Explore Lab 23

Demystifying Abstraction

Demystifying Abstraction

Deyan Saev

Abstraction plays a central role, as both a language and an essential tool for design.Serving as a way of extracting information, architects often rely on abstraction to define and solve complex design problems. However, the steps behind the process of abstraction itself are rarely explicitly taught or discussed in architectural education. As a result, inexperienced architects often do not have a clear idea of how best to apply this process in their own work. The aim of this research is to put forward a teaching model that would help and guide beginner architects to better understand and use abstraction as a method of generating effective concepts. This model is reflected in the process through which I go about designing an extension to the National Library of Bulgaria in Sofia

The ice rink of the future

The ice rink of the future

Eline Stubert

Due to climate change, the ice skating sport is forced to be practiced indoors. These buildings, called ice rinks, have an image of great energy consumption and waste. By building these rinks we are contributing to climate change even more. Their typology includes  closed facades and they are build in the cheapest way possible, which gives them an industrial look, mostly implemented in industrial areas.  The location and appearance of these buildings aren’t generating high visitor numbers.

Due to their unattractiveness and high energy bills these rinks will be unprofitable from the moment they are build till the end of their lifetime.  This downwards spiral needs to be stopped.

During my graduation project I want to find ways to make an ice rink energy neutral, and incorperate these solutions into my design proposal of a new ice rink. Which shows the value of the ice skating sport and makes it more accessible to the common public.

The Illusion of Inclusion

The Illusion of Inclusion

Maya van der Lande

The architecture of psychiatric care has always been influenced by the conceptions of man and society. The Dutch health care system is currently undergoing some mayor changes. Vulnerable people with psychiatric disorders will no longer stay in a institution far away from the community, but will live independent in the neighbourhood, in the inclusive society. In reality independent living faces these people with some challenges such as loneliness, social isolation, stigmatisation, absence of safety nets of outpatient care, a lack of suitable low-cost rental housing and a society that is not entirely inclusive, resulting in, among others a ‘not in my backyard’ attitude towards these people. So now again the architecture of psychiatric care will be influenced by these changes within society. My research aims to develop and design architectural principles to enable psychiatric patients to live independently within the community.

The Architecture of Death

The Architecture of Death

Skander Saâdi

Death plays a fundamental part in our life. The sadness and despair that accompanies it, have also the power to make us deeply think about the essence of our existence on earth: about who we are, where we belong and where we are going. Death gives meaning to life.

Unfortunately, in our contemporary Western society, death is a taboo subject. We fear it and we try to ignore it. We do not mind it until reaching a certain age or until we are unexpectedly confronted with it. A clear distinction is made between death and life. We value the antitheses of death: youth and vitality. While on the other side, death is considered as shameful and forbidden. Consequently, anyone dealing with it does not contribute to the good functioning of the society and finds himself isolated from the daily life.

These issues question the quality and responsibility of today’s funerary architecture in relation to society’s way of living. How should architecture, today, position itself towards death?