Spring 2016 | Prof. Victor Deupi | Individual
The final design for these courtyards of Knox College, located at the University of Toronto in Canada, began like any other. Yet, the design quickly evolved into a semester of incredible growth and process. The initial phase of this unique design project required the studying of a classical enclosed space of architecture. The piece that I chose was the New Sacristy of San Lorenzo, located in Florence, Italy. The incredible and artistic chamber was masterfully designed by the great Michelangelo. After learning several techniques of hierarchy and connection, I proceeded to the next phase of the process.
This piece was centered around the study of a new precedent, this time a gothic one. Vladislav Hall, located in the Czech Republic, has a complex geometric pattern molded on its ceiling. Intense work was taken to uncover the pattern, in addition to understanding the way the gothic arches create the enclosure. Then to further comprehend the entire precedent, a distortion of the space was studied. I decided to emphasize the intense perspective of the hall by narrowing the end of the space. However, I also raised the narrowed end of the distortion to create a unique and interesting space. Once this design distortion was complete, the following phase of the project began.
Numerous hanging models were built to gain even more knowledge about creating enclosures. Growth felt like a fitting source of inspiration after coming this far in the process. Therefore, the final hanging model designed was a triangular plate suspended by a single string that branched out from its source into many more, much like the growth of a tree. The ultimate challenge was to take these numerous and complex pieces of the initial design process, and apply them back to the courtyards of Knox College.
The final design took shape by combining everything studied up to this point. The main facade and gazebo of the southern courtyard were born from the classical inspiration. The geometric pattern and distortion of the gothic precedent was morphed with the branching tree, hanging model to develop the enclosure of the northern courtyard. This space creates a modern architectural forest for the students to enjoy. The end result is a design that is entirely unique in its process, architecture, and growth.