Sunday, August 21, 2011

Old School Cool. Indexicality.

Current architectural discourse has relied heavily on the indexical processes to help clarify and qualify architecture. However, the diagram, as used today, significantly differs from its origin. Today, the diagram is used in critical response to the basis of modernism. In order to understand continuity, the role of the indexical diagram, as an instrument of operations in coding Architecture, must be reconsidered. The fact that the diagram opened a critical gap, allowing us to penetrate the structure of certain architectural works, ultimately influenced our desire for precedent. 

Indexicality has evolved through variants of semantic rules (via process) and tools (like the diagram), which were given to us through groups such as the New York Five, and continues to develop even today. Though significant, there is a need to go beyond the precedent founded in the American academic indexical process, whose legacy still prevails in different degrees.

Through indexicality originally presented a way to use architecture basically as a secondary text and organization strategy, educators now view such methods as a disconnection between architecture as a discipline and architectural history and theory. However, such methodologies as a reflection prove the importance to be closer to architecture. How then, does architectural discourse leave the post-structural position in favor of something closer to architecture as we have always known it?

Each student researched the organizational principles and design strategies found in a selection of houses designed by Richard Neutra and the Case Study Program.  This exercise was based upon the premise that freshmen students have a limited knowledge of architecture and design. A more in-depth understanding of the ideas behind a particular piece of architecture and/or the motivating factors influencing the architect’s body of work would greatly enhance the quality of their design work and decision making process.

Texas A&M University. Department of Architecture. Freshmen Studio. Summer 2011.

Critic: Gabriel Esquivel

Teaching Assistant: Dylan Weiser

Check the 19 projects.