“Retreat” Masters Studio Project
RMIT University, 2014
Supervisor: Jerome Frumar

This project attempts to find a new negotiation of pragmatic, top-down design drivers with bottom up material, formal and geometric languages.

In conventional architecture, these two things are often somewhat discrete, with algorithmic generation performed on a ‘blank slate’ and top-down design with only parametric (as opposed to generative) responses to pre-defined forms.

Thus, here we attempt to find a constructible medium – where a top-down massing and plan gets reconfigured and re-interpreted through generative algorithmic processes, but still coheres to the inherent constraints of brief, site, and structure.

Model construction serves as the medium for conversing between the two poles – where trying to construct a generative outcome with a material that replicates the physical properties of the 1:1 forces design decisions to be made and pratical planning moves to be engaged.
The result is thus somewhat pragmatic, but through this reconfiguration artifacts of opportunity arise based on material behaviour, and thus retain an emergent quality.

As such, a project initially intended very much as an experiment (with potential failure) is able to reach a reasonable degree of resolution (of materiality, structure, and planning).