Historically speaking, the notion of a place of solitude for the individual is a fairly recent invention. So too is the self as we have come to think of it—as an individual with a rich interior life. The development of the private room and the modern sense of the individual emerge more or less at the same moment during the Renaissance. This awakening is no accident—the new-space and the new-self actually tend to give shape to one another. In the modern world, there is a direct reciprocity between interiors and interiority.
This studio taught in the Foundation Design Unit of the architecture program focuses on the development of a series of interior conditions though not all of these conditions are defined through normative spatial interiority. However, the spatial interiority considered does in fact hold true to measures of “the inside” through student interpretation of those defined conditions. The spatial interiority studied was defined as—enclosure, interior room, material landscape and social landscape.
Owen currently is a student in Auburn University’s Bachelor of Architecture program and is a member the AU chapter of AIAS. After completing his first year of architecture studies, Owen went on to spent three months as an intern at Fred M. Humphrey & Associates, a medical architecture firm based in Winter Park, Florida.
The physical material of “reality,” coupled with the perceptual conditioning of historical events combine to form discernible, observable patterns from the totality of otherwise unorganized experience. In our reading and class discussions we have explored two explicit ways that the surrounding environment may be interpreted: through analysis of the physical structure of the environment, or through the description of perceptions activated by the surrounding optic structure.
There may yet be another way to explore this relationship between the heretofore separate environments of optic and haptic fields. In this proposed scenario, physical experience might be considered a type of organism where all of the parts are mutually dependent; the features of its surface are interconnected, presenting a series of actions and influences, of causes and effects, where effects react back upon causes, as in the case of a “well-organized body.*” This well organized body cannot be disassembled, but must rather be understood through the development of symbiotic relationships between the otherwise artificially-separated and distinct optic and haptic fields. Rusty Smith and Margaret Fletcher.
*Richard C. Lewontin, The Triple Helix: Gene, Organism, and Environment
Savoie is a rising sophomore in in Auburn University's Bachelor of Architecture program. He has interned at Savoie Architects, and is serving the Auburn chapter of AIAS as assistant co-chair of Freshman Education.
…The interior is the retreat of art. The collector is a true inmate of the interior. He makes the transfiguration of things his business. To him falls the Sisyphean task of obliterating the commodity-like character of things through ownership of them. But he merely confers connoisseur value on them, instead of intrinsic value. The collector dreams that he is not only in a distant or past world but also, at the same time, in a better one, in which, although men are as unprovided with what they need as in the everyday world, things are free from the drudgery of being useful.
—The Interior, Walter Benjamin
The interior is not only the universe but also the etui of the private person. To live means to leave traces, to collect things. Our collections add layers of meaning to our spaces, each object saved, categorized, and treasured carries its own valence of memory and allusion, and is subsequently thickened by the complexity of experience. Rusty Smith and Margaret Fletcher.
Finnegan, a member of the Chicago Auburn Club and recipient of an Academic Charter Scholarship, is a rising sophomore in the Auburn UNiversity Bachelor of Architecture program. In her first year, she was awarded the Foundation Book Award for her class and that summer interned at Brehm Architects in Chicago, Illinois.
We often speak of architecture as being “like” other things—this is a fundamental way we build understanding. We compare something that is unfamiliar with something that we know in order to gain insight. Goethe stated that architecture is like frozen music, and lately architecture has been compared to language. These metaphors may give architecture recognition on other grounds yet can also confuse us by presenting incompatibilities or by diverting our attention. It is of the utmost importance in the use of metaphor to remember that architecture is not language, nor is it music. These things are alike—in the realm of things with conceptual implications—as all things grey are to elephants.
One thing that sets architecture apart from other things is that it is grounded in building and construction—the former being the natural inclination for us to alter our environment and the latter being the organization and codification of this activity. Building presupposes an optimistic state of mind that anticipates tomorrow and is built upon past experience. It is organized around material and structure, and guided by intention and expression. When an architect draws, the marks on the page propose a constructed reality. In this way drawing is “like” building. The line is constructed, the graphite is built up and the paper becomes a site with context. Rusty Smith and Margaret Fletcher.
Cory Subasic is currently a second year student in the Architecture program. Entering Auburn University in his first year, Cory received multiple scholarships and academic honors, including The Charter Academic Scholarship, Dean’s List in Fall 2015 and Spring 2016, as well as membership in the Auburn University Honors College. Staying involved in the architecture program at Auburn, Cory is a member of the Auburn chapter of The American Institute of Architecture Students, and is the Project Manager for Freedom by Design. At home in Raleigh, NC Cory has had internships with the Perkins + Will RTP architecture firm in 2015 and with Skanska USA Building in 2016.
Settling on the site of a new building is a momentous act. All of a building’s design, its scale and skin and fenestration, the way it meets the ground and its corresponding connection to the sky are all determined by this first act. Then there are views to consider—from the building as well as of the building—the approach, the retreat, the fall of light across its façade, the movement of air around it, the ambient sounds, the angle at which it meets the rising and setting sun. Dwell too long on so many soon-to-be-set-in-stone characteristics and the “simple” decision of determining the construction’s final location is liable to paralyze you. Rusty Smith and Margaret Fletcher.