Computation Lectures

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The Spring 2018 Series:
Affective Bodies & Sentient Matter 

Organized by PhD student Athina Papadopoulou with Professor Terry Knight. 

In recent years, proponents of virtual reality technologies have been advocating for immersive digital spaces, distancing architectural discourse from the embodied experience of physical matter. While architecture is gracefully embracing its disintegration into virtuality, advances in material sciences, biology, and robotics are expanding the possibilities of physical reality by creating materials with new sensing and morphing capabilities. Such advances challenge the ways we conceive our sensory interactions with materials, as they allow materials to interface with our physiology and psychology in redefined ways. The Affective Bodies and Sentient Matter Lecture Series explores the role of this enriched physical materiality and the opportunities it offers for design and architecture.

Feb 23, 2018 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

When it comes to perceiving the built environment, a static model of vision has been the principal organizing modality. In this paper I return to some prior historical articulations of the significance of motility in perception across art history, architectural theory, and the history of physiology. Experimental discoveries by Mach, Breuer and others in the 1870s for example connected sensory subsystems dealing with balance and orientation to eye movements, offering an alternative to the ‘retinal’ or static model of vision.

Mar 9, 2018 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Our history has many variations on what counts as materiality. I will begin with looking at several high points, including Democritus's atoms, presumably inexperiencable; modern science's transformations of atoms, now manipulatable; Marxism's Dialectical materialism; and finally Postphenomenology's experiencable materiality. I will draw from long work in design, art, and technoscience.

Mar 16, 2018 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

What if our environment could detect our physical movement and emotional states, and respond accordingly? This presentation addresses interactive material interfaces that respond to the behavior of the human body and its emotions through the implementation of emerging technologies. It is illustrated by a series of projects that cover a range of different scales from an intimate scale and the world of fashion and wearable computing, through to an architectural scale and the world of interactive architecture.