Design studios are usually centered around a ‘design project’ in which aspects of site and program context have a larger bearing on design decisions. In practice, however, the ideology and structure of the office has an equal impact on design decisions. This studio attempted to address the impact of aspects of practice on design. In the first half of the studio, students designed their architectural practice based on book readings, personal reflections, an experimental collaborative project and visits to 15 architectural practices. In the second half, students attempted two projects simultaneously. The first project was proposed by the student as a ‘dream’ project for their practice. And the second project was given by the tutor who enacted the role of the client. The studio culminated with the students designing a website of their practice. This studio provided a platform to critically examine the role of architectural practice on architectural design decisions and the architect themselves. The projects served as a means to arrive at design processes that aid in translating a vision [ideology] into reality [building] that the practice would uphold. The studio was a unique opportunity to purview varied kinds of practices, reflect, brainstorm, and present ideas on how practice affects the architecture produced and the architect themselves.
A first hand inquiry into the process of running a practice through visits to 15 practices of various scales and specialties, spread across Ahmedabad.
An collaborative role-play project, that sought to decode the relationship between various configurations of hierarchy amongst teammates, and the impact of the same on the process of designing a product, ideology and practice.
An introspection into the version of themselves that the students brought to the studio, through past projects, stances and personal reflections.
An ongoing process throughout the course of the semester. Through introspection and a retrospective analysis of decisions, and an influence of the primary and secondary research, one arrives at the heart of what constitutes their notions, beliefs and hence their practice.
After several weeks of research and introspection, the students then arrived at the formulation of an ideology or a manifesto- the core values and belief systems on the basis of which they will choose to run their practices.
How does a difference in approach from project driven to practice driven affect the overall processes and products? An analysis of the degree of similarity and variation at each step helps one keep track of their interpretation of the ideology.
Although the steps of the design process may be similar, minor differences may stem due to variations in site, programme and client. Examining the degree of differences further helps one clarify the overall intent of the design process.
The practice’s ideal project.
A client initiated project. The client is played by the tutor.
A reflection of the effect of the similarities and differences in the approach, process and outcome. As aforementioned, The projects served as a means to arrive at design processes that aid in translating a vision [ideology] into reality [building] that the practice would uphold. The studio was a unique opportunity to purview varied kinds of practices, reflect, brainstorm, and present ideas on how practice affects the architecture produced and the architect themselves.