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"outside" Tag


In with the out


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

After viewing the exhibition « Architects and Interiors » in the Gemeentemuseum of the Hague we questioned ourselves on this new ideology De Stijl was confronted with, the notion of inside and outside in architecture. As we found out by researching aspects of the Stijl there is a significant new way of looking at architecture in that period of time. Architects wanted a style that was more connected with their own time and ideology, traditional architectural rules were no longer significant. When we look at the Rietveld Schröder House, constructed in 1924, we can see the transition of walls that flow from inside to the outside. Trying to dissolve lines but also creating a way to incorporate the outside into the building. Another interesting factor at the time was the creation of big windows and the opening up of space, which created a deeper connection to the exterior.

Another example from around the same time is the Schindler House built in 1922 in Hollywood. By creating a massive wall that can be opened up between the garden and the living room, Rudolph M.Schindler created a space that can connect the inside with the outside.

Schindler House

Schindler House by Rudolph M.Schindler

 

Our next lead took us to the Case Study House project (1945-1966). A project consisting of 36 planned houses that were published in Arts & Architecture magazine. After the war there was an advance in technology and material. Architects worked together with the magazine to create new ways of seeing and constructing liveable homes during the population boom. Even though not all houses were actually build, these plans were a hot topic among American architects at the time. These Houses were characterised by flat roofs, glass walls, modular design and steel frame construction. They neatly integrated into the sites with an emphasis on indoor-outdoor living. One of the first examples that can indicate a fusion of inside and outside is the plans for the Greenbelt house, where the architect tried to create an open space in the middle of the house that could be used as a place to store crops and other vegetation. Another project is the #21 case study by Koening, where an irrigation system that surrounds the steel construction helps cool off the house itself. The design emphasise harmony of materials and balance between interior and exterior through the use of terraces, water, glazing, and skylights. Many more of these projects were about the connecting and fusing of the outside with the inside. You can find some interesting information about this program here.

Case study 21 Pierre

Case Study House #21by Pierre Koenig

 

If we look back in time structures that connect the inside with the outside have already existed for a long time. We can take the example of the engawa in Japan, having the entire house surrounded by a ledge and being able to open up all doors and windows creates a connection between inside and outside. Recreating these structures and ideas. It’s almost like there was a necessity to be out in the open again in the 1900s and after. Today we can still find traces and marks of this ideology strongly present all around us in our contemporary world. What is being outside? What is being inside?

In recent architecture we can find a lot of traces leading back to this ideology of bringing outside and inside together. Big windows for example are still a highly used aspect in a lot of houses. However, not all modern houses really look into the effect of this blending of an outside and inside. And there also seems to be a genuine difference in houses that have the the possibility of indoor and outdoor blending and houses that are created for the soul purpose of bringing the outside inside continually.

In the OZ House, the south facade made of glass opens up all interior areas allowing it’s openness to the views of the surrounding vegetation. It has the possibility of creating an outdoor/indoor connection by opening the doors, however it may or may not use it’s features. This way you can choose to use the outside.

OZ house by Andrade

OZ House by Andrade Morrettin Arquitetos Associados

 

A great example of a house that tries to bring the outside in continually is the Inside Out building by Takeshi Hosaka. In this house there is only a few spaces that are able to be closed off to the outside, the rest of the building is open and connected to the wind, rain and sun. The ones living in the house have to adapt and live with these weather conditions and live accordingly. Another less extreme house that takes the outside in is Casa Ilhabela by Studio MK27. By creating privacy in the front and backgarden, using walls and plants, they were able to take out the walls of the lower level and create one big space that is inside and outside.

takeshi hosaka inside out

Inside Out House by Takeshi Hosaka

 

Up to now it has been about building houses and bringing whatever is outside of those buildings inside. But there are also lots of houses that are build to be enveloped by nature, by building into already existing structures like mountains, hills and trees. These give you a feeling of literally living in the outside. Some of these houses also have the ability to use their natural structure to create effects in the inside of the house. For example they can control warmth or certain weather effects.

Designers, architects and artists are also questioning the idea of bringing the outside indoor by bringing the nature into the interior space, incorporating scenes of nature. This transition with the natural world blur the lines and barriers between inside and out.  Bringing trees and other elements of nature inside, these projects question what is possible within the confines of erected walls. The artist Jean-Marc Navez incorporates trees that reach the ceiling and occupy the whole space to underline the bringing of outside into an indoor space. Through the incorporation of indoor trees the divisions between the home, office, landscape and environment are blurred.
Another important aspect that is quite popular and important in our most recent history is that of sustainability and our carbon footprint. From this thinking comes a new way of creating houses, so called ecohouses. These houses can generate warmth and energy by themselves and don’t leave any negative traces. Mostly build out of natural and renewable materials, for example by using mushrooms they build the Hy-Fi brick tower. A few of these new structures even have the ability to sustain growth of plants. By doing so the house itself is creating a connection between itself and the outside.

moma1andinteriortree

Left: Interior tree by Jean-Marc Navez / Right: Hy-fi by David Benjamin

 

So how will we adapt to our new ideologies in the future?

Will we see self-growing houses or constructions that don’t depend on traditional aspects like walls and floors? Structures that blend the inside into the outside? In this technological era we might be able to control all these aspects of living a bit more and we have a broader understanding of the outside forces. But as nature is always changing, it’s still not certain if we will be able to control the outside and be truly able to create an outside environment that is at the same time our inside.

 

 

a visual study of the Young-Helmholtz color theory


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Hermann von Helmholtz was a German physician who contributed greatly to different areas of science. In 1851 he made a color system that looked like this:

This color system illustrates how color is perceived by the human eye. The system is based on a previous study made by Thomas Young in 1802, the color system has therefore been named the “Young-Helmholtz theory”. Young’s study states that there exist 3 different types of photoreceptor cells in the eyes’ retina, who are each sensitive to a certain range of light.

Helmholtz then went a step further by assigning different colors to the wave lengths that the photoreceptor cells were capable of detecting. Short wave length, Red. Middle wave length, Green. Long wave length, Violet. If a color between the primary wave lengths is seen, the different cells will react to create a mixture that will create this color. For example, if yellow is seen, both the photoreceptor cells receiving red and green will mix to create this signal. The diagram underneath illustrates this. (1 red, 2 green, 3 violet.)

Colored light is additive, which means the more color is mixed, the closer one will come to white. This is why white is centered in the Young-Helmholz color system. The lengths represent the amount of color eventually needed to get white.

All in all this color system concluded that us humans are trichromatics, which means that we have, as mentioned before, 3 different cells in our eyes that can catch different wave lengths of colored light. So if you are missing one type of these cells, you are colorblind. This information eventually led to developing a color blindness test that is still used today, called PIPIC.

Being new to painting, and especially mixing colors, I was amazed that the three cells in our eyes mix the color that you see for you (and much faster and more accurate than anyone would ever be able to do by hand!)

Hoping to maybe understand how my eyes got so good at mixing color, I wanted to visualize this unconscious mixing trick that they apparently do. I learned from my color system that the mix of colors, which happens in the eye, is a mix of three colors; red, green and violet.

The three colors are divided into wavelengths, this is how the three different cone cells absorb them. Red, short wavelength. Green, middle wave length. Violet, long wavelength.

When we look at different colored things, our cone cells do the mix and our brain sees the  color. cool.

 

 

 

I therefore thought that I might have to put one monochrome item into focus, too boil the mixing process down to the core. I first thought I might make the cones the color of what they saw, to show how they, when mixed, visualized this color. I tried this with a cucumber and the 3rd floor of the rietveld building.

 

 

But it was simply to easy and felt repetitive showing the same color twice. colors are also such an ambiguous and individual experience, so giving the mixed color away this clearly was no fun.

I wanted to show how the eye really works on this almost incomprehensible subconscious level. The cucumber could stay, but the cones needed color!

 

 

I decided to draw a chalk circle (vision is ephemeral), with the object in focus centered. From the center I drew three lines, one for each colored cone. The lines are the same length and represent the amount of that specific color needed in order to achieve the mixed color of the object in focus. The closer they are to the object centered, the more is needed.

So far so good, But a cucumber does not just lie on the floor, a balloon might, but it still seemed too random. A cucumber is found in the supermarket or in your fridge and the balloon, maybe at a kids party. But drawing chalk circles at albert heijn or amongst 30 six year old kids on a sugar high also seemed random.

Chalk is an outdoor thing and so is color, luckily. So I went out in my surroundings and documented, with photos, the different objects i saw. I eventually made a book with all my outdoor color observations.

Click here to view it!

It starts with a green dust bin and then travels around helmholtz color system going to a yellow car and so on, until we reach another dust din, but this time blue. The circle has been completed. At the very end of the booklet we see a white cup, white being a mix of all the colors deserved a special place, so there you go white.

 

 

I am very glad i finally got out of my apartment and ended up working outside, because colors outside, or in public, as communication, is a big part of my color system. The colorblindness test that the Young-Helmholtz theory helped develop, makes sure pilots aren’t color blind, so they know what the light signals on the airstrip are trying to say to them. likewise this also goes on in our everyday public; traffic signals, which bin to throw the right trash in and where the best offers are in dirk. which is why i choose orange to be my screen printed color, featured as a signal cone in the book, because it communicates so nicely. thank you orange.

i brought my book home with me for the holidays, my family liked it.


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