S'MArionette. movable object. Automated with SMA wire and tube. Collaboration with A&M Aerospace Engineering Darren Hartl and Jim Mabe from Boeing.
Team: Gabriel Esquivel, Chris Tackery, Stephen Hewett, Jorge Cruz, Calli Friesenhahn, Eli Wood.
Texas A&M University. Department of Architecture, Spring 2013. Graduate Thesis.
Advisers: Gabriel Esquivel, Weiling He and Ergun Akleman
and Reverberation of an Object” is, in part, an analysis of Graham Harman’s object-oriented
ontology, through which a natural object is stripped of its ontology through a
series of craft iterations. The basic idea of this project was to conduct a
series of drawing exercises going from analog to digital in order to produce a
unique shape. This process was inspired by Robin Evans’ essay “Translations
from Drawing to Buildings.” All steps in the process were unique, though
clearly traceable and geared toward the autonomy of an architectural object.
Similar to De l’Orme’s Diane de Poiters interior, diagrammatic parallel
projections guided the object through instances of dimensional, textural, and
shape shifting before it reached its final destination. Through a drawing-governed
evolution, an object was born governed by methodological iterations, thus the
use of the word “reverberations.” This object exhibits transplanted
characteristics of its source while appearing strange and difficult to read,
ultimately enhancing its appeal.
in a moment where architecture is redefining its position, moving from a
subject-centered and systematic discourse to an object-oriented situation. Objects
need not be natural, simple, or indestructible. Instead, objects will be
defined only by their autonomous reality. They must be autonomous in two
separate directions: emerging as something over and above their pieces, while
also partly withholding themselves from relations with other entities (1). Object-oriented ontology (OOO) is a
metaphysical movement that rejects the privileging of human existence over that
of nonhuman objects(2). Specifically, object-oriented ontology
opposes the anthropocentrism of Immanuel Kant's Copernican Revolution, whereby
objects are said to conform to the mind of the subject and, in turn, become
products of human cognition (3).
object-oriented ontology opens up a unique possibility for rethinking the
peculiar problems associated with the problem of nature. A return to the object
would have to be understood as a turning away from a mythological or
sentimental understanding of nature toward the particularities and the
essential strangeness of the objects themselves. In this particular project,
the use of a seashell, an object of nature, was a deliberate selection. By
submitting this “natural object” through a series of drawing translations, a
new object related to its autonomous drawing process rather than nature was
created. This object doesn’t operate in normative representation.
a moment that the architectural object is unified as an object, and remember that
an architect is also an object in this ontology, not an enlightened mind
outside the world of objects giving form to formless matter (4). A return to
the architectural object as a disciplinary priority cannot be a nostalgic
return to pre-modern academic preoccupations with character, propriety, and the
idealities of a compositional balance. Nor is this return to the object a
simple return to figuration and detached massing. “Object” here should not be
understood in a literal sense.
object making cannot be completely encapsulated by a methodology that might
repeat the success. There are diverse methodologies to investigate. This object
operates outside of formal indexical operations. As a non-theoretical
interaction between the maker as an object and the various objects of the
making process, “craft” is the ambiguous word that has, in the past, identified
the unique expertise of the maker in the relationship to the material. This
where the relationship between Evans’ position in regards to drawing in terms
of inventing complex drawings is what we have referred to as the architect’s
craft and the object-oriented ontology that allows for the theoretical
revisions of the future of an architectural object.
This project involved generating an object that departed from
nature by changing its ontology at the end of the process. Use of the drawing
craft presents alternatives for architecture to apply normative modes of
production in a different way, through the combination of analog and digital
presentations in 2-D and 3-D. The most immediate future development that we
will undertake is to fabricate our object using the CNC milling machine to create
a base form made out of foam. From this positive mold, we will create the final
object using composite materials, epoxy resin, and c-glass; the ZBrush pattern
will be unfolded from the digital model using Pepakura, and it will be printed
and incorporated as a layer within the composite surface.
After the prototype was built, a structural analysis
using ABACUS was performed, a software used by aerospace engineering, and determine the performative
needs and properties of the object’s surface. Additionally, materiality concerns and construction techniques were researched on an
architectural scale. Once the properties of each material are deduced, the
focus will shift to solving various technical challenges of fabricating parts of
the object full scale.
1.Ruy, David. (2012).
Returning to Strange Objects. Tarp
(Spring): p. 38 (2012)
2.Harman, Graham (2002). Tool-Being:
Heidegger and the Metaphysics of Objects. Peru, Illinois: Open Court.
p. 2. ISBN [[Special:BookSources/08126094449|08126094449
[[Category:Articles with invalid ISBNs]]]].
Concrete has been poured waiting for 6 days to de-mold and install.
CO-CO. ArtFill Project. Bryan, Texas.
Concrete Panels with coconut fiber reinforcement.
Team: Gabriel Esquivel, Dr. John Nichols, Jorge Cruz, Steven Hewett, Jeff Lemley.
There is currently a great deal of interest in developing
the technology for using natural fiber materials in cement composites. Natural
fibers exist in reasonably large quantities all over the world and natural
vegetable fibers are produced in most developing countries.
Natural fibers have been used to reinforce inorganic materials for thousands of
years. This project examines the effect of twined coconut fibers as
reinforcement to 10’ x 10’ concrete panels. For treatment, 25% twined coconut
fibers will be added as reinforcement.The panel is a porous ornamented panel, which is more a study of small
façades. This panel size has never been done, thus the importance of this
Flexural tests have been carried out on prototype panels to
determine their strength with different volume fractions and aspect ratios of
fibers. The casting will be done on site to avoid transportation. Each panels
weighs about 2,000 lbs.