Design Ecologies 7 is now available

Intellect is happy to announce that Design Ecologies 7 is now available! To find out more about the volume, click here >>


Radical foundations

Authors: Shaun Murray 
Page Start: 6

Strand city: A report from the future

Authors: Jill Stoner 
Page Start: 12

This is a report from the year 2120, a short history of the evolution of the strand city. These unique urban forms rest within radical foundations of specially engineered forests; their plans follow such linear cultural inscriptions as interstate highways and national borders. Within the strands, plateaus of public life and branches of private dwelling float high above a wilderness landscape, within which regional ecologies continue to evolve. In most cases, the strands are autonomous city-states; they do not belong to any nation. The two featured here are Redwood Strand and Saguaro Strand; both began to develop during the third decade of the twenty-first century: the first along the Interstate 80 corridor at the edge of San Francisco Bay and the second along the US/Mexico border. Embedded within this report is, this writer hopes, a nascent political process affecting urban development, one that is directly linked to contemporary global currents of resistance.

A journey through modern foundations: Re-imagining modernity in the work of Photolanguage

Authors: Robin Wilson 
Page Start: 22

This article reflects on the use of arts-based research methods to engage with a regional history of modern architecture and urbanism. Moving between archival sources and the remaining physical sites in East Sussex, the art practice Photolanguage documented and reimagined the modernist legacy in this region of southern England. Through photography, the gathering of found objects and notation, we construct ‘new’ narratives of place, working across, or in between the official, or dominant, narratives of local history. This reflection back on the production of work for the exhibition East Sussex Modern (2016) focuses on our adoption of the modern ‘sunken garden’ as a recurrent, topographic theme and our exploration and projective appropriation of found ruins as alternative examples of this official, municipal typology of public space.

Towards a taxonometric architecture: D-con: an

Authors: Bryan Cantley 
Page Start: 48

It might be said that a draw-er acts upon a surface by impregnating its membrane, to create a drawing. How then might a drawing perform or draw upon itself, or how might the draw-ing and the draw-er become simpatico? The Act of Drawing within the architectural context promotes several typologies of classifications and methodologies. Three classic conditions of writing notation are used to flesh out a new drawing typology – denotation, connotation and annotation. Denotation, or description of the object, refers to the designation or rendering of an architectural object or condition – it is the physical. Connotation, or the imaginative association, refers to the ‘readings’ associated with its interpretation(s). Annotation, or physical residue, refers to the act of recording new corporeal data based on the collision and overlap of the denotation and the connotation. These systems engender the Taxonometric Drawing© – an entity that complexly annotates itself as part of its presentation. It is a system of instruction and construction that denotes, connotes and annotates simultaneously. It is a drawing system that functions both as an author and as simultaneous reader. Metonymic and Antonymic references play conditions of drawing interiority and exteriority off each other to create a potential contradiction in the drawing’s evolution as both a recorded entity and a syphon of (other) input. The hypothesis suggests the introduction of the concept of the SwarmDraw, a perpetual user-configured VR drawing-world. It is a prime example of the nature of the possibilities of a Taxonometric Architecture – a condition of expressed self-classification, self-impregnation and self-construction.

A new wild: Reimagining the potential of indigenous biodiversity in Aotearoa, New Zealand

Authors: Mick Abbott And Kate Blackburne And Cameron Boyle And Woody Lee And Tenille Pickett 
Page Start: 72

This article presents ways to rethink current approaches to protected areas in New Zealand, which have been dominated by problematic colonial ideas that uniformly construct such places as separate from people and as reminiscent of a pre-human past. This has resulted in the strict separation of productive landscapes from protected landscapes in Aotearoa, New Zealand. A re-evaluation of the idea of allocating further lands that have high endemic biodiversity values solely for protection is considered in light of the country’s public conservation lands reaching 33 per cent of the country’s total land area and still continuing to grow. Using a design-directed research approach we put forward seven alternatives to imagining protected areas that act as speculative futures from which to reimagine and expand the potential of New Zealand’s indigenous biodiversity beyond solely preservation-focused approaches that have been based on a fortress conservation model. These futures are not prescriptive but opportunities to extend the value that New Zealand’s indigenous biodiversity might have, and consider its capacity to foster deep connections between people and place, in ways in which both endemic biodiversity and people thrive.

Radical foundations in Bloomsbury

Authors: Shaun Murray 
Page Start: 96

A sea of change is upon us and radical new foundations need to be grown. The time has come for the fundamental need for radical thought with respect to the new paradigms of architecture as we are confronted with political, social and technological disruptions. At stake is nothing less than the opportunity of world-making in which the role of the architect is paramount. Bloomsbury will be one of our sites of exploration, where in 1692, Thomas Slaughter founded Slaughter’s Coffee House in St. Martin’s Lane, which became the explosively productive haunt and home of artists, architects, designers, players of games, makers and wasters. This was the first of the many radical schools of art to be born within the anarchic lands of Seven Dials and Bloomsbury. The other site will be in Deptford, where for hundreds of years dangerous, infectious, exciting and foreign ideas had landed along its shore, ebbing and flowing with the tide, transforming the City of London. This article will showcase a series of design projects proposed by students of architecture at the Architectural Association and University of Greenwich in relation to sites in Bloomsbury and Deptford in London, respectively. Each contributor has developed a complex set of spatial interrelationships that define their practice and consider art as a spatial language that dissects contemporary society, an architecture that is pre-reflexive, through a radical spatial notational strategy, so as to re-engage with the presence of the past.
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