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“…we had to spend more than four days working on this. But, in reality, not many more”

“‘The Serpentine called us to say, “you have the job”, on 8 February. And for several days we assumed that it was for 2010, as one would. But when we called back they said, “send us the design in four days”, which we didn’t. I mean, we had to spend more than four days working on this.’ But, in reality, not many more.”

Sam Chermayeff, SANAA

http://www.architectural-review.com/skill-/serpentine-pavilion-by-sanaa-serpentine-gallery-hyde-park-london-uk/8601012.article

I think this brings up an interesting question regarding speed and design quality.  It poses the question of whether more design time equals higher quality design.  The pavilion is a good reference for this because it usually doesn’t incorporate a complex program (such as hospitals or education facilities).  I would like to think that this fast and intense design session allows for a more essential design, rather than incorporating excessive architectural elements.  Rumor or not, Frank Lloyd Wright stated that he drew up the entire Falling Water scheme in a handful of hours.  He had been designing and thinking internally, but never put anything on paper.

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Wall Material Explorations:

In the material development phase, I am looking at the form and materials of the ground wall.  The different options vary in: privacy, isolation, and light quality.  Here are some options that both stem from the work of the furniture designers Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec.  The golden canvas reflects a large amount of light and also reflects the surrounding trees.  The cage acts as a barrier but also allows views out.

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Mid-Review: 10.15.10

Below are some images for my mid-review of the pavilion project.  Through putting my files together, I came up with a title for the project: the Aperture Pavilion.  I think the project is moving along well, though there are some key things that I need to still develop like materiality, ground-level design, and technical details.  Other than overall feedback about the shell of the pavilion, I am hoping that I will get some comments to direct me regarding those topics.

 

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Schematic Design: Floating Roof

The ‘floating roof’ design utilizes the same structure below but is more focused on the ground level and encloses the structure with a paper thin wall.  This design looks into the themes of dadaism and anti-rationalism that is apparent in the Barcelona Pavilion by Mies van der Rohe.  From afar, the pavilion seems to be supported by the curved wall.  As one enters into the structure it is apparent that the wall is paper thin and obviously not applying any structural support to the wall system.  The structure is hidden within the roof/column form.  The roof/column form contains a large and complex amount of steel to achieve the structure’s cantilever, touching on the concept of anti-rationalism.  I am also interested in the spectrum between function(seen in the surrounding green houses) and art.

 

These are now the questions I will investigate throughout the remainder of the project.

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Schematic Design: Elevated Platform

The second round of schematic design involved two ideas: an elevated platform and a floating roof.  The elevated platform allows users to study the trees at 12′ above ground level, as most of the trees’ canopies are out of reach from the ground.  Additionally, from the ground level, users are directed to certain views of trees. 

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Preliminary Concept: a conical cluster

The only regulation given to us for the pavilion project is that it must be on the university’s campus.  I was immediately drawn to the idea of creating a pavilion within a natural context (without any large campus buildings to compete with the scale and form of the pavilion).  The largest natural lot on campus is known as Christy Woods.  The land was given to the university by the Ball brothers and is currently used for environmental research.

One of my initial questions after choosing the wooded site was whether the pavilion with blend with the natural surroundings or act as a modern juxtaposition.  The preliminary concept attempts to do both.  In the wooded site there are areas that have no reference to the built environment, so I considered primitive and natural forms as my inspiration to the site.  This way the pavilion subtly references the site but can also be a contemporary interpretation.  I made a list of primitive forms such as mounds, stumps, canopies, rivers, mushrooms, etc and eventually landed on the concept of the tee pee.  The tee pee acts an ideal form for a heavily wooded area, occupying the negative space below and between the tree canopies.

Conical Diagrams

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Project 2: A Pavilion

Keywords:  Ephemeral, Mobile, Tectonics, Materialism, Location, Purpose

Pavilion projects are a tool for architects to push their ideas.  The Venice Biennale, MoMa’s PS1, and the Serpentine Gallery act as platforms for designers to experiment with ideas of materiality, tectonics, and form.  The temporal qualities of a pavilion allow for less obligations than a 100 yr building.  Usually lacking an airtight envelope and generally one level tall, these projects rarely rely on logistics of HVAC, drainage, or typical clients.

With this reasoning, Rem Koolhaas is able to produce a 50′ tall inflatable bubble;

MOS-Office is able to test their contemporary application of thatch;

and Sou Fujimoto can make a building out of levitating planks of wood

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Project 1

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Project 1: Soft Connections with Tyvek

THE GOAL OF SOFT CONNECTIONS WITH TYVEK IS TO EXPERIMENT WITH THE MATERIAL TO ACCENTUATE ITS PROPERTIES (LIQUID BARRIER, STRENGTH, ETC). THE PROJECT BRINGS THE MATERIAL FROM A LARGE BUILDING SCALE USE TO A HUMAN SCALE, CUTTING THE TYVEK INTO HAND-SIZED PIECES.

USING TYVEK’S INHERIT STRENGTH, I WAS ABLE TO UTILIZE SOFT

CONNECTIONS FOR THE EXPERIMENTS. NO ADHESIVE OR SECONDARY MATERIAL WAS USED TO JOIN THE MATERIAL TO ITSELF. RESEARCHING ONE OR TWO EXAMPLES OF PAPER CONNECTIONS, I WAS ABLE TO UNDERSTAND THE BASIC GUIDELINES TO DESIGN A SERIES OF JOINTS.

THE TWO EXPERIMENTS ARE LESS ABOUT FUNCTION AND MORE ABOUT MATERIAL EXPLORATIONS. THE TWO PROTOTYPES DEPICT A REGULAR GRID PATTERN AND A RANDOM GRID PATTERN. COLOR WAS USED TO ACCENT THE INDIVIDUAL SHAPES AS WELL AS THE OVERLAPPING JOINERY.

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Project 1: Soft Connections with Tyvek

Soft Connections with Tyvek

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