19 May 2013

The Draftery Figure 03

I am proud to have my work featured in the next publication by The Draftery, "Figure 03."

They are running a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the publication, please consider supporting this project.


06 May 2013

Amanda and Yhadi

Spiller, “Arcadia, Alchemy, Antiquity and Machines”
Introduction, Visionary Architecture: Blueprints of the Modern Imagination
Pages 5-17

  1. [Page 9, Mechanistic, Dreamy Outside Rooms] “The twentieth century, like no century before it, was defined by technological development, particularly the exponential and accelerating power and dexterity of the machine.” Technology continues to develop at an even greater exponential rate in the 21st century. Should this be of concern and is there a way to balance the growth of technology and the capacity of the architect?
  2. [Page 9, Mechanistic, Dreamy Outside Rooms] “Conversely, some visionary work of this period sought to purvey a more agrarian attitude, seeking non-industrialized materials, antique construction methods, figurative compositional protocols and naturally occurring phenomena that might create a meaningful architecture.” Are the methods or ideas listed here the only way to create a meaningful architecture? What defines a meaningful architecture to you? Can the advancements in technology help create this, or will it hinder the creation of this meaningful architecture?
  1. [Page 12, Drawing Prisons] “Piranesi also anticipated the other great tradition of twentieth century visionary architecture: exploring the gap between the architecture of architectural drawings and the architecture of real built buildings.” Is the gap between drawings and real built buildings increasing or decreasing? Photo realistic rendering capabilities won't capture the true essence of the built environment, so to what degree should these capabilities be used?
  2. [Page 13, Drawing Prisons] This question relates to the previous question... Spiller describes how Piranesi pushed his drawing style to the limit. “His vanishing points are unaligned, and his projection planes multiply with unparalleled fecundity as he constructs the representation of an unrealizable group of objects and spaces.” Can digital media assist in the production of such drawings or would an image like this be more effective if done by hand?

Woods, “Radical Reconstruction”, Radical Reconstruction
Pages 27-31 [Tactics and Strategies]

  1. [Page 28] “The forces of reaction, as cynical and self-serving as ever, are eager to fill the void left by a destruction that they themselves to a large degree have caused.” Woods mentions war and violence which have clearly caused mass destruction in our past and the need for reformation and reconstruction tends to follow such an event, but can this idea of reconstruction refer to events that aren't directly caused by our own actions, such as natural disasters? Unless of course, we begin discussing the topic of global warming, and our effects on the environment...
  1. [Page 28, Instigate change] “Destruction has set in motion a reformation of the city that is both radical and irreversible.” This is directly followed by the statement “when change could be more easily resisted or controlled.” Sadly, I think it's true that the majority of the population are not as open to change and prefer a more stable environment, but as architects, should be we forcing change as the future is ever changing?
  2. [Page 29, Make second-order designs] “The architect must now design the rules of the rules, therefore the languages for comprehending and describing the space of a new dynamic stability. The task of the architect in the reconstruction of the damaged city is to make “second-order” designs, that is, to design the architecture of architecture.” What does Woods mean when he says to design the architecture of architecture? Can the describing of the space of a new dynamic stability be done solely through representation?
  3. [Page 30, Recycle, re-form] “The technique most essential to this process is a conceptual one: see the old as if had never before been seen. From this, all technical means will follow.” The technique being the way in which the architect transforms the material of destruction into the genuinely new.
  4. [Page 30, Recycle, re-form] “The technique most essential to this process is a conceptual one: see the old as if it had never been seen. From this, all technical means will follow.” Although we have advance technology would you agree or disagree with this statement?

Interesting Articles relating to topics:

Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis, “snafu” Pamphlet Architecture 21: Situation Normal
Pages 4-13

  1. [Tactics] “Architecture has always been defined by strategies-witness Vitruvius's writings on the orders of architecture; Diderot's reclassification of the orders in his Encyclopedie; Le Corbusier's five points; and the recent codes of New Urbanism.” Do we anticipate new strategies to be developed in the near future or will we continue to use past orders of architecture or would it be in our best interest to take ideas from all strategies?
  2. [Surrationalism] “Surrationalism is first and foremost a conscious, critical, and rational project, its goal being the liberation of rationality from the encrusted habits of convention.”
      “ If surrealism seeks to explore the more-real-than-real world behind the real, then surrationalism uses rationalism to test the boundaries of rationalism itself.”

30 April 2013


Alex Coyne

Mexican Fiesta/WHSF

Evan Crossman Final Project

Alex Buettner_Project 4

John Annis - Presentation

Ainsley McMaster - Presentation

Zach Haertl - Presentation

Tad Jameyfield Visible Certainty Final Assignment: Chharanagar


29 April 2013


Part of my post is set up for the full spread of the book (18 x 7), so it is hard to read. I included a second embeded html for the broken view so it is easier to read the specifics. Sorry for the confusion. I did not know how else to fix this. Email me if you want the easy to read PDF. Thanks. - Dana (drwells@uwm.edu)

22 April 2013

Arch390_VC: Week 14- Presenting Your Work...

Tufte: 156-185
John Annis

1)  Explain PP is The Software Corporation Itself vs. Presentations are like Good Teaching (pg 161)

2) What problems arise in PP when determining hierarchy

3) Sometimes or most times, PP presentations are too straight forward and mind-numbing. why do you feel this is? what is missing most times that does not include the audience?

4) Compare how the readings shortcomings of PP can be related to the shortcomings of SARUP student presentations of studio work on the alcove walls.

Agrest: pg 163-177
Matthew Breunig

1)   Architecture is produced in three different registers, through three different texts: drawing, writing, and building (pg 161) Will this list grow? With how important computers are becoming in architecture will they ever be able to add to the list? And what could it add? (augmented reality, films etc.)

2)  Out of the three current “texts” architecture is being conveyed through, has writing lost its importance? Should it be used more? And is there away you can incorporate writing within a drawing to be more then notations?

3)  “It seems that the computer only operates as a tool in the production of an architecture that in terms of its mechanism of representation is not very different from previous historical periods” (pg 176) How can we make the computer go further in architectural representation then its current capacity?

4)  “the same system that lays out the grid of the surface in the design process can in turn drive the machine that cuts those elements. Design and Fabrication are linked together...” Besides models how can we start to utilize these technologies to represent our architectural designs?  

5)  (Not directly from reading) Is the computer becoming the standard for the representation of architectural design? This comes from Will Bruder's keynote speech at MAM on the 6th of April. He basically stated that there is no need for computers to be in student design studios and emphasized how hand done work far surpasses the work done by computers.

6)  How do you have to represent a city differently then a buildings? Why? (representation of a city is on pages 171-174)

7)  “Exurbia is to the computer what suburbia was to the highway” (pg 176) Is the computer/cybernetics the downfall of the city as we know it today?

8)  How can you represent cultural aspects of a city?

9)  “Representation, theater of  life or mirror of the world” - Michel Foucault, The Order of Things (pg 163) when we represent architecture what are we aiming for? To be an act of the real world or to try to be the real world? In our representations how real do we want them to be, and where is the line they become too determinate on the architecture?

10) How does the added complexity of architectural representation that it has in itself a double representation effect how and what we choose to represent about the architecture?

11) “representation can thus be thought of as the place of articulation between architectural practice and theory. It is precisely in such moments of change where critical thought and new theories are produced and practice is radically restructured” are these new theories proven true in drawings alone or do they have to be built to become a new practice? 

15 April 2013

Week 13 Discussion, Part II

Antoine Picon - Architecture, Science, Technology, and the Virtual Realm

1.  “In recent years a growing number of images and metaphors taken from mathematics, physics, and molecular biology have spread among architects… The productive character of certain episodes in history of relations between science and architecture is perhaps attributable to the existence of similarities between operations upon which science and architecture are based” (pp. 293-294.)  In the reading, Picon lists topology, fractals, chaos theory, and DNA sequencing as some contemporary examples of this trend.  Can you see a productive character between architecture and design processes and some of these metaphors, or are they simply “mere rhetorical habit?” 

2.        “What is the reality of architectural design?  It is precisely a virtual reality.” (p. 296) How is design among the virtual dimensions of architecture? 

3.  Picon postulates that architectural form in a computer-based virtual reality no longer is the ultimate result of a process of research, and is instead the result of an arbitrary stop in an endless process of geometric transformation; a cross-section in a continuous geometrical flow (p. 303.) What do you see as the difference between computer-based virtual reality and more conventional design methods that would cause these new forms to become more like a “snapshot or videogram?”  Do you agree with Picon’s sentiment?  

4.  From the last question, Picon questions our ability to judge the beauty of forms created through computer-based virtual reality, due in part to an impression of arbitrariness.  How has the ascent of use of diagrams in design being used to as a possible antidote to combat this arbitrariness?   (pp. 304-305)

5.  Is the computer “symptomatic of a profound change in the way we make worlds,” as Picon states on page 301?  Or, is the way that we design being fundamentally changed to accommodate the computer?  

6.  The UN Studio (Ben van Berkel and Caroline Bos) use diagrams as a part of “deep planning,” which aims to integrate as many data as possible, with the goal of avoiding any preconceived idea of what urbanism and architecture should be about, and to stave off any premature recourse to form (pp 305-606.)  Can the use of data and diagrams as evidence successfully stave off all preconceived notions?

7.  “The aim of the architect is no longer to promote an alternative, and allegedly better, world but to take the world as it is, to contribute to the further actualization of its potential rather than bring about the advent of a remote utopia” (p. 307.)  How is this definition more (or less) suitable to what we as architects would like to accomplish?  

8.  What are some of the problems that Picon notes about digital architectural forms in regards to scale and texture?

9.  What is the significance of Picon’s use of the cyborg as a metaphor on page 310?  

10.  How does digital architecture represent opportunity to reestablish links with contemporary science?  (p. 311)

- Dan Kornaus -

Week 13 Discussion

Stan Allen - Chapter 3: Terminal Velocities: The Computer in the Design Studio

p. 72 – “But in the rhetorical fictions of the computer, speed brings something else: a future not only more fully integrated with technology, but a promise to recover precisely that which had been destroyed by modernity in the first place. Claims are made for the recuperation of community, self, political space, precision craft, and local identity.” Do you believe a recuperation through speed integrated into technology is possible? Where do you see possible shortfalls in this ability?

p. 72 – “The field of freedom shrinks with speed. And freedom needs a field. When there is no more field, our lives will be like a terminal…” Do you agree with this statement? Are there fields of study which might be more affected by this advancement than others?

p. 72-73 – Is it possible for technology to reach a terminal velocity? Recalling the cat analogy, what floor are we currently working at?

p. 73 – Allen describes physical forms that have now been integrated into binary form (text/books, music/vinyl, pictures/film). This has “led a number of theorists and historians to begin to think of architecture as just another medium.”
What makes architecture equivalent/different to these forms? Given the realm in which we experience the three examples with prescribed senses (sight, listening), is architecture too complex a medium to truly define in a binary fashion?

p. 76 – “Abstraction is no longer a categorical imperative, but one choice among many.”
In the context of the paragraph and our prior discussion of abstraction as a class, do you agree with this statement?

p. 82-83 – In a description of architecture as a field driven by control vs. the uncontrolled, a discussion is made in favor of working to link technology with the uncontrollable variables of city-life to fuse with architecture’s role over time. In other words, a fully controlled development lacks an ability to resolve uncontrolled nuances/variables of the place. In comparing the sprawling, organic growth of a city to a formally organized city (i.e. Paris), does this integration of technology seem favorable? What variables could be simulated?

p. 85 – “Architects who control the means of digital fabrication, for example, can bypass the builder and talk directly to the machine.” What are the pros and cons to this process of design?

p. 89 – Monsters, Inc. vs. Waking Life: What are the benefits or shortfalls of having realistic renderings such as in Pixar’s work relative to the unrealistic texture given to a realistically shot scene as in Waking Life? Does a refined fantasy image limit the ability to further develop the idea beyond the given information?

p. 90 – Neuromancer vs. Pattern recognition: “Gibson’s earlier novels were speculative projections of an imagined future in which technology has radically eroded conventional social order… There is a sense that the imagined future has indeed arrived, but in a form quite different than expected… more subtle, more all-pervasive…” Is it more conceivable to study technology as a futuristic possibility or as a present tool? By perceiving it in the present, is it limiting our abilities to design? If we look too futuristically, are we ignoring more prevalent and realistic problems? How do we work to fuse both concepts?

p. 92 – “A truly emergent architecture could be understood as a lightly fixed scaffold that allows change around a minimal number of secure points, anticipating the participation of multiple agents, in the field.” Does this process of thinking seem capable of acting universally in all projects?

14 April 2013

cornelius: thesis studio 2013-2014

Nicholas Szczepaniak_A Defensive Architecture
possible topics:
+ pushing the boundaries of digital rendering
+ use of collage/montage
+ descriptive geometry
+ image/model hybrids
+ analog/digital hybrids
+ diagramming and mapping
+ architectural narrative

eight students – option b
fall 2013:
you will enroll in arch 794 pre-thesis (3 cr.)
+ topic development
+ readings and discussion on image/representation
+ technique exercises – analog/digital

spring 2014: 
you will enroll in arch 891 master’s project (6 cr.)
+ must have at least one additional committee member

+ 500-word abstract of your thesis idea/topic of exploration.
+ the five (5) best images you have created to date.
email these items in .pdf to christc@uwm.edu

I will set-up individual meeting after reviewing your material.

09 April 2013

Spring 2013 Exercise 04 - Research Topic

Your final exercise of the semester is a personal research topic. This topic may be related to your current/past studios, Master's project topic or other topic that you would like to graphically research for this course. Your topic may be directly related, tangentially related or reciprocal to architecture(al) thought. You may critique conventions, processes or projects. You may also decide to explore phenomena that are not directly related to architecture, in that, it is not a building, drawing or other.

By Class-time on April 16, you must submit a 500-word abstract of your research topic. Within your abstract you must clearly state the topic as a thesis of inquiry, your methodology for research and your expected out comes. Keep in mind, this topic must be formatted to fit the final document per the syllabus.

You will be presenting your research topic, methodology and progress in class April 30. Your progress must be documented and summarized in a .pdf file that you will upload to the d2L Dropbox.

Please post any questions as comments to this post so that the entire class may benefit.

Week 12- Research Methodologies

 Allen, “Practice vs. Project”

-What is “techne” and how is it related to the reading? (XI)

-Allen says, “The practice of architecture tends to be messy and inconsistent precisely because it has to negotiate a reality that is itself messy and inconsistent.” Do you think reality will always be messy and inconsistent? (XI)

-Why do you think architecture cannot “approach the transparency and speed of other medias?” (XIV)

-Allen states, “The activity of writing for me is part of the practice of architecture.” When do you find writing useful in the practice of architecture? (XX)

Salomon, “Experimental Cultures”

-Salomon states, “to design – you must first research the context it operates in and on.” What are some ways you have researched context and how did you use it in your design? (36)

-“The move away from individual thesis toward theacher-led, group research projects represents a diminished role for intuition in the design process.” What is Salomon's counter-argument? (42)

-What would you want in your concluding architectural course?

07 April 2013

Week 12_Research Methodologies

Experimental Cultures: On the “End” of the Design Thesis and the Rise of the Research Studio_David Salomon
Experiment, Research, & Design
1_What are your pre-conceived notions about “research,” Do you think of it in terms of experimentation, information gathering, the studying of a subject, inquiry, etc?

Definitions of “Research” from Merriam Webster
            1: careful or diligent search

2: studious inquiry or examination; especially: investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practical application of such new or revised theories or laws

                3: the collecting of information about a particular subject

 2_ Nietzsche states “experiments are not limited to the controlled tests that demonstrate or provide evidence of some universal truth; that is, they are not synonymous with the scientific method. Experiments are also previously untried, decidedly risky operations aimed at creating something of-the-moment and new.” (33) Do you think there is a place for both types of experimentation in the field of architecture, is one more prevalent than the other, is one more closely related to “research” as we previously discussed?

3_What is “Design Research?” is there such a thing, or do design and research stand alone?

“Herbert Simon, who argued that design, was method for solving problems that have more than one right answer…design can alternatively be understood as both rational problem-solving technique or an intuitive aesthetic act. “ (34)

“…Research can be defined as any “systematic inquiry,” or as “the close study” of something. This suggests that there would be multiple modes of inquiry - both quantitative and qualitative – that can satisfy these requirements beyond the type of work done in a conventional laboratory.” (34)

“…Research does not simply compile what already exists, but advances the current state of the art.” (34)

Thesis vs. Research Studio
4_Architecture=Building Science + Art History + Fine Arts, where design is the “+,” Do you think that this is still how architectural education or thesis is structured, at UWM or elsewhere? Do you think this a good model? Is the teaching of design emphasized or lost within this model, should design be more prevalent, as some would argue that “(design is) Consistently recognized as the most important subject taught in architecture schools, design was also the one with the least academic credentials.” (35)

5_ “The traditional definition of the scholarly thesis was a series of statements or propositions that either built upon, added to, reinforced, or challenged an existing body of knowledge by “ construction an argument that can stand up” by itself and  be “maintained against attack” from those qualified to judge its veracity. In other words, a thesis is a new idea that needs to be proven relative to a field’s established set of facts, as such, the unique design for a building was no in and of itself a thesis. It could be so only if it added something to, reinforced a weak point within, or contradicted something in the multiple fields that made up the architectural discipline – of which design was not quite one.” (35) Do you think that this is the model most thesis projects follow today, at UWM or elsewhere, or is it more of a comprehensive design approach as described on page 36? To be a “good” thesis project do you believe it needs to follow more of the traditional model or the comprehensive design approach? How does design, research, or design research as previously discussed play a role in this traditional thesis model as well as the comprehensive design approach model?

6_In contrast do you think that a Research Studio is a better way of doing a final/large project for the completion of a professional degree? What role does design, research, or design research play in a research studio, does one element dominate? Out of the examples given in the reading of past research studios do you think that one model would be more successful than the others?

7_Overall what are your thoughts on thesis vs. research studio, are there certain advantages to one over the other? Which would you personally choose if given the option for your final project in a professional degree? Do you think that the Research Studio is what more universities will offer in the future in place of letting students do thesis projects?  

Introduction: Practice vs. Project_Stan Allen
Architecture as Material Practice
8_What is a material practice? Is architecture the only thing that fits into this type of category? What aspect of a material practice is it that separates architecture from all other discursive practices? (Xlll-XV)

9_ “Material practices unfold in time, with a full awareness of the history of the discipline, but never satisfied to simply repeat, or to execute a system of rules defined elsewhere….Constraint is not an obstacle, but an opportunity for invention, provoking the discovery of new techniques...As in intelligence work, with immense quantities of information now simultaneously available, it is no longer access to information that counts, but the ability to process, organize, and visualize information that is crucial” (XV) Do you feel that this expert only applies to material practices and the field of architecture? Do you believe that this idea plays a role in the thesis vs. research studio debate?

Techniques: Differences that make a Difference
10_”Design Intelligence, enable architects to navigate more effectively in this new, information – dense context. Speaks’ suggestive formulation plays on two meanings of the word “ intelligence.” On the one hand, it recognizes that architects and other design professionals possess a specific form of expertise, a synthetic and projective capacity unique to their own discipline. Design intelligence in this sense implies the thoughtful application of that expertise to problems specific to architecture….” (XVlll) How does this apply to our discussion of Research, design, and the traditional thesis model?

02 April 2013

Award of Excellence from the American Society of Architectural Illustrators (ASAI)

Chris Cornelius received an Award of Excellence in the Observational Category from the American Society of Architectural Illustrators! His drawing of Brunelleschi’s Pazzi Chapel in Florence is one of fifty-five pieces chosen from a field of over three hundred entries from around the world.

His drawing will be part of the 28th annual Architecture in Perspective exhibition and catalogue publication. "Architecture in Perspective: Selected Entries"

26 March 2013


ARNHEIM 380- Dunckner says that in the visual field the perception of an objects mobility is directly related to its level of dependency on the framework of the visual field. Do you agree?

ARNHEIM 376- Arnheim seems to suggest suggests that the mind is not capable of remembering events as sequential, even if the even is clearly perscribed by a linear structure that is time? Is this so? Why?

ARNHEIM 377- Arnheim talk about perception of an event as it relates to the route of disclosure, specifically referring to Hamlet. How important do you think the route of disclosure is to architecture? as designers do you think we try to force this? ie architectural promenade

ARNHEIM- How do you think movement effects fixation?

ALLEN 48- How do you perceive architecture's "in-between" situation? what are some newly arising examples of where this can be advantagous?

ALLEN 56- Allen relates the history of cities to a collection of memories, but as technologies advance and information exchange is more easily communicated, the memories of cities are erased. Can the same be said for our memories/identities?

Allen 57- with the advancement of technologies, do you really think that the "discipline of architecture itself" has been marginalized as Allen says?

ALLEN & ARNHEIM- how does architectures "in-between" situation relate to an event that is experienced in a simultaneous manner?

ALLEN 46- Allen says "Architecture, like music or dance, is not concerned to imitate reality", but later goes on to praise diagram architecture. Is this in a way contradiction?

24 March 2013

Week 10_Muybridge & Movement


1)      P. 42
The notations of mathematics and time-based art forms are stated as related areas. How are they related other than their abstractness?

2)      P. 43
Consider the Bruno Latour quote, “when a machine runs efficiently… one need focus on its inputs and outputs and not on its internal complexity.” Do you agree with this statement or are there other opportunities and processes one can pull from the internal complexity?

3)      P. 46 & 50
Can an architectural drawing be notational without numbers or texts by using other types of annotations, symbols, or implied scales? (Use Schlemmer diagram on p. 50) Can notations have multiple interpretations as diagrams do?
4)      P. 53
What are the positives and negatives of moving toward diagram architecture? What are other alternatives?

5)      P. 59-60
Allen promotes “new tools” to map illegible cities into legibility; are there any existing tools, programs, or systems that could be used, maybe differently and/or specifically for this purpose? Can maps scripts and diagrams be used to simplify illegibility in contemporary cities?

6)      P. 66
In the conclusion, Allen mentions mapping, projection, and notation as techniques of representation. How can projection be specifically used as a method of architectural representation?


7)      P.372
When Arnheim defines “pure movement” as, “taking place between two objects and unrelated to either,” is this truly possible and how so? Does the viewer’s perception make a difference?

8)      P. 373-374
If the performance of the dancer is experienced as an event in space, not in time, does this experience become an event if there is a relationship to another object? Or the relationship to the next dancer coming on stage?

9)      376-378
Are there any other art forms (besides painting, music, literature) that have similar or contrasting types of movement relationships (i.e. simultaneity, sequence, action)?
10)   386-387 & 394-396
If color, size, and speed can alter the perception of movement in objects, can these elements influence architecture in a similar manner and/or manipulate users in space? Think of Michotte’s experiments and results as an example too. How can these topics be applied to architecture?

05 March 2013

Questions_Form of Data

1) The SARS diagrams present data gather data from a variety of Sources. Explain why it is so important to use a general syntax? (pg.78)

2) How do we evaluate the credibility of a n analytic graphic? On what grounds should we “buy” the argument? (pg. 79)

3) How can Mixed modal techniques help lessen the cognitive load? (pg. 83)

4) A variety of centaurs have been represented in celestial charts. Why does this one warrant inclusion in this book? (pg. 85)

5) The Hypnerotomachia ”is an aesthetic exemplar of printing, layout and typography…” aside from the style, What makes it a good example of multimodal techniques? (pg. 88-90)

6)  On pg. 92 Tufte compares Hitchcock’s story boards to the Hypnerotomachia. Why can this comparison be drawn?

7) How does the legal document on page 95 rely on the same strategies as the Hypnerotomachia to deepen the narrative.

8) In Sidereus Nuncius, how did Galileo’s original water color handle the big moon in comparison to his engraving. Which was more successful, why? (pg. 99)

9) On page 99.  Is there a disconnect between the images presented in the Sidereus Nuncius and the words? If so what is it?

10) “Before 1610 astronomy had largely been verbal gymnastics, speculation, philosophizing and disputation. How did the telescope change  that? (pg. 101)

04 March 2013

Tufte, pg. 46-64

1. Sparklines are "small high resolution graphics that are usually embedded in a full context of words, numbers, and images. " Explain how sparklines move through multivariate spaces and how the implications may result in a diagram of embedded value. pg. 47

2. Why are typographic sparklines so effective? Can these traces of sparklines within characters and fonts imply different moods, feelings, and meanings? pg. 48

3. When writing with data graphics, or producing sparklines within a set of images, words, or text, is the message of your intent amplified or lost (muddied)? Tufte defines this as "one of the best analytical designs ever." Is his stance accurate? 49

4. When taking analysis from financial reports such as stock readings or exchange rate readings for over a year, we are inputing quantifiable variables to produce sparklines. In what way can quality driven sparklines interfere with quantity driven sparklines? pg. 50

5. The diagram on pg. 52-53 of chromosome readings produces effects that graphically may imply architectural elements, such as an elevation or an abstract diagram. What elements of the graphic layout of data make the sparklines read architecturally?

6.  How can datawords imply different outcomes of events? For example, datawords can read win loss reports for sporting games graphically. What elements make the datawords more legible than a simple character of text or number? p.54

7. In reference to the Chart on pg. 56, the effect of the overtaking of boats, an action or verb, is represented graphically by intersecting two lines accordingly. Explain how grammar is interpreted into form (lines) within the Bumps Chart by Tim Granger. pg.56

8. Which plot reads more effectively, a 2D dotdashplot or a 3D dotdash plot? pg. 57

9.Explain why "lumpy" sparklines tend to read better than "spiked" sparklines and why post processing in other graphics based softwares such as Illustrator or photoshop enhances the quality, clarity, and meaning of a dataword or sparkline. pg. 60

10. Tufte gives a candid response to his positions on computers and their limitations. I wonder if he plays around with Grasshopper and Rhino. How does Rhino, a complex modeling software, and the native plug-in Grasshopper, an open-sourced algorithmic based parametric modeling plug in for Rhino that allows you to input and manipulate data, contest that of Tufte's? pg.63

26 February 2013

The Narrative Armature questions

Tyler Johnson

  1. Cartooning isn't just a way of drawing; it is a way of seeing. Which part is more important. (31)
  2. Why is the cartoon universal? (31)
  3. Describe the differences in cartoon styles around the world, what is the reason for each? (43-44)
  4. “Words are the ultimate abstraction” True or False? (47)
  5. Are words abstracted but a picture is not? (49)
  6. What makes an image iconic?
  1. Can the Camera be exchanged equally for the sketchbook? (11.5)
  2. Is there or is there not, a sense of truthfulness with either the camera or the sketchbook?
  3. Would you consider the photo sequence “Rolling tire 1972” truthful to the actual event it is trying to depict? (11.5) 
  4.  Do storyboards add to or hinder to the creativity of the architect?
  1.  How would you describe “architecture in film,” “filmic architecture”?(100)
  2. “Architecture at every instant, without being able to grasp the thousandth part of a second in which the transition takes place.”  Does true architecture have to be static or can we call film architecture? (102) 
  3. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is essentially a film of a play. Can this be considered filmic architecture? (103) 


Zach Heartl

1. In regards to storyboard montages discussed in the readings, are there any examples in architecture that you can think of?  Or possibly a rhizomic level of thinking created from these montages?
2.  In the Storyboard reading what are the differences that are discussed between the “stills” section and the “the City.”  They both talk about a two sets of imagery in the frame that draws you in and another that pulls you forward, are they different ideas being conveyed?
3.  In regards to people in storyboards how might we use people in our architectural renderings the way that this reading describes it?
4. In regards to the storyboard, does there need to be an existing narrative?  (Example: the cat perspective still is biased).
5.  In regards to the Storyboard narrative being conceived separately, yet imagined together, what would be the difference to a series of postcards?
6.  In the Vidler reading when Elie Faure describes plastic art, how does this compare when considering sheffauer’s argument against plastic art?
7.  When considering these two lines of argument which do you side with and why?  Which would be more appropriate for use for us in the realm of design?
8.  In the storyboard reading when talking about graphics, they describe artist’s sketches and how they are faked.  Do you agree with this statement?
9.  In the Vidler reading, Shauffer talks about the “sixth sense of a man” as the 4th dimension of the photographic cosmos.  Can you describe this and how this might manifest itself in the world of architecture?
10.  Looking at the storyboard reading and the perspective section; if the reader is supposed to form their own narrative, then when talking about perspective is it not already written because they already picked a perspective or view point on the subject?

11 February 2013

Week 3- Index

P. 198
- Krause “As distinct from symbols, indexes establish their meaning along the axis of a physical relationship to their referents.”  What does Krause mean by this? And why?
P. 198-199
In the painting Tu m’, how is the index finger establishing the connection between the shifter and its referent?
P. 203
What is the indexical relationship between the photograph (icon) to its object? Why is this?
P. 205
Why is it that “the language of rapid exposure which produce a state of rest, an isolated sign, is of course the language of photography .“?  How does it describe the isolation of something from within the succession of temporality?

P. 206 
- Krause “The readymade’s parallel with the photograph is established by its process of production.  It is about the physical transposition of an object from the continuum of reality into the fixed condition of the art-image by a moment of isolation, or selection.  And in this process, it also recalls the function of the shifter.  It is a sign which inherently “empty,” its signification a function of only this one instance, guaranteed by the existential presence of just this object.  It is the meaningless meaning that is instituted through the terms of the index.”  What does Krause mean in the last sentence?
P. 206
- Krause “Index is juxtaposed to icon and both are then captioned.  “With my tongue in my cheek,” is obviously a reference to the ironic mode, a verbal doubling to redirect meaning.  But it can also be taken literally.  To actually place one’s tongue in one’s cheek is to lose the capacity for speech altogether.  And it is this rupture between image and speech, or more specifically, language, that Duchamp’s art both contemplates and instances?  Explain how the break between image and speech allows Duchamp’s art to both contemplate and instance.
P. 210
How has photography become the operative model for abstraction?  Why is this concept important?
P. 215
- Krause “The painting is thus a sign connected to a referent along a purely physical axis.  And this indexical quality is precisely the one of photography.”  Why is this?

P. 216
- Krauss “It is only by disrupting its physical surface and creating discontinuous units that it can produce a system of signs, and through those signs, meaning?  What does Krauss mean by this?  Examples
P. 217
Barthes says of the photograph:
Explain how photography produces an illogical conjunction of the here and the formerly? What is the real unreality of the photograph?

04 February 2013

Week 3- The Ageny of Mapping

Corner states that maps have agency because of their double-sidedness.    What are the two sides and what is their relationship?

Corner uses the word “milieu” in contrast to the traditional notion of “site”.  Does this term more effectively describe the space/time in which mappings occur?  If so, speculate on consequences this could have on the approaches to, and form of site analysis practice.

Corner writes: “Such fantastic play across the world’s various surfaces is characterized not only by a fertile heterogeneity but also by conceptual elements coming loose from their traditional moorings.  The boundaries between different foundational realities have become so blurred, in fact, that it is practically impossible in a cyber-world to distinguish between what is information and what is concrete, what is fact and what is fiction, what is space and what is time.” Is there a contradiction between this “blurring” and “fertile heterogeneity”? Why or why not?

What are the distinctions between “mapping (or maps)” and “planning (or plan)” and can a correlation be drawn between these and Arnheim’s dialectic of static and dynamic abstraction?

Discuss Corner’s notion of mapping and our traditional idea of the map in terms of “utility” or what Matta-Clark describes as “use factor.”

Can a map or the activity of mapping ever be objective or neutral?

Compare and contrast Loran’s, Hockney’s and Mossel’s analytical approaches.  Tufte clearly disapproves of Mossel’s.  What are his reasons and are they fair?

Are Loran’s diagrams effective in explaining Cezanne’s construction of the picture plane as a plastic form?  Why or why not?

What are the differences between Corner’s and Tufte’s approach to mapping?

Nissen Questions:

1.                   Contrast Corner’s distinction between mapping and tracing?
2.                   What are the advantages and disadvantages of Mecator’s projection and Buckminster Fuller’s dymaxion projection?
3.                   How does the work of the child psychologists relate to maps relationship with reality?
4.                   In summarizing Harvey’s argument, what are the inherent problems with New Urbanism?
5.                   How does the Situationist usage of mapping differ from the Colonialist?

03 February 2013

Exercise 01 - Film Selections

The Fall
1. Cady
2. McMaster
3. Nissen
4. Pirlot
5. Ruiz
6. Wells
7. Woods

1. Annis
2. Coyne
3. Crossman
4. Haertl
5. Hwang
6. Jameyfield
7. Reiser

Being John Malkovich
1. Breunig
2. Buettner
3. Johnson
4. Kornaus
5. Straube
6. Young

29 January 2013

Spring 2013 Discussion Leaders

Week 02 - Woods, Coyne
Week 03 - Straube, Nissen
Week 04 - Crossman, Buettner
Week 06 - Johnson, Haertl
Week 07 - Jameyfield
Week 10 - Wells
Week 12 - Young, Cady
Week 13 - McMaster, Kornaus
Week 14 - Breunig, Annis
Week 16 - Ruiz, Pirlot

28 January 2013

abstract v. mimetic

  • (Tufte 130-131) Tufte talks about how 2-dimensional technologies "encourage" 2-dimensional (bivariate) thinking. Can the same be said for 2-dimensional technology's effect on inquiry? Why?
  • (Tufte 138) Why does representation of evidence become more verbal and less visual when the results yield poorly resolved explanations?
  • (Arnheim) Why does Arnheim belittle the distinction between what's "cement" and what's "abstract"?
  • (Arnheim 160) Arnheim says "a filter does not abstract." Why?
  • (Arnheim 161) What does Sussanne K. Langer mean by primary abstraction?
  • (Arnheim) What is a mechanism for abstraction?
  • (Arnheim 162-163) What's the importance of induction?
  • (Arnheim 171) Arnheim says that "an arbitrary selection of common traits is not often useful." Why is this?
  • (Arnheim) What makes for a defining attribute?
  • (Arnheim) What is the relation between generalization and concept?

27 January 2013

Tufte & Arnheim Week 2

  • P. 131 Tufte  "Like good information displays, explanatory investigations, if they are to be honest and genuine must seek out and present all relevant evidence regardless of mode."-        How significantly does this concept effect biases, especially when presenting evidence?

  • P 137 Tufte "If we ever see the analytical presentations of intelligent beings from other planetary systems, those designs will make multivariate casual comparisons."-                    Aliens?

  • P. 155 Arnheim- What is ontology?

  • P. 170 Arnheim- What does extirpate mean?

  • P. 174 Arnheim- What is entelechy?

  • P. 174 Arnheim-  Compare and contrast "Container concepts" vs. "Types"

  • P. 179 Arnheim-  What is "Normal variability"

  • Define abstract design.

  • Define abstract thought.

  • Is successful abstraction "dynamic" or "static"?