Archinect - the urbanterior 2014-07-23T05:34:55-04:00 no. 2 On Atmosphere David de Céspedes 2012-11-11T15:07:00-05:00 >2012-11-25T17:17:15-05:00 <p> When the question, "what's your thesis?" comes up, elaborating on the topic of atmosphere usually results in an obscure conversation about what atmosphere is exactly. How do you develop an architectural provocation based on something apparently immaterial, and for the most part, invisible? As a parallel point of departure, architecture as a discipline is struggling, and little of it, in my opinion, is due to the state of the economy. The service-oriented practice has been perpetually whittled away through value engineering, cost-cutting, and hyper-quantification of objective aspects of design. Perhaps, this is the idealist graduate student perspective coming out, but what are we studying for if not to disrupt status quo operations of the discipline?</p> <p> Which brings us to atmosphere. As a clarification, 'atmosphere' and its use throughout this research is focused on architecture's responsibility for articulating the interior through moderation of temperature, humidity, and ventilati...</p> no. 1 The Premiss of Middle-Urbanism David de Céspedes 2012-11-10T01:00:00-05:00 >2012-11-11T20:05:40-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src=""></p> <p> "The Middle" [an impromptu name for my research] takes up the question of&nbsp;middle-urbanism, i.e., contexts which can neither be described as urban, suburban, or rural, or the endless classifications to prop up over the last several years. As the urbanization of the world become more prominent in architectural discourse and beyond, the middle-urban sites pose somewhat of a conundrum. Rather than hold the metropolis as the holy grail for urbanism, The Middle highlights cities whose positions are integral to local economies, yet have no particular impetus to grow, densify, or urbanize.</p> <p> Quad Cities envelopes the Mississippi River, comprised of Davenport and Bettendorf West of the River in Iowa, and Moline and Rock Island on the East side in Illinois. And it just so happens that Rock Island Arsenal, the largest government-owned weapons manufacturing site in the country, sits squarely in the middle of the mighty Mississippi. Although the arsenal is quite a lot to wrap one's head aro...</p> Project:Territory, A Thesis at Taubman College David de Céspedes 2012-11-10T00:39:49-05:00 >2012-11-12T12:03:28-05:00 <p> It's been a while since I've blogged, or written anything substantial for that matter, but as we approach the midway point of thesis at Taubman College, I thought I'd share the experience, as well as the particular trajectory of "Project: Territory."</p> <p> <img alt="" src=""></p> <p> Perhaps Taubman College's biggest asset is its size. There is far too much going on in the school to fully absorb everything; students learn early on that their particular trajectories are self-inflicted, and seeking out mentors is paramount in avoiding a generalized body of work and research. Project:Territory, with Rania Ghosn at the helm, situates architectural investigation in the Corn Belt, a territorial definition used to define the productive agricultural landscape of the Midwest. The studio has been hard at work creating "The Corn Belt Atlas," a combination of production, exchange, and consumption analysis, with the studio's individual spatial narratives as a secondary phase of research.&nbsp;</p> <p> In October, the corn belt crew ...</p> "Drawings & Pictures" Easter Sunday at Taubman College with Andrew Zago David de Céspedes 2012-04-08T16:51:00-04:00 >2012-06-06T22:31:03-04:00 <p> <em>I must say, it was a bit disconcerting getting an impromptu announcement from John McMurrough that Andrew Zago was in the East Review space, ready to give a talk on Drawings. Sure, we have tons of work due this week for just about every class, but the work made for engaging conversation nonetheless!</em></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> "Drawings and Pictures"</p> <p> Set up a couple distinctions</p> <p> Building on some thoughts from lecture in the fall</p> <p> Discussing drawings is sort of an anachronism</p> <p> With a few marginal endeavors in architecture, we don't just build buildings; we set up certain directions for others to build buildings</p> <p> Talking about the working space of architecture is by no means a one-to-one relationship with drawing</p> <p> You produce drawings, drawings become buildings</p> <p> Discuss the former, to dismiss the latter [ref. drawing &amp; pictures]</p> <p> Produce things that allow for non-architects to have a clear conception of the building</p> <p> [Showing Pianesi drawings]</p> <p> People would see the work of Piranesi and probab...</p> Advertisement and/in Architecture: Two Polarities David de Céspedes 2012-04-05T15:44:00-04:00 >2012-04-09T21:04:02-04:00 <p> In a class entitled "Urbanism After Mass Media" at Taubman College, a conversation arose about the overlap between architecture, advertisement, icon, logo, and capitalism [in a nutshell]. Primarily, the discourse was based on several readings; using texts from Bob Somol, Sylvia Lavin, Peter Eisenman, and our professor McLain Clutter, set up a pretty productive argument on whether the "Blue Whale" is completely valid or a prime example of architects "selling out" so to speak [the Blue Whale refers to Cesar Pelli's Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles, for the record]. For a seminar of twelve or so, there was quite the spectrum of positions on the topic, so it got me thinking a bit further.</p> <p> If we were to look at the academicians as characters, Eisenman can be abstracted to the stern, hardline intellectual that demands a level of purity in architecture, untainted by the various cultural conditions that shift the public's actions, perceptions, and desires. Somol on the other hand, p...</p> Let's Get RISKY, live blogging University of Michigan's RISK Conference David de Céspedes 2012-03-30T16:32:00-04:00 >2012-03-31T11:18:32-04:00 <p> Introduction by Anya Sirota to topic of "Objective Uncertainty"</p> <p> This panel will consider transformative design procedures</p> <p> Introduction of Giuseppe Lignano &amp; Ada Tolia [Co-Founders of LOT-EK],&nbsp;</p> <p> [Lignano &amp; Tolia]</p> <p> Objects &amp; Operations</p> <p> Stack &amp; Shift</p> <p> We believe in design that is unregional and cheap</p> <p> What does it mean for buildings to be efficient and effective?</p> <p> We focus on man-made objects not made for architectural use</p> <p> Lift &amp; Incline</p> <p> We don't look for a false cleanlieness, nor do we promise a future technology to solve all of archietcture's problems</p> <p> We look for the dirt, the objects, artifacts, that call for architecture to exist</p> <p> Operations transform objects</p> <p> &gt;&gt;</p> <p> [Carroll House]</p> <p> Stack of 21 containers, cut diagonally, creating a monolithic presence on the street</p> <p> Allocation of outdoor space at every level</p> <p> Tilt &amp; Lean</p> <p> What do we do with all this stuff? First, we love it</p> <p> We try to understand objects not as autonomous, but as part of a global economy/ec...</p> Reflecting on Benedetta Tagliabue and the Recent Work of EMBT David de Céspedes 2012-03-27T01:07:00-04:00 >2012-04-01T09:59:59-04:00 <p> As an addendum to the previous post's attempt to transcribe Tagliabue's lecture earlier this evening at Taubman College, a more personal, subjective reflection is warranted.&nbsp;</p> <p> It is quite difficult to speak of EMBT without immediately thinking of Enric Miralles as an architectural figure difficult to classify. Tagliabue however, at least in the circles of graduate architecture programs, seems more of a mysterious figure. Speculation meanders across social circles as to what role Miralles' counterpoint played in the design of the later seminole projects such as Santa Caterina and Scottish Parliament.&nbsp;</p> <p> About a minute or two into the lecture, and Tagliabue expresses her position quite clearly as one both reflective to the special work completed by the couple and their practice, as well as the ease in which she prevails in the profession, embedding her vivacious personality into every project, regardless of scale, whether it be an art installation or high rise office building.</p> <p> Pe...</p> Lecture: Benedetta Tagliabue 03.26.2012 David de Céspedes 2012-03-26T18:07:00-04:00 >2012-04-01T09:57:05-04:00 <p> Live Blogging #2</p> <p> Before we get the show on the road, I'm pretty excited to see the recent work of Benedetta Tagliabue. I must say, probably similar to most architecture students, I am most familiar with the work of EMBT, an office which greatly effected us as students [at Florida International University at the time]. Should be great!</p> <p> Monica Ponce de Leon introducing Tagliabue as Dinkeloo lecturer</p> <p> Focus on the Italian, Spanish, Catalan cultures</p> <p> Her work shows special &nbsp;dedication to context.</p> <p> ::introduction::</p> <p> Tonight, we're taking you around a little tour of buildings most significant to us, with a focus on how we do them.</p> <p> Office is a playful place where we try to involve the creativity of everybody</p> <p> ::plays video of Disney project with scenes from EMBT studio::</p> <p> Trying to get the situation, the material [characters, cartoons], and transform it, to get an answer</p> <p> Wish to make a space joyous&nbsp;</p> <p> [Santa Caterina Market]</p> <p> We did this because we were very egoistic</p> <p> Mak...</p> Lecture: Alejandro Zaera Polo 03.23.2012 David de Céspedes 2012-03-23T18:39:00-04:00 >2012-03-24T16:13:47-04:00 <p> Live tweeting [tumbling?] from Stamps Auditorium, University of Michigan...let's do this!</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Monica Ponce de Leon's introduction</p> <p> John McMurrough asks to notify the audience that this lecture counts for AIA Continuing Education credits [super important!]</p> <p> Monica referencing establishment of Raoul Wallenberg Lecture Series, his work under Rem Koolhass, and later OMA</p> <p> AZP explaining the title of lecture [envelopes]</p> <p> Points to Yokohama as the point of departure for directed study of "the envelope"</p> <p> Study of envelopes develops as a revision</p> <p> Two mechanisms on which capitalism is placed [temporal and spatial]</p> <p> What is late capitalism? [the ability to] extend time and place at will</p> <p> Reality without borders, conducting business across the world with no barriers</p> <p> Attempting to crystallize this fluid/liquid reality that we are just becoming aware of [referencing Yokohama]</p> <p> The things we thought were gone...borders, barriers, were appearing with a violence, force</p> <p> We are reali...</p>