Friday, March 26, 2010

Great site for quirky modern buildings.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

THE GALLERY and other things.

Hey guys, just quickly:

By next week I'd like to see a gallery in the model you're developing, with an example of the work of both artists in it. (Russell probably talked about the gallery in yesterday's lecture, so if he said anything different to below, please let me know.)

The gallery:

1. goes on the ground (datum).
2. is reached by the stairs you're making for each of the studios
3. has an entrance on the datum (or has a different but practical way that the public can enter)
4. can be a building that combines elements from both studios in a considered way. It can also be distinctly different. If you think that the gallery itself should be a sculpture (like Gehry's Guggenheim in Bilbao), make it one. If you think the gallery should be a simple building to show the art but not compete with the art for attention, make such a gallery.
5. can be a third building, or can be fused somehow within the structures you already have, in a meaningful way.

Research some galleries, see how the designers resolved issues like circulation, lighting and ways to display artwork. If you find a good precedent, put images on your blog.

The studios:

Now that you have decided on the studios you're working on, still think about things like scale. A studio need not be the size of a conventional room. It can be enormous, or intimate, or as sprawling or as intricate as you like.

Also, look at how different architects use materials. Shigeru Ban uses bamboo and paper. It is possible to make semi-transparent concrete, glass is not the only transparent material available to you. Opaque screens can have the feel of transparency if they're perforated enough.

The stairs:

You have had a whole lecture on stairs, and the stairs are important. At the moment some of your staircases are fairly nominal. Think about how you are going to resolve them, how they connect, and how they represent the studio they are connected to. Ideally your staircase will not look like one you have seen before, but will be generated by the project and inspired by many images of precedents.


Please keep your blogs up to date. Some of you don't have your second models up, and some of you haven't uploaded any models yet.

I didn't get to see you all on Tuesday, so if you'd like to talk about your work drop me a line.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Hey, I have added an updating blogroll thing, so you don't have to alert me anymore if you upload to your blog.

Rocky, Eddy and Hao Wu, I still don't have your blog addresses.

Now. For your interest, here is a video of Russell explaining his bikes and tattoos. There are also glimpses of my grad studio both in physical and avatar form, including current tutors Jules and Vinh (and me with more hair).

Sunday, March 14, 2010


There was a question last week about whether you should bring laptops so you can use SketchUp. The answer is you don't need to (unless you want to) since you'll be drawing most of the time.

Chikatsu-Asuka Historical Museum, Japan (Tadao Ando)

Rice fields, Yunnan Province, China

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Week 2 Things

1) I have looked at all the blogs that I have on my blogroll so far. I'm not going to comment on them individually, except to say that you have noted an interesting range of buildings - from an anonymous timber hiking shelter, to Petra's carved-out treasury, to something by Calatrava (I think if I had done this exercise I would also have used a Calatrava building). There's also quite a variety of skills in the group - 3D CAD, manual drawing, carpentry etc. It looks like most of you are not new to design of some kind or another.

2) Your blogs should contain the exercises set in lectures, but these can be interspersed with any other things you stumble on and find interesting....text, images, videos, random musings. It's a way for you to broadcast your thoughts and get feedback, and to see the ideas that are occupying other people. If you are inspired by another student's work, by all means put it on your blog (with their permission). On this note:

3) A few of you aren't referencing yet. At the moment it looks like inexperience or laziness, but eventually it can lead to your academic integrity being questioned. Get into good habits now. There are many conventions for how to reference. For now, if you're referencing a website, at least put up the web address and the day you accessed it (if the website doesn't actually credit the photographer or author of the bit of work you're pinching).

4) I take it from the fact that none of you have posted any sketches for me to look at that you're all clear on which sections you're developing for next week. I hope you're not choosing the easy and straightforward ones, but ones that will challenge you. If you look at them now, you shouldn't necessarily have any idea of how you will go about modelling them when you hit SketchUp. It's ok to let them evolve.

5) If you have time, go and see the Olafur Eliasson exhibition at the MCA and play with lego. He does some cool things with planes and shapes, and inserting cold / wet / dark / reflective environments into a very conventional exhibition space. (He also did the quirky loop staircase in front of the bank in Germany that was on one of Russell's lecture slides today).

6) Monika is your student rep. Go to her with ideas for the end of session party. Also any comments about the course or the tutorial if you don't want to come to me.

If you are 'following' me, it doesn't always mean that I can see your blog. Please keep giving me your blog addresses, I have a little over half of them now.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Welcome to Design Studio 1.

Just letting you know that one of your 'clients', Richard Goodwin, is giving a talk at COFA (College of Fine Arts) this Tuesday evening. I imagine Russell has organised for Richard to give you a presentation at some point during the lectures, so at the very least this is a chance for a preview, and a chance to check out the COFA campus (you may find the library a useful resource later on).

(Keep your eyes on this lecture series, and the one held by the AIA (Institute of Architects) for some cheap and diverse talks.)

ALSO, once you have your blogs set up, please drop me a comment so that I can link to you on the sidebar ----->