THE THIRD PLACE - Urban Machines

Tehran / Iran

International Workshop / 2014

"If one takes a thin strip of a metal such as aluminium and clamps one end and applies a bendig force to the other end, the end of the strip will deflect. Upon removal of this force, if this force is not too large, the end of the strip will spring back to its original position, and there will be no apparent permanent deformation. If a sufficiently large load is applied to the end, the end will not spring back all the way upon the removal of the load but will remain permanently deformed, and we say that plastic flow has occurred."Alexander Mendelson

The studio wants to explore the basic properties of elastoplasticity embedded in the material. The students will push the matter to the extreme, in order to understand to which extent materials cease being elastic and start plasticizing, and therefore take advantage of their behaviour at each stage.

By staying under the elastic limits, the materials offer a reversible behaviour, capable of responding to certain conditions over time and going back to its original state. In contrast, once these limits have been overtaken, materials plasticize and their morphological stays defined for good.

Students will therefore be looking at the matter in regards with elastoplastic properties, to push them forward to pursue research in optimal solutions for a systemic design.

By introducing geometrical or scale conditions, students will immediately start incorporating behavioural complexity, so as to discover the potential intrinsic properties and performance of their design research. This will open a range of strong opportunities and therefore, this will conduct them towards feasible applications on site for urban machines. For instance, any specific stimulus may get a spontaneous response from the system (elastic response), whereas if this any action is repeatedly applied, the answer of the machine may remain permanently imprinted (plastic form).

Students will start looking at the site to investigate the relationship between the intrinsic properties of the system and its possible extrinsic stimuli, in order to orient their design research towards its users and/or according to its environmental conditions.

Research will be now referring to a site, and therefore it will start pursuing a real target by engaging with its users or responding to the environment. Therefore, students will end up developing 1:1 prototypes to proof the results of their design research.

Programme Director / Omid Kamvari // Tutors / Carles Sala and Sara Sheik Akbari.