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THESIS PROJECT BRIEF >>

XIANG LI M.ARCH 10/11 DIGITAL TECTONICS STUDIO


introduction site location Manchester Castlefield site response site analysis


Interpreting the unique character of Castlefield, a conservation town of Manchester, the project explores traditional means of making, the craft of construction, fabrication, and sustainable textile technologies. Here, where an urban community has begun to fray both physically and socially (through recent regeneration-some unsuccessful), the thesis proposes an architectural response that reinforces and consolidates a sense of identity and place. The aim for the project is not a nostalgic return to the past, but a reinterpretation of this social institution to meet the very different needs of a community today. In doing so, the fabric of the city begins to be read as a textual pattern, and unravels Manchester’s rich past in the textile economy. On an urban level, this textile based approach could be deployed to identify and repair flaws in the city’s fabric. It could help achieve urban infill in parts of Manchester, and reconnect its identity with textiles. On a metaphorical level, the process in cotton production is parallel process in the city’s development. (washing, dyeing, blending, carding, spinning, weaving, twining, twisting, filling, layering, softness etc.)

identifying needs and an architectural response

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Site dynamics of Castlefield, Manchester through a time-space narrative

Overlaying individual components and viewpoints emerge to produce new configurations of the city. The fabric of the city begins to be read as a textual pattern

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Manchester - Once a flourishing city has to find another means of existence and a new purpose for their deserted factory buildings

s

i agent

vorono transformation strategy expansion from central to surrounding regions embodied energy, distribution

reservoir of available resources

spatial expansion displacement of human masses

exchange

infilling and knitting together widely distributed regional communities Ecosystem of exchange, System efficiency Mechanical and cultural adaptation

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Manchester as an urban fabric of varying patterns Material tectonics

ion

tradition/innovat

BRIDGEWATER VIADUCT

fraying weaving flaws

derelict soaces abandoned warehouses factory buildings

softness Tactile Quality Fabric of the city read as a textual pattern

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City-scale Through own observations on the city and investigations on dynamics and time-space narratives, the concept of ‘weaving’ emerged as a as a conceptual idea for the project. The fabric of the city can be read as a textile pattern, in which the processes in cotton production is made parallel to the city’s development. Processes of textile-making:

CU T

Washing Dyeing Blending Carding Spinning Weaving Twining Twisting Filling Bleaching Printing

CASTL

E STRE

ET

CASTLEFIELD

BOUNDARY VOLUME

PLANE

Therefore studying textile-making from an analogical/conceptual perspective will constitute the basic premise of my design thesis.

FIELD

This textile-based approach could be deployed to identify and repair flaws in the city’s fabric, in order to hel[ achieve urban infill in parts of the city, whilst reconnecting Manchester’s identity with textiles. It would also be used to set a framework for the design process in terms of program and inhabitation of space.

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projected fabric

N

O IBB

R

Projected Fabric

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This thesis proposes the design of a performance institute and archive. The aim is to re-stitch Manchester’s traditional roots with the new through a reciprocal knowledge-sharing relationship with the local community.

Significant textile economy in the recent

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Cotton and linen manufacturing areas

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CASTLE STREET

DEANSG

ATE RAI L

R

E ST E H

AD RO

C

programmatic brief_ Clients University of Salford, Manchester Peel Media (MediaCityUK) Manchester City Council (canals) Igloo Regeneration Fund (canals benefits) Manchester University School of Materials (textile and material research, arts and design making)

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public centres

Retail

Canals

Institution workshops - traditional making Modern innovative laboratories - for testing (high tech fabrics) Exhibition rooms Gallery Shop (sell made clothing) Summer school for public school children (hands-on making learning) and seasonal workshops (Easter and Christmas).

warehouses

Industrial

Public hands-on making workshop and school to introduce the less well educated people with their local roots to the current modern technology and research. Textile workshop as a small educational facility operated by Manchester University Materials Department. A combination of the workshop, a working site and the rich community and craft tradition of Castlefield provides a unique opportunity for a school of materials. Facilities used by visiting groups of tutors, students for teaching activities that are focused on the workshop as a site for experimentation and fabrication, or within the site of Castlefield as an alternative to the

central Manchester University campus environment. Centre for a new Design and Make graduate design course Fashion show (outdoor on river) linking making to performance, displaying an exhibition of a mix of traditional and high-tech design made at the workshops in the context of a series of machinery halls with gleaming looms. >>PROJECT BRIEF. 12


Main road

Grocer’s warehouse (abandoned currently)

Railway

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thesis proposal_

Manchester as a city which is currently facing the challenge of making the transition from its traditional roots as a textile city to comeback city, and investigates how the practice of textile manufacturing should transform the existing typologies of the fibre production and the archive. The project recognises forms of collaboration within Greater Manchester, to organise and innovate, against the background of a shifting spatial and cultural landscape. The thesis identifies

The acquisition of new machines could transform architectural intervention experiments with the institute as the activated site for en-

reintegrating textile curation. This new type proposes the return of traditional textile making, as a tool for the structuring of knowledge, to its roots in the interactive lab of the institute workshops while also offering a space for the exhibition and encoding of personal memory. gagement with a collection by

spatially capture and project the dynamism, emotion, and discursive potentials intrinsic to the process of design and manufacturing. The goal of this project is to better

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program_ New Campus Center (competition)

CLIENT: Illinois Institute of Technology


character

The of the new Center could be that of a ‘walk in website’, literally deriving its physiognomy from the mediating and orientational characteristics it must embody.

a catalyst of the emerging cross-disciplinary activity between departments. A situation might be envisaged where the potential collaboration between students of diverse backgrounds is facilitated by a heightened awareness of who is doing what forging a stronger collective institutional sense and identity for The Center could become

ITT as a whole.


concept_ The announcement of a New Campus Center for IIT raises a number of interesting contemporary issues concerning the

future of

educational and research institutions and offers an important occasion for Architecture’s re-interpretation

of modernity. Given the exemplary status of the IIT campus for 20th Century architecture the initiative to extend the campus at the beginning of the 21st Century incites the expectation of another exemplary and forward looking architectural statement. The call for a

multi0use campus center seems particularly prone to allow for the pragmatic culmination and projection of recent architectural innovations which have mainly revolved around the question of integrating and articulating new levels of organisational complexity, registering the ruptures in social patterns from the modern to the postmodern.


between permance and transcience


walter pichler

Walter Pichler objectivities are context-based to a large extent. themes_ spatial quality context-based - size, material properties craftmanship level of expression

A Performance Institute :  

Inhabiting poetic exhibitions of textile making in a new geography of curiosity to resuscitate Castlefield, Manchester.

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