Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Friday, April 6, 2012
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Spit&Bang: A Return to the Past in the Age of Three-Dimensional Mechanical Reproduction
The inevitability of progress implies that we are often asked to make a choice between saving the old and creating the new. Nevertheless, there is an evident contradiction today, in many urban environments of the developed world, that we search for uniqueness and relish authenticity when, simultaneously, we allow the erasure of historical places and buildings within our cities. More recently however, we are increasingly inclined towards the simulation of an idealized image of the past to its minutest details, exaggerating even elements of shabbiness and decay.
Spit&Bang draws attention to the implications of hyperreality in the built environment, and how it contributes to the amplification of a sentimentalist production of physical memories of our past, exploring how the reliance of technology in conjunction with the misinterpretation of reality and its simulation can only result in the loss of our referential past, and trigger a desperate attempt to reassert the feeling of this same reality, which is being lost.
May in this process the Truman Brewery be reinvented as itself, the Petticoat Lane Market as a shopping Arcade, the Old Bishopsgate Station as a new Transport Museum, the Brick Lane Market as an old Market Hall or the old Hospital of St. Mary Without as a new NHS centre built upon its ruins, which never existed?
Current three-dimensional scanning and printing technology allows us to replicate any object in nearly instant speed. In addition video capability in mobile phones is being converted into portable three-dimensional scanners, and in every corner of the world are sprouting three-dimensional printers that can increasingly replicate any three-dimensional sample with incredible precision.
Similarly to the advent of photography in the 19th century we are entering a new age of three-dimensional replication and soon we will be able to use the three-dimensional medium of reproduction in our everyday lives. For architects and designers this may now represent a new age of copyrights and lawsuits over illegal sampling of their products and buildings, but for the typical citizen it may mean that it can now use, own and produce any physical commodity ever wished for.
Already buildings are being three-dimensionally printed and soon the benefits of nanotechnology will be brought into the process, integrating the power of microscopic physical properties with our ability to build any physical form. Large budget constructions will likely have full-size custom molecular assemblers installed on site, manufacturing a building in one go; however, conventional construction sites can integrate molecular assembly machines in smaller scale, allowing building parts to be efficiently designed, fabricated and assembled on site, and adapting design details to local characteristics, labour skills and availability of tools. Performance and design characteristics of these parts, such as structural and insulation properties or architectural finishes, can be instantly modified and compiled as the building is assembled.
However, as we fear the advance of technology and a further loss of the sense of reality, can our panic to simulate an idealized image of the past in combination with our ability to replicate any physical object, result in an ambiguity of references and styles which only makes reference to itself and can only further reinforce our loss of both the past and reality? Can Spit&Bang become a replication of itself, appropriating physical elements from a local database of scanned three-dimensional samples, amalgamated into advanced building technology?
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Friday, February 10, 2012
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
"Shopping areas where stores and whole streets recreate the character and adventure of places ‘round the world…theaters for dramatic and musical productions…restaurants and a variety of nightlife attractions. And a wide range of office buildings, some containing services required by EPCOT's residents, but most of them designed especially to suit local and regional needs of major corporations."
"But most important, this entire fifty acres of city streets and buildings will be completely enclosed. In this climate-controlled environment, shoppers, theatergoers, and people just out for a stroll will enjoy ideal weather conditions, protected day and night from rain, heat and cold, and humidity."