Emergent Technologies and Design
Towards a Biological Paradigm for Architecture
Published January 26th 2010 by Routledge – 256 pages
Emergence - the process by which new and coherent structures, patterns and properties ‘emerge’ from within complex systems
Traditional architecture starts from the premise that architectural structures are singular and fixed, and however well integrated are separate from their environment and context. Emergence requires that the opposite is true – that those structures are complex energy and material systems that have a lifespan, exist as part of an environment of other active systems, and develop in an evolutionary way.
This book, based on the authors’ internationally renowned Emergent Technologies and Design course at the Architectural Association in London, introduces a new approach to the practice of architecture. The authors use essays and projects to demonstrate the interrelationship of concepts such as emergence and self-organisation with the latest technologies in design, manufacturing and construction.
With projects from their course, and critiques and commentary from some of the world’s leading design theorists and practitioners, the authors of Emergent Technologies and Design have introduced a radical new way of understanding the way in which architecture is conceived, designed and produced.
Part 1: Theoretical Framework 1. Evolution and Computation 2. Material Systems, Computational Morphogenesis and Performative Capacity 3. Material Systems and Environmental Dynamics Feedback Part 2: Research 4. Fibres 5. Textiles 6. Nets 7. Lattices 8. Branches 9. Cells 10. Mass Components 11. Casts 12. Aggregates
Michael Hensel is co-founder and was co-director of the Emergent Technologies and Design Master Programme at the Architectural Association School of Architecture until 2009. He is now Professor of Research by Design at AHO – The Oslo School of Architecture and Design and board member of BIONIS – the Biomimetics Network for Industrial Sustainability.
Achim Menges is Professor and Director of the Institute for Computational Design at Stuttgart University and Studio Master of the Emergent Technologies and Design Master Programme at the Architectural Association School of Architecture.
Michael Weinstock is the Director of Research and Development at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, where he is co-founder and co-director of the Emergent Technologies and Design Master Programme.