M.ARCH Studios 2020

Following on from last week's project reviews, here some preview images of works by our Master of Architecture students. A big thank you to our four guest critics who joined us for the three-day crit marathon: Alanoud Al-Radaideh/ ACME, Killian Duyn/ Bryan O’Sullivan Studio, Emilio Koutsoftides/ Cyprus College of Art and Andy Puncher/ pH+ Architects.

We will feature selected projects in more detail in the coming weeks. In the meantime, and whilst students are working on their final portfolio submissions, here the brief summaries of the thematic agendas that were explored by the three studios.

M.ARCH Studios 2020

MIND THE GAP // An Adventure in Multi-Generational Living

"Increasingly, the old and the young seem to be living in different worlds. This is true financially, culturally and politically. The different generations appear to regard each other with mutual incomprehension. It’s a gulf that’s trapping the world in a state of impasse just when drastic action is needed to address our multiple crises: political, economic, and environmental."
Milburn, K, Generation Left, April 8, 2019

It is clear that the architecture of the ‘everyday’ and the means by which people live and interact with their fellow city dwellers, is both a progenitor and a consequence of this situation. But what if the cultural ideology of multi-generational living was embraced as a positive new modus operandi for more stimulating and more sociable living arrangements? In architectural and urbanistic terms, what opportunities might this offer, for richer neighbourhoods and a more satisfying built environment?
The studio embarked upon a collective exploration into multi-generational living and how this may be implemented as an optimistic area of focus for new development within urban ‘infill sites’.
Students explored domestic architecture, infused with other programmatic functions and interactions defined by their individual research and design inquiries and devised architectural propositions that break down social barriers, test and critique existing idea of how we live, work, learn and play as well as improve people’s lives for the better.

Studio: Paul Lloyd Johnson/ Christopher Jumbo/ Ethan Leach/ Fernanda Nascimento/ Nellie Ogbonna/ Alicia Pell/ Jeevan Govinda Rajulu/ Anna Reeves/ Shivram Singh/ Sian Taylor/ Yeny Torres Vergara/ Fatmanur Toy

Tutors: Adam Hiles & Carla Novak

SMALL WORLD // Exploring the Effects of Mass Tourism

“To be a mass tourist, for me, is to become a pure late-date American: alien, ignorant, greedy for something you cannot ever have, disappointed in a way you can never admit. It is to spoil, by way of sheer ontology, the very unspoiledness you are there to experience. It is to impose yourself on places that in all noneconomic ways would be better, realer, without you. It is, in lines and gridlock and transaction after transaction, to confront a dimension of yourself that is as inescapable as it is painful: As a tourist, you become economically significant but existentially loathsome, an insect on a dead thing.” David Foster Wallace in “Consider the Lobster and Other Essays”

Tourism, particularly for the masses, is a quintessential product of modernity. As workers gained access to free time and disposable income so appeared the urge to visit other places and consume what was once either unknown or known only from magazines and movies. This once benign and relatively circumscribed activity has arguably become the world’s biggest industry, accounting for 10.4% of the global economy and 9.9% of all jobs. Is tourism killing the city, or is it inflating new life in once ignored territories? Can it be both? Can tourism be channelled by design into a positive force, or does it need to simply be reigned-in?
The studio challenged students to have a critical and informed view on mass tourism as a historically grounded but mostly contemporary phenomenon and on what we, as architects and urban designers, can do about it. Students explored issues of economy, gentrification, conservation, mobility and technology to develop original and carefully conceived interventions - architectural in essence, but not necessarily bound by the limits of a single discipline.

Studio: Janine Antoine/ Henry Chan/ James Duffill/ Cordelia Ibinaiye/ Florence Japzon/ Jason Xzen Lee/ Hanna John Makhoul/ Luna Ozbek/ Marilyn Rey/ Abigail Shannon/ Andreas Spanos/ Oliwia Szatkowska

Tutor: Duarte Lobo Antunes

SYN City // Type, Time & Territory

"But what goes up must come down"
Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers

SYN City critically engages with the complex, often antithetical forces within the expanded field of urban transformation processes. It experiments with the hybridisation of complementary design approaches, which are conventionally separated from each other. Embracing critical and activist, formal and informal spatial practices alike, the studio amalgamates diverse design strategies, tactics and tools to support the catalysis of spatially and socially beneficial transformation processes.
Each academic year, SYN City dedicates itself to a shared territory of investigation in order to explore the dialectical and contested nature of the contemporary city. This year’s research and design agenda focused on the tower typology - the skyscraper, high-rise, or otherwise tall urban building - as a contested territory of urban and architectural production. The studio explored vertical buildings in terms of their symbolic, programmatic, structural and tectonic attributes and opportunities. Students devised spatial configurations of symbiotic relationships between diverse, sometimes conflicting functional and material systems, institutional protocols and legal and political regimes.

Studio: Theodora Aristeidou/ Zigiant El-Sarkaoui/ Bilal Hasan/ Vivina Joseph Selphy/ Anastasia Lavrova/ Grace Lung/ Bianca Marginean/ Marizu Onwu/ Cengizhan Sasmaz/ Damilola Soji-Oyawoye/ Thomas White/ Denis Lung Yau/ Nathan Youngs

Tutor: Gabor Stark

Master of Architecture (ARB/RIBA Part 2)

UCA Canterbury School of Architecture
University for the Creative Arts
New Dover Road
Canterbury, Kent