biophilia + technophilia: thesis 2011

-January 07, beginning of digital mania thesis project; biophilia + technophilia.

Opening Presentation Narrative:

Biophilia + Technophilia

(Slide 1) The project manual, entitled Biophilia + Technophilia attempts to decipher trends emerging within architectural design (since the early sixties[from Archigram to Buckminster Fuller to Phillip Beasley) to incorporate or draw upon a connection between human networks and biological processes, as well as technologies implementation of biological systems. The manual became a series of polemics (exploring multi-materials rapid prototyping, augmented reality, ubiquitous computing, media, biological materiality, and visionary architecture) challenging architecture to confront and embrace these practices and to critically look at their viability. Through research and precedents in design, technology, and biology inferences can be found which dilute the polarity of each particular field, portraying an interconnected future where we are moving towards an integrated system—the biotechnical. (Slide 3) As human technology becomes more biological (the two become increasingly enmeshed), and with architecture being so strongly tied to technological innovation, (Slide 6) it [architecture] shall too become more biological (both in materiality and cultural ideology [and thus design processes]). (Slide 9)Through our evolution with technology and tools we have gained greater understanding of biological life, and in return the bios has influenced our understanding of technology.

(Slide 10) The project manual, as well as the polemical basis for my thesis, joins into the conversation of other visionary architectural projects–either as a trans-humanist futurist utopia or an exploitation of societies and the professions deepest fears and anxieties. (Slide 11) Increasing trends in architectural design to adopt biological processes in the creation of architecture, technologies evolution towards a biotechnical future, and our own infatuations with technology and biology have hinted at a possible future trajectory where we inhabit a biotechnical existence. Architecture itself becomes a summation of the technologies available within that particular era of construction, and as technology begins to adopt more biological processes our architecture too shall become more biological.

(Slide 12)The project to follow the polemic becomes a full-speed exploration into a transhuman biotechnical architecture set amidst of society of biophilia and technophilia (Slide 13) (created from our enthusiasm and infatuation with technology and biology), creating a new architectural ecology; taking on the biological processes of flocking, swarming, and aggregating matter (at multiple scales). The project is imagined and designed on multiple scales (Slide 14); the genetic code, molecular assemblage, the tool, and the aggregation (from the molecular to geological). Architecture becomes not a static edifice, but instead a responsive and coherent organism (Slide 15)–adapting and changing to conditions within the environment, whether they are geological or biological, responding to invisible flows of information within the context.

(Slide 16) The architecture becomes a semi-living organism; adapting, emerging, evolving, mutating, and growing. Grafting, injecting, infusing, and fertilization become some of the processes involved in the construction and regulation of the organism. The technological creation and biological matter become infused and rendered indistinguishable in any attempt to decipher their origin.

The main program/function/intervention/attractor becomes energy/information capture within a dense urban city—the assemblage of vast amounts of energy sustaining the cities existence. The programmatic byproduct becomes urban farming (as its epidermis yields an annual sustenance of edible foods as it photosynthesizes carbon dioxide into sugars). Its planned/augmented/mutated/genetically modified spatial typology/program creates aggregations of clinical laboratory facilities, life extension pods, post-human surgical operating rooms (where the human brain and body are altered or upgraded [with prosthetics, drugs, and mindware]), and genetic manipulation laboratories—a place where biology and technology become intertwined both in the human and architectural aspects.

(Slide 17) Like biological cognitive processes and engineered/synthetic organs, scaffolds are constructed allowing the biological matter to adhere and cultivate around spatial programs creating the Architecture. Design constraints and regulation of the scaffolding system becomes the important factor within the projects conception and architectural development.

(Slide 18) Cells injected into the scaffolding replicate and multiply, aggregating around the scaffolding which has been laid prior by autonomous robotics excreting a carbon-based substance; congealing and hardening into a bone-like formation housing a complex vascular system within. Processes of scaffolding, grafting, and genetic coding become important methods in the development, construction, and maintenance of the architectural entity. (Slide 19) As information flows through the site (in the form of solar orientation, temperature, circulation paths, occupancy, etc; i.e. any informational flow which is quantifiable) the organism responds and adapts searching for internal homeostasis within a constantly changing ecosystem.

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Categories: Academia, Art, Representation, Technology


studying: architecture design


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