Duarte Speaks at Ar(t)itecture Conference at Technion


Eduardo Duarte (Assistant Professor, Interior Architecture) will present his paper User-Made Environments: Reflexivity & Digital Fabrication as Social Experience in Art & Architecture Pedagogy at the international Ar(t)itecture conference at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa (19th to 21st April 2016).

Paper Abstract:

The ability to learn how to digitally generate and analyze art & architecture design information, and then use it directly to manufacture buildings, products or art projects, fundamentally shifts the relationships between conception and production – it provides for an informational flow from ideation to implementation and experience. While on one hand the unprecedented production capability of digital technologies have increased the ability to generate and process information, on the other hand it increasingly detaches users from direct experiences with social or material events. This paper seeks to find out how procedure based approaches towards digital technology applications in art & architecture education may provide new forms of augmented learning and social interaction mediated by sensor based kinetic architecture. Rather than opting towards a disciplinary-based process inherent to models of repetition and continuity of proved cannons, nor the explicit embrace of the generative capabilities of computational algorithms for simulation, a procedure-based approach engages the informational flow as animated form, relying on the students ‘s combination of associative, memory-based and experiential learning methods. Examples of procedure-based learning methods include the design and fabrication of sensory responsive components at the Rhode Island School of Design. Experiences searching to expand the integration of digital generated information towards the enrichment of human-environment social interactions through the relationship between digital and material based fabrication. The projects combine the increasing proliferation of generative algorithmic processes with the largely accessible control of automated-environments in the electronics industry. The integration of a new type of control based on the movement of the user’s body enables the user (student) to become directly capable to generate (and associate) various degrees of privacy and publicity in real time. The project ultimately aims to take architecture beyond the creation of static forms and into the design of dynamic social, transformable and ephemeral material experimental processes.

The paper will be focused on the intention to identify a procedure-based approach to architecture design process in a series of case studies developed at the Rhode Island School of Design as a response to the need to analyse how the increasing changes in the production of architecture design solutions is manifested in the design process. The increasing utilization of computer numerical processes in design and fabrication shortened the distance between generation and implementation. The designer’s set of tools can enable simultaneously one of the broadest sets of generative processes as well as a close approximation to actual making.

For this reason the procedure-based approach to the design process is a hybridization of simulation and making-based models, sustaining its principles on the constant actualization of ideation process in material form. The paper will highlight the relevance of a project prototype, Adaptive Cork Screen (ACS) developed at the Rhode Island School of Design in the way it seeks to generate new possibilities for enriching human-environment interactions when the control of automated environments has became increasingly accessible and where the the movement of the user’s body becomes directly capable to generate various degrees of privacy and publicity in the domestic space.