AA Athens | AA Istanbul Visiting Schools 2012


Istanbul Technical University Faculty Of Architecture
Connected Tower, 24-30 March 2012

The second edition of AA Istanbul Visiting School 2012, “Connected Tower”, in collaboration with Istanbul Technical University (ITU), will act as a continuation and augmentation of its first version, “Crafted Tower”. The school will amplify the concept of verticality in a city which is continuously being populated by towers, altering its skyline and urban fabric.

“Connected Tower” will tackle the challenge of radically decomposing the tower in order to liberate it from its current fixed typology dominated by the repetition and segmentation. Istanbul presents itself as a crucial model in this challenge, due to the increasing high-rise construction during recent years in specific parts of the city. Therefore, taking the existing architectural characteristics of the high-rise buildings and their urban implications in Istanbul, “Connected Tower” aims to set the tower free from its existing binary axioms – building and city, circulation and habitation, structure and skin.  The tower here becomes an extreme testing ground where it can evolve from being a solitary type to a novel vertical system described with the qualities of adaptation, integration, and fluidity. The design process highlights learning from the integrated nature of biological systems in order to infuse vertical systems with adaptive, multi-functional qualities. The generation of differentiated verticality is carried out by algorithmic design processes in various computation platforms. The creations in the digital world are tested and realized with digital fabrication processes involving various CNC methods, leading to the production of physical prototypes of various scales. In relation with the agenda, a series of lectures by leading academics and professionals will be organized as part of the public events of the School.

The extreme spatial dimension of verticality will be put to the test through an online platform linking the workshop with another AA Visiting School, AA Athens, which is taking horizontality as its agenda. Participants are encouraged to join both workshops in order to experience the transition between the two architectural limits.

The workshop is open to architecture and design students and professionals worldwide. Fee discounts will be offered including early applications, group applications, and for those interested in taking part in the Visiting Schools in both Athens and Istanbul.

The deadline for applications is 10 March 2012. All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required. After payment of fees, the AA can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop. A portfolio or CV is not required, only the online application form and payment.

Further information:


Applications can be submitted to: visitingschool@aaschool.ac.uk

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Programme Director
Elif Erdine

Visiting School Director

Christopher Pierce

Visiting School Coordinator

Karina Joseph

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

Cite: "AA Athens | AA Istanbul Visiting Schools 2012" 08 Dec 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 23 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=190762>
  • loos

    why would anyone promote towers in a 6 storey city? if anything, the city needs to explore how to integrate dense, mix use horizontal developments to its current fabric. why does this course specifically deal with istanbul? it seems such a generic approach to architecture anyways, that its focus can easily be another fast developing city like sao paulo or mexico city..

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  • Hugh

    I’m sorry, I’ll say it..
    Why is it that these schools like the AA don’t teach architecture students something that is actually useful?

    They come out after spending 4-5 years and tens of thousands of dollars (or pounds) without the slightest idea of what they should do/know. I can actually say this based on a personal experience.

    It’s sad to see what the business of architecture schools has come to be in some cases..

    Does anyone feel the same about this?..

    • dimi

      It is easy to find all the answers if you understand how these schools-businesses work. Behind everything is how they can axpand and get more money. They have to be provocative, to deal with trendy issues and the same time to look sophisticated. The aa visiting school is a very “cheap” way to expand in the global market and the same time a very colonial one. Greece and Turkey were always 2 very good markets for these kind of schools. It is impressive that so many people from these generally poor countries decide to spend so much money for a prestigious diploma when their local markets are not able to afford it and use that “knowledge”.

      • Guido

        Thinking architects are not always interested in dogmatic or moralist agendas that “aim to blend in” That is why these visiting schools are so popular, because there are and should be alternatives. It is easy to poke holes at academic endeavors when you are busy being a cad monkey, building generic things which stand for nothing, and take no risk.

        While I don’t necessarily agree with the designed outcome, I think it is ignorant to label it as ‘unarchitectural’

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  • Dimitris

    LOL, you know what’s really funny..in athens AA’s visiting school, will use equipment(CNC,3d-printing, laser-cut) that even students of the university are not allowed to use in their undergraduate studies. They can use this modelling workshops only for their diploma thesis(and after a lot of arrangements and refusals), because of so-called staff and money shortages. While there is a discount for AA currently enrolled students, greek apllicants(even from NTUA) have no such special treatment. Hopefully, the visiting school will pay rent for using a public university’s spaces and facilities, otherwise i can’t see what the visiting school has to offer to NTUA’s students

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