ARC 328R / ARC 380C.3 
Instructor: Danelle Briscoe

This seminar will explore the concepts of material ‘sensation’ and technological ‘reason’, as they overlap in architectural practice. In contrasting these two concepts, we will neither celebrate nor denounce sensuous empiricism, but aim to gain a deeper understanding of its definition, potential as concept and production in relation to emerging technologies. The semester will involve the development and experimentation of fabrication outputs, based on readings and discussion of material aesthetics and effects. The course seeks to investigate approaches derived from parametric capabilities cross-referenced with the rules of CNC production and material logic. This course will be in part self-directed as well as discussion based and tutorial driven. In the second half of the semester, the group of students is required to collectively manufacture a 1:1 architectural component system and document its related design scenario.

In an effort to investigate the potential of the often-disregarded native Texas tree, Ashe Juniper (Juniperus ashei) or “cedar,” this year our material research focuses on experimentation with roughhewn cedar branches for structure. Multiple dependencies and factors will be quantified by a Building Information Modelling (BIM) platform. With reference to a geometrically rigid Zollinger system, a free-form wood matrix will utilize variability of cedar to function eventually as load- bearing trellis or pavillion.




Spring 2023