat and light, to advance the prospect of selfregulation. The group is composed of faculty, recent architecture graduates and students founded to advance the discourse between academia and practice. The group is sponsored by architecture and development firms that are interested in the early adoption of emerging material technologies and the creative rethinking of traditional materials.1 Rethinking the role materials play in the conception and advancement of architectural thinking is reshaping the built environment and giving architecture the agency of responsiveness. Until recently, materials were specified for their ability to maintain a stable state. They were intended to maintain their appearance, dimensions and mechanical properties within a range of thermal tolerances, structural loading and exposure. Today, materials scientists, technologists and designers, are inventing and applying materials that change their properties in response to external stimuli. The beginning stages of a paradigm shift are evident in the design and operation of architecture as materials emerge that serve as non-mechanical actuators, lessening reliance on mechanics and enabling devices to be made of fewer parts and processes. The work described below applies the properties of responsive material as solid-state analogue switching devices that are triggered by environmental conditions. There is no central processing, but a distributed network of autonomous devices that read local environmental
The Bio_Logic Design Group at Carnegie Mellon University is directed toward understanding the porous boundaries between living and non-living systems...
Rethinking the role materials play in the conception and advancement of architectural thinking is reshaping the built environment and giving architecture the agency of responsiveness.
1. Current project research is sponsored by Swire Development Group for application in a new building complex in Miami, FL, designed by Architectonica. 2. The Inside Story: A Guide to Indoor Air Quality. U.S. EPA/Office of Air and adiation. Office of Radiation and Indoor Air (6609J) Cosponsored with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, EPA 402-K-93-007. 3. Conversations with Professor Richard Kroeker, Dalhousie University 4. Conversations with PhD candidate Madeline Gannon, Carnegie Mellon University
BIMETALS AND BIPOLYMERS
Project one is a translation of existing material technology of thermal bimetals to polymers. Wayne Jenski, a graduate of the Emerging Materials Technology Program at the University of Arizona (Advisors - Malo, Clifford, Vollen) developed this project based in the material properties of bimetals used in thermostats and temperature activated switches. Bimetals are a composite material composed of two metals with differing thermal coefficients laminated together that translate temperature change to mechanical movement. The physical principles of metals are the same for polymers and studies were begun to search for a composite polymer with a high degree of thermal sensitivity. The polymers specified are inexpensive, durable and recyclable. Composite polymers were designed to develop a thermal valve to passively regulate building temperature. The study evolved through physical model construction and design engineering in thermal simulation software to determine material thickness, patterning and the resultant range of motion per temperature fluctuation. As temperature rises, the valve stores thermal energy and opens. Upon cooling, the valve releases thermal energy and is restored to the closed position. In this instance, the material itself assumes the properties of an energy absorbing capacitor, as the material harvests, stores and distributes thermal energy. The profile was designed to induce airfl w, correlating form and performance through the medium of material properties.
SHAPE MEMORY ALLOYS
The second project is built upon the responsive properties of shape memory alloys, a class of alloys that have two stable phases and can recover from large deformations when heated. Shape memory alloys are most available in the form of wires and can serve as non-mechanical actuators by contracting when heated to a target temperature. Percentage of contraction is approximately 6% of overall length; greater percentages can be obtained at the expense of lower lifetime material cycling. This alloy is applied to actuate the polyurethane petal with embedded photovoltaic cells. The photovoltaic cells harvest solar energy and trigger the alloy actuator to vary
the shape of the petal. In an array, the petals are designed to form a dynamic surface that passively regulates light and glare. Each petal is designed to be autonomous as embedded photovoltaic cells trickle charge an electrical capacitor housed in the petal body. The capacitor is an electrical energy storage system that releases electrical current to the shape memory alloy to actuate the petal. The petal body is designed as a spring to apply force to the alloy and reset it to the original length once cooled.
changes in heat flux and light intensity. The gain is a less complex system that is durable and reliable at the expense of control. The materials and products developed focus on energy harvesting as opposed to powering and involve storing energy in capacitors. In some projects the material itself serves as a capacitor, storing and releasing energy at targetable quantities. Of particular interest are the correlation of form and performance achieved during the storage and release of energy.
The work of the Bio_Logic Design Group makes an argument for encoding architecture with solidstate responsive materials and for the prospect of architecture to read and convey environmental information. The premise is that an architecture encoded with material agency is a highly sensorial operation that forms the data of perception, as we spend up to 90% of our time in building on average.2 An encoded architecture is the primary cultural entity that can translate information into experience and address human desensitization to environmental stimulus as the world we inhabit becomes increasingly artificial. This transgression is often motivated by the perceived incongruity between nature and technology. Professor Richard Kroeker observed â€˜our culture has tended to create a separation between what we understand as the milieu of nature and the milieu of technology or artifice. Similarly, we struggle to maintain the empirical and the intuitive in their separate categories.â€™3 An encoded architecture that translates information to experience will reconnect these milieus.4
The premise is that an architecture encoded with material agency is a highly sensorial operation that forms the data of perception [...]
p.92: Project two, Autonomous Devices: schematic of an autonomous solar petal actuated by shape memory alloys. Onboard photovoltaic arrays absorb solar energy to trickle chargew a capacitor that periodically feeds the shape memory alloy to drive the petal. p.94 top: Computational/Thermal Form Generation: computational models aided the visualization of thermal convective cycles based on mass placement, building form and solar exposure. p.94 centre: Project two, Autonomous Devices: schematic of an autonomous solar petal actuated by shape memory alloys. Onboard photovoltaic arrays absorb solar energy to trickle chargew a capacitor that periodically feeds the shape memory alloy to drive the petal. p.94 bottom: Project one, Reactive Composite Materials: study in developing reactive composite polymers with diffe ent coefficients of thermal expansion. The intent is to correlate material properties, material deposition and form to develop selfregulating building envelopes.
INTERIOR PROSTHETICS Nicole Koltick, Drexel University Interior Prosthetics resulted from a special topics digital fabrication seminar run in fall 2012, led by Professor Nicole Koltick at the Westphal College of Media Arts and Design at Drexel University. Students were challenged to develop a series of prosthetic design interventions to the newly renovated URBN Center. Based on a narrative methodology, the seminar explored design speciation through developing and prototyping a variety of additive and subtractive design species. Moving beyond formal mimesis, we set out to induce a series of procedural operations, which could yield novel outcomes of design
speciation. Students were particularly interested in the potential of synthetic relationships that might arise from interactions between varied species and their prosthetic interactions with their immediate environment, the building. Through a series of investigations into biological precedents that exhibit a highly discrete set of material, temporal and spatial relations, the Interior Prosthetics approximated some of these seemingly messy and unorganized adjacencies. In Philosophy and Simulation: The Emergence of Synthetic Reason, M. DeLanda addresses mechanisms and relationships that exist at various
We were particularly interested in the potential of synthetic relationships that might arise from interactions between varied species and their prosthetic interaction with the building.
as when neurons manipulate concentrations of metallic ions, or a psychological entity interact with a chemical one
the logic of speciation - the evolutionary process by which new biological species arise
If there is anything monstrous in evolution, it’s the uncertainty in the system at any and every point.
scales. In all of those systems he locates their presence, ‘[…]of a contingent accumulation of layers or strata that may differ in complexity but that coexist and interact with each other in no particular order: a biological entity may interact with a subatomic one, as when neurons manipulate concentrations of metallic ions, or a psychological entity interact with a chemical one, as when a subjective experience is modified y a drug’.1 The nested and heterogeneous nature of these relationships allowed for results of emergent nature. Therefore synthetic material relations were induced through the logic of speciation, the evolutionary process by which new biological species arise. In addition to analog procedures like experimental casting techniques, digital fabrication were explored in the generation of species. Additive Speciation was explored through cellular based modeling, 3D Printing and casting. Subtractive Speciation was explored through CNC milling and casting. Hybrid Speciation emerged through trajectories of interactions between additive and subtractive methods. In The Ecological Thought, T. Morton points out that, ‘If there is anything monstrous in evolution, it’s the uncertainty in the system at any and every point. Amazingly, the contamination of variation, speciation and so on is the reason why evolution works at all. Contamination is functional...It’s like language. For meaning to happen, language must be noisy, messy, fuzzy, grainy, vague and slippery.’2 This
definition of contamination was pursued through experimental material approaches, where the uncertainty in outcome and effect provided an additional opportunity and dimension for novel synthetic discoveries. Materials such as clay, resin, rubber and felt provided a tactile dimension to the work. As prosthetic interventions these hybrid species then adapted to their given location. Forcing the species to contend with relations at multiple scales induced varying degrees of drift in the resultant systems. Even with the precise information and rules encoded within a given system, the evolutionary mechanisms inherent to biological systems will entail a certain amount of drift.3 This drift may manifest as subtle or more pronounced shifts in behavior or appearance at one or multiple levels, and may affect the features, behavior or appearance of a given system. The
approach of the seminar was unique in its attempt to seed potential conditions that allow for drift and contamination to emerge simultaneously. Pursuit of evolving species in both genotypic and phenotypic expression, as well as the recombination of these across species would yield additional novel discoveries. The primary findings of this research indicate that the inducement of hybridity through material synthesis is a viable approach to design speciation, and lends itself to further study.
drift may manifest as subtle or more pronounced shifts in behavior or appearance at one or multiple levels
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES 1. Manuel DeLanda, Philosophy and Simulation: The Emergence of Synthetic Reason (Kindle), New York: Continuum, 2011, Intro chapter, par. 9. 2. Timothy Morton, The Ecological Thought, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2010, p.66. 3. Pablo Schyfter, â€˜Technological biology? Things and Kindsâ€™ in Synthetic Biology, Biology Philosophy, 2011, doi: 10.1007/s10539-0119288-9, pp.27, 29-48.
ILLUSTRATIONS pp.96, 98-99: Special Topics Seminar: Interior Prosthetics, material prototype (silicone, resin) assembly by Kathryn Pellegrino. p.99 bottom: Special Topics Seminar: Interior Prosthetics, research.
SOCIAL GRAVITY: Where Analog Means Intersect with Digital Intent Aaron Willette, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Khora Robert Trumbour, Taubman College University of Michigan, Khora The integration of digital fabrication tools and computation methods into academic and professional practice is becoming increasingly commonplace. Despite their growing popularity these technologies are often beyond the reach of many, which is due to issues of accessibility, economics, or pretermitted contiguity to the architectural profession; regardless of the specific conditions, there is a very real and acute risk of creating a condition of technological haves and have-nots within the design community. This dilemma points at the need for establishing a conceptual middle ground, an area seemingly absent from the current pedagogical discourse in which emerging methodologies can be engaged by a larger public. Can design approaches be developed that facilitate the engagement of these methodologies through limited means? How can institutions without the means to afford formal training in rising methods and new technologies avoid the misfortune of their students being left behind in an area of the discipline that changes exponentially with each new development? Social Gravity, a large-scale installation, sought to explore this middle ground, not under the false pretense of providing answers to the questions it
provokes but rather as an attempt to engage the domain of design possibilities it facilitates. The centerpiece to a gala event for the Moon Capital design competition organized by the non-profit SHIFTboston, the installation was comprised of two elements. The formal fabric pieces that were suspended from an overhead space frame and a series of sensor-embedded tables that altered a video projection on the fabric, reflecting the current state of the gala.1 Each of these elements demanded a unique design approach involving a bespoke computational solution combined with readily at-hand physical process. The coupling between digital generation and analog production resulted in an inquiry into how parties interested in exploring emerging digital techniques are able to engage with the topic in a meaningful way with lacking access to the equipment generally required for its proper execution. The heart of the installation was a series of custom-fabricated illuminated tables, each outfit ed with a proximity sensor on three of its sides. The stream of sensor data from each table was fed into a control computer that manipulated the RGB values of pre-recorded video via a lightweight processing program. As an individual approached
Coupling between digital generation and analog production resulted in an inquiry into how parties interested in exploring emerging digital techniques are able to engage with the topic in a meaningful way with lacking access to the equipment generally required for its proper execution.
since an automated means of cutting and assembly was not available to the fabrication team, the labeling and organization of the resulting panels became paramount
one of these tables the corresponding color value increased, reaching its highest saturation only when the individual stood directly at the table. The manipulated video was projected onto a suspended fabric geometry overhead, signifying the amount of social activity occurring at the table. For the video to be shown in full color a minimum of three individuals needed to be gathered around the table; seven of these tables were employed in Social Gravity, each with their own corresponding video. Throughout the gala event the engagement of the attendees could be evaluated: early in the evening people loosely stood around away from the tables, resulting in projections largely devoid of color. As the evening progressed people gathered around the tables for more involved conversations which enlivened the projections surrounding them. With the atmosphere of the installation deriving from the levels of social engagement taking place, the fabric geometries were generated by the programmatic demands placed upon the space. The area underneath the space frame was equally divided using a simple Voronoi diagram. DJ booth, exhibits, aforementioned tables, and other objects of prescribed activities, positioned in the individual
Voronoi cells, acted as seed points.2 Explicit social volumes emerged around those seed points underneath the space frame, which generated tubular geometries in each cell. While the computational design process to arrive at this gestational form was minimal, substantial attention was given to how the geometries could be reconstructed based upon the size limitation inherent to the bolts of fabric it would be produced with. Since an automated means of cutting and assembly was not available to the fabrication team, the labeling and organization of the resulting panels became paramount. While the design team used advanced computational tools to create a participatory, immersive atmosphere, Social Gravity was fabricated using exclusively analog methods over a period of three months by a team of unskilled volunteers from surrounding design schools.3 Without access to the speed and inherent efficiency of computed-aided machinery the fabrication process required tightly coordinated production methods to compensate for the time requirements of manual labor. Due to the sheer size of the fabric pieces necessary to construct the hanging geometries, tasks were organized in a manner
that kept their groupings repetitive and largely interchangeable to avoid training volunteers on a large variety of specialized task. Low tolerances were incorporated early in the design process as inaccuracies and imprecision were expected; materials such as fabric and conventional framing lumber were selected for their forgiving qualities. Throughout the project we used computational tools that were advanced enough to drive the design and production into new territory, and at the same time elementary enough to be self-taught by primary team members. The strengths of the parametric model coupled with the looseness of the handmade resulted in an ephemeral atmosphere driven by the engagement of its participants. While easily possible with more advanced tools and techniques, the process employed allowed for the creation of a project with a moderate degree of complexity while still advancing the knowledge of all participants. The success of Social Gravity begins to point towards a middle ground for emerging methodologies, one in which emphasis is placed on manipulating spatial logics and understanding the necessary steps for their translation to a physical medium. In many ways it isolates the key values
found in more computationally complex projects that employ novel means of industrial automation. The middle ground employed by Social Gravity acts as a transitional territory, on in which participants garner a hands-on experience with the relationships between design, computation, and fabrication, rather than a deep understanding of the tools used to leverage those relationships.
The strengths of the parametric model couple d with the looseness of the handmade resulted in an ephemeral atmosphere driven by the engagement of its participants..
1. It was rumored that the space frame was designed by Massachusettsâ€™s own Buckminster Fuller. No effo t was taken to substantiate these claims for fear of ruining an inconsequential detail that was a point of pride for the design team. 2. Admitting to the use of a Voronoi pattern is considered a faux pas within certain computation circles, but they are incredibly useful for dividing a fi ed region based upon an irregularly-spaced field of activity centers. 3. Those schools included the Boston Architectural College, Massachusetts College of Art, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Wentworth Institute of Technology.
p.100: by the time the project was completed it had required over 80 hours of tracing, 300 hours of sewing, 11,000 square feet of fabric, and 21,000 linear feet of thread. pp.102-103: with a window of only 8 hours for the entire installation process prior to the start of the event, it was necessary to plan out and coordinate the effo ts of every volunteer. pp.104-105: the finished project created an environment that responded to the social engagement of its participants, visually demarking areas of activity within the larger field of the experience.
Jesse Baiat-Nicolai Sam Buckens Katie Bujalski Alex Cabral Kristen Gainnone Mary Hale Chris Harp Cassandra MassArt Mike Modoono Sean Owen Nick Pappastratis Frank Pereira Ryan Philbin Jason Skibo Brian Slozak Jeff Smi h Kate Spalla Mikkel Stromstad Dunja Vujinic Rosie Weinberg Jason Weldon Lin Yang Sue Yoo
CREDITS Artforming (design and fabrication): Rob Trumbour Aaron Willette Erblin Bucaliu Stephanie Rogowski Anthony Sanchez Jared Steinmark
With support from:
Kim Poliquin, Director of SHIFTboston Wentworth Institute of Technology KAN Photography
WX Jose Luis Garcia del Castillo, Universidad de Sevilla, Harvard GSD, ParametricCamp Christian Ervin, Rice University, Harvard GSD Krista Palen, Harvard GSD WX is a numerically-controlled wax sculpture machine in which form emerges from a materialspecific combinatory fabrication process. This project investigates the properties that arise in the dynamic merging of two fluid media: melted wax and water. The project takes advantage of the dissipative effects produced when hot wax and water combine and forms of thin wax-shells emerge. Exhaustive material research with various types of wax and water mixtures at controlled temperatures and rates of mixing gave our team tremendous insight into the behavioral effects of these materials as they interact. In calibrating the discovered parameters and their related effects, the resulting volume is an efficient, thin-walled cellular structure; a frozen animation of the complex fluid dynamics at play
when two materials mix. Rejecting the paradigm of absolute control afforded by contemporary digital fabrication techniques, WX embraces the marvel of stochasticity in these turbulently-mixing materials; the formal effects of the process are generally predictable but not explicitly controllable. Since wax is less dense than water and hydrophobic, in a liquid state, it rises up to the water surface when immersed in water. The material behavior is dependent on the relative temperatures of the wax and the water. If the water is hot, near the melting point of the wax, nearly all of the wax will rise to the surface and disperse. If the water is extremely cold, the surface of the wax will solidify immediately. By regulating the relative temperatures of the molten wax and water, we are able to produce forms somewhere in between; the wax changes states
the process of materialization and rationalization of a firstly speculative formal approach became the actual challenge
the formal effects of the process are generally preÂdictable but not explicitly controllable
While the project in its current state produces relatively small and fragile wax objects, we believe that the approach could be extended with significant architectural implications.
WX is a project in which geometries are derived from a material-specific combinatory fabrication process, influenced by real-time human interaction.
in the process of rising to the surface of the water. Additionally, the rate of descent of the tray lowering the wax sample into the water affects the resulting geometry: a slow rate of descent allows for the wax to disperse along the surface of the water, creating wider shapes, and a fast rate of descent makes for more narrow shapes. Going too fast, however, generates turbulence in the mixing materials, causing unpredictable, chaotic effects While the project in its current state produces relatively small and fragile wax objects, we believe that the approach could be extended with significant architectural implications. The wax could be used in an investment casting process to produce more robust and architectural scale metal elements, for example. Furthermore, this stochastic process could be adapted to the architectural design and construction process. Imagine a digitallycontrolled scenario in which target characteristics were predictable, but the specific execution of those goals was not. For example, a structure that meets certain building criteria but does not align with a specific formal or stylistic reference. WX is a project in which geometries are derived from a material-specific combinatory fabrication process, influenced by real-time human interaction. It favors a stochastic framework of control, where three-dimensional forms emerge from the interaction of these materials. The project offe s a further generation of digital fabrication methods experimenting with stochastic frameworks of control including the unpredictable, dynamic effects of real time human interaction.
p.106: Combination of material and process yields natural tectonics and stochastic form. p.108-109 top: Wax machine and prototypes pp.108, 109 bottom: Diffe ent layered patterns emerge under the userâ€™s choice of color, temperature and tray speed combination.
myTHREAD Jenny E. Sabin, Cornell University, Jenny Sabin Studio Advancements in weaving, knitting and braiding technologies have brought to surface high tech and high performance composite fabrics. These products have historically infilt ated the aerospace, automobile, sports and marine industries, but architecture has not yet fully benefit ed from these lightweight freeform surface structures. myTHREAD, a commission from the Nike FlyKnit Collective, is the fi st architectural project to feature knitted textile structures at the scale of a pavilion. The evolution of digital tools in architecture has prompted new techniques of fabrication alongside new understandings in the organization of material through its properties and potential for assemblage. No longer privileging column, beam and arch, our definition of architectural tectonics has broadened in parallel to advancements made in computational design. Internal geometries inherent to natural forms, whose complexity could not be computed with the human mind alone, may now be explored synthetically through mathematics and generative systems. Textiles offer architecture a robust design process whereby computational techniques,
pattern manipulation, material production and fabrication are explored as an interconnected loop that may feed back upon itself in no particular linear fashion. Here, geometry, matter, communication and form are not separate from each other, but are inextricably linked as set of design elements that may be probed individually, but that are collectively adaptive. The myTHREAD Pavilion situates itself at the center of this paradigm shift by integrating emerging technologies in design while pushing the boundaries even further through the materialization of dynamic data sets generated by the human body engaged in sport and movement activities in the city.
myTHREAD, a commission from the Nike FlyKnit Collective, is the first architectural project to feature knitted textile structures at the scale of a pavilion. The myTHREAD Pavilion situates itself at the center of this paradigm shift by integrating emerging
How do you knit and braid a building? Could a building be as lightweight as air? How can sport influence both design and fabrication and inspire the next generation of buildings? What if we could form-fit and enhance architecture with bio-architecture and performance of our own bodies? The myTHREAD Pavilion pushes soft textile-based architectures. myTHREAD integrates
technologies in design while pushing the boundaries even further through the materialization of dynamic data sets generated by the human body
The myTHREAD Pavilion uses the flexibility and sensitivity of the human body as a bio-dynamic model for pioneering pavilion forms.
data from the human body with lightweight, high performing, formfitting and sustainable materials. The myTHREAD Pavilion uses the fl xibility and sensitivity of the human body as a bio-dynamic model for pioneering pavilion forms. Turning performance into structure for the Nike Flyknit Collective, the project works at the intersection of art, architecture, design and science. The approach shows instant similarities to the work of Nikeâ€™s Innovation Kitchen, where disciplines from diffe ent fields are brought together with a view to re-thinking basic principles and approaches to design challenges. myTHREAD features novel formal expressions that adapt to changes in the environment and increase building performance through formfitting and light eight structures. As a design strategy, myTHREAD also started from a molecular point-of-view where the singularity of a single unit such as a zip-tie becomes the building block for structures of great complexity. Like Nike Flyknit, which uses simple threads to create a complex formfitting structure on a performanceenhancing shoe, the fusion of science, architecture, art and technology open the door to new ways of thinking about structure and the relationship of the body to technology. Bio-architecture and digital architecture deliver solutions, new understandings, new forms and a way for mathematics and generative systems to investigate the complexities of natural form and internal geometries. We are interested in probing the human body as a biodynamic model that provides new ways of thinking
about issues of performance and adaptation at an architectural scale. Performance, lightness, formfitting and sustainability become immediately relevant architectural criteria. The body, or more specifical y the body in motion, as pure performance itself, is the starting point of our New York collaboration for this project. Using Nike+ FuelBand technology to collect motion data from a community of runners during an earlier Nike Flyknit workshop, we transformed the patterns of this biological data into the geometry and material of knitted structure, based on prototypes developed during workshop sessions. The surface patterns are generated by dynamic body data via 3D-modeling environments to form a material construct for a unique response to the formfitting question delivered in the original Nike Flyknit Collective brief. This process seeks to understand and intuit spatial patterns within data sets, patterns that through study and analysis lead to multi-scalar textile tectonics. The process gives rise to questions about visualization of data, technology and how we as people interface and interact with information. By investigating loops that fil er datasets through material organizations, myTHREAD also seeks to empower individuals by unfolding and revealing matters of information and knowledge through alternative modes of access. The increased stores of information available within design technology are insisting on new models for information mediation, collaboration and â€˜seeingâ€™ amidst an ever-increasingly complicated information context.
We are interested in probing the human body as a bio- dynamic model that provides new ways of thinking about issues of performance and adaptation at an architectural scale.
The surface patterns are generated by dynamic body data via 3D modeling environments to form a material construct for a unique response to the formfitting question delivered in the original Nike Flyknit Collective brief.
Here, data is no longer represented as a static image, but rather in a dynamic knitted model, which is driven by the code inherent to the archetype of knitting. The myTHREAD Pavilion is the result of a collaboration across disciplines and industries including architecture, textiles, sportswear and engineering with a harder outside construction and softer, organic inner material. Composed of adaptive knitted, solar active, reflecti e photo luminescent threads and a steel cable net holding hundreds of aluminum rings, the simplicity of knitted geometries meets the complexity of a body in motion. An inner structure of soft textile based whole garment knit elements absorbs, collects and delivers light as the materials react to the presence of people. The materialâ€™s response to sunlight as well as physical participation is an integral part of our exploratory approach to the subjects of performance and formfitting. This interaction amplifies the hidden qualities of the pavilion, embodying the learnings of each workshop. Linking biology and innovation, technology and tradition, this is an analog manifestation of not just the benefits of Nike Flyknit, but also the activities and performance of the individuals that went into its making. This installationâ€™s adaptable sensitivity and fl xibility mirrors the human form. It is its own environment, its own community and its own energy.
Here, data is no longer represented as a static image, but rather in a dynamic knitted model, which is driven by the code inherent to the archetype of knitting.
The materialâ€™s response to sunlight as well as physical participation is an integral part of our exploratory approach to the subjects of performance and formfitting.
my Thread Pavilion by Jenny Sabin Studio on view September 15 - November 10, 2012 Nike Stadium NYC, 276 Bowery The myThread Pavilion was commissioned by Nike Inc. for the International Nike FlyKnit Collective. Jenny Sabin was selected as 1 of 6 innovators from around the globe to contribute an original work for the Collective inspired by the Nike FlyKnit technology and its core benefits. Sabin led the NYC FlyKnit Collective.
While the project in its current state produces relatively
Architectural Designer and Artist: Jenny E. Sabin
small and fragile wax objects, we believe that the
Design and Production Team: James Blair, Simin Wang, Martin Miller, Meagan Whetstone, Brian Heller, Nicola McElroy
approach could be extended with significant architectural
Consulting Engineer: Daniel Bosia, AKT Engineers Consulting Textile Designer: Anne Emlein Fabricator: Shima Seiki, Dazian Fabrics, Smucker Laser Installation Crew: Leslie Cacciapaglia, Aaron Gensler, Mi Young Kang, Rachel Kaplan, Jae Won Kim, Zhongtian Lin, Liangjie Wu, Younjin Yi, Zhenni Zhu Lighting: Kayne Live
p.110: interior view with photoluminescent threads activated. Image credit: courtesy of Nike Inc. pp.112-113: interior view on opening night. Image credit: Simin Wang p.112: axonometric diagrams, Jenny Sabin Studio p.114 top: view of interior with solar threads activated. Image credit: courtesy of Nike Inc. p.114 bottom: seam diagram for individual knitted cones. Jenny Sabin Studio p.115: interior view with Jenny Sabin Image credit: courtesy of Nike Inc. pp.116-117: exterior view with ring nets and entry doors. Image credit: courtesy of Nike Inc.
ROBOTS Wes Mcgee and Brandon Clifford Alexandre Dubor and Gabriel Bello Diaz
Zuliang Guo, David de CĂŠspedes, Justin Tingue, and Andrew Wolking Harold Solie, Bennett Scorcia, Mark Wright, and Ning Zhou Michael Jeffers and Jordan Parsons Andreas Trummer
La Voute de Fevre Magnetic Architecture: Communicating with Material Vertical Territories of Recursion
Recursionism Mill to Fit
ˆ DE LE FEVRE LA VOUTE Wes Mcgee, Taubman College University of Michigan, Matter Design Brandon Clifford, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Matter Design La Voûte de LeFevre is a mashup of ancient stereotomic vault construction with contemporary computation and advanced fabrication. The vault is a compression-only structure calculated through a custom particle-spring physics simulation program to determine how large each unit’s opening should be in order to adjust its volume, and therefore mass, in relation to its neighbors. This project exemplifies Matter Design’s dedication to translating past (and often lost) methods into contemporary culture. We are truly conflic ed. We are pre-occupied with computational design and digital fabrication commonly assumed to be rapid, fashionable, and surfacial, though simultaneously pre-occupied with volume - thick, heavy, ancient, and permanent. We also maintain an emphasis on speculation, and yet our dedication to reality resists this claim. We intend to innovate and transform the future of architecture, yet we look to history in order to do so. Somewhere in this milieu of confusion and conflictio is the kernel that defines us. Marc Jarzombek recently suggested one could determine how well a society
is doing by their ability to precisely carve stone. We like his metric for its simplicity, but also for its assumption that we must not be doing so well today. So much of the discussion surrounding the digital in design has focused on the surface. We are not immune. Much of our previous research has dealt with the economically friendly sheet material, while maintaining a common thread of a dedication to volume. This dedication originally manifested in volumetric occupation through bending from 2D to 3D. More recently this desire has formalized into stereotomic (the art of cutting solids, most typically stone) research with such projects as Periscope: Foam Tower and Temporal Tenancy. These projects mined the past knowledge of stereotomy as a way to robotically carve foam for temporary installations. The irony of these projects is the transfer of knowledge from heavy stone construction to an application for light temporary projects that require tensile cables to stabilize. While the irony exists, these exercises in carving solids could also be applied to materials with significant
We also maintain an emphasis on speculation, and yet our dedication to reality resists this claim.
These projects mined the past knowledge of stereotomy as a way to robotically carve foam.
The purpose of this research is not to revert to ‘antiquated’ architecture. It is intended to re-engage in a problem unfamiliar to our contemporary culture.
mass as a way to re-engage the thick, heavy, and permanent compression-only architecture of the past. La Voûte de LeFevre is the result of a proposal dedicated to constructing a contemporary compression-only structure. This proposal is intended to rarify some of the claims surrounding re-inserting mass and volume back into our discourse. When posited the task of building a fullscale project with heavy and volumetric process, two obstacles emerged—assurance and ambition. How can we guarantee a vault with significant mass will stand, and how can we build a project of such volumetric scale on budget and schedule? The answers existed in these two words - computation and fabrication. The vault is computed with a solver-based model that elicits a compression-only structure, from a non-ideal geometry. The model requires a fi ed geometry as input, and opens apertures in order to vary the weight of each unit. This dynamic system re-configu es the weight of the units based on a volumetric calculation. If unit A contains twice the volume of unit B, then unit A weights twice as much. The computed result produces a project that will stand forever as there is zero tension in the system precisely because of the weight and volume of the project, and not in spite of it. The vault is composed of Baltic Birch plywood sourced in three quarter inch thick sheets. Each custom voussoir is sliced and cut from the
sheets, and then physically re-constituted into a rough volumetric form of their final geometry. These roughs are indexed onto a full sheet and glued, vacuum pressed, and re-placed onto the 5-axis CNC router. The tool-paths (swarfs) used are dedicated to removing the most material with the least effo t. Instead of requiring the end of the bit to do the work, this path uses the edge of the bit to remove much more material. Because this method traces the geometry with a line as opposed to point, it requires the units be constituted of ruled surfaces, hence the conical-boolean geometry. As these units transition down to the column (below the calculation as the columns contain only vertical thrust vectors) the rhetoric of the units continue as if to say the weight is increasing. The purpose of this research is not to revert to antiquated architecture. It is intended to re-engage in a problem unfamiliar to our contemporary culture. This unfamiliar terrain produces a new monster. An architecture that is somehow ancient yet contemporary, heavy yet light, familiar yet alien.
Project funding by the Howard E. LeFevre ‘29 Emerging Practitioner Fellowship Fabrication support by the University of Michigan TCAUP FABLab Nesting Software provided by TDM Solutions
p.120: View of the installation pp.122-123 top: Elevation view of the installation, La Voûte de LeFevre 2012 p.123 bottom left and right: Column Details p.124 top: 5-Axis Swarf Milling p.124 centre: Tools in sequence p.124 bottom: Array of unique construction units p.125 top: Rough Approximation of Units in 5-Axis Mill p.125 bottom: Assembly Process
Matter Design - Brandon Clifford,
PROJECT TEAM Jake Haggmark, Maciej Kaczynski, Aaron Willette
Edgar Ascaño, Kristy Balliet, Katherine Bennette, Beth Blostein, Jenna Bolino, Chris Carbone, Tim Cousino, Anthony Gagliardi, Brian Koehler, Darwin Menjivar, Paul Miller, Tony Nguyen, Bart Overly, Aaron Powers, Steve Sarver, Katy Viccellio, Sean Zielinski
MAGNETIC ARCHITECTURE: Communicating with Material Alexandre Dubor and Gabriel Bello Diaz, IAAC - Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catalunya Magnetic Architecture is a research child of materiality, code, tectonics and robotics that stretches into the architectural design process. Research within the field of Magnetic Architecture triggers the visibility of new data through observing affects between a controlled magnetic field, and responding geometric formations of a magnetic material subjected to the field. Hence the project encouraged us to implement sensor technology and mapping software in order to record, visualize and be able to analyze how the magnetic material responses and behaves when manipulated within the magnetic field. Using magnetic energy to explore a freeform approach suggests an alternative to 3D printing at building scale. Magnetic Architecture aims at the development of a new building process that focuses on an iron based material controlled with magnets. One future goal of the project is to set up this process in the building scale using recycled and granular material.
COMPOSING MAGNETIC MATERIAL
Our fi st approach into this research was to investigate how our raw ingredient iron with its magnetic property changed its behavior once mixed with diffe ent materials, in diffe ent
quantitative amounts. This set of experiments was accompanied by the search for locations where the resource magnetic material naturally exists; mapping junk-yards and black sand beaches, which contain large amounts of magnetite, became more relevant throughout the mapping process. During the fi st material tests we primarily aimed at an optimization of structural soundness. We tried to establish which material mixes well with the main ingredient iron, solidified and strengthened our prototypes. After thirty-two diffe ent material combinations in 1/2” x 1/2” x 1/2” plastic boxes, sixteen proved to be fit for further steps. A material combination of liquid latex, concrete, water, yellow acrylic paint and iron fillings proofed to be the strongest combination. This formation was also used to explore the nature of material-specific connections. Understanding the ‘construction’ and tectonics meant getting closer to establish what exactly was relevant to consider, when coding the magnet’s movement and positions to each others for additive process at later stages. The selection and manipulation of material continued as a feedback reaction while working with and controlling in controlled bigger magnetic fields.
Research within the field of Magnetic Architecture triggers the visibility of new data through observing affects between a controlled magnetic field, and responding geometric formations of a magnetic material subjected to the field.
Through intense tests with our base material, raw iron filings, and using various methods in controlling magnetic fields we final y approached a stage where we were able to manipulate magnetic material for an investigation into additive manufacturing. However, from a digital perspective, simulation of material positioned in the magnetic field, and bahaving accordingly, was close to impossible. Since our mixtures were constantly upgraded, had diffe ent viscosities and variables of iron aggregate, simulation was always just a rough estimate. Through manipulating material ingredients and scale the finalization of location and simulation was never static and the question of sustainability in material and process at an architectural scale remained unanswered at this stage. The introduction of electromagnets increased the amount of control over the magnetic field on one hand and over material in difficult positions on the other. After several tests using neodymium magnets we realized that is was crucial to turn off the magnetic field when maneuvering the fields in diffe ent positions in order to avoid dragging the exquisitely placed material along with the movement of the magnets and the morphing geometry of the field. Despite seeing potential for several applications for the electromagnets we focused on manipulating the magnetic field only and pushing the options for designing the actual construction tool. During the design development stages we considered countless ways of how the magnets could move and position themselves, the most complex cones featuring six magnets on one tool a the same time. Changing scales during the prototyping phase provided the biggest challenge, since materials behave diffe ently in diffe ent scales, and therefore control of the magnetic field was challenging. Increasing complexity drove the design decisionmaking process for Magnetic Architecture.
The true relevance of our research into architecture can be described as introducing design knowledge as logic into scripting. Some of our sketches and models began to suggest what the final outcome could be, how it could look like and how it could perform. At the same time they raised basic questions regarding the design process, such as: What is the logic behind positioning the magnetic field? We were looking at this question from a diffe ent point of view by asking: What separates the electromagnet from the material? From this question onwards, prototypes were defined as ‘molds’ that can provide us with in insight into the material’s connection, and overall end result in logic and aesthetic. Through the diffe ent types of simulations designed for a magnetic material entering the magnetic field, none provided what actually happens once the material enters the field. Using artificial vision allowed us to see the mixture’s formation. Thus the material could inform the system through a set of boundaries on how and where to establish the next position of aggregation. This incremental building method was our fi st step to incorporating sensors into robotics. Our current approach was pulling in environmental data to set up some of these boundaries that translates into code for building. Aim was to regulate the density of material through a surface and to still adhere to the incremental building rules generated through the artificial vision data collection on how and where to establish the next position of aggregation. This incremental building method was our fi st step to incorporating sensors into robotics. Our current approach is pulling in environmental data to set up some of these boundaries that translates into code for building. It would essentially regulate the density of material through a surface and would still adhere to the incremental building rules generated through the artificial vision data collection.
Increasing complexity drove the design decisionmaking process for Magnetic Architecture.
The true relevance of our research into architecture can be described as introducing design knowledge as logic into scripting.
p.126: blue model 20cm long structural formulation p.128 top: MA Tool on 6axis moving and controlling positions of electromagnet using 6 axis and a robot. p.128 bottom: material samples as result of continuing selection and manipulation of material, exposed in bigger magnetic field p.129: generative rules, incremental building method showing fi st steps to equip the robot with sensors. Using environmental data to set up boundaries that translate into code for fabrication p.130: final model, one of he final esults p.131: yellow formation, one of of the strongest combinations during the fi st project stages: liquid latex, concrete, water, yellow acrylic paint and iron filling
At this stage we can successfully create magnetic formations of approximately 20cm length. With specific coding, they could be used to build a wall and theoretically a complete structure. However, since our current design of electromagnets is nowhere near the size necessary for a project on an architectural scale, we are envisioning the use of junkyard size electromagnets. Yet, as we continue to change the parameters of each element affecting the other, it is possible that upscaling in size might not be necessary. The way the research is set up it has a tremendous potential to unleash an innovative way of understanding what it means to build with robots. Additive manufacturing could receive a great push in architecture once our research obtains more momentum. Due to financial constraints in prototyping, equipment, and space to test, this process is slow. Magnetic Architecture is not just architecture, but a platform in which we overlap many disciplines and technologies. Communicating with magnetic material gives direction to embrace technologies for future investigation and can shed light on ways to program intuition for robotic systems, not just in architecture.
Sigrid Brell-Cokcan, Johannes Braumann, RobArch 2012: Robotic Fabrication in Architecture, Art and Design, Vienna: Springer, 2013. Neri Oxman, Digital Craft: Fabrication Based Design in the Age of Digital Production, 2007. Lisa Iwamoto, Digital Fabrications: Architectural and Material Techniques, 2009. Sistemay Consultores S.A., Sustainable Design Analysis and Building Information Modeling, 2010. Fabio Gramazio, Matthias Kohler, Digital Materiality in Architecture, Zurich: Lars Müller Publishers, 2008. Manuel De Landa, ‘Material Complexity’, presented at Digital Tectonics Bath, UK, 2002. Jerome Frumar, Code to Craft: Beyond the Voxel, 2007. Jaspar Morrison, Everything but the Walls, Zurich: Lars Müller Verlag, 2006. B.D. Cullity, C.D. Graham, Introduction to Magnetic Materials, London: Wiley, 2008. William Gilbert, De Magnete, NY: Dover Publications, 1991.
VERTICAL TERRITORIES OF RECURSION David M. de Cespedes, Justin Tingue, Zullang Guo, and Andrew Wolking, Taubman College University of Michigan Vertical Territories of Recursion was a designfabrication exploration at Taubman College during Fall 2012. The studio worked through the lens of apophenia, meaning the perceiving of patterns in otherwise random or meaningless data. In contemporary architectural research the complementary nature of robotic fabrication and non-Euclidean spatial constructs reveals a shift in the role of the architect: from a precise designer of space to the indirect administrator of autonomous construction protocols. Space is no longer determined through the standard plan, section and elevation. Instead the construction process has shifted to one that relies on toolpaths, speeds, and fl ws of material. Thus, space is formed through the playing-out of a set of abstract
data sets, or protocols. These protocols may not necessarily be static, and rather, they work in a feedback loop, which negotiates the schism between an ideal geometry of the toolpath and the final spatial construct. This schism is defined by all of the external forces that act on the material being worked, in this case deposited plastic.
The studio worked through the lens of â€˜apopheniaâ€™, or the seeing of patterns in otherwise meaningless data.
FABRICATING VERTICAL TERRITORIES
Deposition techniques in most cases depend on an external support apparatus; they are infini ely moldable, yet unable to hold a form on their own. Using the unique properties and behavioral characteristics of plastic, robotic thermaldeposition, serves as the methodology to replace an external support structure, transitioning from
Space is formed through the playingout of a set of abstract data sets, or protocols.
infini ely moldable geometries to fully structural artefacts in an instant. Thermal-deposition as used in Vertical Territories of Recursion features two construction protocols: stretch and fl w. Aggregations of stretched deposits create the formerly called support apparatus, a frame-like three-dimensional lattice, which designates microspatial compartments. Upon this lattice the fl w protocol of continuous deposition is administered as needed. The lattice is draped with liquidized plastic, which, during the solidification process, merges with, structures and encapsulates the macro-space set up through the stretching protocol. It is upon this solidified, mono-material spatial construct that successive sets of spaces are built. Recursion occurs after each cycle of deposition. A robotically controlled lens captures and analyzes the recently deposited aggregation and determines the most appropriate locations to serve as the datum points for the next aggregation. The relationship set up between the depositing robot and the analysis robot sets an evolutionary process into motion. Simple rules associated with the tasks of each robot allow for a precise unpredictability within the
The lattice is draped with liquidized plastic, which, during the solidification process, merges with, structures and encapsulates the macro-space.
Resulting territories exhibit vast spatial differentiation, ranging from moments of porosity to moments of extreme density.
system, derived from the specific properties of the plastic and the forces acting upon it at the moment of deposition. This relationship between materiality and external forces allows for extreme formal deviation within a set of simple linear toolpaths.
SPATIAL VERTICAL GEOLOGY
Resulting spaces exhibit and suggest vast territorial diffe entiation, ranging from moments of porosity to moments of extreme density. The shifting nature of the spatial configu ation allows for a dynamic feed back loop between the spatial properties and future stages of deposition. As the system aggregates, continuously shifting gradients of space occur as a vertical territory without the hierarchy and repetition, typically associated in current vertical structures. Construction sites within the aggregated fantastical vertical territory of recursion are unrecognizable; they are uninhabited to the naive eye, at least. The near silent efficiency of thermo-depositers moving in choreographed precision construct new spaces in perpetuity; each level indiffe ent to the last, save for datum points. The sudden and covert appearance of the vertical territories has more in common with the geologic than the architectonic. They appear as though they are natural and have always been there, certainly not the result of a precise robotic construction process. Spatially, however it behaves in a way that would be familiar to any occupant, with one key diffe ence. The intense variation denies traditional habitation of the vertical. Instead, the structure offe s spaces of varying porosity, density, size and form. The vertical territory has a multiplicity of centers and peripheries, renegotiating the politics and agency of vertical aggregations and the space formed.
The vertical territory has a multiplicity of centers and peripheries, renegotiating the politics and agency of vertical aggregations and the space formed.
p.132: juxtaposition of the density of space with moments of porosity suggests the variations of spatial typologies achieved through the fabrication process. pp.134-135: Vertical aggregations consolidate a vast horizontal territory p.134 bottom: The robotic plastic extruder executes a stretch protocol p.135: A completed aggregation of â€œstretchâ€? protocols p.136: deposition protocols and the camera eye, overlaid. p.137: occupied vertical territory under construction
deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS Harold Sprague Solie, Mark Wright, Ning Zhou, and Bennett Scorcia, Taubman College University of Michigan deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS also takes its cue from a phenomenon known as Apophenia, perceiving of patterns in otherwise random or meaningless data. If used advantageously, Apophenia can allow for multiple readings within a single spatial environment. The project attempts to leverage a basic architectural proto-condition to test out the implications and possibilities inherent within this phenomenon. The goal is to create a system, which by oscillating between complete control and a total absence of control allows its users to interpret their environment in a variety of ways. The architectural proto-condition describes the aperture, the physical ly constructed typology tak the panelized wall system. Main goals of the project were a) to create systems of control that maximize output
while minimizing input, using parametric design software and large-scale fabrication technologies in parallel b) to develop simple design methodologies able to generate complex outcomes. Embedded within this logic is the notion that the designer is removed from the final representation, and replaced by the user during the final design stages. By eliminating control from the initial designer, the user becomes part of the design process and is free to create his or her own realities and fictions through an apophenic response to an amorphous environment. To accomplish our set goals the work has utilized a variety of parametric design software in combination with emerging fabrication technologies, such as a 5-axis robotic milling.
The project attempts to leverage a basic architectural protocondition to test out the implications and possibilities inherent within this phenomenon.
Embedded within this logic is the notion that the designer is removed from the final representation.
GEOMETRY LOGIC TO ROBOTIC FABRICATION
In an attempt to fil er the project from highly controlled condition through levels of unbridled form generation, the starting point for deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS was a basic grid logic. Hence the project had a solid foundation to build on while allowing for future processes to alter, manipulate and corrupt the system. Through rigorous geometric and patterning studies, a Cairo Tessellation grid pattern was final y chosen, mainly due to its ability to elicit multiple readings of form and the opportunity to apply a variety of logical protocols. The embedded fl xibility of the Cairo Tessellation was used to formulate the basis for the panelization necessary and to create a pattern of apertures that could repeat infini ely in the context of any size and shape required. Within the digital model we extruded the tessellation pattern to give more depth to the system; restraints began to vanish and
allowances were made for lesser control over the design process, since it was desired to increase the influence of logic integrated in the chosen fabrication system at play. In order to generate apertures within a solid mass, the 5-axis robot uses the so-called swarf cut. The swarf cut was appropriate for its Boolean logic that informed the parametric design approach. Its cut operation simply requires the diameters of a top and bottom curve to generate a Boolean operation. Apertures in the Cairo Tessellation panels were created through a computational design strategy that randomly generated the necessary top and bottom curves. Acquired data was subsequently fed into the fabrication software in order to physically formulate Boolean operations within the physical object of the wall. This strategy required a minimum amount of parametric modeling in order to generate aperture rich architectural prototypes.
The project had a solid foundation to build on while allowing for future processes to alter, manipulate and corrupt the system.
The â€˜swarfâ€™ cut was appropriate for its Boolean logic that informed the parametric design approach.
CONCLUSIONS ON CONTROL
To allow for randomized and control free panel aggregation a second level of control feed back into the system was desired. Since the edge condition proved to be diffe ent than the field condition, all Boolean operations located on the edges of each panel received a universal apertures. We developed a catalogue of panels, each with varied degrees of opening. This act of control within the system allowed for a complete relaxation of control in within the panels. By leveraging emerging technologies the final construction achieves its goal of developing a design strategy that oscillates between top down and bottom up design process. First, the system is controlled through the implementation of a base grid for penalization; next, system control is relaxed through randomized Boolean curve generation and aperture creation. Finally, control is fed back into the system through the manipulation of panel edge conditions to allow for an aggregation that is completely independent of control. Through a seemingly randomized association of apertures and panels, the user is left to draw their own readings and conclusions from the project.
By leveraging emerging technologies the final construction achieves its goal of developing a design strategy that oscillates between top down and bottom up design process.
p.138: Close up of large scale aggregation p.140 top: Image of entire wall prototype p.140 bottom: Shadows cast by aperture rich faรงade p.141 top: Diagram showing the fabrication logics for a single panel p.141 bottom left: Diagram showing the front and back aggregation scheme for each panel p.141 bottom right: One of (4) unique panels which comprise the wall system pp.142-143: Rendering showing aggregation on a large scale
Professors: Matias del Campo Adam Fure
Jordan C. Parsons and Michael S. Jeffers, Carnegie Mellon University
developed as an exploratory, research-based,
Recursionism was developed as an exploratory, research-based, critique and self-critique of computation in a design environment. The argument itself became a methodology of systemic computation, born from our combined interests, skills, and thoughts. This methodology was predicated on an interest in pairing the physical and digital realms. In order to explore where computation and fabrication meet, we needed to establish a fluid relationship between code and physical material. This relationship was established through the creation of a computational toolkit, which allowed us to experiment, design, and test.
The computational toolkit presents a collection of means and is a method for computational design. The tools contained within are custom pieces of software, written by us with the design goal of testing, shaping and collecting data. They are arguments we are making. At each step in their design we inserted assumptions as variables, constants, which amplified their status as highlevel abstractions of more complex behaviors and systems. Their standalone value was minimal. Each was a part of a larger system, through which these tools leveraged. The whole system with implementation and coordination of data through
critique and self-critique of computation in a design environment.
In order to explore where computation and fabrication meet, we needed to establish a fluid relationship between code and material.
our tools, was fl w of logical secision making. A tool accepted to categories of input. a) the information that would then lead to the generation of an architectural form b) environmental data, constraints, tolerances, and constants. A tool would took one variable from the environment, solar exposure, wind or circulation, and then performed a series of functions on the seeded data, transforming it accordinfl . This transformation could be spatial movement, increasing the order of pieces of information, simulation, merely parsing the seed data and providing feedback or export readable data to move between tools, or any combination thereof.
All tools designed incorporated data from the physical world. It was our choice to include material data, construction processes, machining, and assembly constraints as part of this data to be managed through a number of tools. Research of contemporary work in computation revealed a disconnect between code and physical material. Architecture generated in a decidedly a-material world ot bits brings problems, with even more advanced computational solutions. Despite the
complex geometric conditions, our material choices favored economical and standardized materials. Instead of opting for the more expensive but less conflicting geometries, the use of the rectangular dimensional lumber, and sheet materials forced their strengths and weaknesses onto the system, and heavily determined joinery detail resolution. These constraints, while frustrating in their relentlessness, served as a way to clearly define problems solved through computation. ConnectionMatrix and WeightingSystem were developed in parallel to the joinery tool. It became a balancing act of system-level goals versus the local joinery constraints and capabilities. While the final tools and resultant forms communicated their current logic, the feedback of these through digital simulation and physical testing and prototyping further emphasized the recursive nature of, not just the system itself, but of its development as its own design process. The physics tool gave us an abstract simulation of system scale issues, showing the connectivity diagram sag and fl x where connections were too thin. The joinery tool and prototyping joints fi stly gave us feedback on local scale issues and later on tolerances for the WeightingSystem and ConnectionMatrix to implicit in the calculations.
A tool accepts a series of inputs, one being the information that would then lead to the generation of an architectural form, the others being environmental data, constraints, tolerances, and constants.
Architecture generated in a decidedly a-material world brings problems, with even more advanced computational solutions.
Fabrication and assembly also served as another data stream, influencing tolerance and material manipulation techniques. While material more dramatically affec ed the resultant geometries, it is the nature of the computer numerically controlled machine that our output was to be paired with. The connections, 1x2” pine members, were arranged via BinPack, a simple binpacking algorithm, but with the additional task of following each unique member through the sorting so each unique connection could be found for assembly. Creating a nomenclature to track and assist in assembly processes was crucial, and involved an understanding of the data structure of the nodes, and connections in the output data, not spatially, but topologically. The final assembly being a massive web of nodes selectively connecting to neighbors also demanded very particular construction logic. By using machines that could track and mark these pieces with all of the local scale information with relevant associations, it ensured that no piece could be misplaced.
connection, its respective nodes, with finge s assembled. This feature allowed those assembling teh structure to confirm and physically debug any anomalies that may have occurred due to human error. The final assembly itself became an event on its own. Selfless individuals volunteered and built with us after all the pieces were fabricated. Many cycled in and out, some for only minutes. The logic and clear nomenclature allowed for anyone to quickly understand, and know exactly what piece to put with another. The QR code feature, despite its extra level of information, became a rarely used contingency, as the logic of the assembly was successful in its attempts to clarify the execution of a complex geometry.
While the final tools and resultant forms communicate their current logic, the feedback of these through digital simulation and physical testing and prototyping further emphasizes the recursive nature of, not just the system itself, but of its development as its own design process.
The assembly logic is simple. Each node would be given a unique identifying number. Each connection would too be given a number. The joint design consists of a plywood plate, oriented in the XY plane of the final assembly. Bent plasma cut finge s would then be placed on the positive or negative face of this plate, and registered into a bolt-hole pattern at the finger s location, locking the XY angle and the negative or positive direction of the attaching connection. The plate was marked with local finger identifying letters, starting at ‘A’ on each node plate. Each plasma-cut finger was marked with its parent node ID number, and its finger ID letter and sign. The shape of the finger was designed to be folded and bolted to an end of a connecting member, registering the Z angle off of a given node plate. Each connection was milled with a standardized hole pattern at a registered distance off each end. The only unique dimensional aspect of a connection was its exact length. They were labeled with the connection’s ID number, along with the pair of node ID’s it was connecting, including each node’s respective finger ID letter it was to be bolted to. This nomenclature limited set of object types, and simple connection methods made the entire assembly drawing free. Construction could be entirely self-organized, little prior instruction and no supplementary documents were needed. Since the etch-cut time was too long to include all of the label information, connection pieces were marked with their ID number and labeled with a printed sticker at a later stage. The sticker featured a QR code linking to a website that hosted a unique .gif animation of the 3D-mesh geometry of each
Each plasma-cut finger was marked with its parent node ID number, and its finger ID letter and sign.
This nomenclature, limited set of object types, and simple connection methods made the entire assembly drawing free.
The logic and clear nomenclature allowed for anyone to quickly understand, and know exactly what piece to put with another.
ILLUSTRATION p.144: Detail of the assembly of plate #86 in the final instantiation. The assembly, relationships of parts, and identifying nomenclature makes physical what was only understood in an abstract virtual realm. p.146 top: The plywood plates, serving as the node of the joinery strategy, are seen here each with their registered hole pattern locking the XY angle of each finge . Etched with the plate ID, the local-finger ID letter and sign, the local and global assembly nomenclature is present. p.146 bottom: Plasma cutting finge s - The capability and universal adaptability of tool-end of a robotic arm allowed us to more fully control processes, tooling, and tolerances of our operations. Seen here is one such arm equipped with a plasma torch. p.147: Prog script capture - The program manipulates the point cloud data through an attractionrepulsion relationship of spatial information. This local system reaches a dynamic equilibrium at the
intersection of the attraction and repulsion forces where the two become equal in their influence. p.148 top: Diagram of the fl w of data, input sources, destinations, demonstrating the hierarchy of tools, associations, local and global feedback loops of information. We as architects of the system included ourselves as agents, evaluating qualitative feedback and parsing input data like any other tool in the toolkit. p.148 bottom: WeightingSystem and ConnectionMatrix algorithms are seen here evaluating local scale tolerances, negatively scoring, versus system scale connectivity maintenance and simple structural logics, positively scoring particular connections to be removed and then re-evaluated in the recursive solver. p.150-151: Entire final instantiation. Perception of the instantiation revealed the relationship between low-level logics to a higher level perception and understanding on the part of the observer.
MILL TO FIT Andreas Trummer, Felix Amtsberg, and Stefan Peters, Technical University Graz A significant increase of industrial robots used in architectural workshops not only mirrors a new approach in tooling and processing but also influences the discussion about material and making in general. After years of researching and prototyping the academic community gives feedback to a high efficient building industry. This article features two prototypes that investigate the use of an industrial robot as a milling machine. Both projects were developed at Technical University Graz. Architectural innovation is often inspired and driven by technological developments; most notable are material innovations like steel, concrete or float glass. In the past decade the computational influence on architectural design and building processes is widely discussed and provides a kind of playground for young academics and industrial manufacturers at the same time. As one result architectural projects characterized by highly
expressive, smooth, double curved geometries emerge.1 However, in many cases the structural elements provided by the building industry are hardly compatible with the architectural design intention. Given that design tools and ideas change rapidly and the development of building products in comparison follows with moderate speed, it is not surprising that a rather large gap between design and production had occured. Researching at the edge means that digital tooling and processing enhance the design process as well as the industrial process. Knowledge about digital tooling can bring these two positions closer together. From this point of view architectural design requirements and research cause industrial transformations. Besides these new digital methods for plastic deformation of steel-, and glass-sheets, milling and grinding set new standards in prefabrication of high precise assembly sets.
After years of researching and prototyping the academic community gives feedback to a high efficient building industry.
Attaching the spindle as an end effector to the head plate of an industrial robot transforms the robot into a precise milling machine, which can be especially useful for load-bearing elements.
Milling is defined as a tooling process using a high speed-rotating spindle with an attached tool that grinds a fi ed work-piece. It is one method of tooling used in the building industry everyday. Although milling is a highly fl xible kind of tooling, the process is time consuming and compared to other tooling methods such as cutting it produces large amounts of waste. Besides the properties of the chosen material, taking into account that a material with higher stiffness also owns a higher grade of hardness, which may result in a longer and less economical production process, the way workpiece and tool are fi ed and clamped influences the strategy of each individual tooling process. Attaching the spindle as an end effec or to the head plate of an industrial robot transforms the robot into a precise milling machine, which can be especially useful for load-bearing elements, designed to pass on compression forces from one surface to the next. The large double curved roof structure of the Centre Pompidou in Metz, France, where timber was chosen for its material properties, and the Mansueto Library at the University of Chicago is designed as a steel grid shell show the direct influence and impact of material properties on the milling process. In the case of steel the goal of milling was to achieve a precise geometry for jointing while timber allows milling an overall double curved shape. In both cases the correlation between hardness, machinability of the material and the amount of waste material was taken into account, and the strategy of handling digital data within the manufacturing process from design to fabricating numerous non-uniform elements was optimized.
ROBOT MILLED PROTOTYPES The ABB IRB 6660 is sits on a high precise traversing rail to reach a range of operation of 6.0m x 1.2m x 1.2m.
Rethinking design and research at Technical University Graz, required a recontextualization of all existing facilities of model building and structural testing equipment in the architectural workshops and mechanical labs. The faculty of architecture and civil engineering established the Roboter Design Labor focusing on Resource-efficient nonstandard Structures2 and installed the industrial
robot ABB IRB 6660, whose specification targets high precision milling. A characteristic that the Lab wants to use for producing high performance dry joints to connect prefabricated elements made form ultra-high performance concrete (uhpc). One of the Labâ€™s research goals is to proof the usability of this fl xible milling facility in a quasi-industrial environment. Robot based milling, as a low cost alternative may be the key to return knowledge on using industrial robots from architectural research to the building industry. The two case studies featured here describe the on-going approach at the Roboter Design Labor at Technical University Graz, where prototypes are used for testing the machining facility as a milling machine. The ABB IRB 6660 sits on a high precise traversing rail to reach a range of operation of 6.0m x 1.2m x 1.2m, which is part of the customized machinery. Beside the stiffness of the machine and the working table, orientation of the tool-center-point has to be taken in consideration. All boundary conditions clearly influence the milling process and the final result. In order to minimize possible failure and to predict the result of best fitting and milled surfaces we developed a measuring and compensating procedure. Nevertheless the process is controlled and driven by an engineer and the result depends strongly on the experience and knowledge of the design team.
L-Panther3 designed by groszstadt is a series of versatile objects to be used as furniture. L-Panther is based on the idea to remove material in the volume of an animal from a 3-dimensional Lshaped letter. This prize winning project acted as foundation for a research project investigating a complex 5-axis milling task done in plywood. The complexity of deep undercuts gave an idea of the limits of tooling. Firstly we developed a production strategy, that separated the solid in several layers of plywood. Secondly one layer was milled to set the fi st step for proof of feasibility. It was desired and predicted that after reassembling no further manual craft and finishing would be necessary. To minimize the influencing parameter of clamping, we positioned the work-piece vertically, avoiding repositioning during the milling process. Hence the toolorientation had to change in an extreme range. Using a lollypop milling tool the final surface quality strongly depended on the resolution of the tool path and duration of the milling process. To reach all areas of tooling the tool as well the geometry of the work piece were reviewed and if necessary redesigned after each milling loop. This process can be described as highly complex, digitally supported hand crafting.
It was desired and predicted that after reassembling no further manual craft and finishing would be necessary.
This project revealed the importance of precise milling in consideration of geometry and flow of force, whereas the parametric model considered boundary conditions of geometry, force and material.
Depending on material and time resources we can differ in processes that change the overall shape of structural elements
The second prototype, the Rob-Arch4 was the product of a RobIArch 2012 workshop, based at Technical University Graz. Rob-Arch is a parametrically designed parabolic arch made from high porous glass foam, commonly used as insulation material. Fifteen individually milled stones were put together using dry joints. The area of the contact faces depended on the fl w of forces. This project revealed the importance of precise milling in consideration of geometry and fl w of force, and the parametric model considered boundary conditions of geometry, force and material. Proof of ability concerning the milling path and collisions and effects of material and tooling affecting the global model, had to be looked at separately. The milling tool was the initial point for the CAM process. We developed the geometry in Rhinoceros transferred it to the milling software hypermill. The milling process was separated in a rough and a fine cut, using the same tool. Subsequently Pi-path generated the CNC-file for the ABB IRB 6660 robot. The final pieces were transported to Vienna, assembled and exhibited at RobIArch 2012.
and in processes that finish joints to get a precise prefabricated assembly set.
Robot based milling is one part of the dynamic research activities taking place in the field of digital tooling, fabrication and robots in architecture, art
and design. Schools of architecture continuously increase their robotic facilities, which allows research to move of from a model scale to almost full building or building component scale. A variety of very diffe ent examples show the skill of the building industry to successfully providing milling for specific tasks. Depending on material and time resources we diffe entiate in processes that change the overall shape of structural elements and in processes that finish joints to get a precise prefabricated assembly set. However, we should keep in mind, that no structure can be assembled without tolerances. An increasing knowledge of milling arising in the field of architecture also triggers the question of how to develop strategies to integrate tooling in the design process at an early stage. As an example the Framed Pavilion4 focuses on parametric jointing. The project proved that profound knowledge about milling is absolutely necessary to arrive at a successful result. In the age of digital manufacturing, it is crucial to integrate as many parameters as possible along the chain from design to production. While the consistent integration of milling data in a parametric design environment is just a question of the complexity of the task, the feedback of milling experience into a design process is still a question of interpersonal communication. It is one goal of architectural education to provide adequate tools to distribute this knowledge to the next generation of architects.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Examples for glass bending are a) the glass and façade manufacturer seele who designed, built and uses the biggest tempering furnace (3.2mx14m) featuring uniaxial glass-bending. www.seele.com/news/neuer-vorspann-ofen-beider-sedak b) BEMO Systems developed an in-situ robot based metal sheet bending facility for cutting, rolling and bending, since glass forming requires large amounts of energy and specific indoor conditions. BEMO’s individually formed cladding panels are used to cover double curved façade and roof structures. www.bemo.com 2. www.ite.tugraz.at 3. www.groszstadt.eu/production/l-panther 4. A. Trummer, F. Amtsberg, St. Peters, Mill to Fit, RobIArch, Vienna, 2012. 5. R. Dank, Ch. Freissling, The Framed Pavilion, Rob Arch, Vienna, 2012, see feature image chapter ‘building’.
pp.152, 154 top: Roboter Design Labor, Technical University Graz Calibrating of the tool center point p.154 bottom: L-Panther, 5 –axis milling of plywood p.155: L-Panther, Production strategy p.156: The Rob-arch, Semperdepot, Vienna, 2012 p.157 top: milling of joints for ‘Framed Pavilion’, copyright: Institut für Architektur und Medien der TU Graz, IAM, Richard Dank, Christian Freisling p.157 center, bottom: Rob-arch milling and testing at Technical University, Graz.
INTERFACE Benjamin Rice Madeline Gannon
Vivarium Reverberations Across the Divide: Connecting Digital and Physical Contexts The Environment as a Signal: The Architect as a User Cerebral Hut
VIVARIUM Benjamin Rice, University of California Berkeley, Matter Management
Instigating a spatio-temporal bridge between biology, cybernetics, media, and architecture, Vivarium fused organic, inorganic, robotic and virtual life-forms in an attempt to create a diffe ential alien ecology. Key to achieving this condition was an open feedback loop that existed within the project. The system was developed through the integration and interaction of hardware data collection devices, custom software suites, natural and artificial organisms, as well as human participants. This direct, reciprocal involvement of interactive technologies with a variety of other agents and bodies caused the project, at the metalevel, to act as an exchange terminal that evolved and self-stabilized over a period of three months. Vivarium was built in the Los Angeles gallery of SCI-Arc following notable exhibitions
by Eric Owen Moss, Xefi otarch, Zaha Hadid, Eisenman Architects, PATTERNS, and Atelier Manferdini. â€˜Occupying the main floor of the gallery is a monolithic sunken pyramid that contains a vivarium, an indoor enclosure consisting of a collection of organisms that, in this case, are real, robotic and/or simulated. As a collective, these organisms generate energy capable of transforming a freshwater ecosystem into a brackish one, a process made possible by the permeability controls that the skin of the pyramid containing the system produces, and the behavior that the machine generates. Digital organisms mimic the behavior of both the living and robotic microorganisms to intensify and ease the process. Investigating the physical and metaphoric space between biology and
Instigating a spatiotemporal bridge between biology, cybernetics, media, and architecture, Vivarium fused organic, inorganic, robotic and virtual life-forms.
Digital organisms mimic the behavior of both the living and robotic microorganisms to intensify and ease the process. Investigating the physical and metaphoric space between biology and architecture, the installation fuses these organisms within the vivarium.
Organic material provided the origin point for the process, producing the initial condition from which data could be harvested.
architecture, the installation fuses these organisms within the vivarium, creating a new hybrid ecology that grows and self-stabilizes [â€Ś]. The exhibition reflects a shift from the direct experience of life to the experience of media-augmented environment, in which fl ws of energy regulate processes and generate cultureâ€™.1 Understanding the potential of architecture and installation as something that has the capacity to look beyond issues of figu e, material, and program was central to Vivarium. It synthesized full-spectrum sensory scapes (visual, audible, tactile) that were constructed and mediated through a series of feedback loops interacting with, and generating, a wide range of natural and artificial organisms. Organic material provided the origin point for the process, producing the initial condition from which data could be harvested. Multiple agents, such as insects hatching, algae growing, and water turning brackish, worked at diffe ent scales in diffe ent modes of time and space to produce a balanced field that was seemingly stable at the global level, while remaining constantly variable locally. While these global conditions were changing slowly and the local conditions changing rapidly, information was being collected through sensors (temperature, humidity, motion, proximity, salinity) including microphones on a micro and macro level, and cameras (motion, still), producing an extensive and complex set of data. Collected data was fed and interpreted through a digital brain in order
to produce ever-evolving environments of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. The digital brain itself consisted of a custom designed Max/MSP workfl w that converted environmental readings to actionable code that was then used to control environmental conditions. Diffe ent environmental samples were programmed to alter various aspects of that environment, triggering changes in humidity, water salinity or the soundscape of the project. As these environments developed over time, resulting iterations were sampled, merged, and structured in order to continually progress their growth and to evolve in line with the changing environmental conditions. This created an open loop that allowed the project to change constantly and work towards self-stabilization. The environmental sampling was continuous throughout the life of the project. As a system Vivarium presents two distinct modes of operation working inevitably together; that of an object oriented organism as exclusively existing, creating and evolving outside the realm of human influence and interaction paired with that of an anthropocentric kineticism, reading and reacting to the involvement of human participants; changing, physically and environmentally. This allowed for additional variation throughout the evolution and life cycle of the Vivarium, while pushing towards a type of planetary self-stabilization. The homeostatic behavior showed a whole that was always read clearly, even while the constituent parts were in constant flux
The data being collected was fed and interpreted through a digital brain in order to produce ever-evolving environments of sight, sound, smell. taste, and touch. Vivarium therefore presents two distinct modes of operation working inevitably together; that of an object oriented organism as exclusively existing, creating and evolving outside the realm of human influence and interaction paired with that of an anthropocentric kineticism.
pp.160 top, 163 bottom left, 164-165: Sensors and microphones collecting data within the sunken pyramid. Vacuum-formed trays contain a variety of biological matter that underwent various stages of evolutionary change. pp.162-163: algea growing within the system p.163 top left: brackish water that emerged during the duration of the installation. p.163 right: Vivariumâ€™s digital brain consisting of hardware and custom software. This is where the data being collected within the sunken pyramid is stored, sorted, interpreted, and then redeployed. This is also where visitors to the SCI-Arc gallery could witness the mediated video feed of the interior of the Vivarium.
1.http://www.designboom.com/art/juan-azulaymatter-management-vivarium/ designboom [accessed August 2013]
REVERBERATIONS ACROSS THE DIVIDE: Connecting digital and physical Contexts Madeline Gannon, Computational Design Lab, Carnegie Mellon University There is a palpable disconnect between how one designs in the digital realm, and how one realizes a design in the physical realm. A number of factors contribute to this gap, including a virtual environmentâ€™s infini e scale, its autonomy from a tangible context, and its lack of physical materiality. Reverberating Across the Divide addresses such issues through a custom computer vision-based modeling software that merges digital processes in design with physical processes in fabrication. This digital-physical workfl w takes place in three cyclical phases: scanning, modeling, and printing. The process begins in the scanning phase, which imports a physical context into the virtual environment. A depth camera translates a physical space or object into a three-dimensional point cloud. The point cloud is used as a persistent reference
on which to base a digital design; it gives a sense of scale and materiality to an otherwise empty virtual space. The modeling phase creates an expressive digital form around the previously scanned context. The same depth camera is used to continuously capture a designerâ€™s real-time hand gestures. These gestures then manipulate an animate digital geometry within a chronomorphologic modeling environment. The designer aggregates the animate 3D-model to create complex geometries around the 3D-scanned context. The printing phase then translates the digital geometry into physical matter. Once the geometry is 3D-printed, the digitally fabricated artifact can then be immediately embedded into the physical environment. While the scanning phase imports a physical context into the virtual environment, the printing phase
is the reciprocal: it exports a virtual context to a physical environment. These complimentary behaviors [transcribing bits into atoms, and atoms into bits ] create a closed loop in which a designer can recursively generate imaginative digital forms to integrate back into the built environment.
FAB MODELING ENVIRONMENT
The chronomorphologic modeling environment is derived from a nineteenth century photography technique called chronophotography. In chronophotography, sequential photographs are captured from an object in motion.
Therefore, no matter how intricate or complex, the digital geometry will always be exported as a valid, 3D printable mesh.
The chronomorphologic modeling environment is derived from a nineteenth century photography technique called chronophotography. In chronophotography, sequential photographs are captured from an object in motion. These stills are then separated into individual frames or collapsed into a single composite image. Étienne-Jules Marey and Edward Muybridge popularized this technique with their studies on human and animal movement. Their photographs revealed the true dynamism in which animate creatures carve through space and time. Chronomorphology, like chronophotography, is a composite recording of an object’s movement. Instead of a photograph, however, the recording medium is a full three-dimensional model of the object - a virtual creature simulated within a digital environment. This simulated creature is encoded with structural and behavioral logic. Its form is built around a
soft-body spring model: an elastic skeleton that keeps the object inflated while facilitating fluid motion. It can also navigate the virtual environment semi-autonomously: swarm behaviors, such as steering, seeking, and avoiding, enable the digital object to wander without any external guidance. The virtual environment has its own encoded behaviors. Gravity and drag affect the virtual creature’s movements in space. Adjusting these variables alters the environment’s viscosity and fluidity, which in turn alters the formal and spatial qualities of the recorded motion. In addition, the digital environment is able to capture a 3D-scan of a physical environment. The scan’s point cloud acts as a virtualized landscape for contextualizing the creature’s behaviors. The point cloud is programmed to slightly repel the simulated creature. This repulsion force prevents the creature from intersecting or penetrating the scanned physical context. The designer uses their real-world hand movements to interact with the virtual creature. The depth camera used to capture a static 3D-scan of a physical environment is then used to sense the designer’s three-dimensional hand position in real-time. The hand acts as a 3D-mouse for attracting or repelling the virtual creature in space. As the designer’s gestures guide the creature around the virtualized landscape, the soft-body spring model dynamically updates the digital form. As the creature is dragged around the point cloud, the designer can turn on motion capturing to build the chronomorphologic model. Once a model is generated, the designer can export the complex geometry from virtual environment, and send it for 3D-printing. The chronomorphologic model is automatically optimized for 3D-printing. Optimization is handled by the internal structure of the simulated creature: it is a closed mesh, with a spring skeleton that prevents self-intersections. The composite model retains these printable properties at each time-step. Therefore, no matter how intricate or complex, the digital geometry will always be exported as a valid, 3D-printable mesh. Resolving this optimization problem within the virtual environment alleviates some of the technical tasks usually assigned to the designer. Moreover, it eliminates a time consuming step between design and fabrication, and facilitates a smoother transition from digital bytes to physical matter.
The chronomorphologic modeling environment enables a designer to quickly generate baroque and expressive spatial forms that both respond and expand on existing physical contexts. By mediating 3D-scanning and 3D-printing through the modeling environment, the designer has a streamlined workfl w for oscillating between virtual and analog environments. This ease between digital design and physical production provides a framework for rapidly exploring subtle changes in the virtual environment, physical environment, or designerâ€™s gestures can create dynamic variation in the formal, material, and spatial qualities of a generated design. While the application of this kind of interactive 3D-modeling is not as robust as traditional Computer-Aided Design software, it does begin to imagine a future for digital environments that can actually participate in the process of design. Within the chronomorphologic modeler, the designer is not able to give explicit commands to the modeling environment. Instead, there is a constant negotiation between the encoded behaviors of the virtual creature, the scanned physical context, and the designerâ€™s hand gestures. Each of these entities [virtual environment, physical environment, and designer]â€Šhave a certain influence, or agenc ,
over the final formal outcome. Although this means the designer is giving up a certain amount of control over the end product, they gain the capacity to find inspirations and serendipitous discoveries throughout the design process.
pp.166, 169 top: A number of human scale artifacts were designed to validate the workfl w between the digital and physical environments: Bust studies testing the complex curvature around the neck, shoulder, and chest. The digital designs engage the body as exoskeletal extensions of the clavicle or sternum. p.168 top: Cyclical workfl w of 3D scanning, 3D modeling, and 3D printing. p.168 bottom: Chronophotographic studies from Marey (top) and Muybridge (bottom). p.169 bottom right: Screenshot of virtual environment. pp.169 bottom right, 170-171: physical prototype pronted from ABS plastic as a result of a series of wrist studies were created to test symmetrical and asymmetrical configu ations around a freestanding physical context.
THE ENVIRONMENT AS A SIGNAL: The Designer as a User Panagiotis Michalatos, Harvard GSD
Design and computation is often an uncomfortable combination. In many cases a pseudo science is proposed as the outcome based on excessive use of simulation and claims to predictability. Design as a cultural practice poses social and political problems of meaning and aesthetics that, since these aspects are not readily quantifiable, are often ignored in the computational design literature. In a sense we end up with an impoverished version of design and unchallenged computational models. However the architectural object is a contested and dynamic one. Many of its aspects are undecidable and fuzzy at all stages of its life, from conception, to demolition and its afterlife in archives and databases.
SIGNALS AND USER
In the past few years we have witnessed a proliferation of commercial and custom digital and computational design tools. The focus until now has been largely on geometry and the description
of the immediately sensible formal aspects of designed objects. These descriptions can be procedural or parametric, static or dynamic but conceptually they are conceived and discussed in the context of classical Euclidian and more recently diffe ential geometry [with the use of so called free form modeling software]. The fact that we attempt to describe, manipulate, manage and archive architectural objects using digital media, converts the architectural object to a signal to be appropriated through digital interfaces and analyzed using the techniques of information theory and signal analysis. In addition the existence of such objects in a network necessitates the use of interfaces and turns participants into users. Interfaces for accessing and developing design are not simple extensions or reincarnations of drafting tools. They manipulate the perception of designers and modify the architecture of the communication itself within which design develops.
Design as a cultural practice poses social and political problems of meaning and aesthetics that, since these aspects are not readily quantifiable, are often ignored in the computational design literature.
Interfaces for accessing and developing design are not simple extensions or reincarnations of drafting tools.
THE ENVIRONMENT AS A SIGNAL
[you can nowadays hear students in architecture using terms such as tangent planes, Gaussian and mean curvatures, torsion, normals etcâ€Ś]
A very different language is required in order to talk about form, a language far removed from axes and surfaces, and curvatures, a language of superpositions and distributions.
Beatriz Colomina in Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media demonstrated the transformative effect of the modes of appropriation of architecture that emerged in the early 20th century especially with the advent of photography as a medium. The architectural object must be seen not as an isolated entity but together with the totality of its descriptions and traces. Similarly now, new modes of appropriation exist; some as extensions of old ones [photographic associative repositories with metadata like fli kr and instagram] and others still newer [repositories of three dimensional models and annotated and augmented spaces]. Signal analysis techniques offer novel ways of approaching questions of form, geometry and even style. If the so called free form modeling environments introduced concepts from diffe ential geometry and made them mainstream casual descriptors of architectural form [you can nowadays hear students in architecture using terms such as tangent planes, Gaussian and mean curvatures, torsion, normals etcâ€Ś] signal analysis offe s an even more radical way of looking at geometry as information. For example spectral analysis methods are widely researched at the moment. Such methods spawn new ways of dissecting, constructing, manipulating, storing and comparing geometric objects seen as superpositions of more fundamental forms. Intuitive concepts such as structure and texture, which are scale dependent, acquire a precise meaning within this framework. A very diffe ent language is
required in order to talk about form, a language far removed from axes and surfaces, and curvatures, a language of superpositions and distributions. Analytical techniques also deal with objects that become increasingly fuzzy up to the point of fabrication. Topology optimization for example is a form finding method, which treats a structural problem as one of material distribution, departing from the discrete node and stick, assembly inspired model of the past. Additive Fabrication techniques reinforce this idea of an object as a material distribution in a continuum. Quantum theory appropriated by computer scientists increasingly is treated not just as a physical theory but more like a new kind of probability theory as Scott Aaronson argues in Quantum Computing since Democritus, one that can better handle certain dynamic phenomena and framing the limits of the knowable in each problem. Such an approach might be useful in design problems, which contain many stochastic variables, rather than the overly deterministic approaches weâ€™ve seen in computational design till now. Such an approach would enable a richer description of the architectural object and the events that take place within it; one that contains the individual and the crowd, the instant and the duration the synchronic and the diachronic. Signal analysis has a big impact in the construction of the visual field and a new observer. Computer vision and image analysis techniques coupled with perceptual models allow the quantitative analysis of formal aspects of visual objects. A sort
USER INTERFACES FOR DESIGN PROBLEMS
of quantitative aesthetics can emerge which can help us make tangible the Jacques Ranciereâ€™s Distribution of the Sensible. The sensible continuously captured and recorded in databases for better or worse can be dissected and analyzed and its components rearranged. Its statistical properties reveal modes of inhabiting and use of space, distribution of wealth and power. In effect we can start asking questions on the not so immediately perceived information in our environment, information that is hidden not because it is concealed but because it is habitually ignored.
We inhabit a world of increasing layers of mediation that intervene between our senses and the environment. This constant fil ering that expands or contracts the limits of perception is realized through user interfaces, themselves objects of design. The ability to design interfaces goes hand in hand with the possibility of manipulating user intuition and framing design problems as communication problems. If we limit ourselves to purely visual aspects of design, designers nowadays come with two kinds of intuition. One is the intuition that derives from their experience of the world through their senses and a second is an intuition that derives from the modes of description and manipulation of representations of this world through digital interfaces. The second type of intuition for a long time has been a derivative or a simulation of the fi st but now it has gained an autonomy of its own. For example Lev Manovich in the 90s argued that the camera has become the universal metaphor through which all digital information is accessed. However we could argue that now these interactions have become autonomous and that the physical cameras are the ones that have to resemble more and more the interfaces they inspired. There is an interesting interplay between representation conventions here. Linear perspective was a way of simulating visual perception but it got codified and became universal through the use of matrix transformations that became the dominant mode of visualization in both games, science and design software. A whole
[...]one that contains the individual and the crowd, the instant and the duration the synchronic and the diachronic.
In effect we can start asking questions on the not so immediately perceived information in our environment, information that is hidden not because it is concealed but because it is habitually ignored.
Lev Manovich in the 90s argued that the camera has become the universal metaphor through which all digital information is accessed.
Linear perspective was a way of simulating visual perception but it got codified and became universal through the use of matrix transformations that became the dominant mode of visualization in both games, science and design software.
generation of people has been raised to perceive three-dimensional information through this very un-eye like apparatus [monocular, continuous, and perfectly linear], which distorts proportions and scale. We can make interfaces that toy with intuition if we consider the designer as a user among others in a complex communication problem that is the design process. Architecture schools have been rather slow in responding to this development and the opportunities and challenges therein, leaving the design thought process and the interfaces that formalize it in digital media to be solely determined by the software industry. The focus has been too much in students as users at most generating their own geometry generation tools rather than questioning the digital environments within which they develop their ideas. Such environments are designed spaces that already make many assumptions about what design is, and how is appropriated; from the use of a particular type of perspective and the positioning of the viewer relative to the object, to the false pretence of neutrality, generality and freedom. At this moment when monolithic centrally produced software is in crisis, and tries to find its place in an ecosystem of applets and online distribution systems, designers could seize the opportunity to question the premises of these design environments that dominated production for the past 20 to 30
years. For that to happen, perhaps it would be useful for the nascent field of computational design to shift the debate on the relationship of digital media and architecture beyond the effo t to convert design into a pseudo science where the veracity of simulations is taken for granted and unquantifiable aspects are ignored. Instead design should be seen as that which takes place at the confluence of information and culture and by necessity can only be intuitively evaluated. Where computational media come into play is not in order to render this procedure more scientific but in order to enable us to approach the environment as a signal, to expand our intuition and modes of communication. Computational design could be more than computational geometry. It needs to reconnect with questions of design and evaluate what it has to offer as a quasi discipline in a practice, which is culturally preconditioned. In that light we can approach architecture as a symptom of processes that are stochastic, culturally meaningfull and inherently undecidable.
INTERFACE For that to happen, perhaps it would be useful for the nascent field of computational design to shift the debate on the relationship of digital media and architecture beyond the effort to convert design into a pseudo science.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
p.172: Cut outs and Trees. Dance performance by Stockholm based choreographer Cristina Caprioli [CCAP]. In this performance we sought to dissolve the stage by using dynamic high frequency spatio-temporal elements in order to achieve an interference effect with the dancers and the audience. photography: Natasha Stragalinou, 2010, London, Riverside Studios, Dance Umbrella Festival. p.174: all images, Eigenshells: Research on shell optimization in collaboration with Sawako Kaijima. The optimal form is found as a superposition of Eigenfunctions. p.175 top left: Topology optimization application to the design of a new type of fuzzy reinforcement. Images generated by software topostruct and millipede, Michalatos, Kaijima. p.175 bottom left: Topology optimization materialized results using multi material 3d-printing, research project with Andrew Payne and Objet/ Stratasys. The models are made of transparent soft rubber and hard white plastic in a continuous distribution. p.175 top right: Hinterland. Landscape sculpting interface by GSD students 2011, Jose Luis Garcia del Castillo Lopez, Stefano Andreani, Aurgho Jyoti. The viewer is embedded in the landscape and can only move at walking or running speed. Application of sculpting modifie s is restricted to fi st person view too. The user sees the terraforming problem from within developing a vocabulary of near and far field, proximity and horizons instead of treating the land as an object seen from afar. p.176 top: Dynamic visualization of a quantum particle in U shaped box. Position Space, Momentum Space and potential Field. p.176 bottom: Alberto frigo, 2004-2040, art project in progress. Frigo photographs all objects that he interacts with; creating an extensive archive that allows him to generates diffe ent cross-sections of his everyday life. p.177 top: Interfacade: Experimental whimsical interface by GSD students 2011, Christian Ervin, Tim Sullivan. The user is restricted to use his or her face to manipulate the object. The software is using face detection and then metric analysis of the face to determine the shape of the small doll house. Users can only change their face so much [through grimaces], which acts as a metaphor of the inherent constraints in any design problem. p.177 bottom: Antilabyrinth, Panagiotis Michalatos, 2004, experimental game based on the C64 game Drelbs. Two users are trying to claim wspace by rotating panels as they move. Intricate floor plans emerge as a side effect
1.Laplace-Beltrami Eigenfunctions, towards an algorithm that understands geometry, Bruno Levy, INRIA-ALICE. 2.Salient Spectral geometric features for shape matching and retrieval, Jiaxi Hu, Jing Hua 3. Scott Aaronson, Quantum Computing since Democritus, 2013. 4. Beatriz Colomina, Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media, Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1996. 5. Jonathan Crary, Suspensions of Perception, Attention spectacle and Modern Culture, Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2001. 6. Jacques Ranciere, Gabriel Rockhill, The Politics of Aesthetics, Bloomsbury Academic, 2006. 7. Lev Manovich, The Camera and the World--New Works by Tamรกs Waliczky, Munich - NY: Continental Drift, Prestel,1998.
CEREBRAL HUT Güvenç Özel, UCLA [IDEAS PLATFORM], OzelOffice In neuroscience, an ‘evoked potential’ is the electrical response detected from the brain as a result of a sensory stimulus. Architecture has the potential to become a form of technology that triggers a discernable cue through a feedback loop between a spatial configu ation and the human senses, directly. An android is a robot that resembles a human. The architecture of the twenty-fi st century is an android. It is the real-time spatial reflection of the human mind in constructed matter.
ON FORM AND COMPLEXITY
In its essence, the role of the architect is organizing and composing the material world. The principles of this organization rely heavily on social behavior and the changing paradigms of human interaction. As a composer of materiality, the twenty-fi st century architect needs to re-prioritize the concerns of design, as the exactitude of geometry no longer stands as a true reflection of human intellect. Rather, architects need to find methods to organize material
behavior transformatively and reactively. Many contemporary practices of our generation are using coding, robotic fabrication and other digital/physical translation tools to infini esimally vary methods of material organization and complexity. But how do we define the behavioral aspects of architectural form? The static nature of form encodes movement in itself but is incapable of rearranging its material constitution due to environmental factors. As we attempt to translate the animate into the material and vice versa, we submit to the twentieth century notion of modernism where the designer organizes material conclusively, which in return is expected to have definiti e phenomenological outputs. This form of determinism is no longer an accurate reflection of contemporary society. The only constant of architecture is its vis-a-vis relationship to culture, not its permanence. In fact, there’s no potential of form, affect, and materiality, unless form is liberated from Form to create an architecture, which becomes an interface itself that fuses the human mind with space.
As we attempt to translate the animate into the material and vice versa, we submit to the twentieth century notion of modernism where the designer organizes material conclusively, which in return is expected to have definitive phenomenological outputs.
ON FORM WITHOUT FORM
Liberation of form from Form is the liberation of architecture from its physical context and the outside forces that determine its boundaries; a space that has a silhouette but no figu e. A kinetic architecture, by its ephemeral, seemingly amorphous yet programmed behavioral iterations is bound to travel between a multiplicity of contexts. An architecture with a transforming design boundary with its outside world continuously contextualizes its context and content meanwhile disperses it. By allowing itself to be shaped by multiplicity of external forces, it gives form to its user and his/her environment. Form without form is not form without context, content or intent. It is designspace that temporally re-calibrates its relationship with the outside world, repeatedly and through time, by actively transforming its physical and conceptual boundaries, meanwhile simultaneously translating its phenomenological perception by the user. That is precisely why Cerebral Hut is content without context par excellence, as context is not a paradigmatic constant.
ON SPACE AS AUTONOMOUS INTELLECT, OR ARCHITECTURE AS ANDROID
Looking at the historic evolution, technology reveals an aspiration to place consciousness into matter in order to create tools that are subservient yet autonomous from humans. Architecture as a form of technology does not exist outside of this
cultural aspiration. Our scientific exploration of nature through physics, mathematics and material sciences lead to the formation of quasi-intelligent abstract systems in the realm of simulation and computation. These scientific paradigms have had a tremendous influence on contemporary design methodology, theory and critique. Current interest in robotics and sensing technology is an extension of this desire to transform architecture into an intelligent form of technology that can autonomously negotiate between the body, human psyche, the environment and other organisms. These contemporary influences of technological thinking affect both the software [as in design intent] and the hardware [as in formal, organizational and structural logic] of design. Can Artificial Intelligence be a field of study that extends into the built environment? Is there a way to fuse architecture with technology so that space itself becomes the medium that interfaces between social and material worlds, real time? Can architecture itself become the AI that understands and responds to us? The answers to these questions carry the vital link currently absent between the material and the virtual worlds, required for creating the construct of reality for the upcoming cycle of intellectual evolution. Through exploring the intersection of technology and space, we can achieve an Android Architecture that has an intelligent software and a responsive hardware in synchronization and dialogue with the human mind.
CEREBRAL HUT: A PRIMITIVE CYBORG
A cyborg is a robot that constitutes of both human and artificial parts. Cerebral Hut is a robot built as space. It is an environment that is calibrated and synchronized with intangible phenomena such as thoughts. It is dependent on human mental input to come to life. Formally, the overall geometric construct of Cerebral Hut is based on the rejection of simulated complexity that we are so fond of in the contemporary design world. Instead of attempting yet another representational recurrence of complexity, it uses, or borrows anonymous form, such as an Archimedean solid. The input from user participation becomes the primary agent that determines formal iteration, richness and variation. In order to create a space that is reactive to brain activity, a commercially available EEG device [Electroencephalography helmet] was hacked so that it can detect and measure concentration levels and blinking, communicating wirelessly with a
computer. This computer decodes the data sets from the userâ€™s brain waves, and activates scripts to control an electromechanical system that achieves a volumetric transformation. As a result, Cerebral Hut becomes a game-space where the user controls the physical boundaries of the environment by his/ her thoughts. As the user engages in activities that increase concentration levels, the environment responds real time and changes its formal configu ation. Cerebral Hut is an exploration on building the foundation of a reactive architecture that directly responds to the human psyche. It creates a collective architectural form in constant transformation, composed of the mental traces of its users embedded in its physicality. As a form of kinetic architecture, it has no final, or ideal orm, its interior and exterior is in constant transformation, triggered by user participation. The project suggests one way of intelligent comminication that embodies space, human and robot simultaneously.
In order to create a space that is reactive to brain activity, a commercially available EEG (Electroencephalography) device was hacked, which can measure concentration levels
Through Processing, the computer interprets the data from the EEG helmet and runs an algoritm that translates these data thresholds into a sequence of motion. Once the concentra-
The Arduino microcontroller splits the signal from Processing into seven stepper motors, controlling their range and speed. The interface translates code into linear motion.
The seven stepper motors move steel pistons through the help of a custom made gear mechanism. The pistons are linked to folded paper panels on one end, and a stretch fabric panel on the
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Designed and Conceived by Güvenç Özel
Fabrication and Design Development Güvenç Özel Alexander Karaivanov Philipp Reinsberg
Electromechanic Design, Fabrication and Coding Jona Hoier, Istanbul Peter Innerhofer, Istanbul Jaak Kaevats, London Onur Sonmez, London
Güvenç Özel Philipp Reinsberg (London) Lena Krevanek (Istanbul)
Cerebral Hut was made possible through support from
Istanbul Foundation of Culture and Arts University of Applied Arts in Vienna- Institute of Architecture Hugo by Hugo Boss Saatchi Gallery in London
p.180: Interior panels made of folded panels that go through a volumetric transformation once activated, changing the physical boundaries of the space continuously. p.182: Top view of the Cerebral Hut, Vienna, Austria, September 2012. Exterior panels made of fl xible fabric that transform the exterior boundaries of the installation. Vienna, Austria, September 2012. p.183 top: Cerebral Hut was part of the group show Red NEver Follows. Sponsored by Hugo Boss. The exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery, London, August 2013 gathered 20 artists under the theme of urban creativity. p.183 bottom: Communication diagram between EEG device and Cerebral Hut’s mechanic device.
ABOUT Cerebral Hut is an interactive large-scale architectural
installation that explores the relationship between architecture, interactivity, movement and human thought. It debuted at the Istanbul Design Biennial 2012 and was most recently exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery, London in Summer 2013.
Assembly and Movement
Cerebral Hut is formed by a section of a truncated icosahedron built with a timber board frame and steel angle connections. The envelope comprises a stretchy fabric on the outside and a folding paper pattern on the inside. Stepper motors that activate plastic pistons are attached to tertiary timber pieces. The overall omnidirectional movement deforms the folded paper panels as well as the fabric panels, therefore transforming the interior and the exterior simultaneously.
BUILDING Stefano Arrighi and Pierpaolo Ruttico Hironori Yoshida Jacob Douenias Bence Pap and Andrei Gheorghe
Responsive Patterns on Double-Curved Surfaces Scan to Production Algal Architecture: Integrating Biological Symbiosis Die Angewandte [The Architecture Challenge]
RESPONSIVE PATTERNS ON DOUBLE-CURVED SURFACES Pierpaolo Ruttico, Indexlab, Politecnico di Milano Stefano Arrighi, Politecnico di Milano
This paper proposes a model for generating and controlling responsive patterns on double-curved surfaces. The model demonstrates the possibility of making a responsive building envelope considering practical, functional and costeffecti e factors. Here we describe the workfl w of the digital design and fabrication processes and illustrates the kinetic façade system. The proposed envelope is a faceted metallic surface that has the potential to deform physically in response to environmental conditions that surround it; such as movement, sound, light, wind or temperature. Although the system is completely programmable and measurable, it reveals an imponderable and partially unexpected result. In addition to the search for new forms and geometries, the relevance of adaptive systems has been increasing enormously over the last years. Auto-adjusting technology to maintain distance between cars by now is a common feature in automotive technology. Adaptive frameworks with embedded piezoceramic elements for achieving precision and controlling vibration, is currently being researched
in the aeronautical field. Since the architectural application diffe s from the just mentioned target industries in terms of scale, statics or aesthetics, etc., the investigation regarding how the design of a building system can be augmented, by adopting responsive systems is now a dominant trend within architectural research.
Although the system is completely programmable and measurable, it reveals an imponderable and
The project finds its foundations in early studies of capturing performance driven movement such as E.J. Marey’s Geometric Chronophotograph of The Man in the black Suit  or Enzo Mari’s prominent figu e of Programmed and Kinetic Art [1950s-60s]. In the middle of 1950s the idea of shape in motion resulted in programmed experimentations carried out by a great number of artists and researchers. Programmed art was the piloting of the effec . As Umberto Eco stated in 1962, the result was not a form, but the film of a form in movement. Within the field of installation Gordon Pask made progress towards identifying the field of what was to become interactive architecture in the 1960s. The realm of
partially unexpected result.
Programmed art was the ‘piloting of the effect’. As Umberto Eco stated in 1962, the result was not a form, but the film of a form in movement.
the 1990s, as a result of the available technological advancements and numerous academic smart home projects were initiated. Recent projects by Patrick Teuffel and Tristan d’Estrée Sterk include structures that can monitor their shape and rigidity through the selective placements of sensors and actuators. Nowadays the Adaptive Building Initiative (ABI) is dedicated to designing a new generation of buildings that optimize their configu ation in real time by responding to environmental changes. This design approach was previously pioneered by Jean Nouvel in his Institute du Monde Arabe, Paris, 1987, featuring an automated façade shading system or Jean Prouvé’s Square Mozart apartment building, Paris, 1953, with a manually controlled façade ventilation and shading system. Both undertook extensive architectural research on the uses of movable panels and endorsed the link between art and industry. A more recent example is the City of Justice by Foster + Partners and ABI, Madrid, 2011.
such proof-of-concept prototypes was driven by the development of the digital computer. In the 1970s, a number of people, such as John Frazer, further developed the theoretical ideas of interactive architecture. The Architecture Machine, published in 1973, and the following books written by Nicholas Negroponte represent fi st significant attempts to define and produce responsive building systems. In
The purpose of this study is to experiment the use of responsive systems within the building construction industry and explore their potential. This paper proposes an adaptable pattern over a doublecurved surface that would have been very hard to produce in any way other than through the combination of computer-controlled fabrication and algorithmic modeling. The larger perspective of the research approach is the question of how to design complex systems that help promoting innovative aesthetic qualities of buildings, whilst improving building performances. The project is a proposal for an affordable and functional responsive envelope, that adapts to the local surface properties. The façade design approach is two-fold. It is designed to respond to changing environmental impacts, whilst adapting to user’s behav-
u1 P(u2,v1) B
v v A
B C Î´
P(u2,v2) u2 v2
This paper proposes an adaptable pattern over a double-curved surface that would have been very hard to produce in any way other than through the combination of computer-controlled fabrication and algorithmic
iors. It automatically controls its permeability, varying smoothly between a completely covered and an open state. It controls inner light and heat by reconfiguring movable panels. The system can be configured to match double-curved surfaces and to create a seal to protect against dust and rain .
Due to its flexible open structure, we selected the Grasshopper [GH] plug-in for Rhinoceros together with FireFly as algorithm editor to support the digital workflow. The GH definition was developed in order to allow the user to simulate and visualize - in real-time - both the design and the production processes. The adopted parametric approach, compared to traditional CAD-CAM processes, is more flexible and adaptive. The designer can manipulate the initial CAD surface and simultaneously check for fabrication constraints. The digital workflow is consequently fast and reliable. Moreover, the system allows full control of interactive design processes. Sensors gather information about the state of the physical world, and the actuators react to the information by performing appropriate actions. The entire process is performed within the same digital environment.
The algorithm cuts parallel sections through the double-curved surface at designated intervals and angles. The sectioning method generates both structure and paneling. The intersecting curves [contour lines] correspond to the stack joints of the panel components. According to the surface curvature, the system performs with the appropriate typology of the panel, with related requirements and details for digital production. The system allows two different typologies of panel to emerge, based on conditional checks of the local curvature values. With numerically controlled cutting and folding there is no need to keep the joint detail related to manually achievable forms or to apply a standardized dimension. Depending on local context the panelâ€™s topology changes for negative and positive Gaussian curvature. Screws as means of attachment provide maximum flexibility for future dismantling, access and adjustments. Sequential assembly requires larger fitting tolerance to cater for tolerances the pieces to move into place. Challenge is to find the right balance between a tight fit that would cause problems in the mounting and dismounting of the panels, and a looser fit that might cause aesthetic factors to fail. The diagrams illustrate the generation of the pattern starting from contour lines and related UV grid of points.
The system allows two different typologies of panel to emerge, based on conditional checks of the local curvature values. With numerically controlled cutting and folding there is no need to keep the joint detail related to manually achievable forms or to apply a standardized dimension.
Real-time data is analyzed and represented through the parametric model, which reacts to the new set of inputs and configures new geometries.
The system measures environmental conditions to enable the building to adapt its surface configu ation. Movable panels respond to light and air, opening and closing to provide the best lighting and heating conditions inside the building. In order to optimize the building system performances, it is possible to directly manipulate the geometric properties of the digital model based on performance analysis. Specifical y, daylight analysis, thermoacoustic simulations, curvature analysis and air-fl w simulations can be interpreted
by transforming patterns with zoned porosity. The envelope system regulates internal conditions by responding to external environmental factors. Movable panels adjust accordingly, e.g. reacting to the angle of the sun and therefore reducing the need for using artificial light and air-condition. Realtime data is analyzed and represented through the parametric model, which reacts to the new set of inputs and configu es new geometries. Air-fl w simulations / control system. Where required, panels open allowing the air to pass through. Energyreducing sunscreen. Conceptually, the extended
model illustrates how the responsive system can affect a building envelope on larger scales. Rotation angles of the panels are automatically calculated according to environmental constraints or userâ€™s behaviors. All actuators have the same type of communication and acting hardware, they also have the same maximum acting range. The sensors and related algorithm measure the distance between the user and the movable panels. Further the micro-controller sends a signal to the actuator that results in the panel rotating a specified angle. Speed and direction parameters of
the stepper motors are automatically generated for each individual panel. Each actuator can act on the event within its acting range. The rotations of the panels are automatically calculated according to the environmental constraints or userâ€™s behaviors. Hardware used: Kinect, Arduino micro-controller, stepper motor allowing the integration of both speed and position control at the same time. The transformable envelope adapts to the usersâ€™ movements. Driven by a bed of 16 stepper motors, the dynamic configu ations are generated as realtime calculations.
Each actuator can act on the event within its acting range.
DIGITAL FABRICATION PROCESS AND STRUCTURE
In order to validate the basic functions of the proposed adaptive skin and the associated sensor / actuator network system a prototype was created. The three-dimensional surfaces of the digital model were unfolded to two-dimensional templates for laser cutting. We developed an algorithm that takes material thickness into account and labels the panels with pertinent information, such as location and bending angle. The algorithm turns three-dimensional surfaces into a collection of flat pieces. The panel profiles are laid out on 60cm x 90cm templates for cutting and folding. The primary structure of the prototype consists of a waffle-gri made out 5mm thick laser-cut sheet metal, arranged as parallel-sectioned ribs. The steel plates are manually assembled and welded together. Computer-controlled folding becomes a method of making: it turns the flat aluminum surface into a three-dimensional one. When folds are introduced, the panels gain stiffness and rigidity, hence become self-supporting. The final faรงade mock-up presents the doublecurved responsive skin, equipped with sensors, micro-controllers and actuators; a proposal for a building system that is able to alter its porosity in response to changing weather conditions or the movement of passers-by.
CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH
The technology to support responsive buildings is available and dependable. New logic and
organizational systems could allow the building industry to mass produce adaptive building systems and lower the cost of these systems to competitive levels. The methodology presented in this paper describes one possible approach towards mass customization of responsive building envelopes and components. The dynamic envelope adapts due to the presence of actuators, which regulate ventilation and airfl w, light and solar gain, privacy and views. Although motors are the most common actuators, other options, such as hydraulic and pneumatic mechanisms are being currently tested. Besides the investigation regarding mechanical actuators, research in the field of shape memory alloy and smart thermo-bimetal materials has been initiated. By adopting materials that require no energy to be operated, the adaptive building system could require a low level of maintenance. Future research will most certainly lead towards designing system using and applying solar film to adjustable panels that orient themselves to track the sun; they could enable greater shading or sunlight penetration while also transforming energy. Further investigation could also lead to the designing of a human-computer interface allowing the user to directly interact with the sensor network system, e.g. via tablet computer or smart phone. The principle of adaptation pushed the apparent paradigm shift in the building construction industry. By challenging responsive strategies, the building industry could open up to emerging markets by entering a new era of innovation.
Computer-controlled folding becomes a method of making: it turns the flat aluminum surface into a three-dimensional one.
Besides the investigation regarding mechanical actuators, research in the field of shape memory alloy and smart thermo-bimetal materials has been initiated.
p.188: Detail view of structure p.190 top: Air-fl w simulations / control system. Where required, panels open allowing the air to pass through. p.190 bottom: The computational design approach allows infini e variation on a single theme. p.191: The rotations of the panels are automatically calculated according to the environmental constraints or userâ€™s behaviors. Hardware used: Kinect, Arduino micro-controller, stepper motor allowing the integration of both speed and position control at the same time. p.192: The envelope system regulates internal conditions by responding to external environmental conditions. The panels move accordingly to the angle of the sun, reducing the need for artificial lighting and air-conditioning. p.193 top and bottom: The transformable envelope adapts to the usersâ€™ movements. Driven by a bed of 16 stepper motors, the dynamic configu ations are generated as real-time calculations. pp.194-195 top: The algorithm turns three-dimensional surfaces into a collection of flat pieces. The panel profiles are laid out on 60-by-90-cm templates for cutting and folding. p.194 bottom: FaĂ§ade assembly, stepper motor circuit wiring up and testing. pp.196-197: Prototype
The authors would like to thank the sponsors Nieder, Ever Elettronica, Della Cagnoletta. This work has been promoted by the Politecnico di Milano School of Architectural Engineering. A special thank you to Professor Emilio Pizzi for his ongoing support. A combined thank you to Nick Novelli, Kat Park and Kyle Steinfeld for sharing their great sources of inspiration. This project utilizes Firefl , a Grasshopper set of tools developed by Andy Payne and Jason Kelly Johnson.
SCAN TO PRODUCTION: Heterogeneous Material features for digital Fabrication Hironori Yoshida, ETH Zurich ScanToProduction [STP] is a material oriented design/production process, integrating digital scanning, computer aided design and digital fabrication in a one-shot digital chain. This process is a modern translation of how craftsman reads characteristics of natural materials and dynamically reflects on fabrication processes. Thanks to the recent inexpensive sensing devices and the exponential rise of computing power, tools are final y able to adapt their machining processes to the heterogeneous nature of materials. The article examines how digital scanning techniques can be utilized in the digital fabrication of hybrid materials. It explores how imperfections discovered in natural materials can inform unique design solutions. In the fi st part, the technical scan-to-production process is explained. Secondly, this novel production model is discussed against current standardized production processes. The final part of the article introduces ways in which the proposed research method can be incorporated into emerging design practices through four realized projects, Digitized Grain [Yoshida, 2010], Digitized Grain Planks
exhibited at Milano Design Week [Yoshida et. al 2013] and Materializing Exhibition at Tokyo University of Arts , Timber X-Ray Scanning [Yoshida, In with EMPA, currently in development} and Project Yew at CAAD, ETH Zurich, 2013. Material production reflects the technology of the times. An important motivation in material design and construction within architecture is to establish relationships and elicit response through the use of materials. Modern material production places relevance on efficient y producing uniform, homogeneous artefacts from natural, irregular materials. With the aid of contemporary design techniques it is now possible to have material design make use of, and even feature explicitly, the imperfections of natural materials with minimal impact on production efficienc . The Scan-To-Production process, through the use of digital scanning and robotic fabrication, proposes to take material irregularities as design input, to distinguish and create meaningful order from material noise or imperfection.
It explores how â€˜imperfectionsâ€™ discovered in natural materials can inform unique design solutions.
...feature explicitly, the imperfections of natural materials with minimal impact on production efficiency.
What if fabrication machines could fl xibly adapt to irregular, heterogeneous material properties? It is now possible for designers to make use of realtime sensing and complex modeling algorithms through inexpensive devices and computing power. Willis et al combine these algorithms with CNC machines, resulting in interactive fabrication.1 The aim of STP is not necessarily to perform real-time, interactive fabrication, but instead prioritizes in capturing higher resolution of scanning data over real-time interaction. Moreover, STP focuses on the post processing of scanned data and its translation into fabrication processes, using this data as crucial design attributes instead of dismissing these characteristics as material defects. STP considers these as attributes that can intelligently inform the design process; material uniqueness exploited to its full design potential.
Features recorded with devices include such visual properties as grain-stratification, knots, aggregates and defects such as fungal stains and cracks [...]
The technical process of STP is as follows: a natural material with heterogeneous characteristics such as timber or stone is scanned, and information about the geometry of its physical structure are recorded and analyzed. Scanning devices used include a Kinect camera, Xray-CT scanners. Features recorded with such devices include visual properties like grain-stratification, knots, aggregates and defects such as fungal stains and cracks, as well as internal structures not able to be detected by the human eye. A design decision is then made as to which feature to utilize as a design input in the next step. The input is then fed into an algorithm developed within the coding environment Processing, which translates this input into machine code to create a unique cutting path for each material piece. The piece is then fabricated using its custom tooling path, using digital fabrication machines such as a 3-axis CNC milling machine, or a 6-axis KUKA robotic arm.
STP CONSIDERED AGAINST CURRENT PRODUCTION PROCESSES
Tools are the result of successive improvement, and the effort of all generations.
From the stones of the Egyptian pyramids to the modern brick, from the hand-worked logs of a log cabin to industrially manufactured dressed timber, we have continuously developed new ways of flat ening and standardizing irregular materials from natural environments into regular, uniform, repeatable and measurable units. Our living environment today consists mostly of massproduced artefacts, which is typically considered to be the consequence of industrialization and subsequent mass-production.2 Our tools of production mark out the stages of civilization [the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, the Industrial Age]. Tools are the result of successive improvement, and the effo t of all generations embodied in them is the direct and immediate
expression of progress.3 Likewise the perceived merit of standardization throughout history has changed from the Arts and Crafts rhetoric of the dehumanizing effects of industrialization, to the Modernists sleek promise of the machine. Fast forward then to the age of digital fabrication and distributed design process, the Third Industrial Revolution. The STP process is no diffe ent to historical tools in that it is a mark of its age. However this is the age of web-based collaboration, and small batch technology that has the potential to transform manufacturing. The STP process then, diffe s from traditional manufacturing processes in that it uses readily available technology: Kinect scanners, the open source coding environment Processing, and fabrication machines that could be readily hired (KUKA robotic arm) or built at home [3-axis CNC, RepRap]. The use of this technology is what allows the STP process to deal with material irregularity and natural complexity creatively as direct design input.
The following design projects are examples of how the STP process was successfully employed as a design and fabrication process.
1. Digitized Grain Prototype
Digitized Grain is a study of gradient material transitions for interior, furniture and product design applications. The specific property wood grain was chosen to inform the transition of one material to the other, in contrast to conventional joining seams usually employed when transitioning from diffe ent product surfaces. The two materials used are a plywood panel and polyester resin. The algorithm empolyed in this project transforms the scanned 2D-data to a 3D-model by converting the color values to depths of each pixel and connecting them with vector lines, which is used for CNC tooling. In this project the cutting path was utilized to reproduce the grain pattern as similarly as possible, to explore how the material could directly inform the tooling process. Thus the material behaves as if it defines the tooling processes. As a prototype interior wall panel, a 1200mm x 2400mm x 12mm board was fabricated. The outcome was a hybridization of materials enabled by a vivid, superimposed material texture on both materials. The resulting contrasting material combination between wood and polyester resin highlights their physical properties [opaque/ transparent, elastic/ rigid] and emotional materiality [natural/synthetic].4
2. Digitized Grain:
The Digitized Grain Planks exhibited at Milano Design Week, were also shipped to Tokyo and shown at the Materializing Exhibition in June
BUILDING The STP process is no different to historical tools in that it is a mark of its age.
The algorithm used in this project transforms the scanned 2D data to a 3D model by converting the color values to depths of each pixel and connecting them with vector lines.
2013. Moving up from a single plywood panel to 16 three-meter long timber planks, allowed for the STP artefacts to be tested at an architectural scale. The former product design application now became a fragmented wall. In contrast to the earlier Digitized Grain prototype, the cutting paths used in the fabrication of these planks was further refined and abstracted. Thus the grain pattern was less literal, while still hinting at the original structure. The scale of the installation highlighted the physical properties of the hybrid material to another level of experience from product to spatial element.
3. Timber X-Ray Scanning
The scale of the installation highlighted the physical properties of the hybrid material to another level of experience from product to spatial element.
With support from EMPA [Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology], aged lumber material is scanned with an industrial CT scanner to extract data about inner material structures. The project is currently investigating the development of a scanning system that uses a mobile x-ray source and a line detector attached to two robotic arms, to develop a system that can overcome the static size limitation of conventional CT scanners. This potentially allows for more fl xibility of the material scanning process, with further application to the on-site scanning of buildings. The non-destructive analysis procedure could be particularly beneficial to analysis of existing buildings.
4. Project Yew
European yew is a long-lasting material but slow growth timber with a long-standing cultural relevance; hence it is protected throughout Europe. Young small yews are collected and maintained by a forestry station at Uetliberg, a small mountain near Zurich. Taking advantage of digital processes from scanning to image processing to robotic fabrication, Project Yew was launched to explore an intelligent and economic use of yews. Initiated as an educational program for postgraduate students [MAS] at the chair of CAAD, ETH in Zurich, the project focuses on the locally grown yew and a possible application of the techniques discussed in this article. In summer 2013, FahrlĂ¤nder Scherrer Architects realized a new building for the Forestry of Zurich. As the building will be covered with a faĂ§ade of yew shingles, the architects invited the chair of CAAD to contribute to their project. In collaboration with the architects and the forester, several architectural elements were selected to work on through the program.
Yew is a locally vernacular timber. The forestry station in Uetliberg next to Zurich, is protecting the last great refuge of 80.000 European yews, equivalent to the amount of yew trees throughout Germany. In most areas in Europe, yew is almost
extinct or strictly protected, thus commercial use of the timber is not common or illegitimate. In the meanwhile in Zurich, the felled yews for maintaining the forest can be purchased with relatively large amounts at the forestry station. In spite of its highly capable properties, yews at the forestry station are only used for securing the Uetliberg infrastructure ,e.g. poles, stairs, timbering, but not in construction or carpentry. Zurich faces the situation to offer in comparatively large amounts of a kind of wood that cannot be found anywhere else.
One design proposal looks at designing balcony balustrades, lining up small tree branches with minimum fabrication processes. The project takes advantage of the raw shape of branches for its design quality. Firstly, using 123D provided by Autodesk, the branches are 3D scanned from several diffe ent perspectives, allowing users to obtain 3D-mesh models relatively fast with minimal preparation. Based on the acquired 3D-model of the branch, cutting paths for the jigsaw attached to a 6-axis robotic arm are created and translated into motion plan for the robot by KUKA|prc. The scanned and fabricated branches are sorted based on bounding box into gradient order regarding its dimensions.
FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS Scanning:
The current system adopts a slit scanning method to achieve uniform brightness values as well as to avoid lens distortion. Since both aspects can be computationally solved [i.e. through image reconstruction calculating lens distortion, sampling multiple RGB value on a same position and normalizing them], it is more recommended to take several scans from diffe ent positions and stitch the images together respectively. This method is also relevant to 3D-model reconstruction with 2D-images from diffe ent perspectives with 123D provided by Autodesk. .
Image segmentation is a key technical process in the development of STP. The current algorithm requires users to decide the right threshold value to segment grain patterns from backgrounds. Other image processing techniques that could be implemented include blob detection [OpenCV], where outlines of grain structures can be detected and labeled according to an index system. This would be useful to generate toolpaths to exactly follow grain patterns instead of generating parallel paths. Also, the motion paths generation for jigsaw cutting branches can be automated using computer vision techniques such as skeleton generation.
The project is currently investigating the development of a scanning system that uses a mobile x-ray source and a line detector attached to two robotic arms...
Image segmentation is a key technical process in the development of STP.
The motion paths generation for jigsaw cutting branches (Example 4) can be automated using
3D Model Reconstruction from scanning Data:
Digitized Grain Planks, 2013 Hironori Yoshida with Giacomo Cantoni and Pietro Pagliaro Hua Hao, Mathias Bernhard, Jessica In, David Schildberger, Demetris Shammas, Achilleas Xydis, Akihiko Tanigaito, Nan Jiang, Alessandro Tellini, Daniel Bachmann, Alessandro Mason.
Using the depth camera feature of the Kinect camera, the 7 axes of the KUKA robotic arm can be used to allow for a greater degree of freedom in generating and recombining point cloud data together with 123D. In combination with RGB camera inputs, this would be a significant technical development in the scanning process.
computer vision techniques such as skeleton generation.
Based on the acquired 3D model of the branch, cutting paths for the jigsaw attached to a 6-axis robotic arm are created.
These design and production projects illustrate how the STP process can provide alternative methods for design, prototyping and fabrication. The setup as currently developed provides an alternative approach to dealing with the complexity of natural materials, and the illustrated projects demonstrate the potential for this process to allow for design engagement to generate artefacts at multiple scales. The outlined projects further suggest how the STP approach has applications beyond material production that could be potentially developed for new architectural and prototyping means.
Digitized Grain, 2010, Hironori Yoshida
Timber X-Ray Scanning, 2013 - ongoing Hironori Yoshida and Jessica In, with Philipp Schuetz and Alexander Flisch [EMPA - Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology]. Project Yew, 2013 Hironori Yoshida [course mentor], Christoph Schindler [external advisor], Mathias Bernhard [technical advisor], Akihiko Tanigaito and Achilleas Xydis [MAS students].
p.198: prototype of the balustrade. p.201 top: original panel; thresholding; generated toolpath; milled panel p.201 center: finished esin-plywood panel. p.201 bottom: Detail of abstracted grain pattern. p.202: Digitized Grain installation @Ventura at Work, Milano Design Week. p.203 bottom: Digitized Grain Planks shipped to Tokyo , exhibited at Materializing Exhibition 2013. p.204: Isosurface output meshes from CT scans. p.204 bottom: mesh model of the scanned branch. p.205 top: CT Scans of timber made at EMPA. p.205 bottom: 3D printed mesh model of CT scanned wood.
1. K.D.D. Willis. C., Xu, K.J. Wu, G. Levin and M.D. Gross, ‘Interactive Fabrication: New Interfaces for Digital Fabrication’ in Proc. TEI ‘11, ACM, 2011, pp. 69-72. 2. Siegfried Gideon, Mechanization Takes Commands; Reprint edition. New York, NY: W W Norton & Co Inc, 1968. 3. Le Corbusier, Towards a New Architecture, trans by Goodman, J. Reprint, Miami: BN publisher, 2008 4. Hironori Yoshida, ‘Bridging Synthetic and Organic Materiality: Gradient Transitions in Material Connections’ in Biologically-Inspired Computing for the Arts: Scientific Data through Graphics, ed. by A. Ursyn, Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference, 2012, pp. 81-88.
ALGAL ARCHITECTURE: Integrating Biological Symbiosis Jacob Douenias, Carnegie Mellon University Our global society is wasteful. Human beings fuel their expansion on the earth by mining, pumping, drilling, damming, and other consumptive behaviors. We waste large proportions of our resources by pursuing, transforming, and transporting them. Once we have used up resources such as oil, natural gas, and coal, we won’t be able to manufacture anymore. If we were to instead rely upon resources that convert the sun’s energy directly into usable fuel and material by integrating with waste streams, then we can sustain ourselves. Algal Architecture: Integrating Biological Symbiosis suggests a low-cost process that enables to synthesize of what we need with much lower impact than conventional systems of consumerism.
CRADLE TO CRADLE
Green algae culture has the innate potential to work in a symbiotic capacity with human beings. Many organisms do show some symbiotic relationships with humans but the relevance of algae lies in its malleability and extremely high level of biogenic activity. Microalgae, found in our lakes, rivers, and oceans have been producing the majority of the world’s oxygen, oil and coal shale deposits for the past 3 billion years. They are photosynthetic organisms, which consume carbon dioxide and nutrients that we expel from our bodies, such as nitrogen and phosphorus. If we were to thoroughly integrate our biology and behavior with these microscopic organisms, we would be able to clean our water, sequester the current surplus of carbon,
If we were to instead rely upon resources that convert the sun’s energy directly into usable fuel and material by integrating with waste streams, then we can sustain ourselves.
If we were to instead rely upon resources that convert the sunâ€™s energy directly into usable fuel and material by integrating with waste streams, then we can sustain ourselves.
In an open loop the focus is only on the initial utility and not on the whole life cycle, as in a cradle-to-cradle approach.
produce oxygen, and provide us with clean and renewable fuel. The lipids manufactured within each algae cell can be extracted as vegetable oil and converted into biodiesel. Simultaneously, the waste biomass can be combined with kitchen waste and other compostable material to generate
burnable biogas and carbon dioxide, enriching the algae culture while removing a substantial amount of organic waste from landfills and sewers. This method uses algae to create an integrated system. The systemic way of thinking necessary for this type of project categorizes the project
Algal Architecture as a closed loop, featuring an integration of systems. Currently, the status quo of consumerism and waste management can be described as open loop system, which means that non-renewable resources are used and then eventually exhausted. In an open loop the focus is only on the initial utility and not on the whole life cycle, as in a cradle-to-cradle approach. This focus on initial utility also has the tendency to produce negative externalities like waste, and emissions. A closed-loop system on the other hand has no externalities and no emissions. In such a system, the waste from consumption is reconstituted as a valuable input to some other, but nevertheless specifical y defined, process within the system; waste, as we know it is essentially eliminated. A closed loop cradle-to-cradle system is necessary, since relying on biomass to solve our problems the same way power plants do now, could bear the risk of remaining in a situation where more waste is produced than re-, down- or up-cycled; politically and economically, power and resource supply would still remain in the hands of distant
and consolidated entities. Instead, using a closed loop algae system has the distinct possibility to be integrated into our homes, independently and costefficient. By living within a closed loop algae system users have the benefit of immediacy, control, and the ability to take responsibility for their resources.
Politically and economically, power and resource supply would still remain in the hands of distant
By increasing proximity to this system architecturally, heat stored in the thermal mass of algae water can be harnessed to feed gardens with rich biomass fertilizer, and power homes and vehicles with the energy embodied within the architecture of homes. Photo Bioreactors, transparent algae growth vessels, optimized for sunlight and governed by the laws of fluid mechanics and buildability can replace more inert traditional rain screens. These Photo Bioreactors are then fed with the aforementioned biogas derived from simple backyard food-scrap composters allowing algae to multiply rapidly and in doing so sequester large amounts of surplus carbon dioxide leaving only clean burning methane gas. Subsequently these hydrocarbons contained
and consolidated entities...
Photo Bioreactors, transparent algae growth vessels, optimized for sunlight and governed by the laws of fluid mechanics and buildability can replace more inert traditional rain screens.
The changing quality of light, from transparent to light green, is not just appealing, also the technology of homemade photo
within a rich, mature algae culture is converted into usable fuel for future use. Much of this process could occur within oneâ€™s own walls, extending the biology of human beings more into the fabric of architecture. The changing quality of light, from transparent to light green, is not just appealing, also the technology of homemade photo bioreactors is easy to adopt. These are two parameters, which can encourage the average home-owner to switch and to change to the way that we conventionally use and waste energy and material.
bioreactors is easy to adopt.
In order to learn what algae cultivation on a small scale actually means, and to test the impact and opportunity for a new typology of faĂ§ade system, a series of photo bioreactors and conceptual systems made of recycled water bottles and plastic materials were produced. This development stage was critical to establishing a working understanding of algae and some of its requisite systems. Testing site for a photo bioreactor system was a Southfacing window in one of the studio architecture spaces at Carnegie Mellon University. Initially the experiment consisted of a few water bottles filled with algae and an air pump to provide mixing and aeration. Over the course of the project the systems grew in size and complexity. Processes employed or speculated to design and fabricate more complex but at the same time clearer systems using CNC molding, vacuum forming, DIY blow-molding, and laser welding of plastic bags. As the scale of the photobioreactor systems increased, a sustainable solu-
tion for circulation was devised to avoid the need for larger electric pumps. A turbine made from a discarded bicycle wheel was fit ed with a 3-D printed peristaltic pump and was placed in front of a building exhaust box. This allowed a larger series of bioreactors to be operated passively; deriving all of the metabolic energy needed for photosynthesis from the sun and the mechanical energy to pump the water from the building exhaust.
Through continuous research I have learned that Algal Architectureâ€™s speculative systems can be integrated into a variety of constructible retrofit systems tailored to a variety of climates and demographics. The emphasis on Do-It-Yourself construction ensures that this technology is not only applicable in the field of high design in economically well developed countries, but more importantly it can be introduced to the poorest parts of the world where the proliferation of closed-loop living has potentially the largest impact. Sharing the expertise and infrastructure needed to achieve an algae based closed-loop house can be equally important to self-built urbanism and disaster relief. People living in these conditions may not have access to resources and infrastructure, but the entrepreneurial spirit and resourcefulness cultivated under these conditions would allow for the rapid implementation of algae photo-bioreactor powered closed-loop system where they are most needed.
p.206: close-up of algea groiwth in 5 gallon watercooler bottle - bioreactor p.208 top: Stud-wall water bottle photobioreactor retrofit p ototype. p.208 bottom: custom vacuum formed stackable plastic brick to hous standard water bottles p.209: Studio algae lab. p.210: Zip tied watter bottle bioreactor assembled with recycled components. p.211 top: 5-gallon water-cooler bottle bioreactor. CO2 bubbles feed algae and are evolved into O2. p.211 bottom: Bike wheel turbine powered by building exhaust.
DIE ANGEWANDTE [The Architecture Challenge 2012] Bence Pap and Andrei Gheorghe, University of Applied Arts Vienna The IOA Architecture Challenge is a series of international workshops initiated in 2011 by Andrei Gheorghe [Assistant Professor, IOA] and Bence Pap [Assistant Professor, IOA, Studio Greg Lynn] at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. The focus and intention behind the series is to challenge international students in a short period of time to fulfill a full planning construction cycle starting from spatial / formal concepts to actual fabrication and materialization in form of human scale structures. The challenge remains in this task twofold, both for students in their ability to process and quickly utilize new tools and a parametric driven approach towards design within certain feasible constraints in order to achieve a build structure in the end.
A time constrain applied to the design process itself as a combination top-down and bottom up processes. Students were free in the development of ideas that would lead up to design proposals of human scale structures and would have intricate formal articulations. Concepts were stripped of any functional ideas or rational program; instead
the only criterion for the structure was to use the opportunity of occupancy within its space of construction. On the other hand the process of materialization and rationalization of a fi stly speculative formal approach became the actual challenge within the second half of the project. Parametric tools were introduced step by step, and through a steep learning curve, initial design ideas could be brought into a realistic fabrication framework, responding to material constrains, time and available fabrication processes.
the process of materialization and rationalization of a firstly speculative formal approach became the actual challenge
The group explored various types of cellular populations as a rational to construct. The method of subdivision final y resulted into a funnel shaped minimal surface, suspended from 3 points. The initial design started with simple sketches, and ideas how people would move through the given warehouse-like space and observe the structure. The actual formation and modeling was achieved by Daniel Pikers Kangaroo plugin for Grasshopper. Cellular tessellation strategies varying continuously between hexagonal and triangular units were set up
funnel shaped minimal surface, suspended from 3 points
as a starting point investigating their structural capacities for a suspended structure. Structural forces were mapped out on the funnel with Grasshoppers structural design plugin Karamba, developed by Bollinger+Grohman engineers in conjunction with the IOA in Vienna. Tension, compression and deflection behavior of the initial model were used to inform the cellular setup and to specify each opening and gradual densities from hexagons to triangles in areas of higher stress. The digital setup could be modified in several iterations, always achieving a responsive state between structural optimization and form.
a 6m x 6m x 4m cellular structure with embedded structural optimization strategies
Apart from teaching students to setup of cnc/ cam files for the digital fabrication process, it was an integral part of the workshop to also provide students with knowledge about the logistics of fabrication and construction through the necessary organizational skills Assembly lines and various sub teams were formed to guide and help the process of the actual physical fabrication. Everybody worked together and as a team effo t only after 3 days the initial idea; a basic paper prototype had been turned into a 6m x 6m x 4m cellular structure with embedded structural optimization strategies.
Tadeas Klaban, Shota Tsikoliya Academy of Arts Architecture a. Design, Prague
Djordje Stanojevic, Marco Pizzichemi IUAV University of Venice Clemens Conditt, Ceren Yönetim, Maciej Chmara, Rene Meszarits, Andreas Quast, TU Wien
Johanna Jõekalda, Artur Staškevitš Estonian Academy of Arts Bianca Böckle, University of Liechtenstein Tamara Sumi, Univesity of Ljubljana Lenka Januskova, University of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague Tuğgen Kukul, ITU Istanbul Maria Smigielska, Poznan University of Technology, Poland Oana Bogatan, TU of Cluj Napoca Zhenyu Yan, U.f. Angewandte Kunst Jiří Vítek, Faculty of Architecture Brno Raouf M. Abdelnabi, UAE Özlem Altun, Yildiz Technical University Abraham Fung, Carleton University Benjamin Ennenmoser, TU Innsbruck Roberto Naboni, Milano University
IOA, University of Applied Arts, Vienna
Bence Pap, IOA, Studio Lynn Andrei Gheorghe, IOA Irina Bogdan Trevor Patt Clemens Preisinger, Bollinger+Grohmann Moritz Heimrath, Bollinger+Grohmann www.i-o-a.at http://architecturechallenge.wordpress.com
Institute of Architecture Oskar Kokoschka Platz 2 1010 Vienna www.i-o-a.at www.facebook.com/IoA.InstituteofArchitectureVienna Institute of Architecture Oskar Kokoschka Platz 2 1010 Vienna www.i-o-a.at www.facebook.com/IoA.InstituteofArchitectureVienna
University of Applied Arts „Die Angewandte“ - Institute of Architecture
University of Applied Arts „Die Angewandte“ - Institute of Architecture
Institute of Architecture Oskar Kokoschka Platz 2 1010 Vienna www.i-o-a.at www.facebook.com/IoA.InstituteofArchitectureVienna
DIG ital DES ign + FAB rication
DIG ital DES ign + FABofrication University Applied Arts „Die Angewandte“ - Institute of Architecture
DIG ital DES ign + FAB rication
POLITICS Ingeborg M. Rocker
[En]coding and [Re]coding Architecture: From Proto Types and Parametric Types Revisiting the Building Bulk in Hong Kong
Deren Guler and Xiaowei Wang
Andrea Rossi, Lila Panahikazemi
Spatializing the Social
[EN]CODING AND [RE]CODING ARCHITECTURE: From Proto Types and Parametric Types Revisiting the Building Bulk in Hong Kong Rocker - Lange Architects Ingeborg M. Rocker, Harvard GSD + Christian J. Lange, The University of Hong Kong [En]coding Architecture emphasizes the important role code played and still plays in the formation of architecture. Today perhaps more than ever before code, building codes and computational codes alike, direct architecture designs. Of course building and computer codes are not the same, however both have in common that they are a-formal, abstract and yet literally inform architecture and the architect’s choices. Rocker-Lange’s work is an inquiry into encoding architecture; it is a searching for both: the codes that have traditionally informed architecture and those codes that currently encode architecture. For Rocker-Lange the challenge is a strategic
reinterpretation of existing codes, a re-coding of precedent architectural and urban typologies. The project Systems of Multiplicity – Hong Kong [2011/2012], is such a strategic re-interpretation of existing codes: The project rethinks quotidian architecture and urbanism in Hong Kong, a city with an average density of over 6,300 people per square kilometer. As one of the most compact cities in the world, Hong Kong is a diverse and complex place where topographical constraints and unique historical circumstances have created extreme urban forms for the basic needs of city life Hong Kong’s buildings, residential and commercial alike, are predominantly based on the typology of
It is a searching for both: the codes that have traditionally informed architecture and those codes that currently encode architecture.
the tower. While this configu ation allows for many diffe ent interpretations, the common approach is based on a repetitive, reductive use of the same plans and sections and entire towers. The designs are driven by profit perspectives for the developer and take neither the everyday life inside nor outside the towers into consideration. Our project Systems of Multiplicity – Hong Kong is a critique of this perverted economical driven urbanism that not only repeats itself but also repeats simplified urban models that had been envisioned by modern Architects and city planners. Today’s simple repeat of modern urbanism strategies developed among others by Le Corbusier1 or Hilberseimer2 in response of the challenges cities faced at the beginning of the 20th century, seems highly problematic.3 What could then be potential other models that would more appropriately respond to the challenges of the 21st century? How could and should one react to the neglect of civic space, the increased privatization of the public domain in the misguided reinterpretation of modern projects that determine HK’s skyline and more importantly civic space today? One of the important results of the current developments in Hong Kong is the increasing internalization and privatization of the public realm over the last decade. Hong Kong’s inner city ratio of building mass to open space has been heavily
decreased, while the number of shopping malls has increased drastically: Shopping malls are privately owned and fall therefore under a diffe ent jurisdiction than the public space of the street. Streets become integrated into massive Podiums, that become the plinth of several interconnected towers, while former streets are swallowed by the plinth’s shopping mall system. The Podium towers are confused as cities or ‘city centers’ that in fact create entire isolated elevated neighborhoods, while effecti ely erasing and obscuring the truly civic realm of the existing street grid. The public realm is no longer publically accessible as it is relocated to either the gated interior of the building or to the gated roof of the plinth. While Hong Kong’s city grid and civic domain has been dramatically challenged over the course of the last 10 years through either gigantic inner city shopping malls, like Pacific Place, or aggregations of podium tower complexes, such as Whampoa Garden, other developments in the city provide spaces that suggest the arrival of a new typology, which could also suggest a rethinking of zoning and building codes. Due to the extreme density and the severe topographical shifts in the terrain in Hong Kong a new typology of vertical public streets has developed; most prominently along the central elevated walkways, spanning from admiralty to
Our project Systems of Multiplicity – Hong Kong is a critique of this perverted economical driven urbanism that not only repeats itself but also repeats simplified urban models that had been envisioned by modern Architects and city planners.
Streets become ‘integrated’ into massive Podiums, that become the plinth of several interconnected towers, while former streets are swallowed by the plinth’s shopping mall system.
They may evoke â€˜public streetsâ€™ but in fact they are privately owned and controlled interior spaces.
central, but also within buildings, like the Hopewell Centre. In contrast to many Western building typologies, mixed used high rises emerged: Within these structures shops and restaurants can be found far beyond the in Western citiesâ€™ typical 2nd floor level. The internal circulation of these buildings, horizontally as well as vertically distributed become public yet interiorized streets, that link the vertically stacked shops, restaurants
and offices with one and another, or that allow to enter the building from diffe ent elevations. Despite their complex interwoven public spaces, all of those have similar fate than those in the platform towers: they may evoke public streets but in fact they are privately owned and controlled interior spaces. Our project consequently tries to rethink these spaces as truly public spaces. How can the relation of zoning code and building code be changed in
order to allow for a true rather than a pseudo public space to occur in both: the traditional urban fabric and the high-rise buildings of Hong Kong. The loss of true and the evocation of pseudo public, and perhaps more importantly, civic space, is rarely problematized in architecture and urban planning. Only a few urban planners and architects like Rem Koolhaas, who analyzed Shibuya Station in Tokyo as a 24hour vertical urban architecture, drew attention to this urban phenomenon in hyper dense cities like Tokyo or Hong Kong.4 This is surprising given the rapid densifications of Asian cities. How can one rethink and encode civic space for cities with a high population density as horizontal and vertical spaces? How can truly public/civic exterior space continue to exist in an ever more compacted and thus sustainable urban landscape?
The building code is conceptually the genetic DNA for the life and success of cities. If the code is misused, the vitality of a city can suffe . Hong Kong is massively shaped by the building code and its exact interpretation by proﬁt-driven developers. The call for density is a necessity, however quality of urban space should not suffe . The question that strikes us: How can we rethink the zoning and building code in reflection of public space typologies / morphologies? In a city like Hong Kong e.g. the building envelope, which usually expands to the maximum boundary of the site deﬁnes the void space or possible exterior public space. It could be argued that the GFA [gross ﬂoor area] for building plots is responsible for this dilemma. While the GFA could be theoretically freely interpreted and would allow for many diffe ent versions of integration of
If the code is misused, the vitality of a city can suffer. Hong Kong is massively shaped by the building code and its exact interpretation by proﬁt-driven developers.
Rocker-Lange Architect’s project interrogates besides the codes that constitute the current developments
public and open space into the building bulk, the common practice is to extrude the boundaries of the plot area to the limit to maximize the GFA. But how could in Hong Kong, with its limited resource of land and highly proﬁt-driven urbanization concepts, an open public/civic space in which society can develop culturally, politically and socially be reintroduce?
also the design, building and living circumstances.
The rule-based model can vary and adapt to different site, programmatic and environmental conditions.
Rocker-Lange Architect’s project interrogates besides the codes that constitute the current developments also the design, building and living circumstances in order to develop possible alternative design techniques that can result in a series of horizontal and vertical civic space configu ations that vary and possibly produce unique urban and architectural living conditions. Diffe ent existing urban typologies were studied for their potential to provide public space/civic space. How could those spaces that typically exist on the ground be re-thought vertically? How can they continue form the horizontal into the vertical? Diffe ent typologies and there relationships were studied, tested and encoded to define a public / civic ground that could exist as well horizontally as well as vertically. Rocker-Lange’s hypothetical project establishes an alternative system to deﬁne building bulk: Instead of extruding the maximum boundary condition of the site, this model
incorporates a ratio of open space. At its core there is a computational logic that calculates the amount of open space necessary. The rule-based model can vary and adapt to diffe ent site, programmatic and environmental conditions. Outcomes never look identical and result in speciﬁc massing identities. The intention of this set-up is to produce varying spaces and varying densities and ratios between solid and void conﬁgurations. The spaces are distributed throughout the building bulk with the consequence of a continuous vertical organization that will work as public spaces. The design focuses on those zones where two typologies overlap as they provide for the transitional space necessary to migrate from one public space typology into the next. Cores follow the typologies and shift. Transfers between cores becomes necessary, which will stimulate a public realm in those areas where one typology transients into the next.
RE-CODING TYPOLOGIES: From type to typological seriality
With the introduction of digital media and digital manufacturing processes, the conception of modularized architecture constructed out of nearly identical industrially mass-produced components has been challenged, along with it the simple extraction of buildings. Today, with the use of the computers, architecture and urban designs
The here proposed parametric prototype has a remarkable resemblance with Quatremère de Quincy’s notion of type, which was described as a set of rules.
Essential to the envisioning of the future and a rethinking of the present will be a constant recalibration of the relationship between tradition and innovation.
could instead be realized as varying prototypes of a series. Rocker-Lange Architects calls this circumstance: serial multiplicities. Within each series, that has one and the same set of codes underlying, a variety of design versions can be realized. Each of these design versions is unique and yet also part of the series. Rather than having a fi ed form, this approach offe s the ability to develop models that describe a fl xible space that is based on a set of relationships of discrete elements. Hence, the designer is able to constantly redefine and alter the model, capable of producing many possible versions based on varying input data. The here proposed parametric prototype has a remarkable resemblance with Quatremère de Quincy’s notion of type, which was described as a set of rules [categories], which generate a great variety of forms under the principles those forms share. Quite similarly the algorithm of parametric prototypes, is the set of rules that defines the realm of possibilities with in which design may occur. All design versions of one algorithm are related and yet not necessarily uniform. Instead of repeating the same, as it is characteristic for modernity’s mass-produced and mass-replicated prototypes, the parametric prototypes of the after-modern era, repeat the same design protocol in order to set design versions forth-serial multiplicities. RockerLange’s projects are serial multiplicities:
The projects are informed through several interrelated parameters that generate infini e urban- and tower-versions within the a priori defined f amework of operation. The projects are critical of too formal and toolreliant effo ts, instead Rocker-Lange’s projects are increasingly alert to the opportunities, and to the deficiencies, engendered by dependency on the tools and the processes they allow for. This alertness is paralleled by an increasing interest in the power of computation for a critical analysis and synthesis of design. Parametric architecture has thus recently involved projects centered on typological redefinition. Parametric types are developed to revisit and challenge traditional architectural types. Essential to the envisioning of the future and a rethinking of the present will be a constant recalibration of the relationship between tradition and innovation, knowledge and imagination, presentation and representation, the analog and the digital.
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Le Corbusier, Urbanisme, G. Crès, Paris: 1925. Le Corbusier exhibited at the International Exposition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Arts the Pavilion Esprit Nouveau  in Paris. The Pavilion represented a modular apartment as they were projected for his urban proposal for Paris: the Plan Voisin. The plan, which suggested to replace the traditional urban fabric of central Paris with 200m high skyscrapers, was exhibited in the pavilion. See also: Stanislaus von Moos, ‘From the ‘City for 3 million inhabitants’ to the ‘Plan Voisin’’ , in Le Corbusier in Perspective, ed. by Peter Serenyi, 1975, 125-138. 2. Compare with: Ludwig Hilberseimer, Groszstadt Architektur / von Hilberseimer, Stuttgart: J. Hoffmann, 1927 Hilberseimer suggested among the separation of programs also the separation of cars and pedestrians. 3. Charles Jencks, The Language of Post-Modern Architecture, New York: Rizzoli, 1984. Source: Missouri History Museum, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. 4. Only a few architects and urban planners engaged in the subject matter: Jerold Kayden for New York, Rem Koolhaas for Tokyo and a few others for Hong Kong. Compare with: Jerold Kayden, Privately Owned Public Space: The New York City, London, New York: Wiley, 2000. Adam Frampton, Jonathan D. Salomon and Clara Wong, Cities without Ground, A Hong Kong Guidebook, Hong Kong: Oro Editions, 2012. Barrie Shelton, Justyna Karakiewicz, Thomas Kvan, The Making of Hong Kong: From Vertical to Volumetric, London: Routledge, 2010. Rem Koolhaas, SMLXL, New York: Monacelli Press, 1995.
p.218 Matrix of diffe ent tower typologies and their respective versions. Rocker-Lange Architects, 2011, exhibited at the Hong Kong | Shenzhen Biennale 2011/2012. p.220 top and bottom: Repetition of the same as a direct reflection of the encoding of building code, economic code and a reminiscence of a discursive urban vision into architecture, into the urban. Image sources: Photography, by Michael Wolf, Graphic on the right by Rocker-Lange Architects, 2011. p.221 top: The Pruitt-Igoe Housing Project by Minoru Yamasaki build in the 1955 in St. Louis. p.221 bottom left: Detail of Plan Voisin, 1925 by Le Corbusier reflecting the changes in transportation and building technologies of his era. p.221 bottom right: The Pruitt-Igoe Housing Project by Minoru Yamasaki build,1955, St. Louis and its implosion, 1972. p.222 top: Hong Kong’s Podium Tower typology. Source: Barrie Shelton, Justyna Karakiewicz, Thomas Kvan, The Making of Hong Kong: From Vertical to Volumetric, London: Routledge, 2010. p.222 bottom: Extreme topographical changes and the population density of HK new opportunities for a vertical public domain developed. Source: Ibid. p.223 All images: Encoded and re-coded: Matrix of Existing Typologies and their transformations, Rocker-Lange Architects, 2011/2012. p.224 Urban morphologies and their potential to provide public/civic space are defined and encoded. A verticalization of selected typologies and their hybridization are studied, encoded and re-coded. Image: Rocker-Lane Architects, 2011, exhibited at the Hong Kong | Shenzhen Biennale 2011/2012. p.225 top: Matrix of diffe ent typological configu ations and their potential to create public and private space. Rocker-Lange Architects 2011, exhibited at the Hong Kong | Shenzhen Biennale 2011/2012. p.225 bottom: Elevations of the project. Showcasing irregular and regular distribution of public/civic space throughout the building. The ratio of open space to bulk mass remains the same, only the degree of diffe entiation and the distribution of the space in relation to the inhabitable space changes. Source: Rocker-Lange Architects, 2011, exhibited at the Hong Kong | Shenzhen Biennale 2011/2012. p.226 Diffe ent public/civic space typologies inscribed in the bulk mass. The ration of public/civic space to bulk mass is increasingly diffe entiated, yet remains in its totality the same. Image: Rocker-Lange Architects, 2011, exhibited at the Hong Kong, Shenzhen Biennale 2011/2012.
FLOAT_Beijing Deren Guler, Carnegie Mellon University Xiaowei Wang, Harvard GSD In the spring of 2012, global attention shifted to an invisible, imperceptible landscape; particulate matter suspended in the air smaller than 2.5 microns in diameter. The source of all this attention was the Beijing US Embassy’s independent monitoring and subsequent public broadcast via Twitter of air quality readings, which at one point was evaluated as crazy bad. The Embassy’s data was targeted towards its own population of US citizens living abroad who are accustomed to higher standards for air quality. The application of US standards to Chinese air quality added to an existing sensitivity of the Chinese government to a legacy of imported expert knowledge and foreign science with embedded imperialist tendencies. Hence the Chinese government regarded the US Embassy reports to be rather abrasive than helpful, accusing the US of violating the terms
of diplomatic relations. ‘… air quality monitoring and dissemination of involving the public interest of society, government-owned public power, the Consulate of the individual countries to conduct their own air quality monitoring, and to issue air quality information from the internet, is not only inconsistent with the Vienna diplomatic relations, the spirit of the Convention, the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, but also in violation of the relevant provisions of environmental protection…’, [Wu Xiaoqing, China’s Vice Minister of Environmental Protection] FLOAT_Beijing took the issue of monitoring air pollution/air quality as driving force, and suggests a possibility of mining relevant data independently from governmental restrictions, methodologies and strategies; local, fast and clean, embracing communities, tradition and available smart
The source of all this attention was the Beijing US Embassy’s independent monitoring and subsequent public broadcast via Twitter To issue air quality information from the internet, is not only inconsistent with the Vienna diplomatic relations...
The sensors themselves were equipped with LEDs, which changed color according to levels of sulfur dioxide, VOCs, ozone and nitrogen dioxide...
The biopolitical element of governmentcontrolled data was subject to examination.
technology at the same time. Beijing’s air pollution issues are multi-scalar, physically in the vertical and horizontal dimension and economically. The extent of air pollution relies heavily on where the boundaries of the system are being drawn. On the ground, a single 2.5 micron particle is invisible to the human eye, at a fraction of 2/100ths of a grain of sand. In high concentrations, it forms dense smog that seems to shroud Beijing for most of the year. At the urban scale, air quality is aggravated by Beijing’s large network of highly congested streets and roadways, over capacity in their use by 5 million cars. In addition 22 million city residents consume a vast amount of food, water, and material goods, and output an equally immense amount of waste; along with the many factories, coal burning power plants that line the outer edges of the city, and the trash incinerators in the city that burn 25% of the city’s waste. Further Beijing’s geography traps air inside a temperature inversion during the summer by higher elevations that surround the city’s center, creating a layer of impenetrable dust and smog. As a participatory design project FLOAT_Beijing tackled the issue of air quality data availability through grassroots science and citizen sensing. Since the traditional practice of kite making is part of the Beijing community life, FLOAT_Beijing drew upon the kite hobbyists. From young DIY
enthusiasts to older kite masters, all participants were highly engaged, and expressed their views on the design of the module and future improvements for the project. A series of community workshops were held where local residents assembled the modules together including air quality sensors. The sensors themselves were equipped with LEDs, which changed color according to levels of sulfur dioxide, VOCs, ozone and nitrogen dioxide, creating a spectacle of lights in Beijing’s summer night sky above Beijing’s Dianmen public plaza. On the whole the project triggered vibrant conversations on the availability of air quality data in Beijing, its shaping the environment. Urban infrastructures have been continuously evolving under technological advancement, with each new configu ation heralding a death of the city, to assertions of architecture’s becoming both radically homogenous and generic. Picket signs and protests have been transformed into online maps drawing from user-generated databases. If urbanism, as Foucault refers to, was formerly about the management and control of circulation and movement, it is now being transformed into an arbitration of risk and events. For FLOAT_Beijing, the biopolitical element of government-controlled data was subject to examination. Kite flying was critical to transcend the usual group of young
FLOAT Sensing Module
- 5v + 220 ohm
FLOAT Sensing module parts attiny 45 (micro controller)
protoboard 5v battery optional: sd card breakout board optional: gprs/gsm sim reader+modem
professionals with Weibo [the Chinese version of Twitter] accounts and VPNs. Having dealt with designing material infrastructures alongside their ecological and social intentions for a long time, we are now in the midst of the information age, where system thinking offe s strategies for designing unseen landscapes, for good or for worse. Since feedback loops of information and production of data from monitoring remain thoroughly intertwined with social, economic and political dimensions of the landscape, and ultimately expose how data continues to augment our physical and capitalist realms, future plans for FLOAT_Beijing is to plugging into existing social systems for critical data infrastructure in Beijing. Although unseen and invisible, they are a set of networked ecologies that we must not ignore, when designing systems that merge material and virtual matter, we must not ignore, when designing systems that merge material and virtual matter.
p.228: Still from GoPro video. p.230 top: FLOAT Workshop Flyer. p.231 top: FLOAT Workshop participant with kite flying wheel. p.231 center: Schematic diagram of FLOAT module and sensor parts. p.231 bottom: Launching kites during night time kite flight at Deshengmen Plaza
We are now in the midst of the information age, where system thinking offers strategies for designing unseen landscapes, for good or for worse.
SPATIALIZING THE SOCIAL: Computational Strategies for Integrated Design in Informal Areas of Istanbul Lila PanahiKazemi and Andrea Rossi, DIA, Temporary Autonomous Architecture Contemporary computational design methods are heavily based on the study of bottom-up processes of self-organization and evolution, especially in the natural world. Nevertheless, when we think about built outcome of these studies, a deep contradiction emerges. Indeed, the study of bottom-up systems and processes ends up needing a deep top-down approach, and the study of the self-organization of nature totally ignores the study and relationship with the processes of self-organization that pertain to the human world, on each the social, economical and urban level. Our research is based on Istanbul, a city where this contrast between these icons of modernization and real self-organized urban processes is striking.1 Even if these processes
are widespread, especially in the eastern world metropolis, Istanbul emerges for the fact that the informal self-built settlements have reached a legal, and we could also say, fully urban determination. These settlements, called Gecekondu, are built over night, recalling a old Ottoman law stating that a safely built construction created during the night would be considered legal the day after.2 These settlements have been developing since the beginning of the 20th century, pushed by the attractivity of the city due to industrialization. The absence of funding for social housing prompted immigrants to Istanbul to self-construct and self-organize basic housing and infrastructure. In the 1950s and 60s, the government began to
The products of computational architecture tend to become the new flagships of the old corporations, always hungry for new icons.
Today, with the development of neoliberal policies and the transformation of Istanbul into a global city, these settlement are heavily threatened by eviction and demolition, in order to open up new lands to speculation and retail areas development.
introduce state-led housing services and topdown infrastructure. Today, with the development of neoliberal policies and the transformation of Istanbul into a global city, these settlement are heavily threatened by eviction and demolition, in order to open up new lands to speculation and retail areas development.3 The creation of TOKI, the agency for mass housing, a new model of low income neighborhood have been proposed, a model that is not contextual, not relational and not sustainable.4 There is a need to find a common ground, to use a current definition, between the two planes of top-down development and bottomup growth, between the city built by planners, based on statistics and building code, and as the grown outcome of the needs of inhabitants of informal areas. We need an interface, a system of interconnections between the two levels that would allow for a continuous exchange of informations and materials, in order to construct coherent neighborhoods and strong dynamic communities. We believe that the computational design tools offer a possibility for the actualization of this strategy.
SIMULATION The most relevant step have been the introduction of a simple economic model in the simulation, that allowed for the representation of the complex interrelations ...
To tackle this issue, our research started from the basic social and physical mechanisms that determine the growth of these settlements. The basic parameters [income, need for productive gardens, road distance, social groups composition, topography] have been combined in a series of algorithms, that allowed to simulate digitally the growth patterns of these settlements. The algorithms have been developed additively, introducing rules one on top of each other, comparing at every step the resulting formations with the real neighborhoods and the changes
resulting from each new rule.5 This has given the great advantage of building a relatively fl xible simulation, where diffe ent parameters can be interpolated according to the need and the characteristics of the analyzed neighborhood. All the rules define a spatial relationship between the elements of the simulation, including the relationship between roads and building position, orientation and alignment, between the topography and the size of the units, between units and their relative plots. The most relevant step have been the introduction of a simple economic model in the simulation, that allowed for the representation of the complex interrelations that emerge between built form, garden size, that allows for an increase of the income through urban farming, and allows for the composition of the families inhabiting the unit. After some tests on an existing road network, the simulation have been expanded by the introduction of a multi-agents system to define the growth of a new urban network as the starting point of the simulation. Two families of autonomous agents have been distributed on the topographical surface of the area, one always searching for the highest slope of the terrain and the second one searching for the lowest one. The two groups defined in this way a hierarchical network of connections, where the high-slope agentsâ€™ trails created the road armature of the area, while the low-slope agents defined the secondary connections between the main network. The resulting simulation shows a wide variety of behaviors in response to diffe ent economical parameters and diffe ent topographical determinations. More than that, the additive logic of the algorithm seems to allow a great adaptability of the model to other contexts rather than Istanbul.
LAB AT MEDIACITIES 4, BUFFALO
In order to test the possibilities of such a methodology, we tutored a workshop at the MediaCites 4 conference at the University at Buffalo [SUNY], where we introduced students to the ideas behind this research and to the techniques used for urban simulation. The student were introduced to the diffe ent topics in an additive way, testing each rule independently and subsequently adding it on top of the previous rules. After the introduction of diffe ent topic and techniques (income-based growth, potentials, segregation...), each student was challenged to introduce a new set of rules of his/her own choice, attempting to use the developed simulation to generate a diffe ent outcome and to test possible scenarios. Explored topics ranged from the modeling of the emergence of a central business district, with variations in density according to the distance from this centre, to understanding and representing the influence of topography in the creation of a urban environment. The results of the workshop showed the potential for open planning methodologies, where the process of understanding and design are kept opened through all the steps of development, which for interventions and suggestions from a wider public. In order to further increase the reach and the possibilities of the method, all the codes developed during the workshop have been shared freely under a Creative Commons licence.6
drive and enact urban changes. These behaviors emerge when digital tools are not simply used as generators of a novel formal vocabularies, and start to be understood as powerful systems of information processing, modelling and, in many extents, thinking. These tools aim to act as platforms for cultivating a more integrated and contextual practice for urban and architectural design. The data driven nature of the computational medium is starting point for an open urban planning procedures, both towards the citizen, who should become more integrated and be able to actually interact with the proposed plan, and also between professionals, where open platform of simulations, decision-making and discussion would allow for the emergence of a more integrated and contextual practice of urban and architectural design.7
In order to test the possibilities of such a methodology, we tutored a workshop at the MediaCites4 conference at the University at Buffalo.
The overall approach, made possible by the integration of digital modelling techniques in the realm of social, economical and urban decision making, shows the potential that for using computational tools as a way to understand,
First stage Gecekondu First stage Gecekondu single storey-owner occupied . single storey-owner occupied .
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p.232: Plan view of the simulation output on the Derbent neighbourhood. p.234: Perspective view of the simulation output on the Derbent neighbourhood. p.235: Screenshot of the code interface – Building growth simulation. pp.236-237: Historical timeline of development of informal housing in Istanbul.
a full version of the project can bw found at http://issuu.com/andrearoxrossi/docs/130822_ theisbooklet_cc [accessed September 2013]
incresing land price and land price and incresing unaffordable rents made unaffordable rents made housing a major housing issue a major issue
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new law regularize new law regularize add-ones TOKI the add-ones TOKI the approval from 80-83 the to law to Land Office 80-83 thehousing law to mass mass housing federal government legalised illegallylegalised moderatethe land the illegally administration administration to establish Sabgazi builtand squatter housed, price provide built squatter dealing withhoused, housingdealing with housing Beledieyeh. but the owner andallowed for different but allowed the owner as for lower-income foralower-income to add up to 4 storey.to add up sectors. to 4 storey. residence. residence.
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CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Yasar Adanaly, Casidy Johnson, Forced Evictions in Istanbul: Living in Voluntary and Involuntary Exclusion. 2. Miranda Iossifidis, A Study of the Gecekondu in Istanbul, Turkey, Thesis available online at: exchange.drawloop.com/published/download/11576. 3. A. B. Candan, B. Kolluoglu, ‘Emerging Spaces of Neoliberalism: A Gated Town and Public Housing Project in Istanbul’, in New Perspectives on Turkey, no. 39, 2008, pp.5-46. 4. Ayse Pamuk, ‘Convergence Trends in Formal and Informal Housing Markets: The Case of Turkey’ in Journal of Planning Education and Research, no. 16, 1996. 5. Michael Batty, Cities and Complexity: Understanding Cities with Cellular Automata, AgentBased Models and Fractals, The MIT Press, Cambridge, 2007. 6. Andrea Rossi, InteractivePlanningIstanbul, GitHub, https://github.com/AndreaRossi1988/InteractivePlanningIstanbul, 2013, [accessed September 2013]. 7. Berlage Institute, SpaceFighter. The Evolutionary City (Game). http://web.mit. edu/kkdb/www/ newhome/amachine/sf/readings/RR-1yr-MAAS-A5. pdf.
VISIONS Matteo Taramelli and Nikita Azarkhin Alex Woodhouse and Leah Zaldumbide Matteo Maraviglia Maj Plemenitas Galileo Morandi and Silvia Bertolotti
Alchemic Psychosis Desert Driftboat the allHOLE Project Cross Scalar ] LINK [ Complex Heterogeneous Systems Living Nature
ALCHEMIC PSYCHOSIS: Dendritic Network for ritualized sensoric Trauma Matteo Taramelli, Nikita Azarkhin , DIA Alchemic Psychosis: Dendritic Network for ritualized sensoric Trauma discusses the idea of psychogeography, defined as â€˜the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of individuals.â€™1. It is a research-based project devoted to the investigation into the powerful correspondence between selforganized systems in nature and the emergence of architectural scenarios. The project was carried out in two phases, phase one, researching and simulating the adaptive growth behavior of a particular material; phase two, understanding the knowledge gained in phase one as systemic approach to urban intervention. The multilayered invention was developed through feedback
between diffe ent fields of research. Phase one focused on the analysis of dendritic crystals growth, a complex nanostructure that has many peculiarities, such as the ability to provide a natural framework for the study of disordered systems. Several experiments with solutions of copper sulfate salt allowed us to understand the rules of crystals growth and teh factors that influenced the geometry, speed and direction of growth. Digital simulations then translated the principles observed in our physical experimentations to a controlled virtual environment. There is a variety of emerging parameters that have a major influence on the dendritic growth and affect the type of process; the presence of impurities in a solution works as catalyzer for the diffusion of molecular clusters,
Alchemic Psychosis: Dendritic Network for ritualized sensoric Trauma discusses the idea of psychogeography.
the temperature define the direction of expansion and the density of saturation is suggesting the magnitude of the entire phenomenon. The general process of crystal growth is defined by the Diffusion limited aggregation [DLA] model. In DLA, external forces cluster particles into complex aggregates. During phase two of the research we integrated our DLA algorithm into a multi-agent system, that analyzed demographic and geographic data. The designed form of Alchemic Psychosis therefore can be regarded as a reaction on its surrounding envronment. The project reviewed the provocative agenda of psychogeography, and, as an extension, suggested an active feedback between users and architecture;The site chosen was a derelict cargo train station, the program incorporated workshops, laboratories, meeting areas and restaurants / bars for the citizens. Given that the architectural gestalt is scripted in accordance to the cityâ€™s demographic data, tentacles reach out into the areas with the most attractors. Programmatically the project envisaged a space, where people are drawn together to learn with and from each others. The multi-agent system, that organized the whole project, allowed us to create a network that offe ed an architecture that exisits in a symbiotic relationship with its users.
The idealistic aim of the project envisaged a space,
CITATIONS / REFERENCES / NOTES
1. Guy Debord, Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography, (1955, Les Levres Nues, 6), trand. Ken Knabb
where people come together to learn with and from each others.
p.240: Iterations of system behavior combining DLA algorithm and genealogy of crystal growth using processing. pp.242-243: Visions of prototypical architectures reflecting he design process. p.242 bottom: Processing sketch showing an iteration of multi-agent behavior on site.
Alex Woodhouse and Leah Zaldumbide, CalArts Desert Driftboat investigates the prospect of an alternative, event-driven, nomadic society, fleeing the overbearing, cosmopolitan lifestyle of urbanity in favor of a simplified yet profound way of living. Seeking respite from a culture of extreme density, poor air quality, automotive dependence, materialism and ownership, this nomadic civilization has emerged in the barren desertscape of the Salton Sea. Tasked with providing a new locale for mega-events such as Coachella and Burning Man, a colony of machines autonomously roams the desert while mapping the civilizationâ€™s migratory patterns, driven strictly by features of the landscape. Each drone works tirelessly, creating clusters of living from locally extracted resources as it traverses the desert terrain. As a prototype, the Arduino-driven mobile drawing machine senses and responds to its environment, employing a webcam to identify a route of travel and tool-paths to simulate. At build locations, the robot translates complex linework into coordinated stepper motor movements made visible in the output of digitized illustrations. These resultant micro-scale illustrations are congruent with the projectâ€™s overall proposal of landscape intervention. Sited within the expansive Coachella and Imperial Valley regions, the scalar magnitude of these aggregations and the machines that produce them is as monumental as the ambitious process that resulted in the formation and failure of the Salton Sea - itself a product of human ingenuity and catastrophe. Only over considerable durations in time can the significance of the machineâ€™s acts on the landscape and the nomadic population be fully realized.
THE allHOLE PROJECT Matteo Maraviglia, Politecnico di Milano MEPHISTOPHELES ‘Sie ist gerichtet’ STIMME von oben ‘ist gerettet’ Goethe’s Faust, vol. 1, 4611 - 4612 The aLLhOLE project was developed as Scenario Design Research within the Research Group Design & Innovation for Sustainability, Department of Design, Politecnico di Milano, and investigates into a futurist vision for urban development through the biological process of creation through destruction. The aim is to carry out a smooth but violent overturn of the fi ed processes that characterize contemporary cities, which are still firm y anchored to 20th century notions, suggesting an alteration to the urban grid of NYC. At the end of an industrial society and the emergence of what we might define as a real digital revolution, above all philosophical and not technological, it has come to a situation in which the strong and absorbed modernity of the last
century has given way to an ephemeral, evanescent and widespread new human condition. The current society, known as liquid society, carries on in a constant state of crisis and variation. It is no longer conceivable in terms of continuity and stability, and its nature is turbulent and changeable. The city is replaced by territory of complexity is comprised of interactions, information, products, services and connections. Everything is intangible with the absolute absence of predetermination. Architecture and Cities, as they used to be, and as they are now, have no reason to exist as atoms anymore; in the current reality they are rather a phenomenon, set of information or event. Space is no longer static, but alive. Rarefied connective tissue creates a dense network of interactions and layers of reality mostly invisible. Space is no longer occupied by built architecture, but by interaction, people and streams. The predominant culture strives to keep alive a world, which is out of time, inappropriate and nonevolutionary. The new world is anonymous, a body in state change.
a futurist vision for urban development through the biological process of creation It is no longer conceivable in terms of continuity and stability, and its nature is turbulent and changeable
the ‘virus’ is inoculated into the existing urban body of NYC
It loses its typological/functional pattern to be replaced by a topological/ interawwwctive feature.
A method akin to biological viral growth and mutation in a biological laboratory is used, where a retrovirus is generated, obtaining its molecular map and genetic code from the universal database of the Universal System of Virus Taxonomy [ICTV]. After exported and displayed in its tridimensional structure, the ‘virus’ is inoculated into the existing urban body of NYC. During the incubation period the city seemingly maintains a semblance of normality, despite the virus beginning to organize its parasitic dynamics, processes, which are not yet visible. In this transitional period, the principles begin to adjust and the existing urban tissue will soon be subjected to critical mutation. The entity infects the urban body and proliferates according to its own development scheme. Once city cells get infected, the viruses lose their structural stability. These new entities interact with the existing; a process that causes a necrosis of the urban tissue and the geometric grid, provoking severe spatial mutation. The city decays and rips itself apart, loses its physical stiffness and literally opens itself to complex interactive scenarios. It loses its typological/functional pattern to be replaced by a topological/interactive feature.
Lesions, emerged through the decaying process and regenerated wounds, transform into underground galleries, graft with a new territorial tissue, an intestinal epithelium, villi, generated through scripted surface tessellation. A phage culture nurtures the geofront, a natural system based on underground expansion that traces the same conditions present in the superficial ecosystem and that fl ws out the existing city. A forest and a river grow among the intestinal villi, and offer an alternative living space in the new auto-generated city. The tridimensional structure of the virus map acts as a binding agent between the diffe ent parts, an interstitial space allowing dynamic interaction of activities and fl ws of cultural information, physical atoms and data. A new model of urban spatiality is created. Ephemeral and underground; an extension of the existing, industrial city on the surface, takes the form of a complex ecosystem, where within the artificial, human and social spaces nature grows out of the same genetic material towards a synthesis. This unitary organism, loses its own boundaries and limits, and appears as an indefini e entity able to respond to the stimuli it receives from itself and the existing city above - a link with the new territory born from a corruption manifested by the violent reaction of the virus.
p.246: The Geofront p.248: Infection and Rebirth - the Manhatten Scenario p.249: The Geofront - Virus Structure and System of Villi
CROSS SCALAR ] LINK [ Complex Heterogeneous Systems Maj Plemenitas, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture The emerging challenges can and should become emerging opportunities for positive change. Our ability to provide the long-term resilience is critically linked to the ability to fundamentally rethink evolution of our perception, design and use of structures as well as systems and spaces that surround, protect and link us. Heterogeneous, adaptive, responsive and interconnected systems and structures can provide the vital resilience in ever emerging [un]predictable scenarios. Can something commonly perceived as intrinsically stabile, rigid and enclosed as architecture predominately is, act at the same time as a perceptive, receptive and reactive system and platform for active and passive exchange that enables and promotes connectivity? Not only within itself, but also with the environment and its users, consequentially providing a vital link for a truly resilient system? Not one that relies solely on reinforcing the structural performance but also on the ability to evolve, adapt and regenerate through time. The embedded coordinated intrinsic
instability/dynamics provides the potential for increased responsiveness and reconfigu ation of a system while at the same time acting as a driving force throughout its lifecycle. The great potential of this autonomous yet vitally linked architectural vocabulary is especially powerful when dealing with projects of great scale and in non-standard building scenarios. This series of projects investigates through an array of experimental cross scalar innovative approaches how the dynamic, and to a degree unpredictable oceanic environment offe s a unique opportunity and a platform to rethink, enhance, test and implement the new design, fabrication and construction processes. These range from macro scale physical computing based self assembly process driven by wave motion in liquid medium, sub surface self repair processes, multi scale surface patterning and adaptable variable heterogeneous structure production. By designing units capable of physical computation, selective attraction and self assembly, and through the utilization of Eco[Geo]logical Computation as
pp.250, 252: Simple Complexity - an inner view of a highly structurally and functionally advanced and diffe entiated detail, capable of multi tasking, adaptation, reconfigu ation and self repair. p.253: Structural diffe entiations in compositions of homogenous discrete building units can form a wide range of reconfigu able heterogeneous structures.
a self calibrating large scale Relative positioning system it is possible to construct intricate and complex multi scale structures passively. With the expansion of the worldâ€™s population coupled with the fact that a majority of large and densely populated metropolitan areas are situated on or near the shorelines it is clear that this emerging condition is of a great, global importance. Shoreline is a unique constantly self-renegotiating condition connecting and at the same time dividing two mayor systems. Often the link between anthropocentrically oriented inhabited land and intrinsically instable fluctuating water environment is not established in its full potential. This clearly a vitally important yet missed opportunity. Reliance on brutal methods by making a hard cuts and reinforcement of boundaries simply destroys the qualities and diversity of these places while it is still unable to compete with the strength of nature in case of unpredictable events and provide users with long time resilience. Since the constant and direct design input of an architect as a designer is often not possible due to very small or large spatial scales or time scales or because of other intrinsic and emerging specifics forming sheer complexity
of the design field, an alternative approach showing potential for more indirect and at the same time more profound methofoligies needs to be established. Hence Cross Scalar Link proposes an orchestration of components into structures and further into larger systems that is based on the embedding of principles into computational algorithms, material properties and geometry. A resulting ability to compute and establish relations with other components within and outside of the system may construct a diverse and adaptable array of complex heterogeneous structures and networks with redundancy. An ability to form complex heterogeneous structures from homogenous simple building blocks creates the potential for the rich spectrum of structural and other functional diffe entiations. This translates into controllable morphology for performance or other specific adaptation. The right morphology in combination with the right materials can significant y simplify control. This enhanced innovative vocabulary of inclusively strategical possibilities enables vital future developments, extending and enhancing and reinforcing the domain of architecture and redefining its futu e role.
LIVING NATURE Silvia Bertolotti and Galileo Morandi, Politecnico di Milano Living Nature describes a design strategy for a new urban settlement in the Italian West countryside between Milan and Bergamo. The project suggests a possible solution to the current challenging conditions through scripting and the theory that complexity follows cognitivity. A combination that organizes, and structures the built environment in a complex and specific way. If thinking means understanding and interpreting, focusing on and applying conventional concepts/formulas seems obsolete. The area in question is characterized by agriculture, organized in extensive fields with rivers and canals. Rural buildings, large industrial districts and smaller towns with little infrastructure characterize human activity within the area. Missing physical and social connections between the diffe ent programs is evident. Our research aims at finding innovative, creative and sustainable solutions to trigger interaction without relying on top-down planning regulations that tend to generate simplification rather than enrichment. Further, the project acts as critique of the general paradigmatic view that buildings are mere objects, that cities are centers of power with high concentration of activity and that the surrounding territory, as the sum of
fragmented elements, is programmed towards high productivity, in order to serve city centers. Rather than organizing interaction in a specialized and closed architecture, we propose a strong interchange of indoor/outdoor and natural/manmade public program; the resulting space fl ws along the project, promoting human relationships, interaction of diffe ent cultures and moments in our lives, as well as exchanging ideas, products, information. The main principle of a general design method is the redefinition of design process as generative and creative. Through consideration of various diffe ent parameters apparent in society, such as economics and physical location, the project creates synergy, innovation and regeneration for the territory as dynamic, open and creative process; a form of living that embraces and considers the various desires of the inhabitants. To handle the complexity of the program, we did not merely simplify the projectâ€™s existing relationships, which would consist in unifying their multiple actions and controlling complexity with a selection of ratifying rules. Instead we are aiming at metamorphosis that allows for complexity through dynamic conversation, and to foster the fluid relationship between design
If thinking means understanding and interpreting, focusing on and applying conventional concepts and formulas seems obsolete.
The project was developed as part of a Research Group in Design & Innovation for Sustainability, Department of Design of Politecnico di Milano.
process and the real as a possible architecture. Main tool for organizing project and design process was Mayaâ€™s hair system and its self-organization properties to create attractive or repulsive forces, subsequently arriving at a space offering interaction with the areaâ€™s challenges and potentials. This dynamic system simulates the physical and relational properties of the hair, in which each hair tries to reach a level of micro and macro equilibrium, using the energy necessary. Hence the system is able to react to transformations and to adapt to the context preserving its physical qualities. At times efficiency is increased by using top-down instruction and emerging elements. Using Maya MEL script we can project those elements to create a reticular structure that is variable and adaptable to diffe ent environments and characteristics of the project. Therefore the project consists of a net that connects activity-spaces at the same time changes its typological function continuously. It becomes a stair or a roof and creates indoor/outdoor spaces with diffe ent climatic ambient. The code is written to react to two auxiliary systems that control active and passive climatic conditions. The fi st one is based on daily solar irradiation and program inside the structure to calculates the optimal surface for solar paneling or sun-screen louvers. The second one simulates the inside fl w of air to locate solar chimney for the natural air ventilation. This design strategy avoids codified solutions and goes beyond a merely rational tradition that separates analysis and synthesis, with the aim of emphasizing the cognitive survey. It allows to deeply understand the structural aspect of the process that characterizes the synthesis of built environment and human behavior. We envisage observing the structural characteristics of a challenging urban situation, in order to clearly establish current contradiction between the internal and external requirement and to enable new computationally driven urban design solutions. With this method we can understand the complexity of human interaction in urban conditions instead of dissolving and breaking it into fragmented interpretations. A fl xible approach, awareness of mutation and unpredictable solutions to the challenges is part of future architecture.
Maya hair system and its self-organization properties were used as the main tool for organizing project and design process.
This design strategy avoids codified solutions and goes beyond a merely rational tradition.
A flexible approach, awareness of mutation and unpredictable solutions to the challenges is part of future architecture.
p.254: Territorial space organization. p.256 top: perspective. p.256 bottom: Territorial potentials. p.257: Generative design process: from analysis to space organization.
BIOS Editors Authors
EDITORS BIOS LISS C. WERNER, EDITOR Liss C. Werner is a licensed German Architect based in Berlin, architectural researcher and Assistant Professor at Desssau Institute of Architecture. She is founder of Tactile Architecture - Office for SystemArchitektur, based in Berlin since 2007. In 2012/13 Werner acted as George N. Pauly, Jr. Fellow, visiting professor at Carnegie Mellon University, School of Architecture. Her main interest and research subject lies in the relevance and implications of early cybernetics, for computational architecture in C21, exploring code-based tools to provoke an architectural vocabulary that allows architecture to depart from the 19th century understanding of predetermined static form and the establishment of Euclidian space per-se towards an architecture of self-organization, agent-based formations and biological understanding. As practicing project architect, Werner worked in the UK, Germany and Russia. As architectural educator and researcher she has been teaching and lecturing since 2002 in the UK (London, Nottingham), Austria (Kunstuniversität Linz at Institute for raum&designstrategien), US (Carnegie Mellon University, Texas Tech University, CalArts, MIT), Germany (DIA, Anhalt University of Applied Sciences, TU Berlin, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences, HTW Berlin) and Ukraine (Canactions). Further Werner was invited as a critic at Städelschule, University of Liverpool, the Bartlett, USC and UCLA. She contributed to a variety of conferences, symposia and workshops in the UK, Ukraine, Germany and the US, co-organized and spoke at summer academy ars11, organized and chaired Digital Week at DIA 2011 and [En]Coding Architecture 2013 at Carnegie Mellon University. Her computational design studio Codes in the Clouds was founded in 2010 at DIA and is looking at growth of sublime, philosophically and tectonically challenging generation of form to arrive at provocative architectural prototypes with embedded data and intelligence. Research focuses on cybernetic principles resulting in explorative architecture derived through behavioral logic and scripting, developing dynamic design strategies and cross-disciplinary design thinking. Codes in the Clouds was exhibited and published at DigitalFutures, Tongji University in Shanghai and the 13th Venice Biennale 2012 in the Slovenian pavilion in conjunction with Maribor 2112AI 100YC, the European capital of culture 2012. Liss C. Werner holds a Master of Architecture and Diploma with commendation from The Bartlett as well as a 1st class Bachelor of Arts from the University of Westminster. Further she studied at RMIT. Werner received the deVere Urban Design Prize, Peter Fuld Scholarship, George N. Pauly Fellowship and a grant from the ‘Frank-Ratchye Fund for Art at the Forntier’. She is a member of Architectural Humanities Research Association [AHRA], Interdisciplinary Research Colloquium at Humboldt University Berlin (where she is currently writing her Doctorate Philosophicae), Architektenkammer Berlin and the American Society of Cybernetics [ASC]. Werner believes that ‘FORM is a VERB and not a noun’.
MADELINE GANNON, COPY-EDITOR Madeline Gannon is a Researcher, Designer and Educator in Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture. Gannon holds a Masters of Architecture from Florida International University, a Masters of Science of Computational Design from Carnegie Mellon University, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Computational Design from Carnegie Mellon University. Her research investigates digital-to-analog feedback loops in the context of craft, tectonics, aesthetics, and interaction. Her work demonstrates computational and architectural techniques that navigate the transitory spaces between digital and analog, interactive and passive, intuitive and technical, temporal and spatial.
AUTHORS BIOS SEAN AHLQUIST, Taubman College University of Michigan Exploration and Fidelity in Material Computation:
Evolutionary Means for the Articulation of Textile Morphologies Sean Ahlquist is an Assistant Professor of Architecture at the University of Michigan. He is a part of the Cluster in Computational Media and Interactive Systems, which connects Architecture with the fields of Material Science, Computer Science, Art & Design and Music. His particular research thread is centered on the topic of material computation, in developing means by which complex material behaviors can be instrumentalized to formulate integrated and variable spatial capacities. He continues this research also as a current doctoral candidate at the University of Stuttgart in the Institute for Computational Design [ICD], with expected completion of the doctorate [Dr.Ing.] in 2013. Ahlquist holds a Master of Architecture degree from the Architectural Association in London, Emergent Design and Technologies Program. He has published widely on the topic of computational design, including a reader entitled Computational Design Thinking, co-edited with Achim Menges, which collects and reflects upon seminal texts formulating a systems and material based approach to architecture and design methodologies.
STEFANO ARRIGHI, Politecnico di Milano Responsive Patterns on Double Curved Surfaces
Stefano Arrighi is a freelance Architect and independent researcher based in Italy. Arrighi holds a Master of Science in Architecture from the Politecnico di Milano. He is an Assistant Instructor of parametric and algorithmic design at the Politecnico di Milano School of Building Engineering. Arrighi is currently working at INDEXLAB as a computational designer, his latest research is dedicated to exploring complex geometries and adaptive building systems.
SILVIA BERTOLOTTI, Politecnico di Milano Living Nature
Silvia Bertlotti is a founder of the Milan studio CREATE, an office for innovative solutions in the field of architecture and urban planning, which she runs together with Galileo Morandi. Bertolotti worked as a project designer at EMERGENT LTD (Tom Wiscombe). She teaches urban& architectural strategies at Politecnico di Milano as Assistant Professor and acts as author for a variety of Italian architectural magazines. She is a member of the international Project ‘Team NUTAU/USP - LATAS/Polimi’, an academic research group that participates at international competition projects to find innovative and sustainable living solutions for developing areas in Brazil. Bertolotti holds a post-graduate Master degree in Sustainable Territory & Architecture and a Master degree in Architecture from Politecnico di Milano.
NICCOLO CASAS, Accademia di Belle Arti, Bologna, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture Digital Décadence: The Fractal Dimension
Niccolò Casas is currently a professor of Digital Modeling Techniques at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Bologna and PhD Candidate at The Bartlett School of Architecture, where he focuses on characteristics of ‘Digital Décadence’ as a contemporary movement founded on the poetic of decline and senescence. He is a designer, architect and professor. After studying architecture at the Università degli Studi in Florence and the I.S.A. St Luc in Brussels, he participated in a series of international projects designed to highlight the convergence of architecture, art and fashion design. Casas was invited by Gabriel Esquivel to be part of the Visiting Designer Program at the University of Texas A&M School of Architecture in Spring 2013, together with Eric Goldemberg [Monad Studio]. He taught Workshops on parametric design at The Università degli Studi di Genova and Florence, London South Bank University, The Bartlett, and F.I.U. Florida International University. Cassas recently created ‘Alchemy’ a Fashion collection for Materialise presented at the 10th Anniversary – Materialise World Conference and Turbulence a 3D printed necklace designed in collaboration with the Spanish designer Leyre Valiente for her collection ‘Malleus Malefiacarum .
DAVID M. DECESPEDES, Taubman College University of Michigan Vertical Territories
David M de Céspedes is a recent graduate from the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture & Planning. During his tenure at as a graduate student, de Céspedes acted as Editor-inChief for Ampersand Volume Six: Sites of Decline, a student-led publication funded by Taubman College, focused on a fresh analysis of architecture’s role in sites of urban degradation, abandonment, and decay. Prior to attending Taubman College, de Céspedes received a Bachelor of Arts from Florida International University, and subsequently completed a three-year teaching fellowship with Miami-Dade County, aimed at engaging under-performing secondary schools through design and technology curriculum. David is currently a founding partner of AND-OR-US, a design collaborative that analyzes the inherent complexities in contemporary society through built form.
BRANDON CLIFFORD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Matter Design La Voûte De Fevre
Brandon Clifford is currently the Belluschi Lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as well as Principal at Matter Design. Clifford received his Master of Architecture from Princeton University in 2011 and his Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2006. Clifford served as editor of Pidgin Magazine from 2009-11, the 2011-12 LeFevre Fellow at The Ohio State University, and the founder of the Malleablist Movement in architecture. As Principal of Matter Design, his works have won international design competitions such as the “West Cork Arts Center” and the “10Up! Competition” and awarded honors such as the “AZ Award” and “Architectural Record Product of the Year”. Clifford has also received the 2011 “SOM Prize” and the 2013 “Architectural League Prize for Young Architects”.
DALE CLIFFORD, Carnegie Mellon University On Materials, Biology, and Architecture
At Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Arizona, Clifford has initiated coursework and research programs to develop building technologies based on regional building practices, biomimetics, and advances in materials science. The vehicle for Clifford s research is prototyping and includes full-scale demonstration projects to field- est transitional building technologies.
JOSE LUIS GARCIA DEL CASTILLO, Universidad de Sevilla, Harvard GSD - Parametric Camp WX
Jose Luis Garcia del Castillo is the founder and CEO of ParametricCamp. He holds a Master’s degree in Architectural Technological Innovation from Universidad de Sevilla, where he also serves as an invited lecturer, and has taught several workshops on computational design, creative code and digital fabrication. Garcia del Castillo has worked as a structural consultant for several international firms including OMA, Mecanoo, and Cesar Pelli, and currently studies and teaches at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. http://www.parametriccamp.com
MARJAN COLETTI, Innsbruck University, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture An Example of En/Decoding Neo Materialism: ProtoRobotic FOAMing
Prof. Dr. Marjan Colletti [*1972, Bozen] is an architect, teacher, researcher and theorist. He is full University Professor at Innsbruck University, where he is Head of the Institute of Experimental Architecture [Hochbau and studio3] and of REX|LAB; and Associate Professor at the Bartlett, where he is currently acting MArch Architecture program director, MArch Unit 20 master, MArch GAD research cluster 2 leader, and PhD supervisor. He has taught in several schools in Europe [Innsbruck, Oslo, Copenhagen, Paris, Vienna], the UK [Bartlett, University of Westminster, Royal College of Art, KIAD], and Asia [Feng Chia University, Tunghai University Taiwan]. He is author of the forthcoming design-research theory book Digital Poetics, and was editor of the 80th anniversary issue of Architectural Design entitled Exuberance. He is co-founder of the architectural studio marcosandmarjan in London.
GABRIEL BELLO DIAZ, F.A.C., IAAC Barcelona Magnetic Architecture: Communication with Material
Gabriel Bello Diaz currently resides in Seattle, Washington where he works as a writer, architectural researcher and instructor. His writings and research focus on robotics and neuroscience in architecture and the emergence of the “digital artisan” in relationship to the history of fabrication. As an instructor, he focuses on 3D modeling and printing through the studies of complex geometries generated from both nature and mathematics. He has presented work in several conferences and exhibitions including: Robots in Architecture 2012, Venice Architecture Biennale 2012 and Future Traditions 2013. Further, Diaz is director at the F.A.C, Future Architectural Coalition, a global non-profit organization that advocates for a new standard in public school education and initiates interventions for communities in diffe ent countries with the international design team.
ALEXANDRE DUBOR, IAAC Barcelona Magnetic Architecture: Communicating with Material
Alexandre Dubor is an architect researcher hacking new technologies in an attempt to reinvent how we build and live in our cities. He is currently assistant instructor in Digital Fabrication & Digital Tectonics class of the post-graduate master course at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalunya [IAAC]. Dubor also works at Fab Lab Barcelona and Appareil. His current research includes MagneticArchitecture.org and SmartCitizen.me.
JACOB DOUENIAS, Carnegie Mellon University Algal Architecture: Integrating Biological Symbiosis
Jacob Douenias is a recently graduated Bachelors of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University, where was awarded the John Knox Memorial travel scholarship to explore and research Japan and India. He is interested in how architecture can maximize the relationship between integrated building systems and the occupant’s experience combined with a vested interest in the hands on approach to architecture, which allows for the use of his sound experience in DIY fabrication. In 2011, he worked in New York for SOM. Currently, Douenias is working for BioLogic; an architecture research group, run by Dale Clifford, dedicated to materials research, where he focuses on implementing the findings of his thesis work, featured in this book, transitioning into a substantial research project; a collaborative start-up residential algae lab aiming at the distributed approach to energy and sustainability through algae. www.biogenous.net
CHRISTIAN ERVIN, Rice University, Harvard GSD WX
Christian Ervin is a Master of Design Studies student at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He holds a B.Arch from Rice University, and has worked for several years in design, architecture, and music. He is currently a Research Assistant for the Responsive Environments and Artifacts Lab, creating novel applications for technologies developed at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. Ervin is a Teaching Fellow at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, where he mentors students in design innovation in ES20 and Teaching Assistant at the GSD for Responsive Environments. Most recently, he spent the summer managing the Idea Translation Lab, a unique fellowship offe ed by the Lab at Harvard [in collaboration with the Harvard Global Health Institute and the Wyss Institute] for students to develop world-changing ideas at the intersection of the arts and sciences. Ervin grew up in Bangkok, Buenos Aires, and Mexico City before moving to the place he now considers home: Portland, Oregon.
ANDREI GHEORGHE, Die Angewandte, University of Applied Arts, Vienna Architecture Challenge 2012
Andrei Gheorghe is currently teaching as an Assistant Professor at Die Angewandte, University of Applied Arts, Vienna. Previously he was Assistant Professor in Architecture at Portland State University USA, where he developed pedagogy and research in digital media and fabrication. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and after being awarded the Fulbright Scholarship at Harvard University, where he graduated with distinction and received the Harvard GSD Digital Design Prize. Gheorghe taught at various institutions such as Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, SCI-ARC Los Angeles and Harvard GSD, where he offered architectural design studios in the Career Discovery Program. Previously, he worked as an architect for international offices such as Jakob + MacFarlane, dEcoi Paris and Foreign Office Architects [FOA], London. His research focuses on Digital Media and Design [Parametric-, Algorithmic- and Kinetic Architecture] for which he was awarded the Harvard Digital Design Award in 2009.
MONAD STUDIO I ERIC GOLDEMBERG + VERONICA ZALCBERG FIU Miami Rhythm of Code
Goldemberg holds a Master of Science in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University. He worked in New York for Peter Eisenman and Asymptote Architecture, and is the author of â€œPulsation in Architectureâ€? which highlights the range and complexity of sensations involved in constructing rhythmic ensembles. He is Associate Professor at FIU, Miami, taught at Pratt Institute, Columbia University, New York Institute of Technology, New Jersey Institute of Technology, and University of Buenos Aires. He further lectured at Studio-X, Cooper Union, AA, Angewandte, Politecnico di Milano, ETSAB, Iaac, MIT, University of Puerto Rico, MOCA, Wolfsonian Museum Miami, University of Miami, University of Buenos Aires, among other institutions. His firm MONAD Studio was co-founded in 2002 in New York with Veronica Zalcberg. MONAD Studio has been published in The New York Times, Architectural Record, World Architecture (China), Architecture in Formation book, Conditions Magazine, I4Design, Future Arquitecturas, Miami Herald, Florida InsideOut, Design Book Magazine, Summa+, La Nacion, PP@PD (Penn School of Design), Evolo Magazine among other architecture journals. MONAD Studio was one of the 5 finali ts of the 2008 PS1-MoMA competition and the project was exhibited at the MoMA in New York. www.mondastusio.net
ZULAING GUO, Taubman College University of Michigan Vertical Territories of Recursion
Zuliang Guo is an architect and researcher. He has wide interests in architecture, urbanism and ecology. His work explores possibilities of keeping people in harmony with nature. His current studies focus on mathematical-driven design approaches including scripting, observation research, statistical design and physical experimentation. As Fengshui practitioner, he has been following and cooperating with top Fengshui masters in China for a many years years. His Fengshui design projects have been widely recognized. Guo holds a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Michigan in 2013, and Bachelor of Architecture degree with distinction from Hunan University in 2011. He is also a visiting member of the Architectural Association (AA).
DEREN GULER, Carnegie Mellon University FLOAT_Beijing
Deren Guler holds a Masters of Tangible Interaction Design and a B.S. in Physics from Carnegie Mellon University. Her research investigates technology that uses interactivity and accessible computation to explore nature through a playful, educational, and sustainable approach. Guler is interested in how digital media and low-tech devices can provide novel solutions and form fluid interfaces; either in a specific context or a larger, global scale. She has lead many community-based interactive projects around the world ranging from energy harvesting playgrounds to DIY environmental sensors. Guler is constantly thinking about where to go next. She loves to take things apart and has a giant collection of knobs and switches.
FLEET HOWER, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Collateral Intricacy
Fleet Hower is a designer and educator with expertise in computational methodologies. His interests lie in the development of strategies to understand, synthesize, and harness multiple complex systems present in architecture. Such challenges are approached by designing procedural logics that underlie disparate architectonic or urban systems, allowing them to negotiate through a non-linear generative process. Design solutions are created with embedded relationships between traditionally irreconcilable parts. Hower holds a Master of Architecture and a Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania where he received the Lewis Dales Traveling Fellowship and Will M. Mehlhorn Scholarship for academic excellence. Hower is currently Adjunct Faculty at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he teaches in the fi st-year undergraduate and M.Arch. II programs. Further he taught at Philadelphia University and directed workshops at Tongji University in Shanghai. He worked as an architectural designer in several offices, including responsibilities as a designer and project manager for Kokkugia in New York and Shanghai. Prior Hower worked at MAD architects in Beijing, developing large-scale projects in China and throughout southeast Asia. Hower holds a B.A. Georgetown University, M.Arch. University of Pennsylvania, MLA University of Pennsylvania.
MICHAEL S. JEFFERS, Carnegie Mellon University Recursionism
Michael S. Jeffe s is a recent graduate of the BArch program at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture in Pittsburgh, PA. Jeffe s received the school’s Robotic Fellowship position, continuing work with computation, CNC and robotic fabrication and assembly. His work revolve around the questioning of assumptions, the construction of an argument, and the actuation of this process. The construction of logics, carries the same weight as the construction of spaces. This illustrates the coupling of both computation and fabrication in his work. Jeffe s is a strong advocate for both the use of computer numerically controlled machines to advance construction techniques, but for the use of computation in the design process as a means to more accurately execute logical relationships and goals of the designer. His work suggests that the result of a process is minute in the face of the importance of the process that led to that result.
NICOLE KOLTICK, Westphal College Drexel University Interior Prosthetics
Nicole Koltick is an Assistant Professor in the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design at Drexel University and a principal in the research practice lutz/koltick. She is the Director of the Design Futures Lab where she leads a graduate research group in critical design practices and speculative proposals focused on three main areas of inquiry; tangible interaction in the built environment, the incorporation of novel advancements in science and computation into our built environments and new models for ambient communication. The lab explores tangible interaction scenarios through the design and assembly of full-scale prototypes incorporating microprocessors, sensors and a variety of novel fabrication methods. Nicole Koltick pursues a diverse trans-disciplinary collaborative research agenda that seeks to synthesize and explore a variety of ideas and methodologies in the service of novel design narratives and outcomes. Koltick holds a Master’s of Architecture from UCLA and a BFA, in Art from Carnegie Mellon University.
NEIL LEACH, USC Desiring Machines
Neil Leach is a Professor at the University of Southern California. He has also taught at the Architectural Association, Columbia GSAPP, Cornell University, Dessau International Architecture Graduate School, IaaC and SCI-Arc. He is the author, editor and translator of 23 books, including Rethinking Architecture, The Anaesthetics of Architecture, Designing for a Digital World, Digital Tectonics, Digital Cities, Machinic Processes, Swarm Intelligence, Scripting the Future, Fabricating the Future and Camouflage. Leach has been co-curator of a series of exhibitions worldwide including the Architecture Biennial Beijing. He is currently a NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts Fellow working on robotic fabrication technologies for the Moon and Mars, and is working on a publication about Space Architecture.
WES MCGEE, Taubman College University of Michigan, Matter Design La Voûte de Fevre
Wes Mcgee is a Lecturer in Architecture and the Director of the FABLab at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. His ongoing research and teaching has been focused on developing new connections between design, engineering, materials, and process as they relate to the built environment through the creation of customized software and fabrication tools. As Principal of Matter Design, he has presented work at multiple international conferences on design and fabrication, and published in recent books such as “Fabricate”. In 2012, he collaborated with Supermanouevre on an installation in the Australian Pavillion at the Venice Biennale. In 2013, awarded the “Architectural League Prize for Young Architects”. In 2014 Mcgee co-organizes the second Robotics in Architecture Conference, hosted at the University of Michigan.
MATTEO MERAVIGLIA, Politecnico di Milano The allHOLE Project
Matteo Meraviglia was born in Castellanza, Italy in 1980. He holds a Master degree in architecture from Politecnico di Milano [complex and sustainable development of Queens and Brooklyn waterfront. NY city] and post-graduate degree in ‘Sustainable Territory and Architecture STA’ [thesis on Milano Expo 2015]. Meraviglia is a collaborator and researcher at the Department of Design and lecturer at “laboratorio di progettazione architettonica 2” [Prof. Attilio Nebuloni] at Politecnico di Milano, worked within international architecture and urban design studios in Milano and Cairo. His interest lies in the development and application of theories and concepts regarding “scenarios” of complex architecture, sustainable systems, liquid and blurring architecture, contradiction and paradox, non-matter and energy, self generative system nourished by learning from biological and philosophical processes in architecture and urban design.
PANAGIOTIS MICHALATOS, Harvard GSD The Environment as a Signal: The Architect as a User
Panagiotis Michalatos is an architect registered in Greece and UK. His work includes a broad spectrum of design and computation from software development for structural engineering and interdisciplinary integration to interactive artistic installations. He worked as an Interaction Designer at the Stockholm based contemporary dance company, CCAP, and as computational design researcher for the London based engineering firm AKT. Along with colleague Sawako Kaijima, Michalatos provided consultancy and developed computational solutions in the development of architectural design involving complex interdisciplinary problems for a range of high profile projects by architecture practices such as Zaha Hadid Architects, Thomas Heatherwick, Fosters and Partners. Their work was published and presented at internationally. They also developed a range of software applications for the intuitive use of structural engineering methods in design. Currently he is an Assistant Professor in Architecture Technology at Harvard GSD. His teaching and research focuses on the development of digital interfaces for collaborative and participatory design and the application of structural optimization and signal analysis techniques in design problem. www.sawapan.eu
GALILEO MORANDI, Politecnico die Milano Living Nature
Galileo Morandi is a founder of the Milan studio CREATE, an office for innovative solutions in the field of architecture and urban planning, which she runs together with Silvia Bertolotti. Morandi worked as a project designer at XEFIROTARCH INC. (Hernan Diaz Alonso). He teaches urban& architectural strategies at Politecnico di Milano as Assistant Professor and acts as author for a variety of Italian architectural magazines. He is a member of the international Project ‘Team NUTAU/USP - LATAS/Polimi’, an academic research group that participates at international competition projects to find innovative and sustainable living solutions for developing areas in Brazil. Morandi holds a post-graduate Master degree in Sustainable Territory & Architecture and a Master degree in Architecture from Politecnico di Milano.
WARREN NEIDICH Computational Architecture and the Statisticon
Warren Neidich is an artist and writer, in Los Angeles and Berlin. He has been exhibited internationally at such institutions as PS1-MOMA, The Whitney Museum of American Art, LACMA, Los Angeles, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, The Walker Art Center, The ICA, London, The Ludwig Museum, Koln,The Haus Der Kulturen Der Welt, Berlin, Fons Welter Gallery, The Netherlands, and Gallery Moriarty, Madrid, University of California Irvine, Contemporary Arts Center. Awards include The Murray and Vickie Pepper Distinguished Visiting Artist and Scholar Award, Pitzer College, 2012, The Fulbright Scholar Program Fellowship, Fine Arts Category, 2011 and the Vilem Flusser Theory Award, Berlin, 2010. He is co-organizer of the Pathology of Cognitive Capitalism. Dr. Neidich graduated Magna Cum Laude from Washington University, St. Louis, studied neurobiology at California Institute of Technology and Medicine at New York Medical College. After completing an internship in Medicine he went on to become Board Certified in Ophthalmology at Tulane University Medical Center, New Orleans. He was Instructor in Ophthalmology at New York Eye and Ear Hospital, until 1993 when he decided to dedicate himself full time to his art practice and writing.
GUVENC OZEL, UCLA, Özel Offic Cerebral Hut
Güvenç Özel is a Turkish, Los Angeles based architect, artist and researcher. He is the Technology Director of IDEAS at UCLA Department of Architecture and Urban Design, a cross disciplinary research platform and technology lab, and the principal of Ozel Office, an interdisciplinary design practice located in Los Angeles, working at the intersection of architecture, technology, visual arts and research on urban culture. A native of Izmir, Turkey, Özel studied architecture, sculpture, and philosophy in Bennington College, USA. He holds a Masters of Architecture degree from Yale University, where he graduated with multiple awards. He worked in the offices of Rafael Vinoly, Jürgen Mayer H. and Frank Gehry, amongst others. His projects and experimental installations were exhibited in the USA and Europe. He formerly taught at Yale University, Woodbury University and University of Applied Arts, Vienna. His recent work has been featured in media such as CNN, Boston Globe, Euronews, AP, The Independent, Architectural Digest, Gizmodo, Creators Project/ Vice, Archdaily, Archinect, Dwell and Designboom. He currently conducts research on emerging technologies with specific focus to create reactive environments that challenge contemporary fabrication techniques and spatial assemblies.
KRISTA PALEN, Harvard GSD WX
Krista Palen is an Environmental Engineer, and interdisciplinary designer. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Design in Sustainability at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. In Toronto, she led the Passive Practice at Halsall Associates, one of the largest green building-consulting firms in Canada. The current focus of Krista’s work is passive building design, community ecology and biomimicry.
LILA PANAHIKAZEMI, DIA Dessau International Architecture Graduate School Spatializing the Social
Lila Panahikazemi s a recent Master student from DIA, Dessau International Architecture Graduate School, which she attended after studying at Leeds Metropolitan University in 2009, where she finished her fi st year of MArch dealing with bioregional, closed loop urbanism with Greg Keeffe, In the UK she worked at Sturgeon North architect in England. At DIA shePanahiKazemi focused on computational design, bridging the gap with her previous research at Leeds Metropolitan University. She currently collaborates with Co_ Des (peer to peer education) in Dessau, developing workshops on digital design tools. She has exhibited in Slovenian pavilion at XIII Venice Biennale as part of “Maribor 2112 YC”, presented at EnCodingArchitecture conference at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, USA), at the Performance Driven-Exhibition at the FUGA Gallery (Budapest, HU), 39 th world congress on housing science in politecnino di Milan (Milan, Italy), and been one of the workshop leaders at “MediaCities 4” conference at the State University of New York (Buffalo, USA). Her current thesis research, “Spatializing the Social” will be included as research poster in the upcoming ACADIA Conference “Adaptive Architecture” at the University of Waterloo (CAN).
JORDAN C. PARSONS, Carnegie Mellon University Recursionism
Jordan C. Parsons is a recent graduate of the the BArch program at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture in Pittsburgh, PA. While at Carnegie Mellon Jordan developed interests in digital fabrication, computation and robotics through his studies across the university and work in the Digital Fabrication lab. He is inherently skeptical of the process of computational architecture. Parsons believes strongly in materiality, tectonics and and the importance of fabrication and craft in computation. He is looking to continue to explore the generation and study of an architectural methodology that pairs an intimate knowledge of computation and fabrication to create an architecture that surpasses pure code.
BENCE PAP, Die Angewandte, University of Applied Arts, Vienna Architecture Challenge 2012
Bence Pap is an architect by education and currently practicing and teaching as an Assistant Professor in Vienna at Die Angewandte, IOA –University of Applied Arts, in the studio of Prof. Greg Lynn. Pap studied architecture in Vienna at the Technical University, the Academy of Fine Arts and holds Diploma from the University of Applied Arts with distinction. Pap advocates novel generative design strategies with a strong focus on fabrication methods and material behavior. He has conducted several workshops throughout Europe focusing on Digital Design and Fabrication. Pop gained his professional experience with a number of award winning architectural firms such as Zaha Hadid Architects in London [2007-2011] where he has been involved in a wide range of high profile projects ranging from urban master plans to cultural institutions and residential buildings. He has also participated in a variety of projects with F451 Arquitectura Barcelona, Stan Allen Architects Princeton, and other offices in Vienna
MAJ PLEMENITAS, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture, Linkscale Cross Scalar ] LINK [ Complex Heterogeneous Systems
Maj Plemenitas is an Experimental Design Practitioner, Researcher and Educator of Architecture. His current interest and research approach is focused on innovative cross scalar and interdisciplinary design, through combination of computational methods. The research work explores the relations between design, materialization, production, environment and users at various scales. This interactive and inclusive approach enables drastical expansion of possibilities to tackle challenges that are otherwise beyond the design range. After graduating from the Bartlett School of Architecture, as Master of Architecture from Graduate Architectural Design, with his multi award winning thesis 10]LINK[10, Plemenitas established a research platform and design practice LINKSCALE. Currently he is teaching at the Graduate Architectural Design Program at the Bartlett, UCL. In parallel he is actively researching, exhibiting his work and lecturing internationally. www.linkscale.org
BENJAMIN RICE, Matter Management Vivarium
Benjamin Rice is a principal of Matter Management, an award-winning design practice. Before joining MM Rice helped deliver high profile architectural projects and competitions for some of the worlds leading architectural firms. Recently, he has focused his practice on the future of cross-disciplinary collaboration, working alongside his partner Juan Azulay with artists such as musician Mia Maestro, Chef Daniel Patterson, No Wave legend Lydia Lunch, and fashion design house FLoWEN.Benjamin’s work has been published and exhibited widely, including the A+D Museum in Los Angeles, the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York, and the Denver Art Museum and publications in Log, On Ramp, Pidgin Magazine, TARP, eVolo Magazine, and The Huffing on Post. Rice is currently a Senior Lecturer at the California College of the Arts and a Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley. He has taught at Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design, Southern California Institute of Architecture and Princeton University. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from the Southern California Institute of Architecture with distinction, and his Master of Architecture from Princeton University where he was a Fellow of the Graduate School.
INGEBORG M. ROCKER, Harvard GSD [En]coding and [Re]coding Architecture: From Proto Types and Parametric Types
Ingeborg M. Rocker is a German architect and lives and works in Boston. Rocker received her PhD from Princeton University in 2010, her Master of Art from Princeton University in 2003, her Master‘s of Science in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University in 1996 and her Diploma in Architecture from the RTWH Aachen, Germany in 1995. She has taught at Columbia University, Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania. Currently she is an Associate Professor of Architecture in the Department of Ar- chitecture at the GSD, Harvard University, where she has been employed since 2005. She teaches Architectural Design and gives courses and seminars in the theory sequence. Rocker is principle of Rocker-Lange Architects is an architecture ﬁrm located in Hong Kong and Boston. The ﬁrm is interested in practicing architecture through designing, building, researching, writing and teaching.
ROCKER-LANGE ARCHITECTS [En]coding and [Re]coding Architecture: From Proto Types and Parametric Types Rocker-Lange
Architects is an architecture ﬁrm located in Hong Kong and Boston. The ﬁrm is interested in practicing architecture through designing, building, researching, writing and teaching. Founded by partners Ingeborg M. Rocker and Christian J. Lange, the office is a full service architecture and design ﬁrm specializing in installations, urban interventions, cultural and residential projects. Projects materialize out of an in depth investigation of contemporary issues in architecture that are constantly scrutinized. Our work is developed through intensive research in conjunction with the use of innovative digital design methodologies guiding efficient y and creatively the design and construction process. The office has developed a distinctive method for the develop- ment of architecture, with an emphasis on open spatial conﬁgurations, material transformations and reﬁned detailing and crafts- manship. Underlying themes in the work have focused on the conceptual use of building tectonics, components and materials, modiﬁed with both traditional and digital techniques. Recently Rocker-Lange Architects exhibited their work in the bi-city Biennale in Hong Kong & Shenzhen 2012+2009, and the Ve- nice Biennale 2010. Their work has been published frequently in international magazines ranging from Harvard Design Magazine, Mark Magazine to á vivre magazine. Currently the office has p ojects in China and Germany.
ANDREA ROSSI, DIA Desssau International Architecture Graduate School Spatializing the Social
Andrea Rossi is a recent Master student DIA, Dessau International Architecture Graduate School, where he studied under the supervision of Liss C. Werner (Tactile Architecture, CMU Pittsburgh), Matias del Campo & Sandra Manninger (SPANarch), Alexander Kalachev (AL_TU) and Krassimir Krastev. He holds a bachelor degree in Architecture from Politecnico di Milano, concluded with the thesis “Notes on Digital Design: New Tools and Research Lines”. He worked as intern for NuMiStudio (Milan) and then he moved to Berlin, working as architect in AnOtherArchitect (Daniel Dendra) office. He took part to various workshops on digital design tools, and recently he started teaching these topics in a series of workshops in Italy, Germany and USA. He is the initiator and the main organizer of the group Co_Des (peer to peer education) in Dessau, where he’s teaching design tools to other students. He has exhibited in Slovenian pavilion at XIII Venice Biennale as part of “Maribor 2112 YC”, presented at EnCodingArchitecture conference at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, USA), 39 th world congress on housing science in politecnino di Milan (Milan, Italy), at the Performance Driven-Exhibition at the FUGA Gallery (Budapest, HU) and been one of the workshop leaders at “MediaCities 4” conference, State University of New York (Buffalo, USA). His current thesis research, “Spatializing the Social” will be included as research poster in the upcoming ACADIA Conference “Adaptive Architecture” at the University of Waterloo (CAN). (http://temporaryautonomousarchitecture.blogspot.it/)
PIERPAOLO RUTTICO, Politecnico di Milano, Indexlab Responsive Patterns on Double Curved Surfaces Pierpaolo Ruttico, Phd, Architect and Engineer is the Founder and Design Principal of INDEXLAB, a multidisciplinary digital design and fabrication consultancy based in Milan. Ruttico teaches Architectural Technology at the Politecnico di Milano School of Building Engineering Architecture. He has worked as a designer for PelliClarkePelli Architects in New York City and as a computational designer and robotic fabrication consultant for COOPHIMMELB(L)AU in Vienna. He has been a Guest Critic at SCIarc Los Angeles and his work has been published internationally, including IAHS 2012, Advances in Architectural Geometry 2012, Encoding Architecture 2013. www.indexlab.it.
JENNY E. SABIN, Cornell University, Jenny Sabin Studio myThread Pavilion, commissioned by NYC Nike FlyKnit Collective
Jenny Sabin’s work is at the forefront of a new direction for 21st century architectural practice, one that investigates the intersections of architecture and science, and applies insights and theories from biology and mathematics to the design of material structures. Sabin is an Assistant Professor in the area of Design and Emerging Technologies in the Department of Architecture at Cornell University. She is principal of Jenny Sabin Studio, an experimental architectural design studio based in Philadelphia. She is co-founder of LabStudio, a hybrid research and design network, together with Peter Lloyd Jones. She was a founding member of the Nonlinear Systems Organization, a research group started by Cecil Balmond, where she was director of research. Sabin holds degrees in ceramics and interdisciplinary visual art from the University of Washington and a Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania where was awarded the AIA Henry Adams fi st prize medal and the Arthur Spayd Brooke gold medal for distinguished work in architectural design. Sabin was recently named a USA Knight Fellow in Architecture.
BENNETT SCORCIA, Taubman College University of Michigan deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS
Bennett Scorcia is a graduate student of Architecture at the University of Michigan, where his research focuses on the development of emerging technologies, morphogenetic computation, material research, and computer aided manufacturing that encourages a non-linear dialogue between actors and parameters. Scorcia’s most recent work is situated on the interrelationships of wood as a natural material, traditional wood bending techniques and the engagement of digital tools to produce highly articulated and performative structural system that leverages the natural morphologies of wood. Bennett has collaborated with many professors and students to complete full scale installations that have been exhibited around the world. In his position at the University of Michigan FABlab Scorcia is responsible for operating various CNC routers, water-jets and robots. www.BENNETT3D.com
HAROLD SPRAGUE SOLIE, Taubman College University of Michigan deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS
Harold Sprague Solie is a graduate student and an entrepreneur at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture where his studies are focused on leveraging design ideas across multiple scales and platforms. His educational and professional endeavors both as a student and founder at designGOOD, blur boundaries between formal design strategies, materials research and emerging modes of fabrication and construction. Solie is continually exploring how a design idea can navigate complex material and production systems while evolving into fully realized architectural artifacts. Currently, as part of his thesis research, Solie is exploring material realities as they exist in the post-industrial city in an effo t to construction a retroactive history of America’s industrial centers which frames its ruins as the site of future architectures.
MATTEO TARAMELLI, DIA Desssau International Architecture Graduate School Alchemic Psychosis
Matteo Taramelli is a recent graduate from DIA, where he received a Master of Architecture. He holds a Bachelor degree in Science of Architecture from the Politecnico di Milano. While studying in Milan, Taramelli carried out research in the field of 3D-Augmented-Reality within the Architecture & Plan Department of Politecnico in collaboration with Samsung, Istanbul Technical University, presented at Yenikapi Symposium, Istanbul. He worked at NuMiStudio architectural office on a project for the Architectural & Urban Forum, published by l’Arca magazine. Taramelli also produced a series of short films, audio- responsive visuals and conducted generative-music experimentations. He assisted Prof. Attilio Nebuloni at Politecnico di Milano, and taught at Co_Des (Computational Design Dessau), an autonomous student group at DIA. Part of his master work was shown at the Slovenian Pavilion, XIII Venice Architecture Biennale, as part of Maribor2112YC. He has recently collaborated with PhyCo, Milan, for the event “Fotografia Europea”, creating visual interpretations of movement tracking through smartphones. Throughout his career Taramelli has been working with Atlas Publishers.
JUSTIN TINGUE, Taubman College University of Michigan Vertical Territories of Recursion
Justin Tingue was born in 1989 and grew up just outside of Buffalo, New York. He studied architecture as an undergraduate at the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he developed his interest in the role of computation in architecture, which was explored at the school itself and during a trip to Tokyo, Japan. Tingue holds a Masters of Architecture degree from Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at The University of Michigan.
ROBERT TRUMBOUR, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Khora Social Gravity: Where Analog Means Intersect with Digital Intent
Rob Trumbour, AIA, is a founding partner of the design research practice Khora; a registered architect in Massachusetts and an Assistant Professor of Architecture at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston, MA. In 2006 Trumbour founded Artforming, a design and research collaborative in Boston. Educated in the fields of the fine arts and architecture Trumbour’s current work engages in art, architecture and landscape through the medium of installation art and emerging technologies.
ANDREAS TRUMMER, Technical University Graz Mill to Fit
Andreas Trummer is Assistant Professor at the Institute for Structural Design at the Technical University Graz where he heads of the Robot Design Labor and created the ABB Robot Lab in year 2012. These labs are used in the project ‘Prefabricated shell structures made from UHPC’, a project that includes all steps from design process to fabrication. He researched on a lightweight load carrying box beam system, made of wood and plywood, which resulted in a scalable timber beam system (www. kielsteg.at). Trummer studied Civil Engineering at the TU Graz and ETH Lausanne, worked as assistant at TU Vienna and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, where he received his PhD within the field of ‘Cross laminated Glass-fiber reinforced Timber-Plates’. In 2013 Trummer worked together with Martin Bechthold at GSD, Cambridge was a visiting scholar. www.ite.tugraz.at
XIAOWEI R. WANG, Carnegie Mellon University, Harvard GSD FLOAT_Beijing
Xiaowei R. Wang has a Masters in Landscape Architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design where she received the Norman T. Newton Prize in design. Her most recent project, FLOAT Beijing, in collaboration with Deren Guler is a finali t for the INDEX: Design Award 2013. She is interested in tools at the intersection of design, technology and ecology to affect patterns of uneven development in East Asia. Currently, Wang is researching patterns of urbanization along the Eurasian Steppe and examining the political dimensions of computation within geographic indices that have shaped perceptions of settlement in nomadic communities of the Steppe and cartographic marginalization.
ZACK JACOBSON WEAVER, Carnegie Mellon University Apprenticeship and Mastery in Digital Craft: A Transcending Synthesis of Old and New
Zack Jacobson-Weaver is a maker. He received his B.F.A. in sculpture from the University of Michigan School of Art & Design in 2001, where he was a technical instructor of sculpture and digital fabrication from 2006 – 2011, guiding 3D disciplines into the 21st century. The exploration of physical and digital tools, materials and processes led him to Carnegie Mellon University in 2011 where he studied Tangible Interaction Design in the School of Architecture under Professor Mark Gross, working at the anti-disciplinary intersection of Art, Design, Architecture and Engineering. His work encompasses conceptual art, custom interior design and open-source and repurposed technologies in automation and fabrication.
GILL WILDMAN, PlotLondon The Future Architect as Entrepreneur
As a co-founder and principal of the innovation consultancy Plot, Wildman designs and develops the interventions Plot undertakes across industry sectors for clients such as Nokia, the BBC and Participle. She is an advocate for more open forms of participation that foster interdisciplinary collaboration and produce better people-centered system designs. Wildman’s early work, as a researcher and developer of local public services used the community development approach, which puts an emphasis on designing relationships. Her personal and professional research interests include identifying success factors in start-up business incubation, design strategies for new technologies, and exploring the impact of new pervasive technologies in everyday life. A graduate and former assistant director of Brunel University’s Design Strategy and Innovation MA, Gill has played numerous academic and industrial advisory roles for Dundee University, the British Standards Institute, SVA and Tisch, as well as “four years national service” at the Design Council, London. She recently held Carnegie Mellon School of Design’s Nierenberg Chair with Nick Durrant, and was a Visiting Professor where she taught StrategyLab and Future City Services. She is co-developer of the incubator, Upstarter. www.plotlondon.net
AARON WILLETTE, Taubman College University of Michigan, Khora Social Gravity: Where Analog Means Intersect With Digital Intent
Aaron Willette is a founding partner of the design research practice Khora; a principal in the architecture/ art collaborative Artforming, and a graduate student and research assistant at the University of Michigan, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning in Ann Arbor, MI. His current research explores the technical and spatial implications of coupling of industrial fabrication techniques, bespoken computational processes and indepth material studies,focusing on their intersection with traditional interpretations of technique and craftsmanship.
ANDREW WOLKING, Taubman College University of Michigan Vertical Territories of Recursion
Andrew Wolking completed his M. arch from the University of Michigan in the Spring of 2013. His work focuses on the intersection of architectural space in relation to landscape, and explores this through the lens of making. This interest is coupled with the role of digital technology in the execution of built / designed spaces that strive to enhance that relationship. His thesis at Michigan explored the under utilized capacity of color in the post-industrial landscape of Detroit to expose its absence in architectural design and pedagogy. Currently Wolking is working in the Ann Arbor / Detroit area continuing research in structural robotic plastic extrusion, as well as working as a freelance designer.
ALEX WOODHOUSE, California College of the Arts Desert Driftboat
Alex Woodhouse is currently a graduate student at California College of the Arts, where he is completing a Master of Advanced Architectural Design focusing on digital design- and fabrication-technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. Before continuing his education at CalArts, Woodhouse spent three years working as a project designer at LMN Architects in Seattle. He is continuing the research investigations of Desert Driftboat as he participates in the design and construction of a 3D extrusion device in collaboration with Future Cities Lab in San Francisco.
MARK WRIGHT, Taubman College University of Michigan deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS
Mark Wright is a recent graduate from the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan. He received his Bachelor in Arts in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania. Wright is interested in how increasing capabilities and usage of new fabrication technologies can empower a designer to create unique and increasingly complex architecture. As well as the consequences of this proliferation of technology and how this may change interaction between users and users and the built environment.
HIRONORI YOSHIDA, ETH Zurich Scan-to-Production [working with heterogeneity in natural materials]
Hironori Yoshida is a craftsman in the digital era, using robots to fabricate human-scale objects such as furniture and interior. He is a PhD candidate at CAAD, ETH in Zurich and his research focus is scanning heterogeneous structures in natural materials. He gave talks at research institutes and international conferences such as SIGGAPH. He was a visiting scholar at CoDe lab, Carnegie Mellon University, and worked at OMA and Vincent de Rijk werkplaats.
LEAH ZALDUMBIDE, California College of the Arts Desert Driftboat
Leah Zaldumbide is currently a fourth year Architecture student enrolled in the Bachelor of Architecture course at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco. Throughout her educational career she has worked on a range of conceptual projects ranging from the large scale, to temporary installations, to explorations in robotics. In 2012 Zalumbide attended a travel studio, which visited several architectural sites and organizations in Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Utrecht and Barcelona; which sparked an interest in exploring the potentials in the relationship between robotics and other fields of design
NING ZHOU, Taubman College University of Michigan deferentialCONSTRUCTIONS
Ning Zhou is a graduate student at the University of Michiganâ€™s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. She holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Dalian University of Technology, China. During her undergraduate study Zhou traveled to Sweden as exchange student. She used to be the leader of National College Students Innovative program working on a nationally funded project on small townsâ€™ developments. She was awarded as Taubman scholar and received NR-WHITE Fellowship. Zhou is interested in responsive design and the challenge to achieve beauty in design projects and the buildings.
Linda Hagar, Frank-Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry Anika Hirt, Frank-Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry David Koltas, School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University Diana Martin, School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University Margaret Myers, Frank-Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry
Caitlin Boyle Michael Hadida Laura Contero
School of Music, Carnegie Mellon University
Exhibition Design and Fabrication
Jeremy Ficca, dFabLab, School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University
Yasmeen Almuhanna Chandler Archbell Dan Gehr Sam Gruber Marcos Gonzalez-Bode So-Yun Ko Leah Wulfman Peter Salim Kevyn McPhail Andrew Viny Laura Gonzalez Seyedeh Fereshteh Shahmiri Amy Rosen Seong Yeun Carter J. Nelson Andrea Salomon and more
CHAPTER ILLUSTRATION / IMAGE CREDITS
Exhibition in the College of Fine Arts, CMU
Benjamin Rice, Vivarium, Gallery view of the monolithic sunken pyramid which contained a collection of real, robotic and simulated organisms.
Critique in Code
Galileo Morandi, Silvia Bertolotti, Living Nature, generative design process from analysis to space organization
Sean Ahlquist, Exploration and Fidelity in Material Computation, ‘Textile Hybrid Explorations’. David Cappo, Angel Pontes, Andreas Schoenbrunner, Institute for Computational Design (Sean Ahlquist, Prof. Achim Menges), Institute for Building Structures and Structural Design (Julian Lienhard, Prof. Jan Knippers), University of Stuttgart, 2012.
Courtesy of INDEXLAB - Pierpaolo Ruttico Circle Packing: automated construction process through algorithmic design and robotic fabrication. www.indexlab.it
Madeline Gannon, The Environment as a Signal, Bust studies testing the complex curvature around the neck, shoulder, and chest. The digital designs engage the body as exoskeletal extensions of the clavicle or sternum
Andreas Trummer: Mill to Fit, ‘Framed Pavilion’, © Institut für Architektur und Medien der TU Graz, IAM, Richard Dank, Christian Freisling
Deren Guler, Xiaowei Wang, FLOAT_Beijing, Beijing seen from a kite, caption from GoPro video
Matteo Taramelli, Nikita Azarkhin, Alchemic Psychosis
â€˜The architect is no longer an organizer of matter, and space but a designer of systems - with multi-layered components and complex relationships.â€™ LCW
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Published on Jan 26, 2014
The architect is no longer an organizer of matter and space, but a designer of systems with multi-layered components and complex relationshi...