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The Soul And Mind of Man Through Architecture

Dreamer

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I have decided to start this thread as a running blog of sorts. But not a personal blog in the traditional sense. I wish this place be devoted towards the arts and beauty, the intellect and grace, that architecture inhibits. What you see all around you, the built environment and natural, is an embodiment of the mind and soul as seen through the physical environment. Man can only create what they understand to be true. One can say that this limits the potential as to what can be done, yet time and time again, new buildings and structures are created around the world that are awe inspiring and seek to move and to transform the places within the structure, as well as the minds of those that enter them. Great design invokes great contemplation and thought. Not any architect can create such monuments that touch the soul, but those that are able, find a place deep within the mind and and heart and bring forth new hope and optimism for those that partake in the dance that is spatial form and material balance in play of light and shadow.

Architecture then, in its highest form, is an homage to what man can create and what can become.

This thread then, will be devoted to the arts of Architecture. Anyone is welcome to post an entry. I would like to post my first entry shortly if time permits, before the end of this week. Stay tuned!
 

Dreamer

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The Beauty of The Line

To begin this "series" I will present something so basic, yet so powerful to architecture. The professor of my first elective class outside of studio, named Material Representation, started off the class with his first lecture on, the line. What about a "line" is so moving and powerful. It is something so simple, you see it everywhere in language, in the physical environment, perceived order and composition of objects in thought and in the physical world. But for architecture, the line, is the first stroke taken down on paper that translates an architect's thought, to reality. From then on, more lines converge to create intersections. Parallel lines create zones, and varying levels of weight and thickness add texture to a drawing.

What else does a line do? A line is a division between two entities. Between two materials. But you may ask, well in reality, a line is perceived as there exists no such boundary. In drawing class, teachers often say one way to create a lifelike drawing is to break apart a scene into shapes, form, and light. No lines are allowed as the only perceived lines are those created between transitions in light and form.

This perceived boundary, is where I find great fascination. To take a side step for a brief moment, this is the sort of analogy I will think of when describing the way I think. There is no boundary between thoughts and realities, only gray areas and boundaries one creates for themselves, thus, anything is possible.

To bring this back to architecture, anything is possible within this unknown, indescribable place, between two materials. Between two spheres of being. What truly, isarchitecture? Does it have to be a built environment? Can it simply be a construct that your mind creates between you and the environment around you?

Our first assignment for this class was to create a physical representation of this boundary. The meeting of two materials. What happens in this zone? How do we represent the meeting, the unity of these two materials as if the two are seamlessly merged and without force? How can we represent two planes that come together so coherently and without authorship? I took these questions, understood it, and ran with it. I am presenting the artwork that I created from this class, which I also presented in the Typology Central Art Gallery, so if you'd like to read a little more about it, head on over there.

So what can be said about a line? A line is the first step towards realizing an architect's vision and to greater extent, a line is not a division between entities, but encourages exploration of that boundary, of the unknown. What happens when one surface meets another? What happens when one material meets another. How is the force of one material reciprocated by the other? What is the dialogue between the two. Ultimately, I leave you with more questions than answers. But this is precisely what this first class outside of studio taught me, in beginning to open my mind and to question everything I knew of architecture and what space was. What truly, is physical space? To me, space is the external representation of the internal space of the creator. Though, it is also abstract enough where other people that explore this space, is able to draw their own individual connections and at once, feel harmonious or disgust with the space. How one creates space, once more, stems from the care and craft taken to shape that first line on a blank sheet of trace.

The line is powerful in its application, in its autonomy and strength, yet useless without the artist to wield its ability and definition.

Four Drawings.jpg
 

Cloudpatrol

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The Beauty of The Line

To begin this "series" I will present something so basic, yet so powerful to architecture. The professor of my first elective class outside of studio, named Material Representation, started off the class with his first lecture on, the line. What about a "line" is so moving and powerful. It is something so simple, you see it everywhere in language, in the physical environment, perceived order and composition of objects in thought and in the physical world. But for architecture, the line, is the first stroke taken down on paper that translates an architect's thought, to reality. From then on, more lines converge to create intersections. Parallel lines create zones, and varying levels of weight and thickness add texture to a drawing.

What else does a line do? A line is a division between two entities. Between two materials. But you may ask, well in reality, a line is perceived as there exists no such boundary. In drawing class, teachers often say one way to create a lifelike drawing is to break apart a scene into shapes, form, and light. No lines are allowed as the only perceived lines are those created between transitions in light and form.

This perceived boundary, is where I find great fascination. To take a side step for a brief moment, this is the sort of analogy I will think of when describing the way I think. There is no boundary between thoughts and realities, only gray areas and boundaries one creates for themselves, thus, anything is possible.

To bring this back to architecture, anything is possible within this unknown, indescribable place, between two materials. Between two spheres of being. What truly, isarchitecture? Does it have to be a built environment? Can it simply be a construct that your mind creates between you and the environment around you?

Our first assignment for this class was to create a physical representation of this boundary. The meeting of two materials. What happens in this zone? How do we represent the meeting, the unity of these two materials as if the two are seamlessly merged and without force? How can we represent two planes that come together so coherently and without authorship? I took these questions, understood it, and ran with it. I am presenting the artwork that I created from this class, which I also presented in the Typology Central Art Gallery, so if you'd like to read a little more about it, head on over there.

So what can be said about a line? A line is the first step towards realizing an architect's vision and to greater extent, a line is not a division between entities, but encourages exploration of that boundary, of the unknown. What happens when one surface meets another? What happens when one material meets another. How is the force of one material reciprocated by the other? What is the dialogue between the two. Ultimately, I leave you with more questions than answers. But this is precisely what this first class outside of studio taught me, in beginning to open my mind and to question everything I knew of architecture and what space was. What truly, is physical space? To me, space is the external representation of the internal space of the creator. Though, it is also abstract enough where other people that explore this space, is able to draw their own individual connections and at once, feel harmonious or disgust with the space. How one creates space, once more, stems from the care and craft taken to shape that first line on a blank sheet of trace.

The line is powerful in its application, in its autonomy and strength, yet useless without the artist to wield its ability and definition.

View attachment 16192

Powerful stuff.

Sometimes when I am about to start a drawing, I feel paralyzed from the thought of putting that one initial line down on paper. It seems momentous!

Your talk of perceived boundaries put me in mind of the ocean. It's always amazing to be out or in the ocean and have it roiling strongly about. Then, to return to shore and sit while the same immense waves break against the shore. The massive, powerful force heaving toward sand and then stopping gracefully to be pulled back out.

When there are weather complications and the tide overcomes land - like in a tsunami - that boundary becomes ever so clear in it's significance.
 

Dreamer

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The Studio Culture Within an Architecture School

Short documentary film that just so happened to take place while I was finishing up my last year at Pratt. This follows some undergrads though, and the graduate students mostly reside on another end of the building. Nonetheless, it's a cool peak inside what it's like to be an architecture student and some of the ideas that are commonly shared among students and professors. I miss studio :(

Enjoy!

 

typologyenthusiast

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Discussion of a line is best understood geometrically. Euclid in "Elements" believes
Euclid said:
A line is a length without breadth


The notion of Euclidean line may only be imaginable, but in practice it will never be attainable. When we try to draw a line with a pen, will the drawing become a line just like what Euclid says: a length without breadth? The length may be obvious but is it really without any breadth at all? Try drawing a line on a paper and pay close attention to the thickness of your drawing pen nib that leaves the mark of the drawn line. Would you agree if I said that it is actually a breadth? Smaller the nib size, smaller the breadth, vice versa. We actually draw a breadth to a line we may not notice.
---------------------------
A single line by itself doesn't seem beautiful to me. It would be, only when it was drawn in numbers in a way that they become other thing. I drew an Alhambra pattern using only ruler and compass, pencil and drawing pen, but too lazy to erase some pencil marks. The pattern made is as a result of combination of lines and circles. I particularly like the small stars on the arcs of the circles. Do you notice?. They are obtained not on purpose. You can see the result.
 
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typologyenthusiast

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Architecture School Criticized
I heard that Architecture education especially in the U.S is being critisized. The critic is Peter Zellner, an Architect.



A response to Zellner.


Peter Zellner later establish Free school of Architecture (FSA) as a follow up action to it. Antonio Pachecho, Archpaper Journalist discussed it.

This is an overview of FSA.
FSA said:
Free School of Architecture questions the edges of architectural education and explores practice in the context of architecture's expanded field. FSA facilitates dialogue through peer-to-peer learning, participant directed programming and an ever changing network of affiliations and collaborations.

FSA is run by its four organizers, Karina Andreeva, Lili Carr, Elisha Cohen and Tessa Forde, and supported by the FSA advisors.*

FSA is on an indefinite hiatus.

*The Free School of Architecture was originally founded in 2016 in Los Angeles by architect and educator Peter Zellner, who is no longer involved.

Free School of Architecture questions the edges of architectural education and explores practice in the context of architecture's expanded field. FSA facilitates dialogue through peer-to-peer learning, participant directed programming and an ever changing network of affiliations and collaborations.

FSA is run by its four organizers, Karina Andreeva, Lili Carr, Elisha Cohen and Tessa Forde, and supported by the FSA advisors.*

FSA is on an indefinite hiatus.

*The Free School of Architecture was originally founded in 2016 in Los Angeles by architect and educator Peter Zellner, who is no longer involved.
and this one
Starting Free School of Architecture by Teresa Forde

What is Zellner and his followers aim to study by debating between students? Because in FSA they don't have strict teacher - student status like in architecture traditional school, What I get in Zellner and his followers ideal is by doing so, Every student can teach one another and they can also learn from one another. It is not like A teacher gets an authoritative status in architecture that every student must learn from him or her only, hence he might become a cult leader. To learn that it may be rejected for many reason by other peer by engaging in a debate where they will present argument against or for to a design presented. This is a great ideal. This follows from the standpoint that Baldessari and Zellner seems to agree with one another that any art including Architecture can't be taught. But they have to explain in detail what do they mean by it can't be taught.
However, Since they don't hire teacher, FSA student won't enjoy what teacher traditionally do. Traditional university lecturer work that I know is to deliver lecture, and assessing student academic achievement by examination. It is a kind of service that usually is given financial compensation as a professional, since student enjoy lecture and evaluation and of course an academic record issued by the university and later become a formal document that communicates that a person has learnt this and that from a school. In FSA, we can expect no lecture will be delivered also, hence follows no tuition fee will be charged.

FSA status, unfortunately now is on indefinite hiatus as stated on their webpage. The organizer are perhaps occupied doing something else rather than continue volunteering to realize their architectural education concept. Well, Zellner and his follower school concept is probably not feasibly run financially speaking. One of My suggestion for them is that They should try online class so that they should not worry of renting a place to gather and since it can be accessible from everywhere, they can expect student from everywhere can join.

I imagine the ideal of Architecture school. It was more or less like Art internship. Student would work in a real architecture studio run by a practicing architect. When they got client they got a real project. They would learn by doing; instead of attending lecture. They would be engaged in day to day life business of Architecture. I learnt from the videos that students make some models in school. But does it become a real building? Probably not. Perhaps The models are only assessed by teacher or other students and they are graded. Student in this academic environment will never learn that their model might not become real building for many reasons which probably be the case in real architecture studio. Every design would not be directly accepted and proceed to the next phase.
In architectural education intern I imagine that student' design could only be assessed by pass or fail. Pass if the design proposed is accepted by client, fail if it is rejected. Practicing architect got help in hiring an intern, since they could assign some of his firm work to the student. Student-intern got the opportunity to learn by watching how architectural work in actual practice.

I like this idea also because another reason. When applying for an internship position in a real firm, the selection process will be somewhat like hiring decision. The intern might get paid and the intern don't pay, unlike becoming a student that it is student that have to pay the school tuition.

Another critique: Entrepreneurship must be incorporated in Architectural Education Curriculum.

Both being hired as an employee in architect position and hiring an architect with employment status is potentially problematic to both of employee and employer. Becoming burned out because of repeated design process they have to undergo is the risk bore by architect with employement status.
I remember that a story told by my sister that A mining company that she worked for hired a recent architecture graduate in an employment program that somewhat like management trainee. He was tasked to design , but after he submitted the design to his boss, his boss rejected it and instructed him to re design. What happened next was He later resigned. My sister said that it was unfortunate since being accepted in the program, he was going to be offered a permanent position, which would have secured a position for him in the company until he retired.
When architecture graduate accepted a job as architect with employment status, that will happen. When design is rejected, He will be instructed to re design, that as an employee, cannot be refused, since if he did, he wouldn't have something to exchange with the salary paid to him. However, Repeating a design process was probably too tiring for him and the manager might not have known nor cared to know. in the case of the MT, My sister told me that He didn't have enough sleep for his initial design. But he had to repeat it that would have made him not to sleep for the n[SUP]th[/SUP] night. It would be different if He worked as an entrepreneur. If his design gets rejected, he doesn't have to resign since no one employs him, no one pays salary to him and hence he is not obliged to repeat the design process. But he has to realize that he won't make revenue because of that and his archipreneurial career won't last long if rejection keeps happening. This mentality would be best taught at school before they enter the job market so that they are more prepared.
For employer, hiring architect has a risk not having the design although corporate budget has been spent on salary of the architect hired. Instead of hiring one and expect the hired personnel can deliver the desired design, The correct way is to choose the most-suitable-to-client one among many proposed designs and only pay for it. With this digitalized era, I have inspected the internet and found out that digitalized marketplace for architecture design, that enable it are already available.
These are two of them that I have found:
https://archibrix.com/en
Introduction to Archibrix

https://www.arcbazar.com/about
About Arcbazaar


Without entrepreneurship taught, Architecture graduate will probably not have the sense that the Architect role is ideally inherently entrepreneurial. Architect has to work entrepreneurially in order to free itself from binding agreement with employer that is burdening and controlling and we can expect, doing so, Architect can unleash unique individual creativity of him/her/themselves. Architect, if work, as a group, should operate somewhat like a real estate agency in terms of revenue sharing. Every individual professional real estate agent plays the role as an associate to a brokerage principal; not employee. They don't have the right and obligation as employee. Like They don't get paid by salary by the principal. But they have the right to be shared a commission with their principal. They get paid only if they contribute to successful sales, either as a listing agent or a selling agent or principal*. How long their career will last as a real estate agency will be influenced by how much omzet they make. Architect also must not get paid if their design is rejected by client. They should only get paid if their design is accepted. Retirement age is not known in the business. They can work until their death.
Archipreneur can also work until their death since both of them don't have employer who will make them retired when they reach retirement age.
 
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typologyenthusiast

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The Occupant and the Design
I have checked some designs on one of the architectural design marketplace. I raise some questions like : who wants to live there? Do people like the design? what kind of people do the design fit with ? Do these designers know who they design for?
It seems to me that those design comes from the designers own mind but who could guarantee they are also wanted by others? This you-tube channel Nomad architecture, in contrast documents actual traditional buildings that are still occupied, signifying the design still get acceptance from the occupants. I browsed to their youtuber: Gordon Clarke website, who has founded an institute of nomadic architecture that conducts research in traditional architecture of nomadic people.
Institute of Nomadic Architecture said:
IoNA is a rich source of information on the traditional architecture of nomadic peoples. We have been researching nomadic architecture for the last fifteen years and have over 40,000 images and 500 hours of video clips, as well as detailed notes from all around the world. We are slowly compiling this material into a structured resource...but it is taking time and there is a lot left to do before this site is anything like complete.


Most of the buildings you will find on this site have not previously been recorded in any significant detail, and our study methods are muti-layered. We record the structure itself, and where possible more than one of a type, in order to assess the diversity within the group. Within this framework, attempts are made to name all the parts in the local language, to measure the sizes of spaces and components, and to understand the structural and environmental logic behind the design. We record the processes involved in making the building, this is not always easy as some tents take over two years to produce, a little at a time, as the family moves from camp to camp, and for the mobile architectures the way of moving the building. We record the way in which the dwelling is occupied, any cultural values such as sacred spaces and the places for different family members and guests. Finally, we try to assess the recent developments that have taken place in the design of the building, whether by assessing the introduction of new materials or through the narrative of older occupants.
source

If I were an architecture student, I would rather studying those designs first to try to take some lesson from them than experimenting with totally new design concept which presumably without any historical record of occupiers. It would be best to learn why at least historically,what these buildings with every parts of it were built for and why the occupiers chose to live there. Then, I would try predicting, if we just did the same design now, would it be still relevant? would occupiers still want it?. Do we have to introduce some change? Why or why Not, If yes, what that will be, How important it is. Then I would try to come up with my design, and Approximate, what kind of people will be interested in occupying the design if it becomes a real building? I would try to explain this to my audience; in addition to exhibiting the design . Presenting the finished design without that just seems they are probably the result of the designer's trial and error.

Design Stockpiling: An Introduction to an Alternative Architectural Design Marketing Concept
What Archibrix do is arguably collecting designs from designers and exhibit them to internet browsers. For me, They have introduced an alternative marketing concept for architectural design namely design stockpiling. This allow designers not to rush in finishing their design because of trying to meet a deadline set probably by A project manager or other party. This is an interesting concept. Trying to Meet a deadline can be a cause for a worker work until late and even not to take a night rest, which will make them burn out or even fall ill. By collecting a design stockpile, they solves this problem, which will help architect a lot. They show that working with them ,Architect can market their design with relax rather than rushing. It is sufficient for Architect to submit ready design for them and just wait until buyers come. Design sold might be already the one who is stockpiled for a long time. With this marketing concept , design can be sold even when designers are asleep
 
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typologyenthusiast

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Elora Hardy and John Hardy, Bamboo Architecture, Bali, Indonesia

I admire their work. John Hardy has his own interesting perception of which is classified as architecture and which is merely building. He seems not to recognize every buildings as an architectural work result. I have this perception also. Most building that I see like a result of Engineering work without any architectural sense.
Elora Hardy Exclusive Interview
Elora Hardy: Building a sustainable (bamboo) future

inktalks said:
http://www.INKtalks.com Elora Hardy had it all as a designer working for Donna Karan in New York, with her prints walking the world's runways. She left it all to return to Bali and build a sustainable construction company. Hardy builds visually stunning homes out of bamboo, fantasy abodes that look derived from Hollywood movie sets. In this striking talk, Hardy explains the versatility and durability of bamboo, and convinces us all to become advocates of bamboo as the choice building material for construction in the tropics.

ABOUT INK: INKtalks are personal narratives that get straight to the heart of issues in 18 minutes or less. We are committed to capturing and sharing breakthrough ideas, inspiring stories and surprising perspectives--for free!

Watch an INKtalk and meet the people who are designing the future--now.

ABOUT ELORA HARDY: Elora Hardy is creative director of Ibuku in Bali. She established the groundbreaking Green Village alongside the Green School in Ubud. Elora leads a team of skilled artisans, craftsmen and designers to create homes made of bamboo. She previously worked as a designer in NYC, where she created original prints for Donna Karan International and the socially conscious clothing brand Edun.
 
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