Saturday, September 24, 2011

Barcelona: Day 30 : Real Studio ?

Today was the first day that we had an actual real session of studio. You know, something typical and normal, as opposed to completely out of the ordinary. I was beginning to wonder if we would even have normal studios. They hadn't asked for much today, they just wanted to sort of begin a type of understanding of mapping and some general decisions based on our particular space.

Ryan and I had the 'across' block to work with, whose main feature is a triple set of railroad tracks that divide the block almost down the middle. We learned about this specific way of laying out our maps, and basically we need to have a scale, frame, parameters, and coding. It's a lot more confusing than it sounds, and I've never really been good at diagramming things either, which makes for a difficult portion of the process.

It's kind of funny because Ryan and I are the same in that respect -- once we have the idea and have the project ready to start the design process, we are fine. However when it comes to analyzing the space and getting familiar with the different areas via mapping, it's not so easy. I've been able to explain things really well to teachers, about analysis and what I want to do with the space, but the problem is that you are supposed to be able to exemplify these ideas and put them into diagrams. I've always struggled in that regard.

Our professor told us that we really needed to get back out to the site and decide on an interest; something that will pique what we want to do, something that will not only inspire our design but create a need for a design. We eventually decided that we wanted to do something of an urban boardwalk, with inspirations coming from the High Line Park in New York City. It will be a connector of sorts, between Centre City and the Port Olimpíc area by the Mapfre Tower. We only have one block of the entire path that we would fully design, but could foresee the connector going from Plaça de los Glories to the tourist area of the beach and the Olympic area that was designed for the 1992 Olympics.

Upon walking around some other blocks in the area, it seemed that our block was a bit of an orange amidst apples. All the other blocks have small eateries and a much more open feeling. Our block is almost guarded entirely by fence, and while some of the buildings may have commercial or residential uses (and I mean, minimal, like 2 places to eat around the entire block) it seems that the main use is industrial. All of the other blocks in the area have a neighborhood feel to them, and there is even a student residency nearby. These places make an effort to set up public space, whereas the things on our block were clearly just thrown there in apathy. One bench in a concrete block is not a public space.

So, hopefully we now have a better handle on what we want to do and how we want to do it. Even more so, hopefully Jordi (our professor) will be able to understand what we want to do and back us up on it. Only one way to tell -- we have studio again on Monday.

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