Writings

 

 
 
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The Air from Other Planets: A Brief History of Architecture to Come,

By Sean Lally

2014

Publisher: Lars Muller

256 pages

In The Air from Other Planets, Sean Lally introduces the reader to an architecture produced by designing the energy within our environment ( electromagnetic, thermodynamic, acoustic, and chemical ). This architecture exchanges the walls and shells we have assumed to be the only type of attainable architecture for a range of material energies that develops its own shapes, aesthetics, organizational systems, and social experiences. The book is a story in which energy emerges as more than what fills the interior of a building or reflects off its outer walls. Instead, energy becomes its own enterprise for design innovation: it becomes the architecture itself.

The Air from Other Planets is a book nostalgic for the future, rooted in the belief that the architect's greatest attributes lie not only in harnessing the latest technologies and advancements in building materials, but also in exercising our imaginations through speculation and the projections of worlds and environments yet to exist. The book shows us that some of our greatest discoveries come not from seeking something new but from re-examining what we already have around us.

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‘Let’s Touch’ Volume #46

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Energies:New Material Boundaries: Architectural Design

Editor Sean Lally

At present, material energies – that is thermal variation, air velocity, spectrums of light and electricity – remain a largely untapped source of innovation and inspiration for architects. Commonly relegated to the production of ambience - ‘moods’ or ‘effects’ - energies tend to be explored, in a design context, as little more than metaphor or poetics. Alternatively, they are regarded wholly as a resource for providing preconceived, rule-of-thumb interior comfort zones or as a set of measurables for determining ‘energy efficient’ buildings. Energies looks at ways of elevating these materials from their dependence on surfaces and services and in so doing, deploying them as building materials in themselves; thus redefining our physical boundaries through a wholly new means of spatial organisation. 

  • The publication propels the sustainability debate forward by making ‘material energies’ the catalyst for experimental design.
  • The issue deals with a wide range of scales of design, from architecture to building design and that of landscape and urban planning
  • Contributors include Michelle Addington, Petra Blaisse, Penelope Dean, Helene Furjan, An Te Liu, Zbigniew Oksiuta, Philippe Rahm and Weathers.
 
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Softspace: From a Representation of Form to a Simulation of Space

Edited by Sean Lally & Jessica Young

This well-illustrated book unites essayists and emerging architectural practices to examine how digital tools are increasingly being used in architectural design, not only to show form, structure and geometries but also to visualize and simulate energies and material qualities such as air, gas, sound, scent and electricity.

Softspace takes stock of current advancements in design and research, while drawing on historical and ideological trajectories rooted in the past fifty years. The varied contributors examine the capabilities of such 'energy matters' to act as catalysts for design innovation today.

This well-presented and impressively authored title will provoke architects of all levels to consider the potential for creative and innovative design through the use of digital design tools.