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theory of weak design

weak design transforms the aesthetic experience of

the artwork, and specifically of architecture, into event… in contemporary thought the

objective and the subjective are not different and opposing fields but constitute what is called

‘folds of a single reality.’ for architecture, this notion of the folds proves exceptionally illuminating. reality immerges as a continuum in which the time of the subject and the time of the external objects go round together on the same looped tape, with the encounter of objective and subjective only occurring when this continuous reality folds over in a

disruption of its continuity…an acceptance of a certain weakness, and thus of relegation to a secondary position, may possibly be the condition of design’s greatest elegance

and, ultimately, its greatest significant import… this is the strength of weakness; that strength which art and architecture are capable of producing precisely when they adopt a posture that is not aggressive and dominating, but tangential and weak.

-Ignasi De Sola-Morales

biography design art travel photos 09


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cover letter Thank

you for considering me as an employee for your firm. after years of education

i have honed my increasing fascination and understanding of design in architecture, graphic design, landscape architecture, and urban design. my approach to designing

responsively, in the built or graphic environment, will support your firms continued commitment to high quality design as a result of creative and intelligent ideas.


have found that the use of diagrams, digital and physical modeling is the best way

of communicating, and for that reason i strive to stay up to date with techniques and software that support, reinforce, and represent the value of responsive design. my frequent use of adobe products; illustrator, photoshop, and indesign, as well as digital

modeling; autocad, sketchup, and revit, has allowed me to thoroughly communicate my ideas and processes. my understanding and knowledge of design communications as

well as the techniques i use to resolve design problems would be a great fit within your firm. it will give me great pleasure to collaborate with you and the clients you serve.

Thank you for taking the time to consider me as a member of your team. i would greatly appreciate an interview. i am confident that i can prove to be a valuable asset to your firm. Sincerely, ______________________________________________ Maggie Hanna-Elattar

information and references

Maggie Hanna-Elattar 3307 caspian drive palmdale, ca 93551 661.202.9743

Objective committed to improving the quality of life for all people by focusing on the urban environment, and how existing conditions

can be adapted to create more pleasant places for adults and children.

References -Deborah Powell office of the executive vice president and provost

-----Skill Set ArchiCAD (advanced)Sketchup Pro (moderate)Revit (beginner)Adobe cs5 Products (moderate) illustrator photoshop indesign ( Microsoft Products advanced) windows powerpoint


-Fr. Youhanna Mouris archangel raphael & saint mina coptic orthodox church


-Andrea Hamilton (m.arch) graduate; university of nebraska, lincoln 402.707.4309

Personal Characteristics Languagesenglish arabic


international travel volleyball cooking photography

education and involvement NewSchool of Architecture and Design -Masters of Architecture (2009 - 2011) deans list (fall 2010, winter/spring 2011) thesis think tank (2011)

University of Nevada, Las Vegas -Bachelors of Science in Architecture (2005 - 2009) american institute of architecture students

1st year representative (2005-2006) 2nd year representative (2006-2007)

active member (2005-2009)

secretary (2007-2008) active member (2005-2009)

national organization of minority arch. students sketch up workshop

student teaching students (2006-2007)

meals on wheels

food preparation and delivery (2007)

freedom by design

3rd year representative (2007-2008) active member (2006-2008)

University Studies Abroad Consortium -Architectural History and Italian Cuisine (2007) torino, italy

work and independent experience MDM Architects

Draftsman (internship)-

palmdale, california (2008-2009)

garage remodel---------

autocad architectural drawings--------communicated with clients---------

report on sustainable architectural construction materials and methods---------

UNLV Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost File Clerk las vegas, nevada (january 2007 – june 2009) organize files pertaining to all academic faculty--------monitored all documents entering and existing the department---------

Archangel Raphael & Saint Mina Coptic Orthodox Church Landscape Remodel Designer, Project Manager, Coordinator palmdale, california (2009) total landscape and play area remodeling-------- volunteer project---------

Beshoy Boulous Landscape Remodel Designer, Project Manager, Coordinator palmdale, california (2010) backyard remodel for palmdale resident---------



Hookah Lounge and Retail Center

The Center Live | Work | Play

adaptive reuse




medium scale

large scale



Farmers Plus | Retail | Picture Show

Open-Ended Design For Interstitial Play Reviving Detroit

adaptive reuse




medium scale

extra large

Delta Hookah Lounge and Retail Center Building Form

nile and delta

Building Interior

pyramid planes

Project Background The abandoned sears

insertion of multiple floors

building, located on

vibrant fremont street, is the starting point of blight in the east village neighborhood. made






cutout reference to nile


of connection and relationship to the pedestrian environment, this historic jewel

is critical to seaming together the existing gamming districts and the rest of east

village. creating a 24 hour environment that is conducive to urban walkablity was an important programmatic necessity, while

maintaining the building’s integrity was a personal design goal.

northern delta entry

building and sea convergence

pyramid wall and floor path

pyramid alluding interior

Weak Theory Design Process Not wanting to make aggressive changes to this historic architectural jewel, the







address the pedestrian environment created an indirect link between gaming on fremont

method of using gestures which allude to

and the rest of east village. meanwhile,

the egyptian landscape became the prime

referencing the pyramids of giza within the

means of redefining and repurposing this

building created an interesting urban edge

building. using the nile/delta to dictate

and dynamic multi use facility.

Delta Hookah Lounge and Retail Center inverse pyramid

building envelope

concept integration

pyramid envelope

hookah lounge

urban edge retail Fx


vertical circulation

multi use


East Village Redevelopment (phase 1): This studio wide project studied east village in order to determine what its weaknesses are; abandonment, lack of pedestrian 6 environment, and awkward transition between gamming and residential zones. phase one of redevelopment provides a medium scale project that would be a sensible start to the redevelopment of

downtown. the adaptive reuse of the sears building rehabilitates many of the

Site Cross Roads Gamming Fremont Street 6th Street Fremont Street Experience

weaknesses that are present.


0’ 150’ 300’


nile river and delta | final exterior form pyramids of giza | final interior design

The Center Live | Work | Play kaleidoscope revolution

physical rotation

interior movement

dropping of urban public space

repetition of rotation

dropping of play space

Project Background Blight in downtown las vegas’ east village is the result of several factors of the built environment;





empty lots. in this case several residential neighborhoods and educational facilities surround this vacant lot. the addition of

dropping of office space

a residential high-rise was determined an insignificant improvement for the area early on in the analysis of east village. as a result, this site became focused on live|work|play. the goal here is to provide a central point for all age groups to congregate any time of the day.

city block application

dropping of housing

Design Process The design of the

removal of excess

removal of focal point

mirrored building proportions

wheel design. meanwhile, the gravitational structure is based on the

deconstruction of a kaleidoscope. both the applied motion and natural gravitational

pull on inner materials is represented by sections of the building falling during the

rotation process. as a result, the structure

pull of pieces are represented and rotated

fulfills several of the sites needs; urban edge,

the applied motion is represented by a spin

breakdown of the building’s program.

around a central point or ‘looking tube.’

playful aesthetic, public space, and legible

The Center Live | Work | Play

communal balcony

urban edge retail

play space



student housing

Fx F

East Village Redevelopment (phase 2): The final phase of this studio wide project focused on bringing density to downtown las vegas. in doing so, this phase required large scale projects to be placed throughout fremont street with an enforced housing standard. the centers’ design and program fulfilled the density goal M for east village and the personal design goals for a multi use facility that can be used by different age groups 24 hours

Site Cross Roads Gamming Fremont Street S. Maryland Pkwy. Fremont Street Experience

a day.


0’ 150’ 300’


cross over bridges | outdoor public space eastern perspective | ramp to center roller rink

Farmers Plus Market | Retail | Picture Show appropriation of public space existing city block sized building footprint

traditional pedestrian level public space

adaptive reuses of roof space original farmers market

addition of three retail levels

Project Background Just outside of downtown

from poor appropriation of public space san diego is the

residential neighborhood of east village; an older latin community suffering from

a lack of mixed uses and public space. although most of this neighborhood does

not suffer from vacant lots, it does suffer

that could be conducive to a self sufficient community. this project is meant to redefine

how public space can be appropriated in an established community. the goal here is

to provide easily accessible activities for families and improve the local market.

elevated public space

building roof used for elevated public space

rooftop theater and public space

commingling of retail and public space

Weak Theory Design Process Since the farmers market is and





its rooftop, which is nearly the size of a city still in use become

block and contains wheat sifting chimneys.


instead of allowing the roof to remain

take advantage of its form and size. rather

picture show and additional retail provides

community landmark, it is important to

than replacing the building with public space an opportunity was discovered on

unused, appropriating it with an outdoor

the neighborhood with much needed use diversity and public space.

Farmers Plus Market | Retail | Picture Show E


Downtown San Diego Urban Infill: Located on one of san diego’s major corridors, this site boarders downtown san diego and barrio logan. although density is not an issue in this part of town, accessibility to public and family friendly environments






innovative approach that combines infill and adaptive reuse is needed to improve this dynamic neighborhood. Site

Cross Roads Downtown 21st St. Commercial St. original structure East Village


original farmers market


food and beverage

vertical circulation

stepped theater seating

picnic and theater seating

theater seating and retail commingling rooftop public space appropriation

Open-Ended Design For Interstitial Play Reviving Detroit downtown detroit macro analysis



0 1/8 mi 1/4mi

1/2 mi


0 1/8 mi 1/4mi

1/2 mi


0 1/8 mi 1/4mi

1/2 mi


mixed use




rail line major street detroit river


0 1/8 mi 1/4mi

1/2 mi


Thesis Background The purpose of this study is to create socially


valuable places where the urban fabric has

catalysts of blight as they physically divide

failed to provide for the needs of residents.







interstitial areas of a city; freeways, seas

of parking lots, rail lines and abandoned







social function and typically become the and






than allowing these spaces to remain in a

constant state of lack luster pro-forma and no nuance, the simple insertion of a

Infrastructural Setback........................................... Infrastructure City Programming Effect Residential & Mixed Uses.................................. response to interstitial spaces

intervention network

S A RESULT OF INTERSTITAL SPACES IMPLEMENTING PLAY INTO INTERSTITIAL SPACES S A RESULT OF INTERSTITAL SPACES n.................................. Network for Volunteer Play............................... n.................................. network parking strands mation................... mation................... Play Sites.................................................. abandonedInterstitial cluster formation intervention sites .................................... .................................... infrastructure setback

mming Effect s.................................. mming Effect s..................................


0 1/8 mi1/4 mi

1/2 mi

1 mile


0 1/8 mi1/4 mi

1/2 mi

1 mile

intervention example

infrastructure defined zones place for play is studied as a solution to a

sites were made, ranging from rail lines to

Research Process Using detroit as a test site, a thorough

on a micro scale. however, the process

problem present in all urban cities.

macro scale analysis of the city was conducted in order to locate possible

sites to rehabilitate. the selections of ten

abandoned buildings, visited and analyzed for designing open-ended forms required an approach that would expose layers of

play first. this was done through child like and creative brain drawings.

Open-Ended Design For Interstitial Play Reviving Detroit


Weak Theory Design Process: Open-ended design allows for


play that are lightly programmed and yet

site analysis

created by users. following the designer’s


creative brain drawings, which expose layers


of play; form finding via three dimensional


models can be extruded from each drawing.

business education

these models are used to dictate form and overcome open-ended design challenges.

religious park

from this point on the user becomes the

recreational N

industrial neighborhood

levels of

0’ 1871/2’ 375’



master designer of the site. it is up to them to program each site to their own liking according to the seasons and over time.

creative brain exposure of play form finding for open-ended play




building elements


surface shadows





Merge relate merge composition

Isolate Elements | Shadows | Reflections Building Element and Shadow Isolation Series: Inspired by the photography

of lewis baltz, this series of graphite freehand drawings focuses on singular building elements that, when

isolated, can be interpreted in several ways by the viewer.

in this study, my focus was on shadows cast onto and from

building elements. awnings,

windows and fire ladders were used in my initial exploration of

element isolation.

Prominent Building Element Isolation: Architectural ribbons on the geisel are







are incorporated in this drawing for depth.

Building Reflection Isolation: While windows on the library are another architectural component, it is the reflections

prominent caused by

the buildings angularity that is interesting in isolation.

Collage Separate| Modular | Redefine Building Reflection Isolation Deconstructive Collage: Using the unique shapes and shadows derived from the

previous ‘building reflection isolation

drawings,’ i was able to separate each reflection to act as a module that can be organized,

repeated, and redefined.

although, this collage is the product of an isolated moment

on geisel library, it can stand on its own.

Merge relate | merge | composition

Merging of Isolated Elements: The final graphite drawing in this series merges the ‘prominent building element’ drawing with the ‘building reflection’ drawing in a collage like fashion. since both were created from the same building an opportunity was discovered; building elements that are drawn could be merged to create an interesting composition.


International Spain France Switzerland Italy Germany Austria

north america

Domestic Washington California Nevada Illinois Michigan Ontario

International Europe

International Europe

Domestic Regional

Domestic Regional

Maggie Hanna Professional Portfolio