For this pin up I wanted to make the site clear - as I felt I have spent so much of my time on the building itself, the concepts of control, and how the interior spaces work. Up until a few days ago I had no good images showing how my design worked within the site. At first I produced the image below (which I printed at 1:200 scale), but felt it didn't really show much context, other than a few roads, the solar panels and the wall of the library to the east:
So I then drew this image, which printed at 1:500 scale shows a lot more of the surrounding context - the library, tennis club, college and school, as well as the trees, roads/access and the solar panels. The site plan shows the roof of the buildings and the labyrinth landscaping on the surface of the site:
Showing the building in section was also important, because it shows the link between my underground depository and the existing depository of the University Library. I could not find drawings/plans of the existing depository so had to guess the size - all I knew was that it was more than one basement floor and with it being a legal deposit library, the depository would be more or less the same size as the library above ground:
I then spent a great deal of time drawing up a larger, 1:100 section showing the depository in more detail. Unlike my previous section (see my older blog entries) which uses a skewed section line to cut through the two buildings above ground, I have used a straight section cut so that the section looks in to light catchers and a reading/study room below grade. It also shows an elevation of the private/staff building on the right. I chose to make the image black and white to tie in with my early concepts of mythology, labyrinths etc. Once this image was printed, I shaded in the subterranean rooms and corridors to show light/dark areas (below section):
Showing how the basement floor plan works with the ground floor plan is important to my scheme, so I created these two images (printed at 1:200) showing that the light pipes illuminate the corners, the twists/turns in the passageways below ground level.
I thought the basement floor plan looked a bit dull though, so I experimented with making it look like an old map, something that could be found by a visitor once they arrive in the archives/the depository:
The coloured areas show different storage areas within the labyrinth, such as nautical maps, pre-1900 maps, modern maps, Charles Close Society maps/atlases precious maps etc. I printed this map on textured paper then had great fun tea-staining it to make it look like it had been in a depository for a few hundred years (the image above shows pre-staining). Unfortunately I don't think I will develop this idea because it does not tie in with my early concepts. Visitors are meant to be disorientated when they are inside, so giving them a map would ruin the experience. The map could be used by librarians, even if it is a static map underneath the private/staff building.
Showing how the spaces worked above ground was required so that the two towers didn't look arbitrary. The brick towers are supported by a concrete frame (I will blog details of this for my technical assignment later) and have a basic, but flexible floor layout for the cartography exhibition spaces. At the moment I have only had time to draw/render a basic room on Sketchup, showing windows/lighting but I plan to lose the rendering as this project progresses, making my images more hand drawn to tie in with early ideas of mythology, which I feel is being lost in shard CAD lines and renders:
The landscaping above ground is an important space. People will wander around this alien landscape with little idea of what lies beneath. Children from the neighbouring school should enjoy playing on the grass labyrinth. The space should be fun to explore for people of all ages. The western perimeter of the site is all paved - i.e. children playing will know not to leave the friendly, turfed area beyond the row of trees to the main road. The other sides of the site are much safer in comparison. I desaturated these images slightly so they worked better alongside my large black and white section. It felt uncomfortable having bright colours next to a moody greyscale image:
The main feedback was that I needed to show the spaces underground in more detail. I plan to have two large images showing the two main spaces underground - the corridor and the study room. The juxtaposition between these spaces will be interesting - the rough materiality and eerie lighting of the corridors and the bespoke, oak floored study rooms and the bright top lighting.
I was asked to look at Carlo Scarpa and Louis Kahn when designing the light catchers (my 2d section looked too diagrammatical) as their work was based on rough, but pure materiality. Niall McLaughlin was also mentioned - his monastery in London has very similar ideas to mine, and I might be able to get some ideas about furniture design from the architect too.
I need to design ceilings - I think I underestimated their importance in an underground building - but people would constantly look up, perhaps to seek a way out so these ceilings would always be in view. Designing doors is on my to-do list - heavy oak doors I think would meet my concepts.
I was also asked to make the basement floor plan more clear - the light pipes are drawn as squares when they would be circular and dotted lines in this floor plan. There would also be a perimeter on the plan showing the earth surrounding the building.
I need to create diagrams showing the relationship between the archivist and the visitor/researcher. Choreographing their movements through the subterranean space may create interesting diagrams. I might script this with sketchy, hand drawn images, perhaps a series of storyboards above the basement floor plan showing the movement.
Umberto Eco's book 'The Name of The Rose' was mentioned when I was talking about my early concepts, but I had watched the film in the first few weeks of this project, as it's controlling knowledge concepts were similar to those in Jorge Luis Borges' book 'The Library of Babel'.