Sem 06 | Technology

Detail Studies & Construction Documentation

This module focused on Detail Studies. Architecture comes together through materiality and detailing to articulate form, and space experience drives the thinking methodology for this project. It is the process from scribbles on paper toward articulating an idea to the actualisation of the built form on the site, the dialogue with materials and details to curate the experience carefully. This skilful poetic making transcends the mechanical and technical articulation overtly. This studio further supported the practical and poetic understanding of detailing, building technologies, processes and materials.

Three processes were articulated to enter the studio - Detail of Design which negotiated the dialogue between the junction of volumes and spaces and between systems, geometries and materiality—further moving to Design of Detail to formulate assemblies and details, materiality and geometry, and surface articulation. Moving finally to order and put the system together to develop construction documentation drawings. 

The module introduces material processes and articulations for concrete, steel, brick, bamboo, and timber. Material studies pointed towards how material properties guide development of form and geometry. The focus here was to discuss specific experiments with building materials, their processes and articulations on site. The class discussed works of Peter Rich, Louis I Kahn, Tadao Ando, Carlos Scarpa; each of their works demonstrated a different method of engaging with material processes and the act of detailing. While some projects went from the smallest detail to then manifest the complete form, while some other projects were worked out from form to detail. With this orientation, the students began with their explorations for the design school on site.

Carlos Scarpa's work of details inspired the students to work through a series of sketches detailing every element of their building, from the handrail to baluster, to the door handle, to material interfaces. While some struggled to stitch the details into a larger picture, others started handling the programme and the spatial volumes on-site to work out their interface and junctions. Each material opened up possibilities of various assembly systems, thus exploring new experiences.

Once the students began to work with the program requirements, they articulated the working relationships with the areas and desirable volumes, which was explored through volumetric explorations & iterations.

The Design Development stage aimed to articulate the sequencing of building processes (verification processes), all plans, sections, elevations & anchor details to achieve the design statement's spatial intent.

One of the module's significant outputs was the production of the Construction Documentation Set and learning to communicate on the site via drawings. This involved all basic drawings, detailed drawings, cross-referencing, sectional details, and elevations and finishing schedules.

The design detailing was revisited at various points in the process to articulate systems & assemblies. This involved close analysis of the junctions in question and rearticulating the material and systems (strength of materials, behaviour with weather and climate, material response to socio-economic context).

The studio saw some interesting movement from sketches to a detailed understanding and translation into a set of communication drawings. The material became the guiding and unifying factor for the design development and construction of the drawing. Thus, the module articulated a cohesive method of design thinking through the material and hence the form and geometry, further generating a unifying language and experience for the project.