This class will investigate techniques in GIS for visualizing spatial data as instrumental geometry for design. We will explore these techniques within the conceptual framework of “territory.” No experience in GIS is required, however familiarity with Rhino and Max is suggested.
Territory, in the historic sense, suggests the establishment, management, and documentation of political or administrative geographies; the quintessential representation of which has been, and continues to be, the map. In the context of contemporary architectural design, however, territory suggests a constructed condition that articulates the reciprocal spatial relationships between politics, environment, landscape, information, and architecture that define a site.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is the primary digital platform for documenting these relationships through spatial mapping. But GIS can also be used as a powerful tool for design by creating instrumental geometry embedded with socio-geographic meaning that can qualify conditions of territory beyond what mapping alone can afford. The products of GIS can therefore be descriptive and analytical representations of a site that simultaneously perform as generative manifolds for the creation of architecture indelibly connected to place.
This class will use GIS as the primary computational platform for collecting, creating, interpreting, and representing 2D and 3D geographic data in service of articulating spatial territories of a site for design. The class is structured as an exploration of successive territorial-topological dialectics including but not limited to: polygon areal-assemblages, volumetric-vertical compositions, point-density mapping, raster surface-topography, vector surface contouring, and point/line-network tracings.
-Instructor: Brian Brush, GSAPP