While the figure of Vitruvian man has long served as a metaphorical reference for an architecture evolved through design, but fixed in its own lifetime, this seminar considers an architecture where shape-shifting, changes of state, mutation, reskinning, and decomposition are not only anticipated, but celebrated. Dethroning the human figure, the seminar proposes more animalistic, if not monstrous, figureheads for the discipline.
Typically considered to be a singular, solid, and fixed entity, architecture has one perfect state, from which it will inevitably deteriorate. Occupation, movement, additions, and weathering are often considered a sad but inevitable fate. They mutilate and disfigure the ideal form of the building as conceived by the architect, transforming it into something flawed. At the same time, culture, climate, and technology are all dynamic and evolving systems with which a building must interface. In a world where stasis and ideals reign, this seminar will explore an architecture of corresponding to and guided by the ceaseless forces of evolution, extinction, nature, and the machine.
Through examination of both assigned and found texts, as well as key works of architecture, students will develop their own drawn and written brief manifestoes of change using key texts and examples from the built world.