The Function of Time: Cultural Complex

The studio is one of a series at the GSD focused at exploring the architectural potentials of time and uncertainty in large cultural complexes to generate interior urbanism. The last two studios investigated these in the context of a large contemporary art museum. This fall we will explore these in the context of Olympicopolis: a large cultural and education complex, the size of the Pompidou Center in Paris, currently being planned for London. This will house the Victoria and Albert Museum, Sadlers Wells Theater, University of the Arts London, and a Contemporary Art Museum in a single building. These institutions will be required to both share spaces as well as maintain independent parts within the building.

Instead of the universal and autonomous space of the Pompidou Center that leaves change to chance, and where its stacked floors can vary only through subdivision, the studio will investigate how a large interior can be designed as an operational matrix that can change in radically different ways over time by incorporating switch spatial elements such as moveable buildings parts, multi-static spatial grids, as well as strategically planned free-spaces (atriums). By embracing change as a core component of the complex, we will aim to use the dynamics of the complex to generate interior urbanism. During our initial research, we will examine Mies Van Der Rohe’s experiments with universal space through long span structures and Cedric Price’s Fun Palace as two alternative proposals for large flexible interiors that preceded the Pompidou, Walter Gropius’s Total Theater, and Bernard Tschumi’s discussions of cross-programming. We will also examine the history of the atrium as an alternative element for change that is not autonomous in itself.

Please note: The studio meets regularly twice weekly. Farshid Moussavi will not be present all weeks. James Khamsi will be the instructor for the course in Professor Moussavi’s absence.During weeks Professor Moussavi visits, she will be available to meet with the studio all day.

Dates Professor Moussavi will be in residence:
Thursday, August 28
Friday, August 29 (TBC)
Wednesday, September 10
Thursday, September 11
Wednesday October 1
Thursday, October 2
Wednesday, October 15
Thursday, October 16
Thursday, October 30,
Friday October 31,
Tuesday November 4
Wednesday November 5
Thursday November 6
Tuesday November 18,
Wednesday November
Thursday, November 20