This interdisciplinary workshop is understood primarily as a protected time and space within the Architecture Department for an improvisational investigation of space. It will be taught from year to year by a faculty from a rotating team of architects, visual artists, dancers, scientists, etc. who have invested their life's work in the medium of space. Questions regarding spatial phenomena, scale, place etc., will be addressed through the language that the visiting faculty's work employs: it could be a material language for an artist,a tectonic language for an architect, a language of movement for a dancer, mathematical for a scientist, or musical for a musician. The presumption is that there is a unique learning experience when students are asking questions not of their teacher, but with them; and that the individual faculty's discipline and nature can influence the content and improvisational development of each iteration of this workshop.
All participants are invited to challenge what they think they know, to expand their language of practice, to extend their understanding of space beyond the culture, practices and lens of their own disciplines,to inquire by doing and to engage the purpose that the visiting faculty brings.
Please contact the Architecture Department to learn more about this year's iteration of this course including information on the visiting faculty who will be teaching it.
This workshop course provides an opportunity for the exploration of spatial concepts through observation and experience of phenomena. Using the infrastructure and environment of Providence as a laboratory, we will investigate how the ordinary can be transformed into the extraordinary and how the invisible can be rendered visible. Memory, time, light, vibration and metaphor will be examined in relation to the experience of architecture, installation and event.
Students' participation and individual interests will shape the direction of the workshop. The idea is to investigate and invent, pushing the parameters of what is known by applying new ideas and materials. An ongoing series of experimental drawings, constructions and installation projects will be reinforced by discussions and selected readings. The semester will be punctuated with multimedia presentations and site visits. Instruction will be individualized, with an emphasis on group critiques. Guest speakers will share their work and challenge the process. Visiting critics will participate in final reviews.
The course begins with individual projects and will encourage collaboration. Site-specific, ephemeral installations will focus on magnifying a sense of place and present.
Students will record the environmental stimuli that inform our experience of place and time; Identify conditions, influences, and social forces that influence our built environment; consider spectacle, surprise and wonder as artistic devices; question your own aesthetics and instincts; engage in the work of significant figures in contemporary architecture and art; and develop critical skills that support and encourage the learning process.