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5 Unit 3: Reimagining a site

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í Assignment 3: Reimagining a site

Part (1) — Due April 8

Create a spatial mapping diagram about a space of your choosing within the general boundaries of the Design Center. Your diagram can consider the following questions:

Who has access to the space?
How do people interact with it?
What are the particular characteristics of the space?
When is the space used?
Does a user interact with any objects in the space?
How many people does the space serve?
For how much time do people use the space?
How do times of day change the space’s function?

Focus on one element of the space to map. Some examples of focus are (and not limited to) wifi networks, lighting, sound, usage at times of day, demographics. Investigate what actually happens in a space and then translate that into a visual language.The diagram must convey concrete information about the space. Remember that this is a ground-up, not top-down project.

Your mapping cannot be verbal or a list of words on a page. It is a focused visual analysis of the space and must be a drawing, photo collage, video, visual diagram or typographic layout. The maps themselves are a design product— they visualize an analysis of an observation about your space and about how it is used. Like any good map, they take a point of view about of a space and represent that point of view visually.

You cannot proceed to part 2 of the project without a convincing mapping diagram and understanding of your space.

Objectives:
• To design based on observation of how people use and interact in space;
• To think analytically about a space and represent that space in a visual format;
• To design based on analysis and observation of space;
• To design with site-specificity;
• To create a visual tool (the map/diagram) that serves as a basis for a design.

Professional Context: Exhibition Design, Storefront Design, Window Display, Hoarding Design (construction fences when buildings go up/get renovated), Signage, Wayfinding, Stage Set, Kiosk design, Interactive Displays, Geo-locative Designs (like Foursquare or GrindR)…Essentially, design that exists in a specific space with a set of viewers that encounter it in that space.

Part (2) Due April 15

Now that you are thoroughly familiar with your space, propose an alteration to the space that modifies the space, or the behaviors of the users that you have observed, based on your mapping. Choose a format that fits with your idea of how and what you want to modify—it may be 2-d graphics, a 3-d installation, a video, or interactive using gps, for example.

For this part of the project you can choose one of three ways of representing your ideas:
1) Install your alteration at your site in the Design Center on class days only, (April 8 & 15). The class will critique it in-place.
2) Install your alteration at your site in the Design Center at any time, and document users in the space interacting (or not) with the design. Present this documentation.
3) Create a proposal for an alteration that could exist in a space in the design center.

For any of these it is important to note that your alteration must respect building codes and standard access. This assignment is not about disrupting everyone’s experience to the point of endangerment, but rather considering how a well-placed design can affect change. Your alteration cannot obstruct the regular functioning of the space.

Part (3) — Due April 22

Revise your mapping diagram and alteration (either in-place or as documentation) for final crit of both designs.

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