Wednesday, March 02, 2005

4dspace: Interactive Architecture

I attended a launch event for the latest edition of Architectural Design entitled 4dspace: Interactive Architecture at the Architectural Association in London last Thursday. The guest speakers were Vicente Guallart, Ole Bouman, Michael Weinstock, Lucy Bullivant, Jason Bruges and Tobi Schneidler.

Interactive Architecture is an emerging form of architecture that deals with responsive environments, whether they be workplaces, homes or cultural environments. The 4th dimension refers to time-based digital technologies. Ole Boumann explained this as a shift from place to time based environments. I guess this means that place is no longer the only means of bringing people together-- once a time is set, they can 'meet' in 'cyberspace'*. Boumann felt that the function of architects was to establish social relations spatially, and now temporally. I wonder if friend of the Architect, Prince Charles, would agree... I'm not sure I understand the rationale for architects being the best people to do this either. Is an ability to design places in real space necessary or relevant to designing 'places' in virtual space? What are the commonalities?

Anyway, Lucy Bullivant, the guest editor of this issue of Architectural Design, told us that commissioned works in this field tend to be in museums or other cultural spaces. She cited the Churchill Museum in London and the upcoming Battersea Power Station development. Other interesting realised projects were presented by Jason Bruges including an LED light sculpture on the A13 commissioned by the borough of Havering.

*I hate the word cyberspace. I'm not entirely sure why.


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