GSD Course Bulletin - Fall 2012

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

Courses taught by Andrew Witt

02224: Digital Media II (VIS 0222400)

Architecture
Lecture - 4 credits
Monday 10:00 - 1:00   Gund 518
Wednesday 1:00 - 3:00   Gund 518

Instructor(s)
Andrew Witt

Course Description

This class explores the design and science of logical form making, examined through geometry, parametric control, algorithms, and digital tools. The point of departure is a cumulative sequence of fundamental topics and problems in design geometry which have recurring impact on the history of form. These problems will provide a context and pretext for a rigorous introduction to parametric modeling, algorithmic automation, and the mathematical principles underpinning them.
 
These logical investigations of modeling will cultivate a certain objective approach to form that explores the application of parametric approaches that are both deductive (for example, topological classifications, surface characteristics, and pattern logics) and empirical (for example, material deformation and generative detailing). Thematically, the course will foster an integrated understanding of topics such as parametric geometry definition, surface geometry qualification, and the converse dynamics of packing and subdivision.
 
As a part of the course, students will learn to use parametric design tools Grasshopper, Python, and Digital Project, supplemented by other tools to interrogate and permute these design problems. Through a series of lectures, software tutorials, and mathematical workshops students will respond to the fundamental design problems with a progression of digital design modeling exercises culminating in a final project which will demonstrate appropriate synthesis of design ambition, mathematical characterization, and parametric control.
 
Format: The class will be a weekly three-hour session divided into a lecture half and software and geometry workshop half. The class will be organized thematically, with each theme encompassing certain historical, technical, and formal principles.
 
Evaluation: Students will be evaluated through a series of modeling problems and a final project.
Wednesday 1-3 workshop sessions will be offered on alternate weeks, starting on September 19th.
 
This course or VIS-02223 may be taken to fulfill the Digital Media Requirement for third semester MArch students.
This course is not open to cross-registration or for auditors due to room capacity.  
 


GSD iCommons Website


06436: Expanded Mechanisms / Empirical Materialisms (SCI 0643600)

Architecture
Seminar - 4 credits - Limited enrollment
Monday 2:00 - 5:00   20 Sumner 1C

Instructor(s)
Andrew Witt

Course Description

Machines and material are vitally connected and reciprocally constrained. Each responds dynamically to the other through a range of geometric, chemical, and physical events that the designer must choreograph to deliberate effect. Today this dynamic interaction can be automated, but its full spatial and formal potential can only be interrogated through active invention. Just as scripting allows designers to make new tools, hacking enables the creation of new machines and, perhaps, new modes of material operation.

 
In this class, students will make machines to create new material effects. The horizon of the class will be bounded by the physics of materials themselves. The rules of material change—bending radii, elastic limits, viscosity, and so forth—will be instrumental in the machine design, becoming geometric laws and ultimately mechanical rules that shape elastic design ambitions. There will be a particular interest in formed materials and parametric molds: the bending, forming, stamping, casting of concrete, glass, metal, plexiglass, and wood. But machine operation may also be chemical or even geomorphic, and the class will research processes such as accelerated weathering, erosion, deposition, corrosion, and state change. The machines will operate on typical materials up to and perhaps exceeding their elastic limit—to breaking, shredding, shattering—to open the possibility for reconstitution in a transformed state. In fact, the course encourages material hacking, or the evocative discovery of alternative system through radical experimentation. The specific tactile and textural qualities of the result will be an integral part of the experiment.

 
We will draw on a library of historical precedents for automatic formmaking over the last two centuries including drawing machines, model machines, fabrication machines, and machines for simulating sensations as precedents our current digital tools. With each historical evolution of machinery—for drawing, glass forming, metal bending, concrete shaping, and so forth—we will deconstruct and diagram the parametric motions that define their kinetic transformations, and trace the mechanical limits of form as a limit of design itself. Case studies of contemporary machines—such as Roxy Paine’s erosion machines, and Heinrich Heidersberger’s rhythmogramm machine—will complete the historical survey.

 
This polemic history will inform a design project of machines for material transformation. Students will work in groups of two or three to create both a motor-controlled, CNC machine of their own design and a series of material experiments uniquely producible through this machine. These machines may be standalone or may substantially modify existing CNC machines. Small examples of the devices will be prototyped using Arduino, a motor control tool, and larger prototypes will be built with industrial stepper motors. A series of technical workshops on controllers, industrial stepper motors, kinetic motion, and the physics and chemistry of material deformation will aid the students in the construction of their own novel design machines. It is expected that full use of existing CNC equipment would be made to produce these new machines. Post-processing of the material experiments—that is, the injection of craft—is encouraged.
 
Format. Each three-hour session will consist of theoretical and technical lectures, as well as pinups and intermediate presentations from students.
 
Prerequisites. While there are no prerequisites some exposure to scripting is a plus.
 
Evaluation will be based on an intermediate presentation, a series of pinups, a mid-review, and the final machine/material experiment.
 


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


09304: Independent Thesis for the Degree Master in Design Studies (ADV 0930400)

Architecture
Research Seminar - 8 credits

Instructor(s)
Neil Brenner, Jana Cephas, Diane Davis, Gareth Doherty, Richard T.T. Forman, K. Michael Hays, Michael Hooper, Timothy Hyde, Joyce Klein-Rosenthal, Sanford Kwinter, Miho Mazereeuw, Panagiotis Michalatos, Kiel Moe, Christoph Reinhart, Holly Samuelson, Andrew Witt, Allen Sayegh

Course Description

A student who selects this independent thesis for the degree Master in Design Studies pursues independent research of relevance to the selected course of study within the Master in Design Studies program, under the direction of a GSD faculty member. This option precludes taking any other independent study.


GSD iCommons Website


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