Drawing the Immaterial: an Architecture for Uncertainty

  • Elizabeth Saleh, M.Arch. 2014
  • Hometown St. Marys, Pennsylvania
  • Class ARCH 8912 Independent Design Thesis (fall 2013)
  • Instructor Jenny Sabin
    Ramon Bosch

Static definitions of space limit the phenomenal response visible in the process of codifying space. Common methods of architectural representation eliminate the tendency to incorporate change and process. Can behavior become central to an architectural drawing?

This project sets out to untie architectural representation from its static state. Defining moment as "center of reference" and behavior as "leading subject" has enabled the drawing to transform into a tool for exploration and discovery. The drawing has become more than representation by engaging change and uncertainty. Embedding time within the codification of the built environment has resulted in drawings as unbound fields of behavioral change rather than drawings as static depictions of objects. The drawing and its subject can now be understood as endless and evolutionary.

This project demonstrates that change, possibility, and uncertainty, could all become drivers in the visualization of architectural landscapes. This active form of representation could begin to engage and inform architectures that are evolving, adapting, and unbound.

Each final drawing is composed of hundreds of smaller drawings that negotiate a calculated difference between one environment and the other. Drawing has become a tool of visual discovery through the registration of conditional shifts — a map of necessary behavioral patterns of potential adaptive architecture(s).