ARCHITECTURE DESIGN STUDIO: EARTH S1, 2016 SUBJECT STUDENT BOOK Winifred Grace Oâ€™Malley-Welby
762255 Liz Watt Tutorial 12
CONTENTS: 1.0 THREE RELATIONSHIPS 1.1 Point/Line/Plane: 1.2 Frame & Infill: 1.3 Mass 2.0 HERRING ISLAND. The site. 2.1 Conceptacle: 2.2 Concept and Sketch design 2.3 Design Development 2.4 Final Design drawings 2.5 Final Design Model
3.0 Reflection. 4.0 Bibliography:
1.0 THREE RELATIONSHIPS Two-week exercises exploring the architectural tectonics of Point Line Plane, Frame and Infill and Mass were undertaken to understand their role in design and construction. Each tectonic was utilised as a means of exploring space and gravity, with Point Line Plane investigating the ground level, Mass exploring underground and Frame and Infill addressing above ground. The result of these short experiments was carried forward into the final brief: a place for keeping secrets on Herring Island.
1.1 POINT / LINE / PLANE This model has manipulated the paper ground plane to create a three dimensional object. I was inspired by Nendo’s furniture design, where the surface of the object itself is manipulated to create a three dimensional form. In this model the plane is a single element comprised of many individual lines, similar to Santiago Calatrava’s Milwaukee art museum. The curved geometry allows the structure to ‘rise out of the earth’, articulating a relationship with the ground plane and above the ground. This concept of the exploration was key, and ultimately resulted in a major element of my final design.
1.2 FRAME & INFILL In this model the frame is used to define the space and infill is used to define the program. By putting a frame within a frame, depth is created and a series of different views emerge- like the windows in Louis Kahnâ€™s Fisher house. By altering the size and composition of the frame it provided more room for experimentation of infill. The key idea from this experiment was the power of using infill; it is used to defines transition through space and alter the infiltration of sunlight. This was a key lesson that was taken forward, and utilised in the final design.
This exercise utilises the earth itself is apart of the composition of â€˜Massâ€™. The result of this experiment was an understanding of the role of light, and how it can be manipulated to alter the experience of a space. This was particularly important in defining the relationship between above ground and underground. This theme carried forward into my final model, where the elements of the programmatic space switch between above and below underground. Peter Zumthorâ€™s Therme Vals were and important precedent in articulating this relationship through the utilisation of contrasting materiality, a key theme carried forward throughout the semester.
2.0 SITE ANALYSIS
Herring island is a man made island in the south of the Yarra river. Despite being just 5 kilometres from the Central Business District of Melbourne, it is relatively unknown. It is a secret, hiding in plain sight. To the south west of the island, there are a series of ridges. The natural topography of the site isolates the area from sound, light and wind, creating a microclimate. This was the area of the site that interested me the most, given that all of these features facilitate the hiding of a secret. I saw the opportunity to build into the ridges of the site as a means of constructing beneath the earth without necessarily being underground. The simple section from this site was integral to the design, it created a â€˜boundaryâ€™ was key in piecing all the different tectonic elements together.
The conceptacle is a composition that incorporates the result of each tectonic experiment, whilst also utilising- albeit abstractly- the site. I wanted the place for keeping secrets to be hidden, within the site and then again within the design. The canopy obscures the tunnel and the tunnelwhich is buried underground obscures the secret. Each tectonic element helps to define a relationship to the different levels of earth: the relationship between the ground plane, above and below it. The internal space, still quite abstract at this stage serves as the prospective site for resolving the requirements of the brief.
2.2 PROJECT INTRODUCTION
The final project is a place for keeping secrets on Herring Island. It is comprised of a single tunnel divided into four parts, which cuts through the natural topography of the island. Covered by a canopy of white steel outlines drawing up from the earth, which obscures the programmatic space of the design. The final design utilises the results from the experiments in architectural tectonics to create a form and to define a relationship above, below and on the earth. The site is utilised as apart of hiding the place for keeping â€˜secretsâ€™, but it is also an integral compositional element.
2.3 CONCEPT & SKETCH DESIGN
The intersection of the compositional elements of the conceptacle and the relationship between the earth, above ground and and below ground lead me to the idea of â€˜transitionâ€™. This word became a key frame of reference for making design decisions and progressing the project from a series of sketches to the finished product.
2.4 FINAL DESIGN DRAWINGS
24 Section A
2.5 FINAL DESIGN MODEL
3.0 REFLECTION This project has been a steep learning curve, providing the opportunity to further my understanding architecture and design through a theoretical and practical framework, but also to reflect upon my own design process. I have come to understand the value of un-used work. With each exercise, the generation and refinement of each idea required much iteration. At every stage of the process most drawings and models were discarded. This caused immense frustration as I felt like I was wasting time. However I came to realise that the more design â€˜wasteâ€™ that was discarded, the better the outcome- i.e. there was less waste in the final product. I have come to see this as a valuable and necessary part of designing. The blog images were significant in learning to use architectural precedents to understand and apply theoretical concepts to practice. Using the creations of people before you to inform ones understanding and design work is an incredibly useful tool. Through this I have also come to understand the importance of creating a personal library of architectural references from which to draw from. I have found immeasurable value in seeking guidance from experienced mentors: sometimes you have to ask for help. The guidance, tips and tricks, precedents and critique I have received from older peers, tutors, professors has saved me much time and exponentially improved my design work.
An element I have struggled with is the challenge of manifesting an idea into the physical form- sometimes it is difficult to bring your ideas to life in the way you imagine or to comprehensively articulate your ideas. The design process requires a willingness to try out lots ideas and so I have experimented with different design tools to visually represent my ideas, a process that I am sure will continue. I have found it takes time to learn new design technology tools, however with practice you become faster and more efficient. I have learned, that even when I am disappointed with the outcome of my work, that perseverance is key. As I keep trying and testing out ideas and methods I can see my work improving, even though it does not work out every time. And lastly, that holding up the results of my work- as a second year architecture student to the completed buildings of Le Corbusier or Sou Fujimoto is simply not constructive.
Nendo (for Desalto). ‘Softer than steel bench’. Image Stylepark 2014. Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee. Santiago Calatrava. Image Robert Greene 2013 Peter Zumthor. Theme Vals, Graubünden. Image Pol Martin 2015. Louis Kahn. Fischer House, Pennsylvania. Image Grant Mudford, 1967. AD House, Tokyo. Sou Fujimoto. Iwan Baan 2012. Craig Ellwood. Inhabited Bridge. Image Craig Ellwood 1977.