3501 FA07: Architectural Design Studio IV

Building Performance Studio

Studio Statement

"Nature in the form of water, light, and sky restores architecture from a metaphysical to an earthly plane and gives life to architecture. A concern for the relationship between architecture and nature inevitably leads to a concern for the temporal context of architecture. I want to emphasize the sense of time and to create compositions in which a feeling of transience or the passing of time is a part of the spatial experience. "

Taddao Ando, “From the Periphery of Architecture”

performance |pərˈfôrməns|, noun

1. an act of staging or presenting a play, concert, or other form of entertainment

2. the action or process of carrying out or accomplishing an action, task, or function

A building performance is not simply a technical predictability of its structural and environmental behavior nor an aesthetic legibility of the design ideas. It is an action, an ingenious response to various internal and external forces as they seek equilibrium through time.

Recent technological obsessions in architecture fueled by the perforation of sophisticated structural, environmental and visual computer simulations re-ignited the interest in building performance. However, this trends tend to limit its potential by merely re-affirming the old functionalist thinking - predicting the predictable. A good musical performance has an element of surprise, an unexpected experience as it is a response to the audience and the context. So does the performance of a building.

The studio exams the complex nature of building performance through focused iteration, cultivating student awareness of the temporal-spatial (phenomenal) quality of a physical construct as they develop technical proficiency in architectural design process.

The pedagogical intention of the studio is to acknowledge the divide between phenomenal qualities of physical objects and representational methods employed in the design process.

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The studio intends to exploit this difference as a possible source for architectural exploration.

The First Phase of the studio (duration: 3 weeks) will begin with a discourse regarding the role of “architectural diagrams” as a generative tool. Precedent analysis of appropriate buildings with a focus on the treatment of natural lighting will complement the discourse. A small scale project to design and to construct a “Light Filtering Device” will follow.

The Second Phase of the studio (duration: 12 weeks) will consist of designing a building of intermediate complexity such as a library or a museum in urban context based on a careful observation (recording) and analysis of the “Light Filtering Device” constructed in the first phase.

“Performance” is an empirical process of improvisation and adjustment through trial and error, which is a self discovery process. “Student Performance” in this studio is also evaluated as such. Disciplined, self-directed recovery from a spectacular error is valued over mediocre success merely following the instructions.

Note: Field trip to Dallas / Ft. Worth metro area to visit following institutions will be a required

The Rachofsky House

Nasher Sculpture Center

The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth

Kimbell Art Museum


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