Evolving Systems of Material and Performance
Arranging and Articulating Structures through Evolutionary Computation

Complexity is an ever-present concern in the design of architectural systems. Digital processes have proven valuable in the elaboration and control of geometric complexity. Parametric models and scripted methods allow for the generation of complex forms through the use of a minimal number of variables. What these processes alone do not offer is the ability to manage a range of complex inputs as drivers for form generation, such as structural requirements, material characteristics, and environmental dynamics.

This studio will engage the use of evolutionary-based computation as a design framework for defining form through the iterative negotiation of complex analysis and criteria. A main focus will be the consideration of climatic analysis in the generation of material form: how the environment acts upon the system, and the type of localized climates which the system produces. The concentration will be on the formation of membrane structures and their computational and physical articulation, acting as devices that simultaneously affect structure and the permeation of surfaces to mediate climatic conditions. The criteria of climatic performance, rules of assembly and determination of structural stability will be negotiated to arrange both the gross morphology of a structure, and also to define its specific material articulations.

A 4-day excursion to Frankfurt for an intensive design workshop with the Städelschule Architecture Class, directed by Ben Van Berkel and Johan Bettum, will be done to jointly investigate the computation and coordinated materialization of such membrane structures. A second workshop will take place in Stuttgart, continuing the exchange with the students in Frankfurt. Participants of this studio will be required to attend the seminar: Forming Performance. Together, the studio and seminar will include small workshops for the introduction of Ecotect and RhinoScripting. The studio will be taught in English.

Evolving Systems Project 1
Evolving Systems Project 2
Evolving Systems Project 3