Endemic Interstices proposes a new architecture as a system with the capacity to self structure, adapt and co-evolve within the environment considering natural resources as part of a tectonic system. The development of this research evolves as a bottom up system through iterative prototypes as adaptable type of inhabitation in rich arid unbalanced territory where the shape of the landscape is a consequence of water scarcity and constant weathering.
|Endemic Interstices © PLUG-IN|
The project aims to create synthetic ecologies by harvesting the physics of natural processes not only as a design generator but also as a tool for fabricating complex formations by computation of matter. More specificaly the main driver of our thesis is a nonlinear fabrication technique that uses crack dynamics in clay soil as a locally self-computable of water evaporation. The resulted interstitial space between the separated islands under specific conditions allows for various material such as bio-cement or bio-plastics to be casted. Once the filler is cured the dried soil is removed through constant weathering, or washed out by occasional rains revealing an elegant structure.
Shrinkage mud cracks can also be indicative of a predominately sunny or shady environment. Rapid drying, which occurs in sunny environments, results in widely spaced, irregular mud cracks, while closer spaced more regular mud cracks indicates a shady formation environment.
From this wide range of crack patterns some specific ones are selected to provide different performative qualities such as structural stability, sun shading and airflow modulation relative to morphological features such as the size and density of cracks. These features are exploded through physical experiments and digital simulations. As a result different crack morphologies are articulated together into a new tectonic language.
Subsequently the research also explores deployment methods that involve no material wastage in building the scaffold. Therefore, articulated grounds and landforms are proposed to be used as scaffolds. These land formations are to be achieved through earth works strategies. Once the casting on landform is complete the underneath space is revealed through excavation protocols.
Since water management is a key element not only for construction but also for survival in arid territories, Endemic Interstices speculates further on how porous structures can harvest water from air and mist, namely, like in the traditional air wells the air travels through dark porous chambers enabling the vapors to condense on a colder surface trickling into ground reservoirs. While the main purpose is to articulate these formations to become space for inhabitation, a major part of building is designed to fulfill the purpose of water harvesting.
Apart from traditional way of occupying the landscape which predominantly emerges around the water sources, our proposal seeks to sprawl deep into the drylands. In order to pursue this strategy, individual self sustained units are linked together in a hydro-net. The main factor in the network that mitigates the relationship between units is water extraction from air and morning mist. This relation enables a balance and continuous flow of water through out the network.
Who are they?
PLUG-IN is a research group within Alisa Andrasek's design studio at the Architectural Association, London, formed by Alexandre Kuroda (Brasil), Daghan Çam (Turkey), Karoly Markos (Romania), Ulak Ha (Korea).