1st Session is underway (Toni Kotnik)

Dr. Sema Alacam opened the first session with her remarks on the contributions of Dr. Biloria and Dr. Kotnik to the understanding of the relationship between technology and thinking about structure and form, as well as the direct influence they have had on her own work.

First up is Dr. Kotnik. He discussed the introduction of the analytical “tool” of mathematics that has introduced itself into design thinking and practice. It takes the form of scripting, analysis, formal and geometric description, etc. and he claims introduced an “engineering approach” into architectural practice applied into “form finding” and leading to a “typological fixation.”

Asking “what is mathematics?” Dr. Kotnik says that HUMANS make order, and he give us this quote from Heidegger:

“this genuine learning is an extremely peculiar taking, a taking where on who takes only takes what one basically already has…. The mathemata, the mathematical is that “about” things which we already know. Therefore we do not first get it out of things, but, in a certain way, we bring it with us.”

This leads him to conclude that there is a perceptual dimension to the description of things through mathematics, and to his interest in thinking about how to merge these two areas of mathematical relations and the question of perception.

We can start to look at the “parametric variation” computational tools have given us from an architectural point of view, with the help of the perceptual understanding of architectural phenomena such as “openness” “flow” “connectedness” etc.

These ideas were explored with students, beginning with the analysis of compositions that have different character such as “contained” vs. “un-contained” space, and using geometry and geometric rules to read spatial conditions FROM the form.

Students end up generating structure and material systems that seem to develop from “just a couple of lines.”

“Architects and engineers both claim to be designers, though now they define design and the approaches they use to realize it vary widely.”

precision -> principle
typology ->
computability ->
correct -> right