Architectural Modelmaking, Design Development, Bespoke Design & Construction. Part of The University of Manchester (SEED School of Environment, Education and Development) Part of the Manchester School of Architecture
A recent modelmaking project from MSA’s MA Architecture + Urbanism course has gained media coverage in recent weeks. The Northern Quarter masterplan has taken centre stage in the window of Fred Aldous craft store. So what’s the story behind this huge eye catching display? Student Dorcas Agbana kindly explained the project:
We initially had a measured drawing of Northern Quarter but the scale on paper didn’t help us understand the context to its full extent. For part of our project a public consultation was scheduled at the Craft Centre and a model seemed like the best way to translate design to “reality” for the studio group and to the public.
We’ve learnt that physical objects are easier to grasp by laymen over technical architectural jargon and so this 3D manifestation seemed like the best way to explain our design process and showcase how our many ideas interlinked.
Concept art showing the model featured in Fred Aldous window display
Working in the studio space, the model was used to get a better understanding of scale (context and individual buildings), to figure out scope of the groups design interventions. It allowed us to plug in ideas to see how they worked, how we could link different concepts into one narrative and to holistically figure out new transport routes and better identify pockets of relief.
Initially, around 20-30 members broke the whole model into smaller zones to execute it. It took around a 5 day week to get the initial model done. And then around 10 – 15 students worked for another week to prepare it for public display in Fred Aldous shop front.
Since the display was completed the feedback has been positive. We have observed people pause and stare, we’ve gotten comments on how to better design it for the public to understand. People who have seen and read the articles and the brochure on the studio have since made a trip to the store to check out the model. The model will stay in the window until at least the end of March, but its next home has not been decided yet.
It was an interesting experience for everyone as the scale of the model made it probably the largest one that any one of us had worked on. In the studio it helped all the students to better work together. The process was grueling and physically exhausting towards the end, but the end product makes it worth it!
It’s great to see the model being so publicly used to get people talking about the architecture and urban spaces in an area which has been subject to a number of controversial changes over the last year. Individual student proposals were published in the MEN giving the project further coverage in the region.Read the article here.
Be sure to follow Architecture and Urbanism on their Instagram/Twitter to find out more about their ongoing projects Instagram: @maaumsa Twitter: @undoingurbanism
Thanks to Dorcas for explaining the project in more detail.
Students who worked on the model installation at Fred Aldous were: Dorcas Agbana, Priya Renganathan, Rayhane Saber, Marina Kuliasova, Bowen Zhang, Qu Zhang, Shuqian Zhou, Haochu Chen, Tian Gechuan, Dongli Huang, Tingting Miao, Yangyang Bao, Zhaozhao Zhang, Ramita Dewi Lubis, Anggita Krisnandini and Feng Daio
As part of our B.15:45 Exhibition we put together a short film telling the story of how modelmaking is used in the life of an architecture student and beyond. The full versions of the interviews tell many more interesting stories of modelmaking with individual case studies and memories accounted first hand by staff past and present.
In this first extended interview with MSA Principal Lecturer Eamonn Canniffe we hear about how history models have been used as precedent examples and tools in understanding space as well as thoughts on the introduction of digital tools to the school over the past 30 years.
As part of our B.15:45 exhibition we have produced this documentary film exploring the constant but changing use of modelmaking within architectural education here at The Manchester School of Architecture within The University of Manchester.
The film interviews past and present academic, teaching and technical staff about their thoughts on modelmaking in architecture and how the tool continues to be used in design teaching today.
We hope this provides a good insight into Architectural modelmaking and helps to define its place in student studies here.
We would like to say many thanks again to all involved in the production of this film.
Apologies for that lack of recent updates. We have been very busy researching, designing and building the upcoming B.15:45 Modelmaking Exhibition for September.
We can now be almost 100% sure that the exhibition will be opening on the evening of Friday 12th September 2014 – This will be confirmed very soon and we will be sure to post full details on here.
We have been able to gather a fantastic array of projects from the schools most recent exhibition as well as other more historic examples presenting a great range. If you haven’t already we encourage you to share this link to help us get even more responses for our survey and record a more complete history of the workshop through peoples accounts.
Every view is valuable to us so don’t hesitate to add your own!
Today we conducted the first of an upcoming series of video interviews on the role of Architectural Modelmaking and the history of our workshop. We spoke to MSA Lecturer Eamonn Canniffe who first began working at the school in 1986. He gave his perspective on how the use of models has influenced architectural design for students up to it’s current role as well as informing us of the role his study models of classic 20th Century Architecture with students played.
This interview along with several others will be edited to help us tell the story of modelmaking in our exhibition. Complete individual interviews will also be posted over a period of time to hear more accounts of modelmaking and workshop life at the school over the past 45 years – B.15:TV is born!