Studio: 2 sessions / week, 3 hours / session
This studio aims to develop and further our understanding of architecture through the lens of nano-scale machines, technologies and phenomena. The Nano-Machine will become an apparatus, a device, a system and an architecture for understanding inputs, processes and outputs that can lead to the creation of space. Three primary engines of drawing, making and spatial investigations will be employed to elaborate on that theme. Different connotations of the "machine" such as an analogy, a system of working, and a device for decision making literally and conceptually throughout each project will be explored. This course is specifically designed to play off of the students' non-architectural undergraduate classes by introducing a domain of investigation through which a dialogue can be created to span multiple backgrounds and applications. This studio will investigate the notion of self-assembly/self-replication/self-repair/self-reconfiguration and other such phenomena present at the nano-scale and explore contemporary spatial design possibilities through new developments in nano-robotics, DNA origami, synthetic biology, medical devices etc.
We will investigate the Nano-Machine with three projects:
Students should also be able to engage with an increasing level of design research through iterative studies and move fluidly between different modes and scales of operation. Conventions of architectural representation and communication through drawing and modeling should be engaged with clarity and intention. Students will need to demonstrate basic application of design skills, understanding of architectural conventions, and ability to sustain an increasing level of research in the projects over the semester. Completion of each of the exercises, rigor in process and clarity in representation, as well as the overall progress of the semester will be fundamental factors in the final evaluation.
A variety of tools and software are available for the design process, which includes form exploration, modeling, and producing drawings. For Project 1, students will be asked to use Processing, an open source programming language, to develop digital generative drawings. Over the course of the studio, students are encouraged to develop their abilities in modeling their designs as well as producing representations and drawings using Rhinoceros®.
The following criteria will be used for the evaluation of your work, both in terms of helping your progress and in final grading.
Project grades will be assigned according to the following:
Work in the studio will build sequentially. Therefore, commitment to incremental development on a daily basis is of paramount importance. Charrettes before reviews will not suffice. The demanding nature and pace of studio courses necessitates regular attendance and requires that deadlines be consistently met. In addition to lowering your grade, late work will prevent you from following the overall structure of the course. It is important that you take advantage of the studio environment. Magnification of your development as a designer is made possible by the collective nature of the studio. Working in studio, instead of at home, will allow you to participate in the dialogue of the studio setting. Group reviews are collective for a reason, as each student has something to gain from peer students.