The Boston Architectural College - 320 Newbury Street - Boston MA 02115 - USA

Designing Together 2008 - Living in the Américas

Oct 24, 2008

John H. Pilling Home../John_H_Pilling/about_JHP.html
Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey - Campus Ciudad de Mexico

BAC / ITESM Parallel Studio 


BAC CD 102/710 - Designing Together - A Parallel Studio about Living in the Américas

    The purpose of the studio is to expand BAC students’ architectural design capabilities to translating research, on-site documentation, and conceptual modeling, into architectural form.  Another goal is to increase student awareness of the Hispanic culture of the Américas, especially Mexico and the Mexicans who have influenced us.

Within the BAC’s concurrent curriculum,  this is defined as a long studio open to both Masters and Bachelors candidates. It meets twice a week, has a dedicated work space, and includes travel to Mexico and places within New England. Not only do we see works of art and architecture firsthand, but we meet and work with architects and architecture students from Guadalajara and Mexico City, Mexico.

Our design problem has been created by our colleagues at ITESM.  It is a mixed use building with apartments, offices, and shops.  The site will be selected from parcels around the Plaza del la Concepción de Tlaxcoaque, ten blocks south of the Zócalo in the historic center of Mexico City. 

Research begins with the work of Mexicans and Americans whose paths crossed in the last century: the writers Octavio Paz and Juan Rulfo; the engineer and developer, Luis Barragán; the architects, Louis Kahn and Rafael Urzua; the landscape architect, Ferdinand Bac; and the artists Chucho Reyes and José Clemente Orozco.

We experience Mexican culture with travel to the mountains of the State of Jalisco, the city of Guadalajara, and the metropolis, Mexico City. Our methods emphasize sketching and participating in workshops with our Mexican colleagues.

We explore design through conceptual modeling to be translated into concrete designs carried to a full schematic, including expression of structure and services.

The instructors guide students to do independent, high quality work that is comparable to that expected in the degree project and thesis.

This studio emphasizes conceptual work and relies on skills acquired from the practice curriculum to develop the technical description of the building quickly at the end of the semester.