GSD Course Bulletin - Fall 2012

This term's information was last refreshed on 12 MAY 2015 14:54:06.

Courses taught by A. Hashim Sarkis

04323: Constructing Vision (HIS 0432300)

Urban Planning and Design
Lecture - 4 credits
Tuesday Thursday 11:30 - 1:00   Gund 109

Instructor(s)
A. Hashim Sarkis

Course Description

The course examines how architects have historically used means of representation, not only as allographic tools, but as design tools that visually organize buildings and spaces. In that sense design becomes the means by which habits of seeing are shaped and expressed. We will refer to these models of representation/design/experience as "visual constructs."

The course proposes that a diversity of such "visual constructs" has been developed throughout the history of designing buildings, landscapes, and cities. These constructs utilize perspective and other means of representation in composite ways. They also confound the components of perspective with those of the object being designed producing specific types of spaces and types of seeing. Such visual constructs as the picturesque, the panoramic, the prospective, the field, the cognitive, and the oblique, will be studied at their origins and will then be observed as they travel and develop from one setting to another and across time.

The semester will be dedicated to:
1) Discerning different visual constructs and their affinities with prevalent modes of representation in the visual arts, with spatial paradigms, and with cultural contexts in general.
2) Examining the optical and representational operations in each construct and their impact on the production of form.
3) Studying the relationship between everyday experience and aesthetic experience.
4) Extending these constructs to contemporary practice.


Examples of Constructs:
Six such constructs will be examined in depth. These are:
1. The panoramic (exemplified in the architecture and urbanism of Schinkel and Mies van der Rohe and other contemporary designers like Enric Miralles and Tagliabau)
2. The picturesque (exemplified in the English landscape tradition, primarily Humphrey Repton, and more recently in the work of architects like Steven Holl, Michael Maltzan and artists like Richard Serra)
3. The prospective (in the works of Sullivan and then in the work of architects like Peter Eisenmann, Finn Geipel and conceptual artists like Sol Le Witt)
4. The field (in the work of Le Corbusier and more recent designers like Walter Netsch, and Philippe Rahm)
5. The cognitive (as exemplified in the urban theories of Kevin Lynch and then in the work of more contemporary mixed-media artists and the architecture of Diller/Scofidio)
6. The oblique (as exemplified in the works of Paul Virilio and Claude Parent as well as MVRDV and UN Studio)

Background:
The course builds on two legacies in order to define and develop the notion of visual constructs.

The first legacy is that of philosopher Nelson Goodman, and his "constructivist" view of art. According to this position, "the way the world is" is not predetermined. It is constructed. Perspectival representation is not derived from a more correct view of the world. It is not even useful to draw an exact distinction between what is given (out there) and what is represented (mental or visual). To speak of "the world" means to speak of one of its representations. Following this approach, a visual construct could be described as a representation that encourages one way of construing the world against others.

The second, perhaps more familiar, legacy is that of Robin Evans. During the last ten years of his life, Evans studied the relationship between architecture and its representation through the notion of projection. He distinguished between different types of projection but concentrated on projection from drawings to buildings. In that sense, the course extends Evans' project in directions that he did not have time to explore and to articulate visual constructs as a way of describing the network of projections.

These two legacies are important because in some ways they have helped shape our discussions here at Harvard on the problems of vision in art and architecture.


GSD iCommons Website


04334: Geo-Architecture (HIS 0433400)

Urban Planning and Design
Seminar - 4 credits - Limited enrollment
Friday 2:00 - 5:00   Gund 318

Instructor(s)
A. Hashim Sarkis

Course Description

"Geo-Architecture": Le Corbusier's Urbanism and the Territorial Challenge to Architecture (1911â"1965)

In a 1957 review of a lecture by Le Corbusier, a Swiss newspaper characterized his urbanism as a "geo-architecture." The geography being evoked was at once human and spatial. Importantly, the review proposed that the Three Human Establishments that Le Corbusier was presenting in his lecture situated architecture in a larger setting than the city and developed a formal repertoire that operated at this larger scale.

The course examines this relationship between architecture and geography as it manifests itself in Le Corbusier's urbanism. It covers the different periods of his urban output namely: WWI and formulation of an evolutionary understanding of cities; the 1920s systemic urbanisms; the 1930s type-oriented explorations and the advent of the notion of "equipements;" the post-WWII reconstruction projects and the idea of the ensemble, and the 1960s experiments with landscape and two-dimensionality.

The case studies include some well known examples of his urban design work such as La Ville Radieuse, le Plan Obus, Chandigarh, St Die, and Berlin as well as some underexplored projects such as Stockholm, Izmir, Rochelle, and Vallee de la Meuse. The course will also extract the urban logic of some of his architectural projects and typologies like Villa Savoye, the Unite Bloc, and the Venice Hospital.


GSD iCommons Website


05210: Cities by Design I (SES 0521000)

Urban Planning and Design
Lecture - 4 credits
Tuesday Thursday 10:00 - 11:30   Gund - Piper

Instructor(s)
Rahul Mehrotra, A. Hashim Sarkis, Eve Blau, Sibel Bozdogan, Joan Busquets, Alex Krieger, Robert Lane

Course Description

'Cities by Design' is a year-long course that studies urban form. In the fall semester, 'Cities by Design' will explore six urban case studies to expose students to a range of factors that affect the design of contemporary cities in various geographical contexts. In the spring, the course will look at four cities and conclude with a panel discussion to synthesize the conclusions drawn from cases from the entire year. The case studies will focus on both the urban condition as a whole by exploring processes of urban evolution, and on the study of urban fragments or projects. Each case study will be taught during a two-week module, comprised of four lectures and one discussion section. Term grades will be based on attendance and participation in both lectures and sections, biweekly response papers based on assigned readings, and a final term paper.

Two main pedagogical objectives guide the course. The course will allow students to establish a broader definition of the 'urban,' forging commonalities amongst a diversity of cities. It will also provide the historical and comparative material to identify the urban characteristics and design strategies that render particular cities distinct. Comparative analyses of the urban case studies will be guided by the following eight themes, which will be explored through the lectures, section discussions, and assigned readings:

1. The city's genealogy and key historical events, phases of development, and patterns of growth
2. The ways in which the terrain, geography, and infrastructural development constrain and present opportunities for the city's development and ambitions
3. The city's planning and design culture and decision-making institutions
4. The challenges that social equity present to planning and design in the city
5. The orchestration of the city's relationship to the broader region
6. How the particular city contributes to a definition of the 'urban' condition
7. The framing and design of key urban projects/case studies
8. The city's planning institutions, historical conditions, urban forms, or ambitions, etc. that have contributed to its iconicity in a global context

No Prerequisites; Course is required of all entering UD students.


GSD iCommons Website


09201: Independent Study by Candidates for Master's Degrees (ADV 0920100)

Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Urban Planning and Design
Independent Study - 0 credits

Instructor(s)
Iñaki Abalos, Leire Asensio Villoria, Pierre Bélanger, Anita Berrizbeitia, Eve Blau, Preston Scott Cohen, Jill Desimini, Gareth Doherty, Ann Forsyth, Andreas Georgoulias, Andrea Hansen, K. Michael Hays, Michael Herzfeld, Eric Howeler, Christopher Hoxie, Jane Hutton, Mariana Ibanez, Florian Idenburg, Jerold Kayden, Niall Kirkwood, Joyce Klein-Rosenthal, Sanford Kwinter, Rahul Mehrotra, Panagiotis Michalatos, Kiel Moe, Mark Mulligan, John Nastasi, Erkin Ozay, Chris Reed, Ingeborg Rocker, A. Hashim Sarkis, Mack Scogin, Jorge Silvetti, Raymond Torto, Andrew Witt, Krzysztof Wodiczko, Cameron Wu, Diane Davis, Martin Bechthold

Course Description

Students may take a maximum of 8 credit units with different instructors in this course series.Prerequisites: Graduate standing. Candidates may arrange individual work focusing on subjects or issues that are of interest to them but are not available through regularly offered course work. Students must submit an independent study petition and secure approval of their advisor and of the faculty member sponsoring the study.


GSD iCommons Website


09301: Independent Thesis in Satisfaction of Degree MArch (ADV 0930100)

Architecture
Research Seminar - 12 credits

Instructor(s)
Felipe Correa, Danielle Etzler, Eric Howeler, Florian Idenburg, Sanford Kwinter, Panagiotis Michalatos, Toshiko Mori, Ingeborg Rocker, A. Hashim Sarkis, Allen Sayegh, Jorge Silvetti, Preston Scott Cohen, Mack Scogin

Course Description

 Each student conducts a design exploration that tests and expands the thesis.
Prerequisites: completion of two (2) options studios and approval of thesis preparation documents by thesis advisor.


GSD iCommons Website


09504: Thesis in Satisfaction of the Degree Doctor of Design (ADV 0950400)

Architecture
Independent Study - 16 credits

Instructor(s)
Martin Bechthold, Jose Gomez-Ibanez, Spiro Pollalis, Peter Rowe, A. Hashim Sarkis, Charles Waldheim

Course Description

Under guidance of a faculty committee, the student conducts investigations and prepares a doctoral thesis.


GSD iCommons Website


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