Month: May 2017

A Big Change in My Project

So from the first jury until now, my project has gone through a big change, not only the layout of my design, but also the references I took is different, maybe some might be still the same. The second prejury was one which I was not used to, however it was very similar with blogging and designing a portfolio. Let me briefly tell what I have done so far.

My design started with referring to traditional Chinese courtyard houses and Saltzman House. As stated by Lui and Awotona, Chinese courtyard houses were the “ideal model” and it protected inhabitants from outside forces such as harsh weather conditions and wild animals (n.d., p. 5-6).

The designer of Saltzman House, Richard Meier, was more sculptural in his manipulation of solid and void. Relating to his architectural design language, the spaces in Saltzman House are created with the subtraction of volumes (Roth L.&Roth C, 2016).

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Aggregating the idea behind Chinese courtyard houses and the method Meier used to create spaces formed my design, so rather than creating courtyards which are defined by spaces and walls for protection, I subtracted rectangular parallelepiped from the ground and placed the spaces in it to create a safe zone. This way because it was under the ground level, the outside forces were minimized.

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One other special feature is, courtyards were interconnecting the spaces and there was linear orientation. So, in my design, there also was a dominant linearity and spaces were connected with the help of courtyards which each had its own special quality.

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Through the process, introducing an environment became a necessity, and I presented a sub-urban area. The sub-urban area is expanded into a forest nearby and my design is located in that forest near by a slightly sloped hill. A road passes 40 metres away from the South-West of the house.There are houses 100-150 metres away around the house. There is a similiar weather condition of mediterranean climate .

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 To discover the relationship in-between nature and man-made, I analysed Frank Wright Lloyd’s Waterfall House. Lloyd designed something very unique and placed a house right on top of the waterfall, because he strongly supported that the house must become the part of the landscape and the nature. There should be a direct access to the waterfall and the sound of the waterfall should echo in the house. (Cole, n.d., p.72).

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Refering what has been done in Waterfall House, one other source I looked was the Atrium House by Erkut Şahinbaş. In Atrium House, the courtyard is leveled down towards the sea. The spaces, including the courtyard, are smoothed with different levels and this helped man-made and nature to become a whole (Vitra, 2016, p. 38).

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Because there was a quite distance in between the spaces and the vegetation, to empower relations in between nature, man-made and inhabitant, I gradually elevated my spaces and they started to get closer to the ground level. Some were elevated until it become to the same level with the ground and some were placed on top of artificial grounds and, courtyards were opening to the surrounding environment. Therefor, I took reference from Atrium House, the method used to engage the nature and man-made by elevating spaces smoothly. I also took reference from Waterfall House, the way it opened directly to the water, in a similar sense, the way my courtyards open to the surrounding area, the forest.

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References taken from BB House by BAK Architects and Balancing Barn by MVRDV is forming the sloped hill and integrating the hill with man-made structure and nature. The sloped hill is designed by taking reference of BB House’s sloped site. In BB House, spaces are gently inserted into the hill (Jodidio, 2015, p.126). The hill creates a smooth transition between spaces and helps the spaces to become a whole with its surrounding. So, the hill in my design has similar gradient, however the site is mirror imaged to make connections with Balancing Barn. As in Atrium House, slope provides smooth transition and it helps to connect the spaces on the hill and on the ground levels. Balancing Barn has half of the structure long cantilever which floats on the air (Bradbury, 2012, p.28). Interpreting from the research, as one walks along the house, he experiences nature first at ground level and ultimately at tree height. The linear structure provides the stage for a changing outdoor experience. Balancing Barn is adapted to my design, therefor the inhabitant first, experiences views from different ground levels and eventually he experiences a view from the tree height.

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Reference taken from Casa Ventura by Tatiana Bilbao is related with the spatial order. The slope helps to differentiate shared and individual used spaces. At the very lower levels, shared spaces are placed. The spaces for an individual use is placed on higher levels.

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Luis Barragan’s Plaza y Fuente del Bebedero is famous with its tall white walls which define courtyards and frame views (O’Leary, 1997, p.162). Taking reference from the method he used, I engaged my spaces to the surrounding nature.

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Workshop at Kaktüs Smooties & More

Few weeks ago, a friend of mine from Bilkent University called and invited me to one of the workshops they arranged as Bilkent Gastronomy Society. I went to Kaktüs make three types of smoothies and energy balls. I like the smoothie with celery flavored one the best. I enjoyed the time I spent there very much, and I wanted to share it with you.

A small note: Nobody liked the smoothie with celery and cucumbers, I guess it was cucumber, but you should give it a try.  Also, don’t miss the delicious energy balls. They are like a piece of chocolate, heaven.

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This was the only picture we took as a group.