Collection: PART 3

REFLECTIVE JOURNAL

3 themes

Unit 7 is the final unit, all the work that we do from this Monday onwards counts towards this unit. It lasts until the end of the course.

We were asked to think out 3 difficult themes for this project and created 3 pages on the sketchbook. So far, I have already come out with some aspects that I am interested, but l was not sure what specific theme should I really focus on.

  1. Serenity

Since I had done some research about the fair-faced concrete before this project, I was quite interested in thinking and designing kind of building which is made by this material. It is A clear trend is 'surfacing' in the language of architecture, towards concepts that are as individual as they are unique. Also, it might create kind of serenity, philosophy atmosphere within itself, and encourage and engage people in philosophy thinking if there are well applying in some architecture. That is what I want to achieve at the end of this course.

  1. Extinguish the border

By looking some architecture by Sou Fujimoto, it inspires me a lot considering how to extinguish the border between inside and outside. I would like to make a public place for people communicating but also it can be separated into several areas in order to keep the privacy for someone.

  1. Compact living

An imagination of future city-crowed of people living in limited space, but how can I improve their living quality by building a suitable house in that situation.

 

During the tutorial on Monday, the tutor said he prefer to the serenity than the other themes, he hope I can pay more attention on this and started to develop this idea, moreover, he encourage me to combine with other themes rather than just concern with one field. The exhibition of Sou Fujimoto in Japan House London is he high recommend to me to visit. Wish I could get more inspiration from it.

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Today I had made a series of cardboard models and I made these in really quick and simple way - sticking different component by using hot melting glue gun. Therefore, these outcomes seem really fragile and unfinished, especially from the conjunction parts. Moreover, some of these have a mistake, for example, one sketch elides with another to create something unexpected, but I thought a broken model suggests a new spatial arrangement. Accidents are part of the process. 

Initial models may be simple sketch ideas but we also value the ability of abstract, sculptural models to express an initial idea or intention in its clearest form. As designs develop models are often built at a large scale, enabling a real sense of inhabiting the design; this may extend to full-size models of individual elements that allow proportions to be gauged against the scale of the hand or body. So I will keep making such quick models in next day.

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Today we had done a one-day-project -"Make it in a Day Workshop". What I thought is this workshop is developed from the design practice of prototyping. In order to rapidly develop and test early design ideas, designers and artists often create low-tech models from readily available materials and parts. These aren't about the overall aesthetics, they help us to rapidly identify and solve practical or functional issues.

Thanks to the previous paper models I had made before, it help me work out the first draft of the final model in the really beginning. At this time, I choose a bunch of clay-wood as primary material to complete the model rather than applying those low quality cardboard at the last time. The outcome was made quite successful, but some scales have to be adjusted for better results, such as heights of each floor and the gradient of the slope. In fact, I really want to create that model with concrete since I had never use it before and my expected material for this social architecture is fair-face concrete. Due to the limited time, I gave up this method but I expect to use it in the next time since it is worth to test as a experiment.

Viewing exhibition

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Today I went to the exhibition SOU FUJIMOTO: FUTURES OF THE FUTER. It introduces Fujimoto’s visions for the architecture of the future through a presentation centred on models. His work displays a graceful strength and poetic aesthetic, representative of contemporary Japanese architecture, which Japanese proudly consider to be an aspect of their nation’s culture.

In this exhibition, Sou Fujimoto is presenting not only the ongoing projects and works we are known for but also his current experiments for the future. Therefore, the experimental models are quite different compared with some ordinary architectural models. They may turn out to be strange, unseen forms of architecture. They may also include many things that have not quite taken the form of architectural and still remain anticipations of anticipation. Still, every one of these attempts started with the questions that are the most essential to architectural –in the future, in what social environment, where and how will we live? What are the meanings of “human being and space”, “inside and outside”, “natural and manmade”, “individual and society”? I think these fundamental questions are really useful when I am considering the theme of the project.

In fact, I really enjoy watching these models in the exhibition, which gave me a lot of inspiration, especially the Tokyo Apartment model. Rather than treating it as a single apartment building, Sou Fujimoto designed a complex yet pleasant living environment by connecting and intertwining a stack of house in multiple layers. The shape of the result is impressive and it let me understand straightforward work like this is also a part of architecture, I would like to simulate that method into my project.

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The structure of the building is really affect the form of activity of people, therefore, I tried to work out with a special structure which is able to well lead the public to interact with this space. I decided to keep using the primary idea from the hand made project- Mobius Strip, since I thought the continuity of this strip is a good demonstration to achieve to my expectation. Due to this feature, it can lead people to walk through the whole space without guidance. The Möbius strip is a surface with only one side and only one boundary. It is easy to achieve this effect in mathematics theory, but not in reality. If I have to apply this structure for building a architecture, I need to add another identical structure as a kind of connection to connect different platforms because we cannot walk through a ‘mobius strip’ without it. So I am going to work out a series of structures in SketchUp and find the best solution for this project.

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I love fair-face concrete applying in architecture. The smooth fair-face concrete wall surfaces and soffits therefore provide a modern contrast to the wooden furnishings, but still fit in well with the style of the interior. Both inside and outside, all the details of this building have been carefully and thoroughly conceived, which meant that the various openings for doors and windows, even the recesses in the soffits for the flush-fitting lighting units, had to be constructed very accurately in order to do justice to the requirements placed on the design.

Also, it might create kind of serenity, philosophy atmosphere within itself, and encourage and engage people in philosophy thinking if there are well applying in some architecture. That is what I want to achieve at the end of this course.

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Today I went to serpentine museum and I was quite interested in this pavilion by Frida Escobedo. The introduction show the pavilion is made up of a series of perforated walls, which from a distance recall the woven wooden frame for a wattle-and-daub hut or for a celosia, a traditional breeze wall commonly found in Mexican architecture. Personally, I do not feel any differences between indoor and outside when I was walking through the pavilion.

The interior of the space is partially covered by a curving and initially disconcerting ceiling covered in mirrored panels and reflecting the various surfaces and textures of Escobedo’s design. Here, again we find a sense of displacement: roof tiles are used in the walls, while the tables and chairs found inside are doubled on the ceiling. 

Confusing typical notions of indoors and outdoors, the internal courtyard also contains a shallow pool that reflects the sky and the surrounding trees, the image on the water’s surface changing with the light, weather and time of day. 

Confirm theme

Thanks to the experience of watching serpentine pavilion and the exhibition of Sou Fujimoto in Japan House, it help me reconsider the whole theme for this final project. I decided to integrate the three themes together and started to find the relationship among these which are The serenity, A space with no border and Compact living. I noticed these elements can be linked with imagination of finding numerous possibilities for new architecture in the future, we dreaming about the future because we thought the constructions or the cities we are living in present are still need to improve in order to get better living standard. Nowadays citizens are really living in on the Internet, our communications become less in reality and we prefer staying in fixed, closed environment for protecting their privacy. I think this less positive phenomenon in our society has to be corrected by changing the form of architecture which may also influence our living style. Therefore in this project I want to create a space which is able to encourage people come together and the building itself is a kind of my realisation and reflection about the modern society and city.

What I gonna to do is do more relevant research about some architectures which really close to my concept and also try to look for suitable materials and methods to develop my project.

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It’s quite efficient to work with using SketchUp when I tried to create complex structures and it is able to transfer information to viewers directly, especially for this project. I thought it also help me a lot when I started to do some experiments in workshop since I could quickly select and apply some practical and outstanding structures from the computer.

Nevertheless, the images making by SketchUp still cannot take place the handmade model. As  students study architecture we are engaged in the encounter between people and the physical world; how people experience place and how place affects them. Model making is the first step towards understanding this reality. Working with card, plaster, stone, wood, steel and glass a bridge to understanding the material presence of the building. Exploring the subtle unfolding of spaces and play of light a way of “being there” and sensing the feeling of the spaces we are designing in all their tactile and sensory complexity.Physical models allow us to share these spatial explorations with others: team members, clients, users and consultants. Design is collaborative. Discussion around design models allows everyone to engage with the design of spaces and contribute to the creative process.

Therefore, I would start making quick sculptures but trying to test and applying different materials on these for seeing more possibility, such as concrete, wood, steel or plastic in the next step.

 

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Location is one of the most important part of architecture, it may reflect local particular culture and affect surrounding people’s living style or promote the development of economic if it is located on a right place. Personally, I usually put this section at end of the project since it is difficult to make a great decision. At first, I decided it should be set on some public parks in London, such as the Regent’s Park, Hyde Park, etc. Because these natural spaces have a well connection with the theme of project-Public Serenity. However, those kinds of constructions have already existed in these areas. The aim of this project encourage not only ordinary people but also people who have social communicate problem to come together for interacting with this modern city. Usually, most of social architectures are located in some particular places for solving local issue, therefore, I would search some social news in London as well as select a appropriate location for it.