Archinect

Birmingham City University (Carys)

  • VIRTUAL / REAL ARCHITECTURE - Aston Moratorium HUB (Zahid Khan)

    T H E S I S S T A T E M E N T
    The project began with a main character, used as a vehicle to explore the meaning of virtual life; a young man who has travelled to the UK after growing up in Pakistan. The “virtual life” does not refer to the computer age idea of virtuality, but to Marcel Proust’s definition of what is constant in the past and the present. Therefore, although the character has moved on in life physically over time; his virtual life (or perception of his identity) has become a blur of past memories and new experiences. It was understood that the world which the character lives in is not the real world but the virtual (as in Plato's theory of forms, the shadow of the real and not the real itself). This virtual life also, according to Deleuze's theory, exists as a principle; as opposed to the actual, or hard facts - that is an understanding of actual events but shaped and influenced by memories and personal perceptions.

    The project explored the meaning of the virtual and the real in order to provide enhancement for a deprived area in Birmingham, through an architectural intervention on a derelict site in Aston, Birmingham.

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    R E S E A R C H
    The aim of the project was to use the character as a vehicle to explore the concept that the actual (as things happen) is not the same as our personal understanding of the real (as we perceive things to happen); and by investigating the character's virtual life to reveal the influence of his nostalgic memory as he makes his journey through the actual environment of living memory, the principles of this theory gradually lead to the site and the programme of the project.

    The first theory explored Deleuze’s ‘Actual’ and the ‘principle’, in order to understand the meaning between the real and the virtual. This lead to an exploration of Plato’s ‘Theory of Forms’. Comparing the two theories led to the resultant meaning of the Virtual and the real, which was similar to Marcel Proust’s interpretation (the presence of memory within the present and the future).

    While exploring the character’s life, as a parallel research, different types of identity crisis were explored; in order to help arrive at a location, site and programme. It was discovered that there were 4 types of identity crisis which lead to a virtual perception; however Moratorium Identity crisis is one which can help to blur the boundaries between Virtual and the real.

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    S I T E & A R C H I T E C T U R A L I N T E R V E N T I O N
    As informed by the theory the site was to be located in a deprived area, therefore Aston (the most deprived area in Birmingham) was used as a Location for the project. The site in particular was the former Broadway Primary school, a place which was, until recently, a very important site for the community but now lies as a derelict piece of land with only remains from the past (portable shipping containers).

    As the site itself was suffering from an identity crisis and had meaning in principle but not the actual; this was the perfect site for this project.

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    Through a historical exploration the previous school footprint, was used as an ‘Actual form’ without material, to reveal the nostalgic memory of the site. While further shipping containers were imported to the site in order to reveal the living memory of the site, acting as ‘Principle forms’ without any architectural culture. As a result this gave the site its own new identity together with a programme (extracted out of Erik Eriksson’s moratorium identity crises) which will help to create better social integration within the area.

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  • Kowloon walled city v2.0 ( Sam Man Fung LUI)

    Thesis statement The image of Hong Kong has always been the traditional image of the island city and its impressive skyline overlooking a natural harbor with the Peak looming behind it. However what is the real Hong Kong? What is the Hong Kong people think and what the culture are like? Research...


  • Ruins of Governmentality (Peter Jenkins)

    Mass-Surveillance Information Processing, Storage and Feedback FacilityThesis Statement My thesis is a metaphorical architectural exploration of power and control in society, based largely on the later writings of Michel Foucault, from where the term governmentality appears. Research The studio...


  • PRODUCTIVE CHAOS (Abubakar Kumshe)

    Productive Chaos Thesis Statement The thesis will demonstrate an alternative scenario where it exaggerate the existing conditions of productive chaos created by the specific conditions of Lagosian Highways, in order to explore the possibilities of developing a Lagosian, market-based urbanism...


  • Truss Script (Peter Jenkins)

    I had one person who was interested in my automatic trussing script from the previous post, so I'll post it below. It's for Rhino, so the language is pretty much VisualBasic. Please not that, in my experience, copying and pasting code from blogs often results in syntax errors, particularly with...


  • Brain Library, Coventry Cathedral Ruins (Peter Jenkins)

    An overdue update on what has been happening with my thesis. The theme generally is "control" in society, in this case implemented through the control of knowledge, with the design for a brain library. First of all, here's a few images of the "graphic novel" developed using puppet photography and...


  • Progress update / graphic novel / models etc (Rob Tadman)

    Ok, a quick round up of what ive been up to since way back in November! I finished writing and designing a graphic novel with the brief synopsis of creating a virtual gaming environment for lost souls. The arrangement involves people physically connecting to a living organism in order to...


  • First Thesis Crit (Carys)

    Meaning and Place within Architecture. The theory behind my thesis began with the exploration of meaning and place within architecture, the criticism of lack of meaning and absence of ‘place’ in architecture being a result of the modernist architectural movement. What is meaningful...


  • HELP please

    Hello everyone, below is the mission statement of my project: The community of the Niger-Delta have witnessed the slow poisoning of their waters and destruction of vegetation and agricultural land by oil spills which occur during petroleum operations. There has been less concern and effective...


  • The Perfect society (Zahid Khan)

    continued from my previous idea about the external services not being as perfect as they should. I have started to read Slavoj Zizek's "Cyberspace, or, the Unbearable Closure of Being". Below is a paragrpah from the Article and my interpretation and also a diagram explaing my version. What is a...


  • Is the representation more definitive than the thing itself? (Images)


  • Symphony of Destruction (Peter Jenkins)

    “Just like the pied piper, Led rats through the streets, We dance like marionettes, Swaying to the symphony, Of destruction...”Dave Mustaine, Symphony of Destruction We exist in a society consisting of interlocked and conflicting systemic control structures. Revolutionaries rise in...


  • Is the representation more definitive than the thing itself? (Rob Tadman)

    What troubles me? What troubles me in architecture? Representation being more definitive than the thing, event or experience itself is a growing problem in the digital world. What happens to meaning when the simulation or copy becomes more prevalent and understood than the source? Fashion...


  • The perfect society

    We have been brought up in a society where, everything has a system. This system we refer to also has various rules regarding providing a perfect service. Every day we deal with people who provide external services for us (e.g buying goods, dealing with public services etc). However, over the...


  • Introduction

    This blog is set up on behalf of the D7 Thesis Unit - The Elegance of Non-Engagment. The students involved in this unit are: Carys Fisher Peter Jenkins James Clayton Rob Tadman Zahid Khan Paul Welch Abu Kumshe Riyaz Nilar Sam Lui We will all be posting our progress on our individual projects...


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