T5a Technology Report

From the initial outline concept of Crystals, further research in this area has led me to discover and learn more about the atomic structure of crystals in general. Crystals are composed of ‘perfect’ structures known as Lattices. Structural diagrams of the atoms could be likened to architectural structural diagrams.

Atomic diagram of Sodium Chloride. The crystal’s lattice is very structured and symmetrical.

What has been very eye-opening for me is what happens when the atoms do not appear in their ordered position; the structure of the crystal responds and defects/impurities become evident within the matter. Within the physical build-up of the matter there can be either missing or additional atoms; in each case the structure changes. The atoms have a ‘field of influence’ – and when a parameter changes, the matter responds accordingly.

My investigations have led to me to another area of architectural research that I am really excited to investigate further: Parametric Design.

T5a Technology Investigative Report

The starting point for my investigative report is going to based around the concept of Crystals. I have selected this area of research as Crystallography interests and intrigues me: there is a mythical, magical and enchanting quality to crystals and I feel that research into this area may provide theory concepts that could be linked to architectural practice. 

As an initial starting point, I believe there could be multiple potential paths. After studying the Turner Contemporary and its ‘crystalline’ appearance I could chose to focus on the aesthetic link between crystals and architecture. Or as I develop my research into this area I could be taken down a different route. I am excited for what I might discover…

D4 – Site Selection

With the intention of exploring the concepts of ‘time’ and ‘place’ through architecture in this academic year, the site was crucial in ensuring that I can develop a scheme that responds to this theme. I have chosen the grounds of St. Botolph’s Priory in Colchester, highlighted in green below and located south of the ancient walled Roman city.

I have carried out initial site documentation and research, the next step is to develop my project brief and define the user group for a more focused approach to the project.

Turner Contemporary, Margate

This weekend I travelled to the seaside town of Margate, Kent to visit the Turner Contemporary art gallery designed by David Chipperfield. The gallery opened in 2011 and has been criticised for being “alien, brutal and bleak.” The building cost £17.5m, and was it was hoped that it would aid the regeneration of the town.

Statement of Academic Intent 2020-21

At the start of each year of study we are asked to set out our academic intent for the year ahead:

During my first year of study, my methodology is to challenge the concepts of ‘time’ and ‘place’ from the perspective of Architecture.

Everybody experiences architecture, be it consciously or sub-consciously, however those experiences can vary greatly with both ‘time’ and ‘place’. I aim to explore and interrogate the role of ‘affordance’ through Architecture.

This methodology originates from a deep personal interest in a range of current architectural issues, including my view of how architecture is ‘consumed’ in today’s society. A prime example of our modern-day consumption of architecture includes the concept of ‘background architecture’. 

Additionally, there exists in cities around the world redundant and abandoned places and architecture; their affordances may have evolved from the positive to the negative. With the concept of time and place at the forefront of my studies, I aim to unpick the role of architecture today. Buildings were once built to survive for a millennium and I am eager to explore whether this notion is relevant in a modern, twenty-first century society.

It is my intention for the methodology above to be the theoretical thread through each of the four components of my first-year studies:

Design

Experiment with the way that Architecture transverse ‘time’ and ‘place’.

Culture

Explore the prevalence and dynamism of Architecture throughout history, linking this understanding to the future. 

Technology

Question the affordance of past, present and future technologies and the impact that they have had/can have on Architecture.

Professional 

Consider the impact that Architectural Management and Practice have had on Design, Culture and Technology through time, and how this can be explored in the future. 

And so it begins…

I’ve gone through the course reading list (all 12 pages of it!) and ordered a few books to start prepping for the P3 Professional Studies exam which is on the 9th May 2020. I’m starting early to get ahead; having gone through the past exam questions provided by Brookes, it’s clear that it’s going to be a case of learn it myself first and then revise. We’ve been given five broad subject areas but no key topics to focus on so I’m going to try to identify what I’m likely to be asked and make revision notes. I definitely want to pass first time round so that I’m not retaking it in October, when I’ll undoubtedly be focusing on D4.

15 weeks and counting…

Contemporary Building Review

A House for Essex by FAT Architecture and Grayson Perry, 2015

A House For Essex is a purpose-built holiday home which tells the story of the fictional Essex character Julie Cope. The building is the realisation of a partnership between contemporary British artist Grayson Perry and architect Charles Holland, from the now-disbanded London studio FAT Architecture. A House For Essex is situated down a private lane in the rural village of Wrabness, on the North Essex Coast.