“From Landscape to Roofscape” is the title of an architecture workshop taking place at the Vilnius Academy of Art, department of Architecture from February 4th – March 14th. Followed by two exhibitions at the National Gallery of Art and at the Gallery Titanikas both in Vilnius.
Opposed to Landscape, a Roofscape is constructed from autonomous elements. (i) In a Roofscape continuity evolves through the coherence and agreement of its constituting elements. Here we encounter one of the basic problem-sets in architecture: Alberti's Part-to-Whole-Relation (ii). In Alberti's treatise the Whole is written through the Roman term civitas which describes a political form of coexistence, a fragile entity, a ground from the many.
Here we can continue Frei Otto's research in tensile roof-structures, its structure "arising from three things, namely the number, the figure and collocation of different parts"(iii). More precise: A roof is build up from an arrangement(1) of particles(2) and their relaxational connections(3). If we translate Frei Otto's description of a surface condition towards Alberti's definition of an architectural object, the former structural particle opens up to a (rigid) figure, being an element of a configuration through specific tectonics. A Roofscape as an active drawing of agencies, a constitution between its elements.
In this workshop we used Processing, an open-source software for an object-oriented ontology in architecture. Models were produced with Vilnius Art Acedemy's 5-axis CNC machine.
(i) Gottfried Semper, Caribbean hut, Great Exhibition of 1851, London:
with the Caribbean hut Semper shows that landscapes (territories) are defined through steronometric strategies (clay), whereas Roofscapes (agencies) are defined by tectonics (wood), the combination of rigid elements.
(ii) Leon Battista Alberti, De re aedificatoria, Florenz, 1451, p.12: “Quod si civitas, (...), maxima queda est domus, & contra domus ipsa minima quaedam est civitas“
(iii) Hilberseimer, Ludwig, 1956, 'Mies van der Rohe' , Chicago: Paul Theobald, p. 36S