Vibrant Architecture. Matter as a CoDesigner of Living Structures
3 Literature Survey
Open Poland, Gruyter
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My work establishes how the innate potency of the material world may be applied to architectural design practice. I aim to identify experimental models to test this hypothesis and set out the principles that underpin the proposed modes of action that may be practically applied in an architectural design context, through the production of collaborative drawings, models and prototypes. My literature search, therefore, explores the overlapping fields of chemistry, which may be regarded as the ‘language’ of matter, and architecture, which is concerned with the tactics for developing spatial programs. In juxtaposing these disciplines to find synergies between them, my research aims to identify gaps in the knowledge canons and therefore establish the research opportunities. Omar Khan observes the many historic technological and cultural instances where chemistry is entangled with architecture to create something new in the production of new materials, such as concrete, steel, plastics, rubber, crystals and fluids with mutable structures (Khan, 2011). Architect William McDonough and chemist Michael Braungart combine architecture and chemistry in their ‘Cradle to Cradle’ manifesto, which proposes that more efficient management and better design of the production process may achieve ecologically intelligent design (McDonough and Braungart, 2002). While I share the material concerns of McDonough and Braungart, my research is not focused on the transformation of industrial processes or ‘upcycling’ through the cultural (re)usage of waste materials, but in the direct empowerment of matter. Rather, I use an alternative framework to the industrial worldview by applying design principles that are expressed through process philosophy and whose operations are embodied in complexity science.
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