Working Prototypes Exhibition

Multi-media Exhibition  / June 2019
Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA) Research Workshop
Related: Wind Tunnels, Water Tables, Filling Box Models
Photography: Lisa Moffitt

This exhibition featured prototypes and associated documentation of wind tunnels, water tables, and filling tanks, all of which make airflow associated with natural ventilation visible. This exhibition hypothesises about how physical environmental models operate as contemporary architectural design tools. The models were designed, constructed and calibrated to create continuous, steady air-flow. Insights about architectural environmental mediation were revealed through the iterative prototyping process. It is through the process of trying to make the environmental work as a mechanical device that it works most effectively as a conceptual design device.  These insights are in some cases tectonic, revealing ways of thinking about joints, surfaces, and assembly logics. They are in other cases responses to natural forces associated with pressure of air or weight of water. Fundamentally, the prototyping process revealed air’s extreme sensitivity to both constructional anomalies and external disruption, revealing the complexity of creating a steady-state environment.