Brick has positioned itself as one of the materials that characterise and identify Argentinean and Latin American architectural culture. The diversity and versatility of masonry in our region have given rise to great heterogeneity in its uses and applications: structural walls, partitions, enclosures, screens, envelopes, skins, roofs, vaults, domes and floors allow us to visualise the great adaptability of this material in order to adapt to the particular requirements of each project.
The Apollo 11 Mission, departed Earth on July 16, 1969, and touched down on the moon 4 days later. This moment marked a milestone for humanity and, to this day, makes us reflect on how technological progress is bringing us ever closer to life beyond planet Earth.
With the help of 3D printers, highly developed and fully automated constructive technology, we have compiled a selection of 15 architectural projects that demonstrate that life on the moon and beyond is closer than we've ever imagined.
Leonmarcial's Installation at the Venice Biennale 2021 Celebrates the Dialogue Between Architecture and the Environment
Peruvian architectural firm leonmarcial arquitectos has been invited to take part of the 17th Venice Architecture Biennale with an installation at the Arsenale as part of the "As New Households” exhibition space. Titled Interwoven, the installation encourages the action of sharing and celebrates the exchange between homes and their environments through architecture.
The automation of architectural design and rendering has been further accelerated by digital production tools. Tools such as 3D printers, assembly robots, and laser cutters, have all but perfected the design and construction process and have proven essential in optimizing resources, improving precision, and increasing control of the process.
In woodworking, the most frequently used digital production tools are milling machines or CNC (computer numerical control) routers. These tools facilitate the rendering of 2D vectoral drawings and 3D models, codifying them into instructions for the machine to follow and execute. Through this process, which starts with digital archives (typically created using design software widely known as AutoCad), milling machines and CNC routers can rapidly and precisely cut wood, producing ready to assemble pieces.
Capturing aerial photographs allows raising awareness of a project feature usually complex to capture using traditional methods. Based on the technological opportunities offered by small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly called drones, architecture photographers have begun to explore new ways of capturing a project in order to expose design decisions such as implantation, dialogue with the environment, or the relationship with nearby buildings.
Whether applied as cladding to steel or timber frame structures or to structures built by traditional means, sheet metal offers an array of advantages as a building material, thanks to its low cost, ease of maintenance, and versatility.
Can architecture foster better relationships between people, creating an equalized and respectful use of space? Can tools be designed that strengthen the bonds between humans and objects? BAAG (Buenos Aires Arquitectura Grupal) studio explores the architectural elements that mediate between people and objects, the natural and artificial, public and private, individual and collective, and humans and other living things.
How does systemic thinking and generative design contribute to new forms of convivence? Can they become tools to connect tradition and identity in a modern way? Can they help to design customizable architectural strategies that offer locally accessible solutions? Can they contribute to the creation of dignified spatial experiences that can be replicated on a mass scale?
The Peruvian Pavilion in the 2021 Venice Biennale Seeks to Transform Fences into Tools for Integration
“Playground: Artifacts for Interaction”, by curator Felipe Ferrer, aims to transform the fences surrounding Peru's public spaces into tools for social integration. The project proposes removing the gates enclosing public spaces throughout Lima and Peru's other urban centers, inviting residents to freely enter and interact with the spaces. By removing these "security" mechanisms, which really serve as tools of segregation, and installing benches, playgrounds, and soccer fields, the project aims to divert all the energy, time, and resources put into installing fences and channel it into bringing new life to these public spaces.
As Francis D. K. Ching explains in his book Architectural Graphics, unlike the traditional, two-dimensional orthographic drawings used to represent layouts, sections, and floorplans, which only allow a project to be glimpsed through a series of fragmented images, axonometries, or axonometric projections, offer unique, simultaneous three-dimensional views of a project with all the depth and spatiality of tried and true technical illustrations.
At first glance, building a pool right beside another body of water seems a little redundant. After all, why would someone choose to swim in a pool when they have a river or ocean to enjoy? However, for people with limited mobility and younger more inexperienced swimmers, natural bodies of water can prove both daunting and dangerous. Pools not only provide a controlled, secure space for them to enjoy aquatic activities, they also provide a connection with the surrounding landscape.
In his book “The New Brutalism in Architecture: Ethical or Aesthetic?,” Reyner Banham establishes what he deems the semantic roots of the term 'Brutalism,' explaining that it comes from one of the " indisputable turning points in architecture, the construction of Le Corbusier's concrete masterpiece, la Unité d'habitation de Marseille. It was Corbusier's own word for raw or rough-cast concrete, "Béton brut," that made Brutalism a mainstay in architectural jargon and, in many ways, the term, as well as the architecture it described, flourished." In the book, Banham highlights the historical milestone marked by Corbusier's Unite d' Habitation and the socio-political context that shaped it. In steel-starved post-World War II Europe, exposed concrete became the go-to building material within the burgeoning Brutalist movement, which quickly defined itself by its bare-bone, rugged surfaces and dramatic, geometric shapes.
Historically, "cyclopean" referred to a building technique that superimposed large stone blocks together without any mortar. This allowed for a diverse array of structures across various civilizations, including defensive walls, talayots, navetas, nuraghes, temples, tombs, and forts. Nowadays, the term applies to any ancient structure consisting of large stones superimposed to form a polygonal shape.
A vault is a constructive technique that is achieved by compressing the materials forming it together. While this technique has existed since the time of the ancient Romans, certain types of vaulted ceilings, such as the Catalan or Valencian timbral vault, only reached popularity in some areas of the world at the start of the 19th century thanks to their lost cost and ready availability. With the ability to span over 30 meters and add substantial height to structures, vaulted ceilings became a go-to for the construction of industrial spaces such as workshops, factories, and warehouses.
Whether made from natural or synthetic fibers, textiles have played a part in architectural design since time immemorial; however, it wasn't until the era of industrialization and advancements in technology that high-quality textiles could be made and utilized en masse. Most often, they have been used to enclose temporary structures like medical tents and emergency housing thanks to their mobility and ease of assembly.
"The Infinite House": The Argentine Pavilion in the 2021 Venice Biennale Explores Public and Collective Housing
Developed by architect Gerardo Caballero, in collaboration with Paola Gallino, Sebastian Flosi, Franco Brachetta, Ana Babaya, Leonardo Rota, Emmanuel Leggeri, Sofia Rothman, Gerardo Bordi, Edgardo Torres, and Alessandro De Paoli, "The Infinite House", a project inspired by traditional Argentine houses, will represent Argentina in the upcoming 2021 Venice Architecture Biennale. The project reflects on the identity of Argentine public housing and the role collective housing, both public and private, has played in the country's history and society. The Infinite House aims to push the limits of the domestic and to highlight the importance of the collective rather than the individual by illustrating that a home extends beyond one's own living space: "it is the city, the country, and even the world."
2020 and the Covid-19 pandemic forced architectural students around the world to go virtual with their classes and coursework, transforming the way architecture was both taught and learned. Once based primarily on in-class participation, and collaboration, architectural workshops had to take on whole new methods of instruction. Conversations and debates between students and their instructors, a key element of architectural education were relegated to phone and video calls as well as written documents, making digital formatting an essential tool for students to share their ideas and receive feedback on their work.
The distribution of natural light, improved ventilation, and the propensity to connect living spaces with the outdoors while maintaining the privacy of the inhabitants have made courtyards a go-to in architectural design around the world over the centuries.
Courtyards are characterized as outdoor or semi-outdoor spaces that are enclosed within the walls of a house or building.