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FLATTENING HIGHRISE

Part of the thesis Proximity, Interaction, Evolution

Using a shared housing space as a vehicle, I first designed this space to challenge our system of sight, and force us to experience our surroundings in a different way.  This space is situated in the canyon of a vast mountain range.  The top of the unit, the most private space, has louvers that block your sight upwards, forcing you to look down at the canyon.  As you move down in the space, these louvers become farther spaced, allowing you to see more and more of the canyon.  Finally, the bottom floor is glass, with a hammock suspended over it.  The intent is to lay on the hammock, and take as much time as you need see every detail of the canyon itself, breaking the systems we are accustomed to, unveiling new wonders. The flattening high rise forces us to disrupt our own systems.  When our eyes look onto a vast landscape, or detailed scene, our brain filters out some details and simplifies what we see.  It fills in the blanks of details we can not perceive. This is because seeing the entire picture, in every detail, would be too overwhelming.  Sometimes by seeing everything, you can not understand anything.  So the evolution of our sight has changed our perception of spaces around us.  

 

This design forces us to relearn how to perceive our surroundings.  As you look up, your view is broken, to encourage a downward gaze.  The views widen as your gaze lowers.  The lowest level is a large, indoor hammock, suspended above a glass bottom.  This allows you to lay, and look downward at the amazing, living systems that inhabit the valley, systems we do not usually view.  

 

As the design forces you to look differently, hidden systems become uncovered.  These overlapping systems, of which there are infinite, can be uncovered, observed, and learned from.  When we see our surroundings differently, we begin to understand the spaces we inhabit in a different way.  Then, and only then, is it possible for us to create spaces that can accommodate our systems, and the living systems we are sharing space with, in some far away dimension.