Seeking to trace the Urban Interior as a point of origin and departure for Cinema

02. 08. 21

Fort Lane, a service lane

in service of… in service too… in service for…

For this weeks studio sessions, we are beginning to uncover the material and immaterial narratives both existing and proposed within the Fort Lane Precinct. Where we can begin to consider how do these shift, transition, alter between day and night? What materialities are more prominent, consistent, or opulent in the site, and what tangible aspects are hidden, covered over or perhaps alluded too?

Within my own design intervention, how can I utilise, manipulate and respond to material sensibilities in order to activate, dispose and evoke a different kind of behaviour within the site? How could distinguished design cues invite or excite a certain kind of behaviour into the site? A new mode, method or way of utilising the terrain vague, the ambiguous space with a desire to be redefined.

Historical material narratives alluded to within the site

A captivation of exisiting site materiality, surface and texture. Brick, stucco, stone, steel and concrete display qualities of wear and tear, where characteristics of old, heritage buildings become a focal point of material interest whilst visiting the site. Rough surfaces that could be firstly perceived as material imperfections instead uphold a strong narrative that draws attention to the age and character of the site. Surface that is in-scripted, holds narrative and memory of layered inhabitation across time.

A photographic copy of Felton Mathews original plan of Auckland, 1841. The rich historic and cultural contexts leading up to the formation and development of Auckland City, and therefore Fort Lane hold an abundance of in-scripted material and surface narratives across time.

  • A tension between geometries, the initial tidal bay shorelines juxtapose against the rigid, structured grid developed road plan patterns that now make up Auckland City’s layout.
  • Orthogonal lines of the city, fixed geometries trail against curvilinear ones.
  • The site imbedded around the foreshore, a cultural exchange.
  • A reinforcing, a hardening of the shoreline edge.
  • Global forces of imperialism, colonialism as ‘overshadowing’, a transition between ownership and displacement of land.
  • The transcending dip within Fort Lane, land settled, decomposed, decompressed timbers, piles of timber whilst reclaiming the land – a refinement along surfaces.
  • An archeology of layered built environments, an almost hierarchy consisting of tall contemporary reflective, glass structures, brick and stone masonry buildings, and modernist structures.
Material Narratives Context Talk

What materials where optically present at the site? Which encapsulated a strong presence at the site whether it was through its age, character, volume, usage, structure, or even displacement within the site. A layering of textural surfaces and both natural and artificial light qualities evoke and protrude these details further. An extension of textural characteristics to invigorate ones haptic sensibilities within an environment. As a way of exploring these thoughts further I began gathering selective images of documented detailed surfaces from the Fort Lane Precinct, particularly relevant to my site locations of interest. I also took textural rubbings of these surfaces to analyse and explore deeper their unique patterns and contrasts.

Materiality, Surface, Texture, Detail

Textural rubbings of selective surfaces from the Fort Lane Precinct. A revelation of historic details of architecture, where a loosely framed edge draws attention to the age and character of the site. Converging of brick, stone, stucco and metal details.

In order to begin understanding the intent, meaning and fabrications of material and surface qualities employed within a space, I researched further into an array of art and design case studies who draw an inherent or prevalent focus towards surfaces in their works.

Exploration into Case Studies

Materiality, assembly, fabrication of process, poetics of space and relationship to site, all key components to be considered whilst engaging with surface.

Searching deeper into discovering new design precedents and their vast approaches towards utilising and evoking materials and textural qualities through consideration of surfaces. Through investigating these projects it allows for new ideations and realisations of potential explorations and ways of materialising my conceptual frameworks and interests.

Research into design precedents – Surface case studies

03. 08. 21

For todays surface design workshop, we are to create surface design models considerate of materiality, assembly and detail using investigations made from our site visits, conceptual ideas and art and design project research to prompt and inspire our ideations. As part of this quick fire design exploration workshop, I firstly gathered an array of textural materiality to play with, either found, repurposed or invented. By compiling an extensive collection of materials to work with, it allowed me greater opportunities to explore and test out any of my design hunches when spontaneously making.

As a main, considerate part of this workshop, once we had established our surface models we were to carefully and considerately photograph them. By photographing our models from various angles and with more considered perspectives it helps us to capture the immersive experience of each textural surface. Whilst photographing each of my models, I made sure to carefully take into account the lighting, shadows, contrasts and surface textures being showcased and how within the portrayal of each image.

Surface Design explorations, beginning to establish a material narrative

Establishing surface designs through model making, as a means of investigating material and immaterial narratives relative to my existing conceptual frameworks.

In momentum, in movement, in motion. Something so delicate it moves with inherit motion, responsive to human movement.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of sheer organza fabric.

Emphasis on textural qualities, details focused erratically.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of

Layered movement in motion, a blurred shift.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of silicon gripping matt.
Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of wooden sheets

A layering of curvilinear lines become an invigoration of impetus movement in motion.

Playing around with explorations of performative qualities, a layering of delicate materialities.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of tissue paper and wooden sticks.

Playing around with explorations of ethereal and performative qualities, something with inherit motion.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of sheer organza fabric and base surface.

Emphasis on textural, performative qualities, details focused erratically.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of wire and brown card paper.

Playing around with explorations of ethereal qualities, a layering of delicate materialities, direct contrasts against immediate surrounds.

Surface Model Iteration. 03/08. Materiality consists of white paper.

As a reflection after the surface design workshop, I began mapping out any revelations and further potential exploration ideas with regard to the materiality and details that I may wish to feature, incorporate, enhance and utilise within my established design intervention.

Materiality and Surface Concept Mapping

04. 08. 21

After creating an array of surface design explorations and model making, it allowed me new understandings and insights into unique ways of establishing surface, particularly with an emphasis on its textural qualities. When generating surface designs it is incredibly important that I consider how a surface will be scaled up and proportioned when utilised on a much larger area. Surfaces can be scaled up through, pattern, repetition and difference, variations or with permutations. How I wish for a surface to not only view and perceive but its effect and inhabitation within a space can heavily determine ones response or experience to it. It is crucial I carefully take into account these designed elements when thinking about materiality, surface and texture in my design intervention into the Fort Lane Precinct. From my generated models, I then started sketching out surface textures and patterns explorative to my new discoveries and surface ideations.

Surface textural explorations

Utilising a combination of my generative surface design explorations, drawings and observational site analysis, I wanted to emphasise the array of textural marks present within Fort Lane, the in-scripted material narratives that showcase the sites disposition overtime, a revelation into its many livelihoods. By experimenting with clay surface impressions it allowed me to ideate all these discoveries and test out how different patterns and materials respond to malleable surface.

A surface impression, a textural indentation, a means of mark making generated from site observation, analysis and exploration.

A further exploration into surface, material and impression of the Fort Lane site. I collectively gathered site images, frottage studies, sketches and line drawings all evolved from spatial modelling, site sequences and conceptual ideations.

Material and Surface Explorations of Fort Lane

Along with these site investigations I also wanted to experiment with photomontage and image collage generative from my photographic cinematic device explorations as a means of highlighting the expressive movement captivated at Fort Lane.

Fragments, moments, material narratives for continued exploration. How can these new explorations evolve or enhance my design proposal? What new insightful findings can be generated from them?

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