|Bildnerisches Gestalten I-IV, 1./2. Jahr, Prof. Peter Jenny|
The Phenomenon of Colour, Light and Integration
The subject of the first semester is visual phenomena.
Components of design such as line, tool and trace, form and form transfer, visual space and medial breaks are the focal points of the exploration.
The second semester is devoted to research into colours and their relationships. Colour in comics, colour con-trasts, colour in space, colour in architecture, colour in nature, colour in the different visual media are the main subjects of the exercises.
The third semester establishes connections between the image, clothing, sculpture and architecture. The different forms of expression enter into a ‘communicative’ relationship. An attempt will be made to create an integral manifestation of the third semester by means of performances, slide projections and acoustic elements. The students and media are parts of the visual process.
The fourth semester is essentially the integration semes-ter. Visual design is directly related to the problems of design and construction. By means of sketches and visual drafts, a building site and an architectural task will be explored in such a way that the single visual steps acquire the character of a model for the design task.
The chair of visual design is primarily devoted to basic instruction. Research activities include, among other subjects, investigations into visual perception, visual design and visual communication. These activities are documented in a series of publications.
In addition to basic research, the application of phenomena in spatial contexts is the focal point of the research, in which the mutual interaction between the image and space is the primary theme.
Research Project: Landesplattenberg Slate Quarry
Landesplattenberg in Engi, Canton Glarus, is the site of a disused underground slate quarry. Its network of tunnels forms a unique structure of high, amorphous, cathedral-like chambers hewn into the mountain at oblique angles to the layers of slate. The quarry consists of an interior space with the character of a landscape composed of slabs of slate.
It is absolutely dark in these grey, light-absorbing caverns, with a total absence of penetrating natural daylight except at the mouth of the quarry. A number of research activities have been carried out in the quarry.
Light Studies in the Mountain
Subjected to a number of different types and qualities of light, the huge caverns and kilometre-long tunnels provide an exemplary means of exploring changes in spatial perception and represent a useful supplement to the perception studies studios.
The goal of the studies is the acquisition of creative competence in design with light on the basis of complexly structured space.
In addition to furnishing familiarity with different kinds of light and lighting methods, the experiments provide information about the use of light as an aid to orientation in space, and about types of lighting which can reinforce spatial perception. The lighting changes the legibility of spatial structure. The spatial atmosphere changes with different stagings based upon light-dramaturgic scenarios (for example, theatre lighting concepts). (Instruction relating to information gathered in the quarry is being discussed.)
Space and Volume
In addition to experiments on the site, design activities are aided by photomontage (photo shop), a constructed model and/or a computer model (form Z).
The goal is the acquisition of creative competence in design on the basis of interventions in complexly structured space. The strong form of this space calls for a complementary response to the existing conditions: the special spatial structure is emphasised by creative interventions (sculptures, space-descriptive objects) which enhance spatial perception.
Colour recipes for the interior areas are developed using a number of binding agents. The goal is the development of an aid to design using locally identifiable pigments, as well as the acquisition of knowledge about the use of slate as a pigment.
An Industrial Monument
The experiments provide some very useful insights into possible architectural uses of important witnesses to the changing economy of our alpine regions, including the development of concepts favourable to various utilisation projects (a museum, a perception instruction trail, a monument to industry and social history, an event venue). These concepts show that it is possible to open up the site to tourism on a long term basis.
Further Research Projects
– Colour as a subject of architectural design
Man and his Visual Traces
– Notes on drawing technique (published in book form in 1999)
– Notes on figuration to be published in book form in 2000)
– Learning from (to be published in book form in 2001)
A Collapsible Framework as a Lighting Structure
The starting point of this project is the possibility of converting a rigid framework into a flexible mechanism by means of the elimination of specific individual connections. A filigree lighting system is created by equipping the points of intersection with lamp holders fed with low voltage current via supply rods. The rods and their intersection points thus constitute a minimal construction of dish-shaped, star-shaped or mutually interlocking bodies according to the basic geometry of the framework.
The first prototypes of these lamps have contributed to the festive atmosphere of ETH Day for several years now. The current project involves the use of the potential of this lighting concept, and the experience of the aesthetic effect of various lamps in different spatial situations (for example, churches). The technical specifications are intended to develop a kit-of-parts-like system in which the different types of lamps (of varying size, structure and density) can be compiled.
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