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Open Access Finding value in material investigation and innovation

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The manifestation of architectural ideas is reliant upon an orchestration of building materials. In an effort to investigate the reciprocity between material thinking in practice and the academy, this research project proposes an alternative to the typical methods of full-scale material engagement in design education. The premise of a materials exploration workshop seminar was to create a laboratory environment to test parameters and constraints of selected materials and processes and subsequently to use empirical feedback to uncover new and possibly innovative ways to work with these materials. Hands-on material investigations and the development of iterative making skills were key tactics used in attempting to fold material thinking into a critical process and students' future creative practice. Pedagogical objectives and findings of this methodology will be examined to determine the value of a student's direct physical engagement with building materials in bridging professional practice.
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Keywords: INVESTIGATION; MAKING; MATERIALS; PRACTICE; PROCESS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 June 2014

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