So our discussion forum had a new visitor today who brought with her the perfect antidote for the identity crisis (!) that we had been suffering from in recent times.
Arthi provided us a glimpse of her Thesis Project which had its roots in Kinetic Architecture – the evolving branch of architecture that deals with physical transformation of buildings with an objective to redefine traditional methods of design.
Aarathi began by talking about the growing tendency of our cities to turn into concrete jungles, as the high-rises that serve various purposes during the daytime turn non-functional during the evenings, they turn into sleeping structures that serve no purpose but occupy precious space.
This brings us to the need for architecture that would be customized to functions and can be transformed as the function changes.
What if a building could be an office during the daytime and an amphitheater or an exhibition space by the night?
To experiment on her concept, she chose to implement her ideas into design of The Lamborghini Headquarters on a site located in Dubai.
She envisaged cubical volumes that would serve as modules which would move along all three axes and continually transform to match the various functions as required. . The volumes that would form the modules can be arranged in relation to each other in three dimensional spaces in a variety of permutations and combination. The volumes could be brought together to form a large exhibition space or stacked to form an office space. They would shrink by evening to form a landscape feature or a playground.
In harsher climates, she suggests a thermal cover over the entire kinetic modules which would again be collapsible or transformable into an element that would perform a different function.
While the entire idea appears fantastical, the future might just hold something within its fold. What began with Fuller and developed through Calatrava is finding fulfillment through groups such as Archigram. One lives in an age when one is not surprised to hear of buildings, parts of which rotate to obtain the best orientation through the day.
While Aarathi was thoroughly grilled by our detail-loving, wonderfully rational and curious members, the concept was a spark that I hope would stay and perhaps inspire us to think beyond that which we know is possible , for like Ar.Karan Grover mentioned –
We are only as good as our imaginations.