Schedule and Readings

Content and timing are subject to change. Assigned readings are listed in bullets below.

Part 1: How to Evaluate Material Technologies

1. ARCHITECTURE IN TRANSFORMATION
09.04 Tu
Course Introduction
Technological change and socioenvironmental effects
Explanation of the course
Assignment of weekly journal

09.06 Th
Material Innovation
Technological transformations in the built environment

2. RELEARNING ARCHITECTURE
09.11 Tu
Exformation
Reassessing the use of material technologies in the built environment

09.13 Th
Skeleton to Skin
Mineral building technologies and their effects
The nature of materials

3. PROJECT 1
Project 1 due (see assignment)
09.18 Tu and 09.20 Th
In-Class Presentations


Part 2: Assessing the Social and Environmental Effects of Material Technologies

4. LIGHTER, FASTER, STRONGER
09.25 Tu
Ultraperformance
The pursuit of bleeding edge technology and its ramifications

09.27 Th
Magma to Machines
Metal building technologies and their effects

5. THE THIRD SKIN
10.02 Tu
The Envelope
The continuous evolution of building skins

10.04 Th
Engineered Transparency
Glass building technologies and their effects

6. REGENERATIVE DESIGN
10.09 Tu
The Carbohydrate Economy
The third industrial revolution and the development of renewable material technologies

10.11 Th
Living Structures
Wood building technologies and their effects

  • Blaine Brownell, “Wood,” Material Strategies, 61-81
  • Luis Fernández-Galiano, “Architecture Discovers Fire,” Fire and Memory, 2-32

7. RESILIENCE
10.16 Tu
Guest Lecture: Thomas Fisher on Fracture-Proofing
Evading fracture-criticality in the built environment

10.18 Th
Architecture for Emergencies
Film—Michel Quinejure, Shigeru Ban: An Architect for Emergencies

8. A CONCRETE PLANET
10.23 Tu
Waste Equals Food
Film—Rob van Hattum, Waste Equals Food

  • William McDonough and Michael Braungart, “Waste Equals Food,” Cradle to Cradle, 92-117

10.25 Th
Liquid Stone
Concrete building technologies and their effects

  • Blaine Brownell, “Concrete,” Material Strategies, 41-59
  • Jean-Luis Cohen, “Earth as Urban Laboratory,” Solid States, 21-26

9. PROJECT 2
Project 2 due
10.30 Tu and 11.01 Th
In-Class Presentations


Part 3: Predicting Future Technological Change—Expanded Topics

10. THE REDISCOVERY OF CRAFT
11.06 Tu
Guest Lecture: Adam Marcus on The DigiFab Revolution
Computer-automated manufacturing and the empowerment of the designer

11.08 Th
The Age of Plastic
Plastic building technologies and their effects
AIA Student Day: please review this schedule for events.

11. BIOMIMICRY
11.13 Tu
Guest Lecture: Marc Swackhamer on Biomimicry
The convergence of the made and the born

11.15 Th
Construction History and Innovation
Film—Jesper Wachtmeister, Great Expectations: A Journey through the History of Visionary Architecture

12. LIGHT AS MATERIAL
11.20 Tu
Guest Lecture: Mary Guzowski on The Architecture of Illumination
The orchestration of light in time
Research paper: prospectus due (see assignment)

11.22 Th
Thanksgiving (no class)

13. INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE
11.27 Tu
Hypermaterial
Augmented matter and the network of everything

11.29 Th
Soft Skins
Textile building technologies and their effects

14. RESEARCH WORKSHOP
Research paper: exploratory essays due (see assignment)
12.04 Tu and 12.06 Th
In-Class Presentations

15. THE ARCHITECTURE OF TRANSFORMATION
12.11 Tu
Material Frontiers
What is the future of architectural innovation?

16. FINAL
12.18 Tu (no class)
Research paper: final paper due by 5:00 pm (see assignment)

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