Focus Artistic Research

n.formations - An Atlas of Experiments in Materialized Information

Klaus Bollinger

Institute of Architecture
Since the digital age, how we design has become as important as what we design. Never before there have been so many different techniques at our disposal, many of them with the ability to cross previously imagined frontiers. During the 20th century efforts to rethink habitual practice of the design process are accompanying the process itself. Our research focuses on the dissection, documentation, and reinterpretation of contemporary digital production practice by means of serial experiments and platforms of new media. An interactive atlas of correlated aesthetics, entities and formulations shall contribute to the growing community of open source design practitioners and makers in the digital chain.

The role of the model as an immediate source of physical and emotional feedback shifts from the analogue to the digital realm. Today, designing characterizes itself rather by manipulating digital systems than determined articulation. Parametric modeling and open systems allow a simple formulation of intricate generative processes, though a model’s ability to adapt to changes is limited by its own complexity. There is a desire to be designing with systems of simple rules, which are able to temporarily stabilize but stay open to changes of any kind, to be capable of reflecting any unforeseen state. Modern parametric modeling bears great potential in the research of novel interfaces, representations, their flexibility, and the theoretically unlimited pool of formal languages waiting to be described. We want to fundamentally question the ways in which parametric design platforms are used, to produce original modes of operation. Artifacts of contemporary design and architecture serve as samples for an elementary decomposition and strategic reconstruction, where smart representation will foster flexibility and persistence of a model until its physical manifestation. The galore experiment of ‘gestalt to digital to analogue’ here serves as means for synthesized innovation to establish a knowledge base of components, forms, formulations and dependencies. Open source and plug-in tools are about to establish a new collaborative design society, where the seed of new methods and profound reflection of the existing is greatly needed. Beyond local prototypes, an open-ended result of this project is envisaged in the atlas as an online platform; gathering, relating, rendering an artifact of parametric design’s dissected information, logics of aesthetics, subsystems and fragments for the public.