In its broadest sense, this research investigates how one should design the physical environment for the contemporary subject of the Digital Era. The ease and immediacy with which one can access the preponderance of information available through digital and electronic media has complicated the development and understanding of self-identity in popular culture, and by correlation how one engages with society. The significance of the public institution as a center for information exchange and civic engagement has diminished in favor of new media , which has become a staple at home and is trending increasingly mobile.
While architectural investigations of the past two decades contemplate the formal possibilities of digital technology and the affects of new media on physical objects, few architectural proposals consider how the proliferation of these media and technologies directly affect the subject in society. This project rethinks the design of the contemporary upper school as a model for considering the affects of new media on individual and community interaction, the dissemination of information and the evolution (dissolution?) of public institutions.
This thesis challenges contemporary formulations of identity and societal engagement in an age increasingly dominated by the proliferation of digital and electronic information and interaction through the proposition of an architecture which fosters critical awareness of the (re)presentations of actuality in new media and directs critical engagement between the new subject of the digital era and the public sphere.
My complete thesis preparation document can be viewed here: Rethinking the Contemporary School
- Scheme Development Screenshots
- Connecting the Individual to the Collective
- DC School Program Distribution
- Design Strategies
- Concept Plans - Programming
- Design Strategy: Pixelation
- Active Facade: Empowering Students
- Concept Model Pics
- Concept: Reality TV Reconstructed
- An Alternative Plan: School Design Concept: Screen...
- An Alternative Plan: School Design Concept
- H-Street Development Plans
- The Role of the Architect
- The School Feedback Loop
- Digital Feedback
- The Individual and the Internet
- The Connected World
- The MacArthur Foundation Study: Digital Youth Proj...
- Schools and Neighborhood Development Policies
- Washington DC public school failure and reform
- ▼ March (20)
Friday, March 6, 2009
The Role of the Architect
The architect must design to re-affirm the value of physical, embodied presence in contemporary interaction and identity construction. He must think in terms of spatial relations which create new adjacencies and new ways of thinking. His challenge is to "develop strategies of articulating the new public domains that connect physical urban spaces and the potential public sphere of the electronic networks. This public sphere will only come into being if there are complex forms of interaction, of participation and learning, that use the technical possibilities of the new networks and that allow for new and creative forms of becoming visible, becoming active, in short, becoming public" (Scott McQuire).