Monday, May 26, 2014

Non-Axisymmetric Disruptions_Austin Samson

This project aims to explore the possibilities of a mid-rise tower with a disrupted center rather than the normal differentiated top or bottom. The disruption is created through the bending and twisting of wood planks in order to produce different conditions based on the amount of twisting or bending applied. The disruption of material into a twisted or looped condition is an attempt to rethink the role of the envelope as a barrier between outside and inside. By creating a twisted or looped condition where the surface is constantly weaving in and out of itself, the distinction between inside and outside becomes blurred, producing series of intertwining public and private spaces. Four of these twisted tower conditions were created and then grouped around a center core. The program is a standard office tower, where in normal towers, the bulk of public area is located in the top and bottom of the tower. Here, the envelope splits and twists at the middle thus opening the envelope to the outside resulting in the moving of most of the public program to the center of the tower. Program differentiates between the center core and the middle of each twisted part of the tower. Down the center, standard floor types occur. In the twisted conditions, two story cubes along with outdoor floor-plates are nestled within the twisting envelope creating continuity between the twisted envelope and the cube. Placing cubes in the center of disruption also allows for the ability to explore ways of transitioning the envelope between disruption and normal conditions. The use of two envelopes explores the use of de-lamination as a technique to create space between two surfaces that are being pulled apart. The project also explores the possibility of a de-laminated corner condition where each corner of the building is dissolved as a result of the twisting disruption.


In analysis of the modern skyscraper there is traditionally an aesthetic agenda that localizes itself in a “shoes” or “hat” location. The tower typology has ignored the possibility of a center distortion. This distortion acts as an aesthetic element as well as an organizational(programmatic) locator. By designing from the middle out there is a chance for the building to better blend with its context by keeping the processional elements in the center. Entrance and roof conditions mimic their tower surroundings and give a moments rest in the exuberance of design.
This proposal creates a center distortion and layers form through a simulation of gravity and the“claspyness” of the outer skin. The skin is designed to be perceived as more of a lacey volume hiding the inner-mass yet in the right light disappearing and letting the inner monster emerge. This jackel and hyde effect of the inner and outer skin is meant to keep the eye intentionally out of focus. The inner void acts as a way of creating a Secretary oriented office program rather than a traditional first floor security, freeing up the center of the building to the public. The project looks to rationalize itself through components rather than a monolithic form. By focusing on the parts to whole relationship the project adapted to the concept of build-ability in its panel size and something as banal as the curvature limits of steel. These elements of design while “unsexy” add up to a rational that helps the brain rationalize the digital grotesque of sci-arc into something more place-able.
Ultimately the project yearns for build-ability as a way of taking the next step in digital design. This project is less about the result and more about the statement of digital production. Just as the machine revolution allowed the 1920’s working man 8 hours of freedom, the digital project of the10’s gives the designer extra time to work on other elements like texturing and design development. This project is a statement of the speed and quality that digital design can create and how this revolution of speed can give the architect a greater chance to impact that project outside of pure form making. Architect’s can now impact design into the later stages sooner and potentially prevent some value engineering and hopefully stop the slow erasure of architects in building.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Wenxin Lin & Ou Liu Final Animation

Nonaxisymmetric Disruptions - Butchering, Form and Verticality from Wenxin Lin on Vimeo.

Final Animation for Spring 2014 Hernan Diaz Alonso vertical studio.

Student: Wenxin Lin, Ou Liu
Instructor: Hernan Diaz Alonso
Teaching Assistant: Evan Bernal

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

BallsyWonder from Freesia Torres on Vimeo.

After a material investigation that consisted of beads and latex, I proceeded to a formal investigation with the intention of evoking a similar reaction as these two materials when combined, a subtle discomfort and curiosity.
By blurring the legibility of the familiar primitive forms, the observer or interpreter is forced to make a connection and therefore invited to create a story, to make a wild guess or to keep wondering.
The goal of this formality is not to obtain an "awe", instead it is supposed to incite a mild discomfort and will most likely be classified as "weird".

The building is composed of three main layers or components, each one with its own personality but yet belonging to each other. The inner most component is the membrane that separates the private space from the public. The structural component holds the public space all around the peripheral in the center of the building with undulating floor plate designed for an active public space where the circulation becomes the destination. The outermost layer is the skin, composed of three different systems of translucency and geometry.
The deformed spheres are the "bigger" and most flexible spaces that can be adjusted in accordance to needs.
The program of this "office" tower is to be more of an "open work" space, where desks can be rented hourly, daily and weekly. which I think is where the future of office buildings is going.