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SCI-Arc Future Initiatives, Postgraduate Program




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Formless Urbanism

Student: Kenichi Kabeya
Studio Title: CITY DESIGN STUDIO, FALL 2012 – The Figural City / West L.A.
SCIFI Faculty: Peter Zellner

Freed from datascaping, versioning, arraying, modulating or swarming and delivered from the difficult task of building up total expertise this studio sought to discover and explore the crisis of texture and the predicament of the object. The studio sought to move beyond the the dilemma of the overly formed city and to re-organize its complexities with new tools and new attitudes towards a formless city. Working at the scale somewhere between a block and a district the  studio produced figures and fields, objects and spaces, transits and  networks with the aim of exploring the city as a formless process.

Formlessness, rather than being a disturbance to urban form should be understood as an order of form that we cannot yet reconcile aesthetically, an aesthetic brutality that moves beyond binary oppositions between form and content; towards what Yves Alain Bois and Rosalind Krauss revisit in their User’s Manual for the formless; a third term that is “nothing in and of itself…[that]..has only an operational existence: it is a performative…” The formless city, therefore, is an operation that can “…put the formless to work, not only to map certain trajectories, or slippages, but in some way to ‘perform’ them.” The formless,” Krauss estimates, “has its own legacy to fulfill, its own destiny –which is partly that of liberating our thinking.”

Formless Urbanism

Student: Federico Pessani
Studio Title: CITY DESIGN STUDIO, FALL 2012 – The Figural City / West L.A.
SCIFI Faculty: Peter Zellner

 

Freed from datascaping, versioning, arraying, modulating or swarming and delivered from the difficult task of building up total expertise this studio sought to discover and explore the crisis of texture and the predicament of the object. The studio sought to move beyond the the dilemma of the overly formed city and to re-organize its complexities with new tools and new attitudes towards a formless city. Working at the scale somewhere between a block and a district the  studio produced figures and fields, objects and spaces, transits and  networks with the aim of exploring the city as a formless process.

Formlessness, rather than being a disturbance to urban form should be understood as an order of form that we cannot yet reconcile aesthetically, an aesthetic brutality that moves beyond binary oppositions between form and content; towards what Yves Alain Bois and Rosalind Krauss revisit in their User’s Manual for the formless; a third term that is “nothing in and of itself…[that]..has only an operational existence: it is a performative…” The formless city, therefore, is an operation that can “…put the formless to work, not only to map certain trajectories, or slippages, but in some way to ‘perform’ them.” The formless,” Krauss estimates, “has its own legacy to fulfill, its own destiny –which is partly that of liberating our thinking.”

Urban Transects

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MARIBOR AI 2012: 5 Principles for a Differential Urbanism

Students: Janiva Henry, Yaying Weng, Yuan He.
Studio Title: CITY DESIGN SUMMER THESIS STUDIO 2012: Maribor 2012 European Capital of Culture
Instructors: Peter Zellner, David Bergman

Proposed Site View, City of Maribor 2062

 

Proposed Center of Leisure

This project represents a comprehensive vision to manage growth and development in Maribor over the next 50 years. Our vision for Maribor is for it to be integrated fully into the European context, as a distinctly Slovenian city. The plan results in a framework for amenity driven development.

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Aggregated Figure: Courtyard ReInvented

Student: Janiva Henry
Studio Title: CITY DESIGN STUDIO FALL 2012: Porter Ranch Redux: The Figure and It’s Unfolded Ground
SCIFI Guest Faculty: Peter Trummer
TAs: Ursula Frick and Thomas Grabner

 

This project is concerned with the housing unit and how it aggregates to constitute larger program. An architectural diagram, that is a progression through architectural types, begins with the typical American single family unit, morphs into a courtyard and transforms into new forms as density increases. As the diagram transforms past a courtyard house, density doubles, and the courtyard slowly unfolds vertically. It extends into a ‘C’ shape, whose arms bridge over the street, connecting aggregates. Density increases again, and the arms from both sides of the street fold together to accommodate larger program and occupy less ground area.

A street pattern generated across an untouched region of California’s San Fernando Valley based on slope, is populated with aggregations from the architectural diagram, by matching their densities with decided equivalent land values. The ability to use reduced ground area, not only allows the diagram to react to constrictive site conditions, but also provides aggregations for assignment to lots with higher value. When the transformation moves from the sides of the into the street, it assumes Hilberseimer’s model of the integration of buildings and streets.

Innate to this courtyard scheme is the porosity necessary to make dense site population viable. The resulting site population is both dense and sparse, with the ability to contain a large range of program.

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Re-Envisioning LA: Pattern to Form: PATCH I LINK I SUTURE

Student: Duygun Inal
Studio Title: CITY DESIGN STUDIO FALL 2011: Transit Hub  / West Los Angeles: Figures and Fields
Instructor: Peter Zellner
TA: Alfonso Medina

 

Cities are no longer singular entities but they do have molecular compositions based on interactions between diverse & active constellations that unite to form the city. Looking at the urban pattern of LA, this project takes on the idea of map figurations and takes a different position towards densifying Los Angeles. Basic building blocks have irregular shapes with maximized porosity, instead of closed shapes and rigid boundaries. The basic infrastructural unit is a ‘strand’; it multiplies and overlaps to form patches, which are habitable spaces. This project blends the boundary between public and private open spaces to create a variety of interstitial experiences where hard edges are broken with a high degree of complexity & connectivity in between the patches.

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SCI-Arc's SCIFI is an intensive research-based, post-professional degree program and think tank dedicated to generating pertinent examinations of contemporary civic design, city formulation, and urban regulation.


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