Author Archives: Natasha Rieffel

The Chronic Sampler

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Library of Samples…

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Next drawing…




Fragments… so this is an update of the one with all the hanging objects…. talking about the library of samples that us, as units in the diploma school also borrow, extract and share… WIP + version with the start of people…

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Next drawing to follow my sampling landscape…

Collision between the Pruit-Igoe destruction and the intarsia of Urbino.




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So from the feedback it seems the drawings is the best way to talk through my models. I have continued working on the continuum map so as to elaborate on the points of collision in separate drawings.


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Collision Map and Totem…

Decided to stop working on the monolith for now so that there is time to go over the presentation and choreograph which model/drawing comes where and when. image1

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Coming together

so there is lots more polishing and detailing to do. But starting to look like the start of a Totelith.image image

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Making Update

Have the first piece made and rendered with plaster. In process of drying as the plaster is making the card soggy and lose form (and then sanded to make a nice looking cast model.) So waiting to add other objects and materials that come onto it later as they are being printed tomorrow; remote control, headphones beats…etc. Update coming on drawing that goes with it entitled ‘Tools.’

And then onto the next piece.

Plan of action:

Having left to dry under heater it looks to have hardened and once sanded, I think should look pretty object like. So to continue today

– lasercut + 3d print pieces.

– finish details of 1st object ( wood inlay, metal tube, texture)

– make bases for other objects (details for other pieces will be done tomorrow)

– update Storyboard + presentation!

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Update of next version of monolith. At some points the narrative moves through the monolith in a spiral formation and others it jumps from area to another.

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Some pieces can be taken out and explained further in a drawing.

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For example the car window gets taken out the Pruitt-Igor window and gets explained on collage.


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WIP – Monolith – Totem

Spent some time writing the introduction again and figuring out the story of the monolith and its place within the project. –  I am now continuing with the next iteration of the monolith…

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Building the Monolith

DEFINITION: A monolith is a geological feature consisting of a single massive stone or rock, such as some mountains, or a single large piece of rock placed as, or within, a monument or building. Erosion usually exposes the geological formations, which are often made of very hard and solid metamorphic or igneous rock.

- my monolith is made up of many fragments which are only discovered through the narrative, otherwise they are part of the one whole track.

Narrative through the monolith:

The ‘railing’ or jersey barrier becomes one of the ways in which we read Banham’s autopia. It becomes the one object with which we can compare the speed, distance and scale of L.A. Similarly Kurokawa uses the railing as a prop to set himself on the television screen, humanising himself to the audience.

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The prop reads as both the humanising tool in Kurokawa but also as the supporting tool elevating the design, bringing the object to a new level of importance.

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The plinth.

As the plinth elevates to another reading or context, the Truman Show brings the possibility of a new world, a new realm to encounter.

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Tha staircase.

As the staircase connects from one floor to another, the connecting ….

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Working on the ‘WHOLE’


Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 20.19.45Will present first version of totem tomorrow. I think I have abandoned the idea of it being open-able/move-able – no hinges. It just doesn’t work as a ‘totem’ otherwise. Tried a few options, but think Im getting too bogged down in the mechanics of it! I will concentrate on the idea of the whole thing being multi-faceted, but no longer being manipulated when it is in its final form! Also found these lovely things!

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So, have been thinking about the way I construct the WHOLE and what form it takes. Slightly  worried about the random-ness of just putting things together and ending with a weird looking thing (although it has not seemed to bother me previously…)

The final object, assembling all the samples, needs to have a narrative which I construct using the drawings and grains. I was thinking of basing the design around the sculptures we often saw in Mexico City ‘ Arbol de la Vida.’ Even though these were mainly used in a biblical sense, it is interesting to see how they tell the narrative of the theme they are portraying. Allowing me to talk through the model and the spaces created.





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‘Fair Use’

Post-jury comments.

Thought it was a really interesting Jury as it highlighted this interest in this idea of the ‘copyright’ issues surrounding sampling. Had a look over more cases in other fields such as collage, literature and architecture! I think i need to capitalise more on these aspects in the way I deliver the project. The project lies on a ‘blurred line’ between the work of the reference and myself. As Assa said, what is the precise recipe for the sampling process that I am going through?

I am now working on a storyboard for this idea between artefact – space – narrative.

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Artefact: reference, form. (sample) – currently in green foam, should these be carefully analysed and presented as precise fragments taken from the origin. The decision to take specific pieces must be underlined as it is in music, with each time frame being very precise. – does the fact that you take specific pieces count as ‘fair use’ in the sense that they are no longer attached to their original reference.

Space: scale, material (distortion)

Narrative: This brings the context, time, scene/theme. (re-appropriation)

As the drawings start to do, each artefact is placed into a new narrative, bringing the entire ‘track’ of the year into one continuum of sampling.

Putting together White Book starting with the sampling landscape…

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Also, finally found the reference I have been looking for quite some time. Its the Brazilian architect Vazio. This is the project ‘ultimate skyscraper’, a bit of architectural sampling. Or maybe this would be considered piling. Its a story of Sao Paolo that tried to empty itself into one building. – Felix? In any case, its great!



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Esquivel is considered the king of a style of late 1950s-early 1960s quirky instrumental pop known today as lounge music. Esquivel’s musical style was highly idiosyncratic, and although elements sound like his contemporaries, many stylistic traits distinguished his music and made it instantly recognizable, including exotic percussion, wordless vocals, virtuoso piano runs, and exaggerated dynamic shifts. He used many jazz-like elements; however, other than his piano solos, there is no improvisation, and the works are tightly, meticulously arranged by Esquivel himself, who considered himself  a perfectionist as a composer, performer, and recording artist.


Interesting stuff! Found quite a few texts that I will print out for bus reading!


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Working through the White book




Parallel to working on the factory, scale etc. drawings, I am trying to figure out the way i introduce the grains in the white book.

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Main interest lies in the process of design in Mexico? To what extent do different fragments pose weight on a project: culture, activity, politics, environment, light, colour. What becomes the outstanding fragments that are multiplied in the city. They can be found at different scales, but they are a key part which defines Mexican design. If Banham reads L.A through the car, or Kisho’s ideas are read through the camera screen, Urbino’s life is through the intarsia of the studio, how should one read Mexico? or what should one read through?

Dip9ium travel to Mexico, exploring the city through its many fragments. Their readings are stitched together through the …. of Mexico City.

Very much looking forward to seeing some of Luis Barragan work. In terms of sampling, it looks very interesting with the mix of forms, colours, use of light. The framing of the views and forms.

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Studio research and questions…


Having read a few of their texts, for example ‘Against Methods.’

Our architectural projects always start with an anarchic series of intuitive explorations.

This is super interesting in terms of what we are discussing in our own work. My question for them would be how do they pick and choose the beginnings of a project? Working with the clients’ interest and your aims for the project, what becomes the fragments that you want to underline or accentuate in Mexico/ in your work.

Frida Escobedo:

Frida’s work has been used multiple times as architectural identity of Mexico. How does one combine all fragments, history, cultures of Mexico? The ‘collective identity’ through mirrors and changing borders and reflections, suggests a way in which Frida finds a way to discuss ‘the continuum’ of Mexico and identity through her work.


I enjoy their philosophy points, one of which is ‘…strive to discover a narrative specific to each project.’ If we are arriving in the middle of project which searches for a continuum between one fragment, sample, form, from another. How do they find a way to build their projects through their own continuum? Do the many narratives of each project fall under one umbrella of their office? Is their ‘a continuum’ which strings their projects together?

Moye & Zeller:

Touching worldwide projects. Their attention to surrounding vs the built architecture seems carefully designed and discussed. Wether through the sharing of space between artists and work space in the Arena Mexico or the natural environment in Helsinki with the art museum. The architecture is designed to create a smooth boundary between two worlds. What becomes the important worlds that are connected? How is ‘landscape’ defined in your work? (is it the surrounding vs the project or the surrounding with the project within)

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Update with colour + choreography WIP


– land of choreogrpahy: these potentially become animated and get lifted into the sorting area. (need to figure out what would be the ‘artboard’ / green thing for this landscape)

– need objects imprinted on walls, sticking out of walls…etc.



and now onto the next one so that I can start to see how they look together

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Working set of drawings into presentation WIP

Going for the next version of the drawing… still need to add in the artboard etc.

New composition of window view, signage.

attempt 2

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Sample drawing…UPDATE


(First thing first, i need to figure out some difference in aesthetic between the artboard of the model and the ‘stitch’ around.  this is the base for one drawing of a puzzle )

A collage within a collage/ an art board within an artboard. The stitching of the samples becomes the area of design. wther designing through speed, choreography or time, the stitches becomes new worlds in themselves.

A layering of processes to create distorted manipulations of fragments.

I start with the mechanical process of SORTING, this becomes a filtering of elements which conclude with a final form and model, capturing the fragments. An assembly line of design.

Physical assembly of the sampled world.


Next drawing becomes stitched onto this one, but discuss another theme of the design process of the sampled landscape…

For Friday, have version 1 of this panel (with textures, renderings…), and base of the next panel, for discussion!

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Changing medium

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Working on the stitches between the samples. Right now this is the kisho vs banham sample which should then move into the next drawing. Update of whole drawing coming.Screen Shot 2016-03-14 at 13.42.36

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scaling the models

Possibilities of what the sampler allows… parallel discussion over multiple scales.Screen Shot 2016-03-08 at 12.57.39 Screen Shot 2016-03-08 at 12.57.47

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still working on video

ok, so here is a little sneak peek of video. The sound you hear on this video is not the final sound so ignore it for now.

After a bit of a set back on sunday when I experienced major model sabotage!!!! Walked into the room where I was filming and  some of green models where in pieces. Anyway, … grrr, i just can’t imagine who would have done that :( …. the video is on the way. Should be done by tonight so that tomorrow I can fix models and prep for presentation.


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Video in process

1. Video in process…

2. Really not sure what kind of mood the video will be? any directions? Right now i am working with this sort of sound but perhaps its a bit too aggressive in comparison to the shots? This sound should be with the start of the sampler wheel, the idea is that as each video/ fragment is revealed the sound gets increasingly bombarded. Perhaps the video speeds up as the models keep turning and we journey through the sampled landscape. Starting slow with the collage and ending with an ‘overload of sound and objects.’

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3. Working on the voice for the intro text:

Today’s architectural project lies embedded within a landscape of sampling. Our work, ideas, forms and conversations are created from the constant aggregation of references. Wether we actively search for the ‘right’ project to inform our own, or passively relate one idea to a another, we are constantly piling the samples onto our working desk. The ‘new’ becomes a mere distortion or manipulation of a past, present or future project, it sits within the continuum of the sampling process. Referencing and sampling become the instrument for production. 

A collage within a collage, the architect extracts fragments, leaving them with an infinite number of meanings, readings and context. Their insertion onto one’s own personal desk space become a subjective re-appropriation of their utility and the way they will inform the architect’s own ideas. The architect does not sit alone at the desk, but surrounded by a world of samples, a bombardment of references, a landscape to navigate.

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Intro of the Intro


The title scene, storyboarding the screen shots.


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collage (Update: filming the collage)

Thinking of starting the intro with the making of a collage of the references i will use to inform the ‘big picture’ of the project. Will do a first take tomorrow with a voice over of the text I have been working on today.

Storyboard of intro:


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On camera.

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Have a series of samples from my sampler, now its time to edit and bring the landscape together through the film.

(Had to reduce quality for blog)


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Filming Day…

So, I am going to test out filming as a medium to tell the narrative of the models. I have my story board set-up…. (these are the scenes which i hope to get and edit today)


Parallel to this have been working on drawings for the white book to introduce and set-up the project.

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Models gone a bit creepy…

So I had the aim of modelling stalactites, but they ended up looking bit creepy and I’m going to say hand-like (Mark please don’t comment!)

Currently working on a large collage planning the landscape.

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Stitching Voids

By constructing the samples one must design the voids that stitch the landscape together.


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Movement, scale, position & Form

So here are the models I am currently working on, these should talk of my ‘four ecologies.’





The models will take on a size which allows the viewer to physically move around and discover these ecologies. Next version of the architectural sampler!!

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Been playing around in an arduino workshop with a certain Diego, from Mexico City! He works particularly with sound and arduino and translating music samples into spacial design. Thought it would be useful to see what he teaches and does. Yesterday we discussed the idea that the green foam models should somehow force the viewer to move around to capture the view of the different samples; scale, position, form and movement. The arduino is interesting in terms of its possibilities to force the viewer to move to capture the sound samples that accompany the models. The sensors become embedded into the model perhaps? For now the arduino will stay a side note and perhaps come into play for the second iteration of the models. For now I will work on the 4 set of integrated models. But, here is the fun of arduino!


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Relationships Update



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Relationships: navigating through my sampling world

Models to start to describe the relationships discussed between samples and how i must start distorting the model to allow for the relationships to be described through the ‘art of mixing’ diagrams. These diagrams act as a lens through which certain parts of the samples are highlighted/ in focus.

This particular piece is still in progress, but wanted to illustrate the idea behind the set.

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Models and views to be looked through…IMG_4598

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Mobile Sounds – studying the role of the pivot in sampling

So, I have been thinking about the ‘pivot’ aspect of the models and how this can be more designed. right now the pivot works as a singular movement which allows the samples to be re-read or distorted within the carved world. But what if the pivot responded to the three dimensions of the samples as defined: choreography, orientation & time.So I am experimenting with mobiles!

The mobile movement is designed according to weight and shape of the objects added onto them. i am using the ‘mixing of art’ diagrams to study the weight of each section of sounds. Right now the mobile is taken perhaps a bit too literal, but i think its going somewhere! (

Actual model coming up, just want to film it at home for shadows…

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Sample Sketches

So with some more answers to my questions it is getting increasingly interesting to realise how precise the work of sampling is. Each sound is designed to perfection before being added in the track. The art of mixing was a way for them to visually respond to my questions…

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I am working on a few sketch models to test these drawings in volumes…

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Collaboration: Platform & Vocals

Building up the ground work of sampling knowledge and the design process behind the track.


Music Sampling Questions


Also cool website looking at genre….

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Meeting the London School of Sound

So I have been in contact with the Music Manager at the London School of Sound in Clapham, London and met him today for a tour of the school and also a interview/chat around the subject of sampling. It was super useful to get insight into the design process of music sampling. He took me around different studios explaining the different sounds they create, but more importantly explained the step by step process of how a music producer comes up with new sounds and distorts sounds. Will upload edited interview (right now it is my direct typing which is probably all over the place) , i would like to explain what the explained through drawings for the white book.


Interview with Aaron, Music Manager at London School of Sound

We have separate rooms each creating its own sound textures, the club-looking room will make a more clubby sound, whereas the classical room will be more adapted to the live performance of classical instruments, piano, strings, etc. The more creative you are with the design and size of the room the more creative sounds we can create. For one music production session the musicians played in separate rooms to create the best of each sound, however could be kept altogether by the music producer.

So if we are looking at Dr Dre, he would have worked mainly with records that he liked the feel of. He would have been looking for a specific sound to recreate. So usually he would choose 4 bars, which had a bass, drum, backing, but probably no vocals. Maybe a part of the intro, a clean part of the record. He would then put it into his board and record it through a 4 track recorder onto a cassette. The idea is then to loop the 4 bars and then he starts to layer other sound on top. Maybe from the same track. He probably chose a sax or horn, a part of the music where they could stab through the loop. By the end he has got a melody, bass, drums. For hip hop the most important part is now the vocals. All the other sounds are just the platform for the vocals. For Dr Dre, the vocals would have been very important.

So sampling is a great way to create new sounds and the aim is always trying to figure a new sound, music that nobody has ever heard of. Before travelling and bringing back sounds that nobody had heard of allowed for DJ to create new grooves, making them successful. Today that is very hard, especially with the internet and the amount of sampling going on, it is very hard to create an unheard sound. Today many people try and recreate samples. You will have a sample with a drum and bass and the music producer will perhaps keep the drum and get a bass player to play the music live, record it and play it on top of the drums. Off course the original sample artist needs to be credited as you are still stealing the fragment of music, but that is one way for producers to make a new sound. Playing the sample live or with a new instrument or different studio. The thing with sampling is that it is so precise, everything about it is controlled and listened to. A music producer is looking to replace as many things as possible to create that new sound he is looking for.

The laws of sampling are huge and can be very confusing. Some pieces of music which are direct copies, where only one word is changed can be fine with the law whereas Daft Punk who have taken a piece and reversed it, pitched it, made it unrecognisable can lose a legal battle. It is a huge subject and very hard to understand. The Amen Break at the time was an amazing drummer that sat in a studio and had 7 seconds to make a beat. At the time it is important to know that tapes were extremely expensive compared to now. I can record hundreds of projects on one 35 GBP hard rive, but a tape was like 250GBP a minute or something. So now people have made millions based on one 7 second beat that was sampled, looped and placed into a track. The drummer never got any money for that breakbeat. In fact I think there was a crowd fund project where they asked the public to donate money to the drummer and they ended up giving him 5000GBP. In any case sampling laws are a big subject and something which seems to change depending on every situation.

So a student here Andrea, who is making a lot of trap music will have some very key elements to keep to his music. He will have an 808 drum machine, high hats, something like a 32 or 64th, we like to call it a high hat machine gun. He will also have a melody that repeated, chords, the chords have to be interesting so if he is using a simple piano chord he has to add something, usually that will be something on a string texture. And finally he will have some sound effects, like gun shots.

If we are looking like a big famous artist and music prodcuer, someone like Amy Winehouse and Marc Ronson. Robson will usually ask Amy what she listen to, what she thinks she sounds like, who she wants to sound like. Its all about finding the style for the final track and recreating that with the artists. For example Leon Bridges has the most motown sounding tracks and yet you look at the 2014 copyright certificate and you realise he has used everything from the type of tape for recording to the type of microphone to recreate the style and sounds of motown.

Sampling and distortion, well the sky’s the limit really. We could sit here all day and find ways to crete new sounds, i mean that is the aim. You could play it out a speaker and record it on different tapes. You could improvise with live artist. For example get a drummer to copy the exact sample and then get him to add something a little new over and over again until you get the right sound.

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Model in progress, what is the green?

Model is in progress…

Parallel to working on the model, i would like to prepare some drawings suggesting what the ‘green’ could be? Sketching landscapes and removing samples….Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 20.09.53 Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 20.10.00

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Green Foam Invasion

Green foam has overtaken… living and breathing green foam… literally have green foam particles in my throat!

But first part of model coming together…

The model works through the ‘four ecologies':

the cut, the scale, the joint and the plug-in. ( when i talk about my project it is no longer about the grains themselves but how they inform my process of design aka sampling)

The model challenges the way one can think about sampling, not only in music but in architectural design.

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(in musical terms: “overtly insists on the repetitive nature of the music, by abruptly skipping it back to another beginning which we have already heard.”)

in my terms: when one goes through the design process of taking a piece of a reference from one setting to another, it creates a new reading. A new understanding of what the track could be. The ‘cut’ is not different in form however can be re-read when placed in a new environment, material, scale….

So these are the beginning of the cuts. The pieces work in different places creating a new track, the model re-works itself into a new sound, form and design.

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Casting, Modelling and Storyboarding…

The model for the jury should introduce a narrative into the world. The process of designing becomes the narrative. Whilst the ‘grains’ or ‘samples’ inform the world and its physical form, it is the extracted form that becomes the project. The cast form enables a new continuum between sample and design, creating a new sample itself. The pieces work alone, however their collaboration constructs the new narrative.

Dr Dre becomes the joints that pull the samples together into a final piece. HARMONY

Banham’s speed of view gives the PACE. ( studying musical roads and translating sounds into physical forms that can be played) – the exact speed and certain physical shape gives a certain wanted sound, when going too fast or too slow this is not the desired sound.

The tension between Pruitt Igoe’s past and present leaves a lingering SHADOW. Jencks discusses its past aims and present failure.

The others are slowly coming together, these terms define the way I design the pieces and their interaction with one another, leading to a larger final piece.

I have now done some tests of casting and still need to work out the best way of getting the perfect surface I am looking for ( as the pieces should be just as good sitting on a table alone, as they do altogether, for the sample idea to be properly conveyed)

The storyboard (WIP) builds the different ways one zooms in and slowly zooms back out to the entire narrative.






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Volumes and Surface

So I’m starting with quick moulds and volumes of the ‘desk design’ talked about last tutorial. Right now I’m working with foam and laser cut shapes to imprint/ cut out/ add and subtract forms to have tests of volumes that would fit together to form mini-worlds of samples, left for the piece of music to decode.

Photos of other models have been taken and are in process of being taken apart and put back together…. but its sooooo hard to get that perfect photo!

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Turn-table Animation begins….

So, the ‘desk’ or area of design as mentioned in previous post is still being explored. I am thinking of how the architectural sampler allows us to filter the information we collect for the purpose of design. Every step of the process becomes a distortion or manipulation of the previous step. The idea of the table turning and the sample becoming increasingly layered and complex in form and scale. Here is a short animation of of what i mean by the ‘turn-table,’ one side starts in 3D and translates to 2D, the 2D is then re-mixed into 3D etc. This becomes an endless cycle of sampling…



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White Book, Audio questions?

So, will bring the printed version of the white book on Tuesday. Thinking about how it should work since there is a substantial amount of work which uses audio or animation media. Right now I am thinking that the white book works like an ‘audio book,’ in the sense that each page has a track number which can be found on the USB which is given with the white book. Any thoughts? ( not sure whether there should be printed screenshots of the audio (ableton programme) in the white book?

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2D + 3D

Update project summary ( I have not yet found a way to take away the word ‘grain’ yet, but it will come – see BOLD area for newest edition)

The project takes the grains on a musical adventure of sampling. The grains divide, mulitply, add or subtract themseleves from the database of forms, creating the architectural fragments for design. Just as sampling has exploited the use of the found material in the artists environment, the project challenges the way a similiar approach can be translated into a tool for design. The musical fragments have qualities which should be implemented on the architectural fragment, that is;




As a musical piece takes the listener on a journey through different sounds and rhythms, the architectural sampler should allow for the possibility of different readings. These readings are as close to or as distorted from the sampled element itself. The samples pass through a filter which the architect controls.

If sampling should be a tool for design, then how do we decide what is allowed to be imprinted on our design and what do we let slip through our fingers. Forms, ideas, colours, inspirations, scales all form just part of the bombardment of samples that we must consider when designing. The architectural sampler is no longer a layering of ideas but a way to create hierarchy between samples, this being translated into the 2D and 3D architecture. The drawing of a design no longer exsists on a singular plane but is a timed journey through the 2D and 3D design, an animated choreography.

desk idea

Small animation coming up…


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Sampling Worlds

Hello! Happy New Year!

Back into the project we go…

Model the worlds in the fragments itself and in-between. The architecture of the fragments gets lost in a world of sampling, where one fragment is used to fit in the entire. A fragment does not stand alone, but in a link between the past and future, scale and material, time and space. The fragment can be as recognisable or unrecognisable as it fits in the world.

Section of the worlds coming…

Collage is the medium, time is the factor which allows us o move through this world.

Sampling is my viewport (what I include and throw out)

World Fragments

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A step from music to space…….

What does sampling do for me? For design? For architecture? Sampling in music gives possibilities for an artist to take the breakbeat, vocal, sound effect, lyric… from the minute to the entire piece, for the fabrication of their own design. Through programmes such as Ableton, one is able to build up layers of information from all sort of backgrounds. Creating a potentially completely random agglomeration of stuff! This ‘stuff’ might be music one likes, things that just fit in the rhythm or useful tracks to construct the piece. The layers overlap, mask, exaggerate certain sounds, some might end very distinct and recognisable, others distorted to a whole new music.
Having used the sampler as a method for this random layering of actions/ moments/ interpretations, the next step is to take this further in finding a way to sample in architecture. This does not mean eliminating the music, however it does mean finding a way to translate the methods of music fabrication for spacial design.
I am using sampling as a form of production. The grains are reduced to views that are used for these models. Each model should sample a minimum of two grains,using one common element. This piece may vary in scale, material..etc, but it should allow for a continuum in the model itself. The model should be viewed from two-three angles. One of these angles gives the new reading. This common element allows us to switch from the crude representations of each grain to a new version of what this element should be.
My aim with these models is to explore the musical ‘fragment’ in terms of a scaled element or spacial quality.
We have so far:
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Banham – Kisho : railing
Banham – Pruitt & Igoe : frame
Urbino – Pruitt & Igoe : corridor
But, need more…..! The more I have the funner it will be enter my world of sampling!
(The breakdown video is continuing to progress parallel to work on these models.)
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Sample Breakdown II

So, I’m trying to build up the CLEAR sample breakdown of N.W.A Straight Outta Compton. This should be able to explain the methods of sampling as a set-up for the project

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Sample Breakdown WIP

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Reducing to Samples

Having looked at the work on the elements I felt reducing the grains down to basic studies allows for samples to be created. Previously I have been looking to create an entire piece, but actually it is probably more interesting to start from the basic and build up (duh…)  Here is Kisho’s reduction on the theme of ‘Ground.’

For each grain there is a reduction on each theme, so that I end up with an encyclopaedia of drawings, musical notations and sound to use for my symphony.



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Multi media

I have made a first try of a combination between physical model, drawing and video (sound) to create the ‘sampler.’ The sampler becomes the combination of all these medias. An overlay of the methods for design of the sampler and the sampled.Screen Shot 2015-11-30 at 18.08.22 (2)


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Symphony 33

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New piece of music coming on Friday.

Symphony 33

Composer: Pruitt & Igoe


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Graphic Scores: Tying Up the Samples

So from the lecture I took the main idea of synesthesia. The condition in which one type of simulation evokes the sensation of another. For example when one hears a sound it produces a visualisation of a colour or image. If the sound is able create a specific fiction depending on the listener than the visual score of the music becomes a subjective reading of the sampled sound. Just as the video or stills taken from the visual sampler leaves the performer open to interpretation, the score leads to a way of reading the sound. I have been brainstorming this idea of material + form + story, all under the umbrella of sound. How can I start to draw what these mean and how do they translate into a sampled form. As I concentrate on the construction of the fiction of my grains, I use the structural elements of musical notation to control elements of how the performer reads the score. Here are some graphic scores for Pruitt-Igoe soundtrack.

graphic score 2 graphic score

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Visual Culture Series: Afrofuturism

I came across a lecture at Goldsmiths that looked at the fictional world of Afrofuturism  and the powers of image and sound revealed within artist work. Navigating visual, cultural and sonic spaces. The importance of echo and reverberation being a vital part of how we hear, feel and visualise sound. Here was an image showing the different frequencies needed to be felt by each part of your body. (French scientist research)


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Music for the Metabolists

I have been researching references and finding ways of further understanding the methodologies that mixing engineers (artists) design the music. I thought the comment at my jury about the way I translate my samples into architectural designing tools is the way forward for the project. Just as musicians design the breakbeats, drums, base, melodies (the layers of information or midi), I want to design a temporal architecture using these layers. I have contacted the music engineers office on Charlotte Street that heads the music engineering studio of Goldsmith University to get the possibility of entering the world of sampling. Perhaps getting the opportunity to sit in on a live recording session ( have not yet tackled the ‘live’ version of sampling that Evan was talking about, but I think he is right in saying that there is a disconnect between the ‘sample track’ version of my music and the live jamming of my visual sampler.) By getting the opportunity to learn on methods of live recording I can put more emphasis on these unexpected moments of the sampler.

For now, here is a music group that works using recorded sound for the creation of an album exploring the themes and aesthetics of the 1960’s experimental Japanese futurist architecture group The Metabolists.

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Distorted Kisho

I am in process of making the next version of the sampler with the different layers relating to each grain. Here is Kisho + Urbino married into one grain. Going from the distorted multi layer view of Kisho and his constructed world of television. When the jury are sat infront of the sampler, they see Kisho in a television, rather than distorted shapes. I, the ‘sample manipulator,’ can sample in and out objects, different versions of Kisho and text.

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These grains leave an ‘imprint’ into my newly formed world. The world is formed in my head by the research and gathering and filtering of information. Similarly my physical world is created by the ‘effects’ of my physical grains being sampled in and out of the sampler with the combination of the structured sound.
Some grains are sampled from different angles reflecting the theme I pick. For example Urbino allows me to go from a very flat sampling space into a completely volumetric space. The sampler no longer becomes the drawing you look at from the top, but perhaps is readable from multiple angles. The samples collapse into my world leaving me with a potentially completely distorted scale, form, space, use. Just like the starting point of the grains research and the distorted way that the audio sampler goes about filtering sounds, the physical sample is a completely subjective formation of my world.
Important to look at both extreme scales for all my ideas. How they change/ are affected by my audio ‘effect.’
I have made an attempt to model the world through the use of the sampler.
The grain is no longer necessary at the end as they have created the spring board from which I continue with my project. As a sampling device it is vital to note the different ways I sample sounds and translate that into my physical sampler. This does not need to be too literal, but themes are useful for explanation.
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Sampling Elements

So for the past days I have been bringing together elements that I would like to sample in the physical device. Here are a collection of them… they explore the window, isolation, looping…. an amalgamation of the grains sampled into one.


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So, here are the description of three tracks that I am working on in terms of drawing, sound and performance. They are each based on a certain theme which I draw on multiple layers for each grains. The layers are sampled in audio format and drawing for the sampling device. I will continue putting together the sampler for pin-up performance tomorrow.

Track 1 : to Failure. 

This track starts in the key of Minoru Yamsaki’s vision of the Pruitt-Igoe project, St Louis, USA. The song begins on an up tempo beat, translating the positive vision of slum clearance and introduction of a new ‘luxurious’ setting for the communitities being relocated. The track is slowly set into minor-harmony as the political reading of the time is sampled in.  The track then starts to overlay the readings of failure in the multiple grains using the main beat of destruction as a theme for the sampling of midi files. The final reading should be one of complete failure and destruction.

Advisory: this should not be pleasant for the ears.


Track 2 : the Backdrop. 

This track starts in the key of Kisho Kurokawa’s tv set scene. The controlled setting that allows the music to drastically change from one beat to another, from one key to another and form a remix of scenes. The backdrop becomes a reading of a layered world of narrative and extreme control. What one sees and hears becomes specific to the protagonist and his ideas. Although ones sees traces of all settings, there is only one final image.

Track 3 : Distortion. 

This track starts in the key of Dr Dre…. ( description on the way)


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The Layering Instrument

The second prototype of the device. Should be able to play around with this one tomorrow to further think about how the instrument works in relation  to the sampled sounds and the physical layering.


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Sample Track Trial I

So here is the first sampling track that I have put together using Ableton programme. Today I continue the study with the instrument/device and go for the second prototype that can be used for further discussion later in the week.

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Building the Continuum cont.

Thanks for your responses and references, was very helpful!

So I have arrived at a point where I try and bring my ideas into a device. This could be called a ‘new version’ of sampling the layers of my grains. By using Ableton as a basis for sound sampling and drawn layers for the visual samples I am able to bring all of them into an instrument. The instrument is layered interpretations of musical terms; Midi, Beats (offbeats), transpose (key), breakbeats..

The final compilation brings a new version of the grains…. a whole new grain is created! What is the “turning point” that brings to a new grain?

I will have the first prototype of the device and sound sampling for Tuesday.

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Drawing layers:

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Building the Continuum

Following on from yesterday I have been delving into the idea of ‘language as form,’ as a way to bring the grains together.  These are initial thoughts, imagery will follow.

The grains are all struck by a moment, event, location, realisation which leads them to create a movement/ a turn in the way the public reads architecture, politics, music, cities, amongst others. Their ideas are then transmitted to the public through different medium, or one could argue, a form of language. If language is a form of communication. Then the grains will use a particular way to resample language for their particular use. The construction of the language engages with many layers each touching on different themes and ways of language formation. Whether this is through the Kurokawa’s manufacturing of image, Dre’s distortion of music and politics or Jencks’ naming of a event. The language they form create a new understanding/reading for the public to engage with.

As an idea I have been looking into this idea of sampling and creation of the music (a form of language.) I have been playing around with Ableton programme- this could be an initial medium of overlay? If I am able to overlay sounds and images in a music piece or video, i can then translate this to a visual form.

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Initial layers and definitions:

Dr Dre started his musical career with an E-mu SP-1200 changing forever the widespread influence of music sampling and its often resulting controversies. distortion, copying, re-copying, rhythm, breakbeats

Architect Kisho Kurokawa, founder of the Metabolism, reivented the Japanese modern man and hosted a TV talk show for 14 years. manufacturing

Reyner Banham records his thoughts on tape while driving though LA. These recordings become his Four Ecologies. analysing, decoding, narrative, transcription

The Duke of Urbino injured an eye in a jousting tournament, he had the bridge of his nose removed to improve his field of vision. He translated this flattened form of viewing into the intersia of his studiolo. collection, perspective

1972, Charles Jencks declares the death of modernism as Minoru Yamaskai’s Pruitt-Igoe is demolished. naming, collapsing


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The Device…

Following on from the tutorials on Tuesday the language which i use is important in finding the tool to illustrate my ‘subject of interest.’ The words have different meanings and consequences:

Mirror: 1) show a reflection of. 2) corresponds to 3) (mirroring) something that gives a minutely faithful representation, image, or idea of something else. 4) a pattern for imitation; exemplar

Turning point: a time at which a decisive change in a situation occurs, especially one with beneficial results.

Reaction: something done, felt, or thought in response to a situation or event.

Turning point

Each grain uses a different medium that fabricates a subjective reading of the event (pre ‘turning point’) The public than read this through the eyes of the fabricator. The ‘reality’ no longer exists in their work, rather a distorted reality that is consumed by the public. The question lies into how we read these different fabrications. Can one overlay the readings to form a newly fabricated world.

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Compton through the eyes of the lyrics

So as you may have already seen with the ‘Big Ben’ experiment, I have been entering into the realm of creation through what the messages we are told, hear, see. I have illustrated Compton through picked out lyrics of the album N.W.A  Straight Outta Compton. Creating my own plan through the way the artists ‘document’ the area.Plan Compton3



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Can you illustrate what you believe is behind Big Ben?

On Sunday I went to find out what people imagined would be behind the famous Big Ben. My interest was to find how people react when being asked about something which is never really questioned. We are constantly being thrown images of Big Ben in newspapers, postcards, books, art… But what about behind the image? Some people took this very literally, whilst others drew animals, objects, events that represented the tower and what it has been used to depict. The discussion will continue tomorrow and I will bring together how this has informed my themes and grain research.Sketches big ben

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Form follows Function: The Fork



The Fork:

The shape of the fork acts as an extension of the hand, helping for the consumption of food.



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Lebbeus Woods vs 12 Monkeys

Lebbeus Woods illustrates his ‘Neomechanical Tower, (Upper) Chamber’ in 1987.

Terry Gilliam directs a film called 12 Monkeys, 1995.

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Followed by the release of the film, Woods files a lawsuit against the film company based on the similarities between his own illustration and the stage set of the torture scene in the movie 12 Monkeys. The court decided that the footage be removed from the film. Lebbeus Woods allowed for it to remain, content with the financial settlement.

Lebbeus comments that it is not the act of copying which made him file the lawsuit but more due to the interpretation used for scene.






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Kisho Kurokawa: Superstar

Japan’s Architectural Superstar

Kisho Kurokawa both the “man in the dark suit and the pop star.”

Architect, TV figure, Political member, Writer… the list goes on. He seems to have touched all backgrounds in reaching fame and producing a heroic image of himself through the creation of the Metabolist Movement. Exploration on this unexpected character continues tomorrow!

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Dr Dre


Dr Dre aka Dr J (Andre Romelle Young)

Dr Dre started his musical career with an E-mu SP-1200 changing forever the widespread influence of music sampling and is resulting controversies.

N.W.A released their album “Straight Outta Compton” (1988) marking the arrival of a new genre – gansta rap. Their songs were based on music sampling techniques using the E-mu SP-1200 aswell as emphasis on the lyrics. The song “F*** tha Police” caused controversy as it explored tensions between black youth and the police, it was thought to incite violence. The FBI sent a warning letter to the record company.

In 1989, Australian radio “Triple J” had been playing “F*** tha Police” for about 6 months before being banned by the Australian Broadcasting Coporation. The staff went on strike playing N.W.A “Express Yourself” continuously for 24 hours (approx. 360 times)

This initial research brings up intrigue into the ‘culture of sampling.’ What are the legal implications behind sampling? The research continues…

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