tutor | vanessa dammous


The semester was structured around two projects MASS | MACHINE, in which students followed different design processes, while exploring architecture as a communicative tool, translating spatial experiences into rational and efficient systems. In the first project MASS, a hypothetical site was proposed to the students. Each student was assigned a plot and asked to design a living/working spaces, composed of educational & recreational areas as a well as units to accommodate individual and multiple families, workshops etc. The relationship between the project and the site as well as the specificity of the program defined the massing of the project, its voids, circulation and integration in the site. 6-weeks. In the second project MACHINE (exhibited here), a specific site in the city was assigned. The students designed a unit, a housing module for the elderly and/or orphans, sometimes inspired by the pandemic situation, repeated 6-8 times to create an organizational system – a Machine. The integration of the project in site called for a readjustment of the system into a unique and specific massing responding to an imagined urban experience. 8-weeks
The studio focused on the interdependent relationship between the massing of a project and its smallest component, the unit. It also focused on the notion of ‘context’ or ‘specific condition of place’ and the role it plays in an architectural design process. In both projects, a list of precedents was proposed for their relevance to the exercises and students were asked to analyze the essence of these projects and reinvest their fundamental principles into the design process.

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