Politecnico di Torino
Anno Accademico 2017/18
Architecture and structural forms
Corso di Laurea Magistrale in Architettura Costruzione Citta' - Torino
Docente Qualifica Settore Lez Es Lab Tut Anni incarico
Barosio Michela ORARIO RICEVIMENTO A2 ICAR/14 64 16 0 25 2
Tondolo Francesco ORARIO RICEVIMENTO A2 ICAR/09 48 12 0 20 4
SSD CFU Attivita' formative Ambiti disciplinari
B - Caratterizzanti
B - Caratterizzanti
Analisi e progettazione strutturale dell'architettura
Progettazione architettonica e urbana
In the Design Unit 1, students will enhance their skills in managing a complex architectural project autonomously, both at the urban and architectural scales, learning to manage contemporary building production.
The aim of the "Architecture and Structural Forms" Design Unit is to elaborate a complex architectural project from the knowledge and skills provided by two complementary subjects: Architectural and Structural Design. The relation between them will be carried on all along the Design Unit, and the continuous reciprocal influences will be explored, going over the recurring separation between subjects and developing the awareness of students about the effect of Architectural Design over structures, and vice versa.
Moreover, through the experience of the Design Unit, students will acquire specific knowledge and skills in Science and Technology of Structures, which will be considered as an alternative to the 2nd Year Course in "Theory and Design of Structures", mandatory in the Masterís degree.
Risultati di apprendimento attesi
The Design Unit 1 provides advanced knowledge and skills, to be acquired through a series of disciplinary lectures, both theoretical and practical, as well as a series of exercises and physical models, aimed to mimics the structural awareness of architectural forms. This knowledge will be used to develop an accomplished project, carried on from the architectural and structural point of view at the same time.
In order to acquire a precise knowledge of the project site, students will be encouraged to visit it, to analyze it, to understand specific problems of that place and to give a sincere architectural interpretation and evaluation of the site. Dialogues with external hosts will help in defining critical issues and future prospects. Then, the development of the project should take in account this first part of the Design Unit: the progression of the project will be examined and evaluated through frequent reviews and some mid-term evaluation, which are mandatory. Also the series of exercises which will be parallel to the development of the projects will be mandatory, as theyíll show the progresses in understanding structural behaviour of architectural forms: indeed, in any phase of the Design Unit, professors and tutors will focus of the multi-disciplinarily knowledge and skill, always highlighting the relation among architectural and structural design and comparing actual results with the premises defined by the analysis phase. Moreover, each student will be asked to individually accomplish a test in order to obtain the final evaluation. Then, the final evaluation will take in account the effective reciprocity of Architectural and Structural form in the final result, the results of the project itself, as well as the completion of both the exercises and the individual test. The ability to process a complex architectural project in a given time represents a specific ability of the work of the architect: this will be verified at the exam that will take place during the first week of exams, in the first examination session following the Design Unit.

Prerequisiti / Conoscenze pregresse
Basic critical and design skills, along with the concepts and introductory tools in Structural Analysis and Design, are assumed to have been acquired during the Disciplinary Courses and the Design Ateliers of the Bachelor Degree in "Sciences of Architecture".
Architectural Design Course:
The course will focus on the relationship between architectural form and structural principals. To understand this strong relationship, paradigmatic examples will be shown, collectively discussed and analyzed from compositional point of view. Paradigmatic examples will be selected in the whole history of architecture as well as in contemporary architecture.
The design unit explores the theme of masonry vaults, both on historical and on contemporary context.
A first design exercise will be focused on the completion of unfinished historical architecture from Alessandro Antonelli: La rotonda di Castellamonte.
The second, and main, design exercise will be focused on a non built work of Louis Kahn, the Motherhouse for the Dominican Sisters. The students will be asked to design architectural proposal on the Kahnís sketches and to develop them to the structural level.
Structural Engineering Course:
In a first phase, students receive information on compressed-only structures and the structural aspects linked to the load flow from the top to the bottom of unreinforced structure. The equilibrium condition is evidenced and the comparison with masonry structures of monuments, gothic cathedrals, and buildings with particular attention to the vaults is discussed. Graphical methods for the solution of the equilibrium in two and three-dimensional space will be introduced.
In a second phase the mathematical aspects for the solution of a three-dimensional compressed only structures are given and the use of a specific software able to find a form based on the force pattern is introduced. Further methods for the analysis of equilibrium and strength are introduced. An overview of the geotechnical aspects together with the design of foundations are proposed. Along all the phases of the course the use of physical models made by the students will help to understand the static of the compressed only structures. At the end of the course, the delivery of the students working in groups are drawings and calculation of the structural aspects of a specific object containing the compressed-only structures and a complete physical model.
Organizzazione dell'insegnamento
The DU will be developed through a series of lectures, alternate with several exercises, all of which are to be completed in order to pass the final exam. The organization of the Course will take care of timings, in order to facilitate a continuous, if hard, work. Thatís why there will be a regular sequence of deadlines and revisions, in order to best organize the work.
The DU will widely use physical maquettes as an important tool to verify architectural, spatial and structural consistency of the project.
The application software RhinoVault will be used for structural calculation and the students will be trained to the use of the software.
Testi richiesti o raccomandati: letture, dispense, altro materiale didattico
Kenneth Frampton: Studies in Tectonic Culture. The poetics of Construction in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century architecture, MIT Press 2001 [1995].
Robert C. Twombly (edited by): Louis Kahn: Essential Texts, WW Norton & Co, 2003
Jacques Heyman: The Stone Skeleton: Structural Engineering of Masonry Architecture, Cambridge University Press 1997
Phillippe Block: Thrust network analysis: exploring three-dimensional equilibrium, PhD thesis.
During the teaching course extra working material will be uploaded on the website.
Criteri, regole e procedure per l'esame
The exam will consists on the discussion of the final boards, of the intermediate exercises as well as of the physical maquettes.
Fully attendance and engagement in lectures, seminars, and further activities of the Design Unit is a required precondition for the positive participation in the planned activities.
The final exam will take place in the first week of the examination session consecutive to the Design Unit. In case the final design work is not completed on time or is judged inadequate or incomplete, the student may submit the final project in the second examination session consecutive to the Design Unit. The final grade will consider the student inability to develop a complex architectural design in a given time.
The final evaluation will be individual and will use throughout the whole of the votes available. It is carried out through group discussion of DU professors, taking strictly into account the weight of each discipline (in terms of credits) and considering carefully the following criteria.
Criteria regard the DU central experience, that the project activities: left to itself the assessment of other specific activities, according to the needs of lecturers (eg, written tests or theoretical checks). They consider a background value the student's ability to bring together in the project, as the experience of synthesis, what acquired from the different disciplines of the DU.
Evaluating the ability to analyze and to return the context of the project, physical and social, through original elaborations. Evaluating the ability to manage the complexity of the information, provided by the teacher or found themselves, and to interpret the architectural context.
Criteria guiding:
- Reading and synthesis
- Interpretation and critical processing
- Return results
Evaluating the ability to conceptualize an argued proposal, as a strategic answer to the identified problems from the inquiry. Evaluating the ability to describe the general aspects (repeatable) of the project and its feasibility in relation to the ordinary practices.
Criteria guiding:
- Clarity of argument
- Vision
- Autonomy in the elaboration of the proposal
Evaluating the ability to develop, within an available time, a coherent project in the individual joints compared to a unitary interpretation, through a circular process (development / discussion / feedback). Evaluating the quality of the final result, as the last maturation of this process.
Criteria guiding:
- Critical capacity and self-criticism in the early stages of development
- Adaptation to the feedback of the mid-term reviews
- Completeness and quality of the final papers
Evaluating the ability to represent and transmit the project, at all stages of the learning experience. It also evaluates the ability to communicate, in an integrated manner to the project and also in innovative ways, the specific aspects of different disciplines.
Criteria guiding:
- Compliance with the agreed rules of communication
- Conscious use of presentation tools
- Effectiveness of public presentation and discussion
Evaluating the ability to identify disciplinary problems in a relevant way of the proposed project case. Evaluating the ability to intercept a complex design theme using cross-fertilization of knowledge.
Criteria guiding:
- Maturation of sufficient knowledge in all disciplines
- Disciplinary relevance of individual contributions in the project
- Integration of disciplines at different scales
Orario delle lezioni
Statistiche superamento esami

Programma definitivo per l'A.A.2017/18

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