Doctor of Philosophy with a Major in Architecture

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 13
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    Tectonic memoirs: the epistemological parameters of tectonic theories of architecture
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2010-04-06) Rizzuto, Anthony P.
    The purpose of architectural theory is to provide a paradigm, or episteme, from which one can address contemporary design issues within the broader cultural context. It comprises any written system of architecture and may be either partial or comprehensive, but it must encompass a framework of cognitive categories that inevitably provide criteria for judgment. If not explicitly stated, it nevertheless implies an epistemology, a substructure for architectural knowledge. Previous studies of tectonics have tended to treat it as an autonomous architectural discourse, focusing on an individual writer and theory, or on a thematic concern such as the relationship between ontology and representation. This study approaches tectonics differently, relating it to the broader shifts within the discourses of architecture and philosophy, thereby sanctioning a more synergistic, as opposed to autonomous, examination. In exploring the epistemological parameters of tectonics theories in the West it isolates three major periods in its development: Classical Tectonics- derived from ancient philosophy, Rational Tectonics- emerging from the epistemology of science and Poetic Tectonics- developed out of concerns raised by the German Counter- Enlightenment and the Romantic Movement. At each stage in its development tectonics has served to provide key principles that collectively constitute its ground. The study reveals that Poetic Tectonics was a reaction against the duality of mind and abstract rationalism- so central to Cartesian thought and the epistemology of science- and its impact on architectural thought. In response Poetic Tectonics while accepting the key principles of Rational Tectonics sought to redirect it along the philosophical lines of the 2 German Enlightenment and Romanticism while also re-presencing the ethical substructure of Classical Tectonics. This study recognizes that through the course of time, the epistemology upon which cultures are formed have and will continue to change and as they do new tectonic theories will need to be negotiated; rendering tectonics in a continual state of 'becoming'. If there is to be a conclusion it lies in the fact that in its historical persistence and continuity tectonics represents a tradition within Western architecture on par with the likes of the Vitruvian, Organic and Functionalist.
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    Modernity in architecture in relation to context
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2010-04-05) Setiawan, Arief B.
    The thesis questions the ways in which architecture might embody the notion of modernity in different cultures and regions yet achieve appropriateness relative to place. In the early twentieth century in the industrialized world, the issue of modernity in architecture was identified with the notions of abstraction and rationalization that colored the development of the modern movement. The second generation of the modern movement queried the roles of human experiences and urban and architectural contexts in architectural design. With the spread of the modern movement to the rest of the world, the issue of context in architecture grew stronger. Following this line of thought, this dissertation examines the tension between modernist abstractionism and urban and architectural contexts in place in which the presence and the role of local knowledge and traditions in architecture remained influential. It investigates modernity in architecture through a specific Asian reading and through an analysis of the work of Geoffrey Bawa of Sri Lanka. Selected works of Geoffrey Bawa are chosen because the significance of his oeuvre is often contested by interpreters who see it as reflecting various contemporary approaches, including regionalism and vernacularism. Thus, in an effort to refute such simplistic explanations of his work, this thesis examines selected works of Bawa, analyzing their spatial organization, formal arrangement, materials, techniques, and building details. In particular, it attempts to highlight the ways in which Bawa articulated the notions of experience and memory in his architecture. These analyses are then placed within the framework of the social and cultural situations that his architecture confronted in Sri Lanka. It is within this framework that we might determine the ways in which modernity and locality were embodied in Bawa's work. Interpretations of his work take into account the understanding of modernity as a cultural practice and an attitude. Modernity as an attitude relates to a specific modernist subject who is able to use reason for judgment in addressing context. In this dissertation, a reading on the work of Walter Benjamin on modernity, the pasts, and traditions frames this understanding of this modernist subjectivity. In architecture, modernity as an attitude means that is not a style but a way of thinking and formulating design intent. This inquiry is then used as a framework within which this dissertation will interpret the relationship between modernity and local identity. The conclusions of the dissertation contribute to an understanding of the achievement of modernity in architecture in tight relationship to context. On a more focused level, it also hopes to contribute to an appreciation of the extant works of Geoffrey Bawa, which the author of this dissertation deems exemplary of what modern architecture might achieve in Asia.
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    Evidence of existing knowledge of China and its influence on European art and architecture in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2009-11-16) Zhu, Ying
    This dissertation investigates the extent of knowledge of China in Europe and, more particularly, Chinese influence on European art and architecture in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It attempts to answer the following questions: 1. What visual and literature resources on China and Chinese art in Europe were available in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries? 2. To which extent was there any understanding of Chinese art and architecture in Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries? 3. To which extent might this understanding have affected European art and architecture in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries? Although European contacts with China began in the early sixteenth century, few scholars have touched on the evidence that exists of the extent of European knowledge of Chinese architecture before 1720, even on the possible impact of the Chinese architectural designs that were depicted on Chinese porcelains and other merchandise imported into Europe for two centuries before that date. This dissertation examines the evidence for the employment of new and differing aesthetics derived from Chinese artifacts and then assimilated in European art, architecture and landscape in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. After examining the variety of resources from which the new aesthetics derived from Chinese artifacts imported into Europe was evolved, the dissertation analyzes Chinese influence in different nations in an order which follows the most consistently open and effective communications to the Far East. In the process, the dissertation quotes the contemporary historical descriptions of those Chinese artifacts as well as attempting to identify their influence on European art and architecture, thus providing evidence that the interaction between China and Europe served as subtle but active, generative force in European art throughout the period. In sum, the thesis attempts to explore the European understanding of Chinese art in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and to examine the consequences of that influence as they were reflected in European art and architecture. It analyzes some of the most influential and related social, political, and religious aspects that acted as powerful stimuli, which in turn affected in the growth of Chinese influence on European art, architecture and landscape. This dissertation thus attempts to push back the significance of the Chinese influence on aspects of European artistic styles from the accepted date of the early eighteenth century to the seventeenth and even earlier - the sixteenth century.
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    The domestic architecture of the earliest British colonies in the American tropics:a study of the houses of the Caribbean Leeward Islands of St. Christopher, Nevis, Antigua and Montserrat. 1624-1726.
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2007-11-12) Hobson, Daphne Louise
    This study delineates the domestic architecture of the early colonial period in the American tropics in the first group of British colonies that survived. In 1624, the English made their first permanent settlement on St. Christopher in the Caribbean, then expanded to the neighboring islands of Nevis, Antigua and Montserrat. Of particular interest to this research was what the architecture would reveal regarding how the first settlers adapted to the new island environment, its geography, resources, climate, and people, in the first 100 years. The research involved the examination of manuscripts of the period in archives and collections in the UK, USA and Caribbean. The historical data accumulated was primarily inventories and brief descriptions of houses, business correspondence and a small number of official maps. A key resource was a document listing the losses of buildings and possessions suffered as a result of French raids in 1705-1706. The study views the recorded items not as losses, but instead as proof of what once existed, almost as newly found "treasure", and analyzes the items both qualitatively and quantitatively in order to reveal a clearer picture of daily life for the settlers, from modest farmers to wealthier land owners. The study identified house types, stylistic trends in the houses and their furnishing, patterns of use, and construction methods. The architecture recorded the British colonists' process of adaptation to the unfamiliar environment. The study found that Leeward Islands, in the settler period of English colonization (1624-1726) there was a significant degree of interaction and exchange between the Amerindian and British peoples. In addition, it found correlations with rural houses in the wider American tropical region.
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    The art of building (Baukunst) of Mies van der Rohe
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2006-05-12) Kim, Ransoo
    This dissertation attempts to interpret the statements of Ludwig Mies vans der Rohe (1886-1969) that pertain to his lifelong theory of Baukunst, or the art of building in terms of tectonics. In order to use the concept tectonics as a criterion according to which one can comprehend Mies words and works, this dissertation attempted to define tectonics in a more general sense by collecting existing definitions and categorizing them. The result of this endeavor showed that tectonics does not signify a supportive structure but the art of framing construction, in which linear elements are put together with joints and clad or infilled with lightweight material. It is proposed that Mies, who called the ideal of tectonic architecture the art of building, during his lifelong career, experienced two periods of critical awareness through which he established his own type of tectonic buildings: awareness of the open plan and then that of clear space. After the former occurred in 1926, he focused on the creation of inner spatial openness; after the latter, which this dissertation proposes occurred around 1930, when he met Karlfried Graf Drckheim (1896-1988), who had been absorbed in Lao-tzus philosophy, Mies intended to show that his architectural concern was beyond physical construction by employing the concept of changing nature and by designing his buildings to be neutral frames. Mies finally achieved a tectonically integrated body of a building that contained extroverted and undetermined space, which he referred to as clear space, or generally called Mies universal space, through his lifelong pursuit for the accomplishment of his own art of building, which this dissertation terms Miesian tectonics.
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    Urban Metamorphosis and Change in Central Asian Cities after the Arab Invasions
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2005-07-15) Sobti, Manu P
    This work is a study in urban history, in particular, one that examines a crucial period in the rise and development of large cities and metropolises in the region of Sogdiana within Central Asia, between the seventh and tenth centuries. The primary focus of inquiry is to show the effects of inter-relationships between social change, intense urbanization and religious conversions that occurred within Sogdiana at this time. All of these processes were initiated as a result of the Arab invasions between 625 and 750 A.D. Sogdia or Sogdiana, along with the regions of Bactria and Khwarazm, were incorporated into the Islamic world through the process of conquest that followed these invasions, but once resistance was extinguished and Islam widely accepted among the populace, these regions became among the most vital centers of urban life in the Islamic world. Sogdiana, among these three regions, witnessed the rise, change and unprecedented development of many large metropolises that were distinct in several ways from the cities in other parts of the Islamic world. Traditional cities in the Islamic world further west and south of Central Asia had a dense structure within an encircling wall, and eventually the residential areas were found to extend beyond the wall, only themselves to be eventually protected by another wall. However, in Central Asia yet another further stage of development took place. Here the main administrative functions and markets moved out into this outer residential area and abandoned the central core. This outer area of the city (the rabad) became the locus of political and commercial activity. In due course the process repeated itself - the residential areas overflowing beyond the walls of the rabad, only themselves to be surrounded by a third outer wall. In this way the Central Asian city developed into a distinct type, markedly different from cities further west and south.
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    Architectural contextualism in the twentieth century, with particular reference to the architects E. Fay Jones and John Carl Warnecke
    (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2005-07-15) Wolford, Jane N.
    A study of the importance, elements and techniques of architectural contextualism. Contextual architecture is here defined as architecture that creates relationships with its specific site or its broader physical or visual environment. This study posits the comprehensive definition of architectural contextualism on multiple levels: denotatively, connotatively, historically, philosophically, and in its aspects of critical regionalism. American architects adept at the practice of architectural contextualism during the mid-twentieth century offer principles and techniques. These architects are John Carl Warnecke, E. Fay Jones, and George White and others. This research has yielded the systematic, comprehensive definition of contextualism, a set of metrics which can be used as a basis of design and aid in the evaluation of the degree to which a building or set of buildings and their landscape are contextually congruent.