The Social Weaver: Considering Top-down and Bottom-up design processes as a continuum

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Predictive architectural models have, over recent years, become able to integrate material feedback by incorporating either finite element or physics-based simulation processes. When used to simulate large material and structural deformations, they can be informed by both specific material properties as well as formal mechanical behaviors, for the purpose of calculating and representing material characteristics over time. However, in many commonly used modeling approaches, this increased influence of material is achieved only at the expense or limitation of other agencies: those of the designer, of the design space, and the assembly. As our design processes increasingly navigate complex, open-ended design spaces, finding effective methods for extending agency becomes a growing architectural preoccupation. The research presented here describes the context of open-ended design spaces, and distinguishes between two characteristic modeling approaches: designer-controlled simulation models that exhibit material agency but are constrained by topologically fixity (top-down), and simulation models that operate with unfixed topology but at the expense of direct agency for the designer (bottom-up). We identify this as a false dichotomy and present a third approach that treats this space as a continuum. A built case study project demonstrates the underlying modeling concepts and methodology. " The Social Weavers " is a bending active, non-standard grid shell structure made from fiber composite rods of varied diameter and stiffness. The installation develops aggregate self-forming processes that intersect with the behavioral activation and distribution of fiber-composites under design direction for the production of a novel architecture.
TitelDesign Agency [Proceedings of the 34th Annual Conference of the Association for Computer Aided Design in Architecture : ACADIA 14
RedaktørerDavid Gerber, Alvin Huang, Jose Sanchez
Antal sider12
UdgivelsesstedLos Angeles
ISBN (Trykt)978-1-926724-47-8
ISBN (Elektronisk)978-1-926724-49-2
StatusUdgivet - 2014
BegivenhedACADIA 2014: Design Agency - University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California, USA
Varighed: 23 okt. 201425 okt. 2014


KonferenceACADIA 2014
LokationUniversity of Southern California
ByLos Angeles, California

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