This summer started with a trip to the desert and was promptly followed by four productive months of working with x-lines and x-refs in 2d and push/pulls in 3d. At the office I have worked on a variety of projects, a single family home, a remodel of a house, a few 14-20something unit apartments, two small-lot subdivision buildings (5 and 6 unit), and an office building. While working on them I was exposed to all the phases of architectural services, from schematic-design development-construction drawings.
Sciarc starts next week and I’m ready for thesis. For design inspiration my friend Harold and I went back to the desert over the weekend. The Joshua Tree desert landscape is vast with clusters of welcoming rock formations. Because of its apparent openness, the systems that give the desert life are visible if you look twice. The ways created by water on the boulders over thousands of years are not only observable; they were our paths of escape/circulation in risky situations. And the effects of the nearby San Andrea fault lines are visually dramatic.
Native Americans often used this land; it was amusing to look for zones where we could imagine humans and cities inserted into the cave-like spaces created by the formations. There were huge cantilevering rocks overlooking cliffs, very flat hang-out areas at different altitudes, “pods” to rest in, alleys, welcoming wells, constant-blasting cool winds, and mazes all easily accessible to us and the animals that live there.
The landscape reveals how its eco-system forms it, and all the living beings there live by the rules of those systems, all working hard to survive in a place of extreme weather and ruled by the sun. My summer began in the desert and ended in the oasis.