Asian Fawn | Spider Silk
An alienated spatial and material device for nonhuman entities to habitat in second nature environment.
The structure and organization of urban space, through our historical analysis, is either affected by imposed ideologies or is developed through anthropocentric interactions of communications and commerce. We aim to test the hypothesis of a non-anthropocentric view on design beyond ideologies and human centred local interactions. We suggest a productive version of alienation, from the established methods of design that will allow us to speculate and revise our urban structure towards more cosmological understanding of the urban. For that reason, we explore and experiment with a species that has its own spatial reasoning. By mobilizing the alien spatial intelligence of nonhuman entities like spiders will give us a new insight in the possible construction of a multiheaded city where spatial diagrams can explore new conditions of organizing the urban, redefining its aesthetics and establishing new politics. In order to do this, we refrain from a problem-solving perception of design and we embrace its power to designate problematic areas. The project explores the spinning behaviour of an Asian Fawn spider. Given any substratum inside the designated cube, Asian fawn always keep spinning the tube for herself with the function of predating, inhabiting and self-defending. However, the size of cell can affect the size of tube web and the density of substratum, then further effect the amount of spider silk. After learning spinning behaviour of spider, there is a series of studies about substratum which is mainly explored the influence caused by different sizes of cell and resolution. Spiders can give us insights into enhanced and extended modes of sensing environment and constructing space. And Inspired by spider’s intelligence, we rethink the space and time at scales beyond that of the urban. What if novel spatio temporal constructions could be reorganized blended with multiple hierarchies. Careful observations have revealed that the spider always attaches the silk to the element of the substratum. In this sense, the spider constructions can be thought as extensions of the primary substratum. Following this logic, we suggest that spatial hierarchies at architectural and/or urban scale can also be generate in this additive, layer by layer process. The first layer of fibrous construction triggers the further morphogenesis of this project. The latter can be considered as the structure of vertical spatial organization. The second layer is generated by the first one, which becomes the network to channel information and energy. The same principle is followed to get the third layer that is the structure with the highest resolution in this project and serves as hosting the spider farming activity. Spider silk is well known as its excellent properties such as tension and strength. Our design research is here to build a second nature environment to host spiders and then to collect spider silk to treat it as real architectural material. Through introducing spider silk into architectural design discourse, it would help us to re-depict the urban spatially and materially. This research will take insight into spider's behaviour intelligence for designing different sets of habitating apparatus with a fibrous form. According to multiple environmental conditions, an alienated device system would be generated with diverse morphologies in urban. In that sense, such xeno habitating device could exist as the skin of urban and widely spread. Working and experimenting with these nonhuman space-constructing intelligences, we revise our urban organization and reefine its aesthetics. We integrate them to build a complex system for nonhuman entities like spiders and humans coexisting.
Student | Mengxuan LI Xiaojun LIANG
Tutor | Claudia Pasquero Filippo Nassetti
Theory tutor | Emmanouil Zaroukas