Architectural Design IV is taught in conjunction with Architectural Topics IV. These two courses are separate and distinct but organized to support and enhance each other. What is taught in one should be brought to bear on the other. This is particularly important in design studio, where you will be asked to apply knowledge that, in the other class, you simply needed to know and comprehend. This type of coordination reflects a premise of the school’s curriculum — that design involves the synthesis of diverse areas of knowledge and various skills, and design studio is the primary venue for that synthesis.
In this studio you will continue to explore the expressive potential of space and form as it relates to intent. ARCH 2002 and 2102 accomplish this exploration through a series of projects that are aimed at stretching your understanding of, and appreciation for the ways in which architecture occupies and responds to a specific site, condition and/or event. We will begin by looking at how form, when carefully composed, gives up its object-like qualities in deference to space. Following an initial project looking at space and view, we will then undertake two projects that focus on building form and space as a coincidence of site and program. To do this, we will need to consider how spaces and buildings are inhabited, how they touch the ground, and how they occupy the landscape. Emphasis on process, materials theory, site inventory and analysis and impact of regionalism.
ARCH 2002/2102 is the fourth studio in the Bachelor of Architecture sequence at LSU. This studio introduces and explores the connection between an architectural object and the landscape. The students investigated two trails in the Big Bend National Park during a field trip in February 2016, one called Devil’s Den and one, Santa Elena. Although both trails have similar climatic conditions, they have very different characteristics (quantitative and qualitative), thus invoking different architectural responses. The students were charged with using data collected prior to our visit (site analysis), as well as site observations, to develop an idea for the design of a community camp that best addressed site conditions and resolved issues of enclosure, material, circulation, views, and scale.
The goals of this studio project were to build a critical understanding of architecture and landscape, to independently develop a building program and understand the program not as a list of facility spaces but as the ambition of architecture and to use material as a strategically vital expression of narrative and program, and to demonstrate an exploration of structure, environmental systems, and various modes of representation informed by a use of architectural precedents.
ARCH 2002/2102 is the fourth studio in the Bachelor of Architecture sequence at LSU. This studio introduces and explores the connection between an architectural object and the landscape. While the studio will again look at fundamental issues of order, two- and three-dimensional composition, these topics will now be explored through a critical design approach utilizing analysis and research to inform response to site that respects and challenges the perceptions of architecture and its interaction with the landscape of Turtle Cove, Louisiana, and Marfa, Texas. Students’ work will be aimed at developing a keen awareness of site and context to facilitate the construction of a coherent and consistent intellectual position relative to site and a schematic design for each condition that allows for the testing and reflection upon the position taken. There is an expectation that students will develop a tectonic language consistent with the defined conceptual approach through iteration, resulting in material clarity and the development of details.
Architectural Design IV explores the connection between architecture and context. Students learn to investigate the qualities and complexities of the landscape and develop a system of notation; explore ecological and spatial characteristics that define the site and larger context as well as the opportunities they present in the development of architectural interventions; establish a critical design approach utilizing analysis and research to inform responses to site that respect and challenge the perceptions of architecture and its interaction with landscape; and develop a tectonic language consistent with the defined conceptual approach through iteration, resulting in material clarity and the development of details.
Architectural Design III begins with a series of non-programmatic exercises: aperture studies and trajectory studies. Students develop models and learn discipline specific language. The design process alternates between representational techniques—first producing a model or series of models—and iteratively drawing plans, sections, axonometrics, and sequential perspectives to building collages, writing descriptive conceptual text, framing photographs, and curating presentations. Students present their work throughout the semester to public juries and gallery reviews.
In Architectural Topics, students use case studies to contrast the meanings of buildings designed in urban or rural environments. The course introduces and explores the relationships between architecture and site. Each week, site is examined through lectures, case studies, representations, and readings. Weekly, project-based assignments focus on the process and production techniques for designing with tools—hand skills, software, and hardware. Students are expected to develop an understanding of best practices for each set of tools and to explore their design ramifications. Architectural Topics shares its physical site and is taught in conjunction with its co-requisite Architectural Design IV (ARCH 2002). The concepts and coursework discussed during Architectural Topics are intended to be applied in the Architectural Design IV and to augment and inform the required studio work. This coordination reflects a premise of the school’s curriculum: design involves the synthesis of diverse areas of knowledge and various skills, and the design studio is the primary venue for that synthesis.
Architectural Techniques is about architectural representation—the exploration of drawing, modeling, and digital applications to the design process. Introducing software as a design tool, the course is designed to aid students in the development of two- and three-dimensional information necessary for the production of architectural renderings and fabrications. Focusing on the relationship between architecture and contemporary technologies of production, the course is also an opportunity to learn about the history of architectural representation and basic techniques, creating a general background from which to operate. At the conclusion of the course, students are expected to be able to engage with the required software for architectural design exploration and communication, including Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign and Autodesk AutoCAD, Rhino, 3DS Max, and Revit.