Big Form — Small Grain

Constellations and Aggregations for Future Living

In the first phase of the semester project we are investigating existing housing projects in view of their performative qualities and typological configurations. Divided into 4 categories (slab, cluster, table, terrace) the relationship between s and xl, between the parts and the whole is analyzed through specific observations based on references from the past as well as from the contemporary context. While the emphasis is put on how apartment units are specificly designed for certain users, how the units are assembled and how the whole complex creates an urban form within a given context we should already project how far these aspects can be translated to the semester project.

As we also would like to reflect the standardization of architectural production our attention will also be directed towards the building details. How do certain elements create a specific quality (openness, flexibility, aesthetic quality, etc.)? How is the building detail related to specific life-styles or modes of everyday live? How can we achieve low-cost construction while still creating a ‘plus’, something that goes beyond the banal or the trivial? How do certain detail solutions lead to a kind of de-standardization of housing production?

The main goal of the research phase is to create narratives for the existing that would then inform and inspire the design process. Besides the common tools of research and analysis (descriptive texts, image documentation, drawings and diagrams illustrating the design ideas) we would also like to experiment with more poetic or lyrical types of re-descriptions in text and model. Even though the research part forms an independent work, it serves also as the starting point of a design process that will continuously establish a dialogue between the findings of the research exercise.

MA Studio Research Task

MA References