This research represents the outcome of a two-part workshop at the Vilnius Art Academy, architecture department February - March 2014.
course instructors/ brief: Daniel Köhler & Rasa Navasaityte
Participants: Lina Baciuškaitė, Gediminas Kirdeikis, Raminta Ražauskaite, Ruta Marija Slavinskaitė, Paulius Venckūnas, Lina Venckutė, Petras Vestartas
special thanks to: Rolandas Navasaitis for construction consultation. To the company Karbonas for laser-cutting.
Designed with Rhino. Simulation done in Processing with bRigid. Rendered partly with Blender.
for more information please visit: lab-eds.org
When Bruno Latour observed that „We never have been modern“, the underlying question might be: „How to become real modern?“
According to Manfredo Tafuri modernistic architecture reproduced the reality of the industrial production. From the standardized element, to the cell, for the urban block, the settlement and finally to the modernist city described a hierarchical chain in which each parent object must be seen as an assemblage of smaller objects. The architecture of the modernists described no longer form, but organized the economic, social, technological forces, relations and conditions of the city. In Tafuri's story and with his materialistic description the postmodern discourse in architecture became a reflection of the assembly line, searching for its alternative.
The first generation of digital architects were challenged by the idea that architecture can be defined by new modes of production mediated through parameters into architectural form. The „new“ in architecture were developed through speculations on the next possible interventions in other fields. You can also say the last generation flipped the modern condition rather than the expression of economic, social and technical forces the form of the city became the speculation on it.
In terms of production the postmodern critique on modern equality and the 1968 discovery of the inividual found in customization an alternative to the assembly line.
Since then architectural design strategies are driven by the thought of difference in degree. The whole research of one generation is gone into the customization of the figure for the customized, specific building as icon. Driven by the deep thought that an architectural design can change industrial processes as well, so called tooling and the disciplinary abstraction of cutting edge technologies determined more and more architectural design. Today architectural research seems to be defined through the design of materiality and new modes of its production. What is left from architecture if you are completely dependent on robotic machines? What if architects have no access to robotic machines, will they be able to make a relevant design? And will the whole research on customization have an impact on other diciplines, if these machines exist since generations, whereas all of them make the same thing and this exact, fast and cheap? In an epoche as the assembly line is completed on global scale and individuality is mostly expressed on blue-ish plattforms shining on mostly silver devices made by one and the same global ruling company, can the idea of architectural customization still has an impact? Is an alternative left and possible to Tafuri's assembly-line?
In this sense its worth to think the modern again: What if the figure stays the same? Can we achieve similar effects with the same architectural element in figuration as with a customized element? Why to speculate on an alternative to Tafuri's assembly line of the modernists, if you simply can design the figure and its figuration simultaneously?
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