Harvard Graduate School of Design

Masters of Architecture Thesis: Interrupted Flesh: Didactic Provocations for Reprogramming Perception

Advisors: Krzysztof Wodiczko and Ingeborg Rocker

What is architecture divorced from building?  In exploring this provocation we come to reevaluate the context and agency of the architect practicing in an era of relentless technological advancement.  Architecture has historically been an essential manifestation and expression of humanity.  Today, a new media of technological determinism has emerged- challenging the current paradigm of architecture.  Architecture itself needs to broaden its definitions to recapture its relevance.

The work of this thesis is two fold: first, to distill the fundamental aspects of the profession that can never be replaced by algorithms, and secondly, to produce work that expresses current cultural changes and critically reflect the reality we live in- one in which technology has become a cultural prosthesis and extension of humanity.  To achieve this, I have begun by examining and reprogramming our conduits of perception.

Perception is fundamental to architecture- it is through our bodies, sensorial organs, and cognition that architectural experiences exist.  The artifacts produced by the research of this thesis reconstruct spatial perception from within the human sensory system, becoming a means of forcing us to reconsider the very constructs of our own points of view.

Through investigating systems of perception, this thesis aims to reframe and reveal a more nuanced, and ineffable understanding of the human experience within our networked cultural and spatial constructs- both as inhabitants and designers.