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    "Let's Negotiate! "

    By snatraj
    May 14, '15 4:13 PM EST

    I love thesis day! I love watching the presentations, the energy and excitement as students suddenly look and feel like the professionals they will soon be, so I decided to take the opportunity to ask a graduating student to share his project....

    Robert Guertin | University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee | Masters of Architecture | Advisers_ Assistant Prof. Filip Tejchman, Associate Profs. Chris Cornelius and Kyle Talbott.

    "Let's Negotiate!”  A diaphanous spatial condition, exploiting concepts of: superuse, building codes, and what we refer to as the "back of house" space.

    These are all active agents in what constitute infrastructural interventions. They ultimately create a commentary on how we perceive architectural typologies by critiquing architectural thoughts of representation, and challenge the notion of appropriate response in regards to building codes.

    This project is situated in downtown Chicago, in an alley off one of the densest and populated intersections within the Loop. The existing conditions of this alley are…well… as one would expect. We begin to formulate an understanding that these conditions, while not ideal, are part of the syntax of alleyway/back-of-house zones. From there, we start to question whether we can use this existing infrastructure to facilitate or "lift the veil" on the architectural process.

    Before any notion of intervention takes place we must understand the taxonomy of the back of house space, namely 1. Exterior Egress Stair 2. Balcony 3. Accessibility Ramp 4.HVAC and 5. Masonry Wall. With all of these components in such close proximity, it is evident they begin to behave as a system, each taking on a personality and a purpose.

    Now, let's project these taxonomies onto a new canvas, "The Architectural Cliché".

    By doing this we create a new set of "Actors" to play their role in the new theatrical performance. Again, we keep in mind the main script that makes all of this possible -- the building codes and the taxonomies that are birthed from their respective creators.

    These Actors are spawned from a study of a "system narrative". While each programmatic element may seem foreign,  they depend on each other and inherently the user to operate.

    The elements are: a hanging garden, biomass deposit, a krill filtration tank, a Japanese soaking tub, an aquarium and a sushi vendor. Gaining an understanding that these new components behave as an engagement for the users, it leads to a suspension of disbelief, that while these new actors are necessary to close the gap in the plot, the possibility of aggregation amongst a given space are essentially infinite. 

    The underlying design for this operation was a product of building code manipulation and the ideology that we may be able to "negotiate" on a code by code basis. (IE. ramp to lift, resting on balcony railings, not below 18' drive lane); the notion that rules are not necessarily meant to be broken, but certainly taken with a grain of salt.  


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About this Blog

Each semester, SARUP turns into a beehive of creative activity, with the collective energy of students and faculty resulting in projects and presentations that excite and intrigue, as they generate enquiry into the disciplines of architecture and urban planning. This blog is an attempt to give a glimpse of our life.

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