UBC Graduate Research

Material Aware : A Speculative Kitchen Quartet Nazar, Roxanna 2019-12-18

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Material Aware: A Speculative Kitchen QuartetbyRoxanna NazarB.A. in Political Science, University of British Columbia, 2014Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirementsfor the Degree of Master of Architecturein The Faculty of Graduate StudiesSchool of Architecture and Landscape Architecture,Architecture ProgramCommittee:Thena Tak (Chair)Blair Satterfield (Internal)Roy Cloutier (External)Nicole Sylvia (External)We accept this report as conforming to the required standardThe University of British ColumbiaDecember 2019 ©Thena TakBlair SatterfieldAbstract As we go about our lives, seldom do we stop to think meaningfully about the materials that surround us. It is not often that we question the origins of our countertops or flooring, especially in a way that critically assesses how their production and consumption shape our broader lives, spaces, landscapes, politics and rituals. The origin stories of everyday domestic materiality are largely glossed over, receding into the background, hidden or consciously considered out of our purview. When we do pause to think about where or how something was made we are met with a complex web of actions, events, landscapes, people, and labour, that is difficult to untangle. How do we begin to grapple with this complex reality? How do we begin to connect this global obscure with our own domestic lives?  In short how do we acquire a more critical material awareness of our everyday surroundings? This project hopes to disrupt the often apolitical material domestic realm by speculating on the complex narratives embedded within its material makeup. Through the use of design fiction this thesis will argue for the adoption of a multidimensional relationship with materials that takes into account the social, political, and ecological imperatives shaping both our everyday lives and our global systems. At its heart this project is one of speculative visual storytelling that weave together a collection of thoughts and observations meant to question our relationship with the domestic material. ii iiiTable of ContentsTable of Contentsiv vMake New with Different KitchenMake New with Nothing KitchenPrecedents/InfluenceBibliography Illustrative CreditsAppendix Abstract  List of FiguresAcknowledgmentMaterial Aware: A Speculative Kitchen QuartetThesis Statement Finding The Global in The DomesticThe Global Obscure as HyperobjectA Relatable Global Obscure: The Familiar DomesticSite of Speculation: The Kitchen The Kitchen - PlanThe Kitchen - ElevationsVisual Itemization - MillworkVisual Itemization - WallsVisual Itemization - HardwareMaterial Palette Index Millwork Composition ChartMethod of Speculation: The Drawn NarrativeMake New with NewMake New with Less Make New with DifferentMake New with NothingMake New with New NarrativeMake New with Less Narrative Make New with Different Narrative Make New with Nothing NarrativeMake New with New KitchenMake New with Less Kitchen103107112134135138iiiviviii246121517192021222324252729313335375165799599List of FiguresFigure 1. Assorted Series of Photographs by Edward BurtynskyFigure 2. Assorted Collections by Birthe Piontek. Figure 3. Site of Speculation: The KitchenFigure 4. Fig 4. The Kitchen PlanFigure 5. The Kitchen - North ElevationFigure 6. The Kitchen - South ElevationFigure 7. The Kitchen - East ElevationFigure 8. The Kitchen - North Foyer ElevationFigure 9. Visual Itemization - MillworkFigure 10. Visual Itemization - WallsFigure 11. Visual Itemization FlooringFigure 12. Visual Itemization - HardwareFigure 13. Material Palette IndexFigure 14. Millwork Composition ChartFigure 15. Millwork Origin MapFigure 16. Melamine Foil CompositionFigure 17. World I - Make New with NewFigure 18. World II - Make New with LessFigure 19. World IV - Make New with DifferentFigure 20. World V - Make New with NothingFigure 21. Axonometric Speculative Kitchen QuartetFigure 22. Axonometric Make New with New KitchenFigure 23. Axonometric Make New with Less KitchenFigure 24. Axonometric Make New with Different KitchenFigure 25. Axonometric Make New with Nothing KitchenFigure 26. Rachel Whiteread, Ghost, 1990, Plaster on steel frame 106 x 140 x 125” Figure 27. Rachel Whiteread, Untitled (One Hundred Spaces), 1995, Resin (100 units) Dimensions variableFigure 28. Tschumi, Bernard. Manhattan Transcripts.1978.Figure 29. Matta-Clark, Gordon. Conical Intersect. 1975.Figure 30. McGuire, Richard. Here. 2014.Figure 31. Wang & Soderstrom. Tides. 2019Figure 32. Scenes in and around the Capital,17th century, Japan, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.Figure 33. Ugo Gattoni, Bicycle, 2012Figure 34. The Kitchen’s Origin - 3 Panels.Figure 35. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings.Figure 36. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings.Figure 37. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Millwork.Figure 38. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Flooring.Figure 39. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Hardware.Figure 40. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Walls.Figure 41.Origin Series - The Water CoolerFigure 42. Origins Series - The Concert HallFigure 43. Origins Series - The Dinner TableFigure 44. Origins Series - The Grocery Store.Figure 45. The Party Series - 1Figure 46. The Party Series - 2Figure 47. The Party Series - 3Figure 48. The Party Series - 4Figure 49. Assorted Sketches - Set 1Figure 50. Assorted Sketches - Set 2vi viiAcknowledgment A huge thank you to my committee Thena Tak, Blair Satterfield, Roy Cloutier and Sylvia Nicole, for their open minds, wise words, kindness, and good humor. Thank you also,to Erin Finnerty, Jessica McDonald, Karen Lai, and especially Katie Dolphin for their help in bringing this project together. to Brit Naylor for being my buttress.and finally to Mac Page for everything. “ I twirl a pencil—a magic wand lathed from incense cedar— between my fingers. The willow bark in the aspirin. Even the metal of my lamp asks me to consider its roots in the strata of the earth. But I notice that my eyes and my thoughts pass quickly over the plastic on my desk. I hardly give the computer a second glance. I can muster no reflective moment for plastic......And yet I mean no disrespect for the diatoms and marine invertebrates who two hundred million years ago lived well and fell to the bottom of an ancient sea, where under great pressure of a shifting earth they became oil that was pumped from the ground to a refinery where it was broken down and then polymerized to make the case of my laptop or the cap of the aspirin bottle—but being mindful in the vast network of hyperindustrialized goods really gives me a headache. We weren’t made for that sort of constant awareness. We’ve got work to do.”- Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweet Grassvii viii1 2Material Aware: A Speculative Kitchen Quartet3 4Thesis StatementThis thesis argues for the adoption of a multidimensional relationship with materials that takes into account the social, political, and ecological imperatives shaping both our everyday lives and our global systems.5 6“In pre industrial society, every object that an individual was likely to encounter would come from their immediate world,and would have a local history, use, value and so on. For the individual in industrial society, the relationship through exchange to every other object on the market network is radically different in kind. The market network is experienced as an extension of the local environment, and as a transformation of the individual’s sense of space.” -Jon Goodbun, Material Matters: Architecture and Material Practice, 2007.Finding The Global in The Domestic In today’s world of complex global networks, our domestic realities have changed drastically from that of our pre industrial past. Rather than a spatial domestic comprised of materials and objects originating from our immediate local geographies, we occupy a domestic realm with complex and global origins1. When one pauses and takes stock of a domestic dwelling its materiality is unlikely to have been extracted or produced from a single origin, never mind within a reasonable radius constituting the local. This is a significantly changed reality, no longer are we surrounded by materials and objects that reflect back to us our immediate geography, instead are we met with an obscure complex global network. What is the global network exactly? What space does it take up and what are its spatial qualities? There is no simple singular way to spatially identify this all encompassing global network. There are ways however in which to relate to it that can begin to give it form. Theorization of such kind has been commonly attempted in the economic analysis of networked geographies. Geographer Doreen Massey argues that we conceive of networks relationally, as places linked to other places in constant interaction and flux2. Through such a conception dichotomies such as the local and the global begin to fold into one another, conceptually inhabiting the same place at once. To avoid such distinct dichotomies Massey provides 3 maxims, which I will suggest can help conceptualize the global obscure. This is a starting point in unpacking the global obscure as a series of spatial conditions created through interrelations of peoples, ecologies, materials, production, transportation, and all that includes the processes of material extraction, manufacturing and use.“(1) that space be seen as the product of interrelations, i.e., of embedded social practices in which identities and human ties are coconstituted; (2) that space be understood as the sphere of multiple possibilities, i.e., as a contingent simultaneity of heterogeneous historical trajectories; and (3) that space must be conceived as always under construction, in the process of forever being made, implying a continual openness to the future.” 37 8Jon Goodbun’s approach to unpacking the global networks of concrete or as he calls it mudcrete displays the way in which one can begin to identify particular spatial conditions and happenings within the global obscure. On an individual level we can only be aware of so many of these spatial conditions at once. Our own understanding of what compromises the global mentally materializes through our unique experience of the circulating capital and commodities connected to these material processes5.  Limited in broad exposure, for the experiencing metropolitan subject, this may be largely limited to networks of personal consumption. The networks that risk remaining concealed or overlooked in these mental maps of the global then are those of extraction, processing, delivery, and associated labour.  Unearthing these overlooked realities is at the center of beginning to shift common perspectives from the unilateral illusions perceived in the everyday to the complex web of happenings, objects, beings and places embedded within it.“If we ask what are the ecologies of mudcrete, what networks of relations are at play in the various forms of mudcrete, then it becomes clear that concrete internalises a series of very local and wholly global relations, spanning a range of scales and temporalities. Any piece of concrete can only be properly grasped as a network that extends from the most modern chemical research laboratories and patent offices, to boats dredging up the banks and estuaries of an ancient Thames-Rhine mega delta hidden beneath the North Sea for aggregates, and limestone kilns around the world burning the corpses of ancient marine creatures. Its political ecologies include modes of production that are exceptional social performances, such as the annual renovation of the adobe mosque in Djenne, Mali, and elsewhere other divisions of labour that couldn’t be more modern. Its use is so large scale that it has become a primary constituent of the anthropocene rock which is re-surfacing the planet, while the more than one billion cubic meters of water tied up in the molecularly Scheerbartian crystalline architecture of modern concrete annually drains aquifers and water tables of entire regions, and the carbon dioxide already emitted into the Earth’s atmosphere through cement production will reflect back solar radiation onto the increasingly concrete surface of the planet that would otherwise escape into space, with climatic consequences that will play out over the course of millennia to come.” 4Fig 1. Assorted Series of Photographs by Edward Burtynsky9 10Notes1. Goodbun, Jon. “Marx Matters, or: Aesthetics, Technology, and the Spirit of Matter.” Material Matters: Architecture and Material Practice. New York: Routledge, 2007.70.2. Massey, Doreen B. For Space. London: Thousand Oaks, 2005. 11.3. Ibid.4. Goodbun, Jon. Mud and Modernity. ARENA Journal of Architectural Research. Online: Ubiquity Press, 2016.5. Ibid.11 12The Global Obscure as HyperobjectIt is clear there are many moving parts to the Global Obscure. Objects, actions, spaces, peoples, nonpeoples, all varying in time, place, and scale make up this vast tangled network. This type of entity both singular and plural, can be understood as a hyperobject. Timothy Morton describes hyperobjects as relational ‘entities massively distributed in time and space’ that stick to us but can never be directly perceived by us 1. Morton breaks down the hyperobject by narrowing in on 5 properties all of these entities have in common 2. Morton’s properties of hyperobjects are :Viscous : they adhere to other entities involved with them. Molten : they are so large they do not abide by regular conceptions of fixed time.Non-local : because of their broad distribution in time and space their perceived local manifestations are never directly or totally the hyperobject itself. Phased: they weave in and out of three-dimensional space, occupying higher dimensional space invisible to usInterobjective : ‘they can be detected in a space that consists of interrelationships between aesthetic properties of objects.’ 3Morton’s definition of Interobjectivity is of particular interest to the global obscure as it reveals a partial access point into the otherwise inaccessible through ‘aesthetic traces or footprints.’ 4  Wherever there are causal relationships there are the resulting aesthetic properties of the objects involved 6.  An aesthetic trace appears as a result of existing causation between entities 7. The global obscure is an entity with a vast aesthetic trail indicative of the network of causal relations happening within/around it. While the global obscure can not be directly accessed in the local, its traces whether registered as absence or presence can be. To what extent these footprint are accessed becomes a question of aesthetics. When adding, removing, or altering aesthetic qualities within an object or material connected to the global obscure we are engaging with stories of causality. How the global obscure manifests itself in the local is a question of aesthetic reveal. “Like a petrified slab of ancient mud with a dinosaur’s footprint in it. Like a glass whose shape was molded by blowers and blow tubes and powdered quartz sand. Every aesthetic trace, every footprint of an object, sparkles with absence.” 8“(Aesthetic events) happen when a saw bites into a fresh piece of plywood. They happen when a worm oozes out of some wet soil. They happen when a massive object emits gravity waves. When you make or study art you are not exploring some kind of candy on the surface of a machine. You are making or studying causality.” - Timothy Morton, Realist Magic: Objects, Ontology, Causality, 201313 14Notes1.Morton, Timothy. Realist Magic: Objects, Ontology, Causality. Open Humanities Press, 2013.2. Ibid.3. Ibid.4. Ibid.5. Ibid.6. Ibid.7. Ibid.8. Ibid.15 16A Relatable Global Obscure: The Familiar DomesticHow the Global Obscure becomes tangible may be a question of aesthetic reveal, why we should care to reveal it is a critical inquiry into ourselves, the architectural industry, and the current global system. By revealing the global obscure we are directly met with the detailed traces of a reality we seldom interact with, never mind reflect or empathize with. Through exposure to the invisible or forgotten we are introduced to new knowledge we can internalize and ultimately act on. Acquiring this global knowledge through the scale of the domestic allows us to zoom in and engage with the global obscure in ways that are familiar, relatable and specific. Familiar because know what it means to engage with our everyday surroundings, relatable because it is a scale and place we can identify with, and specific because it is at a detailed scale we can wholly take in. Experiencing the global within the context of the everyday domestic makes clear there is no “away place,” suggesting the global obscure is embedded in even the most banal of places. We need not travel very far to experience the global obscure, it is embedded within the materials that coat the walls and line the floors we encounter everyday. Focusing in on the scale of the domestic allows us to zoom in and engage with the global obscure in ways that are familiar, relatable and specific. The familiar domestic is understood within the scope of this project as a dwelling that contains both materials and objects that are considered widely available and financially accessible for the average persons situated within a middle socio economic context.  Fig 2. Assorted Collections by Birthe Piontek.   17 18Site of Speculation: The Kitchen This project began with a curiosity into material origins. Before it was a project about speculation it was one of exploration. The initial interest was to take apart a space and trace its material origins. With this in mind the desire was to select a site that could serve as an archetype for an average domestic material palette. It had to be a site that was as diverse in materiality as possible but was still situated within a middle economic strata. The focus was first on the common apartment, and from there narrowed in on the kitchen. The Kitchen displayed here is the selected site of a friends recently renovated kitchen. Domestic, familiar, and rich in ordinary materials it is exemplary in its normality.The Kitchen was first dissected down to the individual screw, visually itemizing all the millwork, flooring, surfaces, hardware, painted surfaces, and drywall. Once itemized each material’s composition and origin was carefully traced. This was an exercise in research and informed guess work. If the exact origin could not be confirmed the closest largest producer and most likely trading partner was selected. For instance the melamine foil wrapping the mdf millwork of the kitchen was found to be composition of melamine formaldehyde resin and kraft paper. The melamine formaldehyde composed of engineered urea which itself is a combination of liquid ammonia and C02, and formaldehyde which itself is composed of methane and ammonia was traced back to production plants in China with a base composition of natural gas sourced in Turkmenistan. When unraveled this palette consisting largely of mdf, polyvinyl, quartz, steel, and gypsum board begins to reveal a set of complex global systems spanning far beyond the domestic. By dissecting the kitchen’s material composition down to its molecular beginnings this everyday space starts to reveal narratives depicting systems of extraction, production, and consumption,  varying wildly in place, scale, process, and labour.Fig 3. Site of Speculation: The Kitchen 19 20The Kitchen - Plan The Kitchen - ElevationsSouth Elevation - KitchenEast Elevation - Kitchen North Elevation - FoyerNorth Elevation - Kitchen342Plan1Material IndexBRS - BrassGWB - Gypsum WallboardLDF - Low Density FiberboardMEL 1 - Melamine WhiteMEL 2 - Melamine Black MIR - MirrorQRZ- QuartzVYN - Vinyl FlooringFig 4. The Kitchen PlanFrom Top:Fig 5. The Kitchen - North ElevationFig 6. The Kitchen - South ElevationFig 7. The Kitchen - East Elevation Fig 8. The Kitchen - North Foyer Elevation  521 22Materials by VolumeParticle BoardFibre BoardMelamine FoilSteelPolypropylenePlastic FoilAcrylic PaintPigmented EpoxyPolyester Powder Coating12.674.251.350.390.200.20ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³65%23%7%2%1%1%>0.5%Visual Itemization - Millwork Visual Itemization - WallsMaterials by VolumeGypsumFoaming AgentWaterCellulose PaperCalciumCarbonateAcrylic LatexFiber GlassTalcumTitaniumDioxide4.201.152.312.10.100.05ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³42%23%21%12%1%1%>0.5%Visual Itemization - FlooringMaterials by VolumeConcretePVCCorkUrethane Finish20.571.950.710.39ft³ft³ft³ft³88%8%3%1%Fig 9. Visual Itemization - Millwork Fig 10. Visual Itemization - WallsFig 11. Visual Itemization FlooringMaterials by VolumeParticle BoardFibre BoardMelamine FoilSteelPolypropylenePlastic FoilAcrylic PaintPigmented EpoxyPolyester Powder Coating23 24Visual Itemization - HardwareMaterials by VolumeSteelPolypropylene WoodZincx 68x 14x 76x 14x 72x 14x 72x 20x 400x 20x 40x 20x 3222.18³in³in³in³56% 44% 0.37%2%Material Palette IndexWhite Paint White Melamine Veneer Ash Wood Vinyl BrassBlack Melamine Veneer Black Quartz  Fig 12. Visual Itemization - Hardware Fig 13. Material Palette Index25 26millwork particle boardwood chipswood shavingssaw dustwood chipswood shavingssaw dustoak  pinemelamineureaNH3ammoniaCO2carbon dioxidefiraspenMelamineformaldehyde resin fibre board quartz slabquartz petroleumpolypropylenepigmented epoxypigmenttype not specifiedsub titanium dioxide*acrylic paintacrylic latexacrylic resinacrylic acidethane butane naphtha propanepropylenepetroleumtitaniumdioxide*H2SO4 sulfuric acidilmenite oremelamine foilMelamineformaldehyde resin kraft paper wood pulpNaOHsodiumhydroxideNa2SsodiumsulfidewoodchipsmelamineureaNH3ammoniaCO2carbon dioxidealder pinefirgumH N NaS O HC O H SC Nepoxy resinepichlorohydrinbisephenolacetonepropyleneethane butane naphtha propane phenolspruce pinefirlarchbirchaspenhemlockelementsextractedresourcesconstructionmaterialintermediatecomponentsmelamineformaldehyde resinkraft papermelamine foilmelaminewood pulpwoodchipsNa2SsodiumsulfideNaOHsodiumhydroxideureaCO2carbon dioxideNH3ammoniafir birchaspen larchsprucepinehemlockNCHONaSMap of Millwork Origins Millwork Composition ChartFig 14. Millwork Composition ChartFig 15. Millwork Origin Map Fig 16. Melamine Foil Composition27 28Method of Speculation: The Drawn Narrative To explore these questions and to advocate for a multidimensional relationship with materiality that takes into account this web of global obscurity, this project has chosen to employ a series of speculative drawn narratives. In each speculative drawn narrative, a kitchen’s origin story is told through the lens of the world in which it exists. Folding scale, time, labour, and process these drawings employ a mix of architectural means of representation to tell stories that would otherwise be difficult to tell. These narratives are not comprehensive nor prescriptive, what they are is a testing grounds for the many differing values, aspirations, and tendencies present in out world today. Hyperbolized not to the degree of abstract futurism but just enough to engage with each subset of values in a more palpable way. Not without their own biases and perceived faults they are a means to a beginning of reflection, exploration, and critical engagement, that hopes to point to the adoption of a multidimensional relationship with the materials around us. The following pages contain such 4 drawings and their accompanying narratives.“Stories are a means for understanding the world, for nuturing new habits of seeing, and, ultimately, for projecting alternative forms of organizing life. They are means of world making.” - Ghosn & Jazairy, Geostories, 2018.29 30Make New with New.Fig 17. World I - Make New with New 31 32Make New With Less.Fig 18. World II - Make New with Less33 34Make New With Different.Fig 19. World IV - Make New with Different35 36Make New With Nothing.Fig 20.  World V- Make New with Nothing37 38Wine spills and drips down the polished marble. The stone begins to absorbs the acidic drink. The host shrugs, and theguest isn’t the slightest embarrassed proceeding without a pause to fill the glass up anew. Over night after everyone has left the wine will do it’s corrosive work, etching into the stone it’s winding path. But when the host awakes to a counter spotted with red rings and streams, they will only be slightly annoyed at their guests’. This is because in this world a kitchen’s bones are infinitely dispensable.Make New with New Narrative39 40Within hours of reporting the stained marble, the host’s apartment buzzer will sound. A hoarse voice over the intercom will announce they are here to fulfill a speedy swap out. Two factory employees will make their way up the stairs, hauling a brand new replacement counter top. To the host’s delight this week’s speedy swap out came with a complimentary limited set of an artist rendered cupboards set, which the host excitedly opted into and which the two employees were now balancing up the stairs.In 15 short minutes the two employees muscle memory their way through the speedy swap out, quickly slipping cupboard doors and walls in and out of the kitchen’s framework. They lug the spotted marble and a well outdated set of last month’s scratch and smell series of tropical fruit cupboards into their disposal truck.41 42The two ride through the city, behind a daisy chain of other disposal trucks, off gassing a tropical chocolate sundae. The stained marble countertop rattles in the back, lodged between stacks of vinyl flooring, and peeling wood composite countertops.The cab of the truck is filled with an overwhelming fragrance of pineapple, and mango, but also of chocolate scented flooring tiles, attributed to last month’s complimentary limited edition kitchen flooring system.43 44Suddenly all the pieces lift up in unison, suspendedin the air for a brief moment before crashing back down again. The truck is making its way through therolling hills, where the kitchen pieces will soon be laid to rest. The truck is making its way through the rolling hills, where the kitchen pieces will soon be laid to rest. 45 46Cracked beyond repair, the truck unloads the many kitchen pieces just beyond the last hill, where they will be crushed, snuggly packed, and assimilated into the landscape.A faint clamouring gently echoes through the hills, in the distance an orchestra of machinery works day and night to fulfill the townspeople’s orders. This is the company. The only company. 47 48Filled with floors upon floors of machinery, this Behemoth is an agglomeration of all imports, production and distribution. It’s functioning flawlessly efficient, hyper streamlined, it does not stop to rest, with the town’s high demand even if it wanted to stop it could not do so. Every week it outputs new kitchen flooring, countertops and millwork, supplying its weekly, biweekly, monthly, and quarterly subscribersin town. The host, usually a monthly subscriber had to request their new kitchen set a whole two weeks early this time, but the company is used to these types of orders, in fact a hefty surplus of supply is built into its production cycle. Stocking a seemingly infinite variety of raw materials, the company is always ready to be set into motion. After all it is more cost effective to make and dispose than to disappoint and slow down desire and demand. The company works hard to take care of its townapeople. It does its best to acquire the most sought after materials from the furthest corners ofthe world. It stops at nothing to stock its production shelves with materials with the most beautiful sheens, colours, and patterns.49 50As the sun begins to set in this world, the two employees surrender their keys for the day to a new duo of night drivers. The host sits in their apt, pouring themselves a fresh glass of wine, wondering if their new quartz countertop couldn’t be just a bit more sparkley.51 52In some distant but altogether familiar kitchen, a couple sits slumped over in their chairs around a kitchen island. It is just past dawn, the freshly oiled wooden countertop glows in the morning light, softly illuminating their tired faces. Refractions bounce gently off the bright mismatched set of stone coasters which flutter on the uneven surface of the rising and falling wood. Circular dips in the wood’s surface suggests the meticulous sanding of old rings stains from generations long before their own. Stripped many years ago from a decommissioned grain mill, this inherited piece of wood is the envy of many in a world where no new things are made.Make New With Less Narrative53 54The couple sits together quietly. One of them sluggishly runs their fingertips over one of the many butterfly joints holding together the splitting wood. The other musters up the energy to clear the empty coffee mugs. The mugs are placed with the rest of the cups packed tightly on a single shelf made of many laminated mdf offcuts. 55 56The kitchen is scarce and eclectic, an aesthetic largely embraced by this world. Comprised of a wooden island built upon many stone off cuts, some mismatched cupboards, a hodgepodge engineered stone countertops, and a wide collection of ceramic and vinyl floor tiles, this kitchen is both one and many.The couple still sleepy strap on their thick coveralls and pull on their gumboots. Tired as they may seem, in under an hour they will be waist deep in the town’s salvage mounds, sifting through many waste piles of derelict material. Out their apartment window they spot a family already coming backfrom their own salvage haul. They are carrying a large column on their shoulders. Cracking down the side but still in tact the plaster column only bares a few chips. The couple look at one another with worried eyes and pick up their pace. They hope they are not too late.57 58They move quickly. The streets are filled with a strong scent of bleach, mixed with the odd hints of citrus, pine, and lavender, cut by the occasional whiff of sulfur. The sound of vigorous sanding fills the streets as the couple coughs inhaling saw dust cascading from the apartments above. This is not unusual for this time of day during which many of the townspeople perform their material maintenance routines. They clean, they sand, some apply oil, others slick layers of resin, but they all labour to maintain the materials they have come to know. A culture of maintenance runs stronglythroughout this world, make new with less they are told because even the waste mounds will someday be finite.59 60Before they reach the salvage mound, they must weave through all the local piles of leftovers. The leftovers are littered with rusted hardware, rotting wood, marble nearly turned to dust, shattered glass and anything else thrown out by those working on the sorting lines. As they step around the piles, they dodge the scraps flying off the conveyor belts. Others jump to catch the flying debris, in hopes those on the sorting line have missed something of value. 61 62Suddenly a euphoric yelp erupts from a nearby pile. A man emerges triumphantly waving a bundle of unscathed vinyl flooring tiles. Such a durable material is a valuable find, the man is overjoyed. As the couple leave the leftovers behind, they immediately register a subtle vibration traveling up their bodies.They are close to the salvage mounds. Moving even more quickly now, the couple nod at one another knowingly. As they turn the corner of a straggler pile, they break up in opposite directions, immediately scanning the abyss of dormant materials for any active diggers. The giant diggers are well off into the distance today, mining materials and feeding them to the sorting belts far from the where the couple is standing. The couple know well this will be a short day of digging. Today’s exposed sun will mean a heat too unbearable to stay in the mounds for very long. So they work fast, focused on their dig, reaching into twisted piles of debris, pulling out pieces of cupboards, rusted brass handles, and what look like pieces of flooring. 63 64Make new with less think the couple to themselves, as they dig through the debris. ‘Make new with less’ ring the chipped countertops piece and peeling melamine. Make new with less reads the billboard high above their heads. A widespread motto that motivates the townspeople to keep digging. The couple will return to their apartment well before sundown, with a decent haul of mdf panels they will cut and use as cupboard doors. Tired from a day of digging they will sit tired in their kitchen next to their new haul, and they will daydream about what they might find tomorrow.65 66In some distant but altogether familiar kitchen, a father and daughter tend to a kitchen island. They spray a light mist onto the side where edible mushrooms have begun to sprout.The particles of water are slowly absorbed by fine threads of fungus feeding off the kitchen’s compost. Make New With Different Narrative67 68After many weeks this is their first successful mushroom fruit. The father gently picks the mushroom and places it on the countertop. Without hesitation he cuts the mushroom directly on the bare surface, after all if the countertop gets damaged it can easily grow back. He then grabs two thin cups, transparent like plastic but paper thin and heavily distorted in shape. He pours his daughter a glass of water, she gulps it down quickly and hands it back to him. He runs the cup under the water for a few seconds longer and it begins to dissolve. Unalarmed he lets the glass completely disappear in his hands. In this world kitchen materials are often in flux, dynamic, and experimental in nature. In this world a kitchen is made from many different things by many different people.69 70The father bites down on the mushroom, tasting the fruit of his and the fungal threads’ joint labour. His eyes gaze at the patterns grown into the kitchen countertop, they reads like a creamy slab of marble with chestnut coloured swirls. His eyes follow the fungal pattern down the side of the countertop, until his gaze stops abruptly at what appears to be a gaping hole. It looks as though someone has bit a piece of the creamy wall right off.Down the hall a dog gnaws on what is left of the chomped off piece in question. Made from a hardened mix of mycelium, straw, and compost, the now quarter sized piecewill not hurt the dog. As for the kitchen island, it will need a live patch to fill in its newly made gap.71 72Across town a woman minds a mass of fungal threads that will mend both this gap along with a much larger gap that will be made by the dog in about a weeks time. She makes her way down an the isle of shelves packed with fuzzy white bags containing all kinds of fungal strains feeding on substrates of the towns making. Straw, sawdust, compost, and even old discarded plastic pokes out of the fungal roots mesh. Like many of the townspeople in this world she does not believe in the static death of a material. Everything can be brought back to life.While still examining the gap in his kitchen island a loud crash followed by a meek oops breaks the fathers concentration. The dog runs into the kitchen his paws clicking against the uneven terracotta tiles. He sniffs to see if anything edible has fallen to the ground. His trailing drool seeps into the pores of the tiles, staining them on a microscopic scale. 73 74These tiles like everything else in this kitchen was made by the trial and error of the local townspeople. Scooped out of the banks of a nearby river, the distinct red terracotta clay has become a staple in these parts for flooring and pottery alike. In a few years time when the terracotta begins to crack, fade and wither away the father will bring it to one of the clay spinners that operate near the river bank. There it will be crushed into a fine sand and made into something new. For now however the teracotta tile does just fine weathering the dog’s drool.The father sighs, he turns to discover the source of the crash and find his teary eyed daughter standing next to what appears to be a toppled over shelf that has managed to break into many little pieces. The dog paws at the collection of scattered green and beige speckled pieces. Ushering the dog away, he picks up his daughter and balancing her on one arm begins to pick up as many whole pieces as he can. He tells her not to worry, they would melt down the broken pieces themselves and cast something new, these shelves weren’t really made to last anyway.75 76Made mostly of a puree of seaweed and wood chips,they could be quite brittle.The father sweeps up the last pieces of dried seaweed pulp and pauses for a moment in front of the kitchen window to get a glimpse of the ocean. His eyes fixate on the thick mounds of seaweed that cover the townes coastline. When the town first began to harvest and dry the stuff there was promise that its removal could heal the overgrown coast, and eliminate the need for the harvest of other less abundant materials, that took longer to grow and regenerate. It was still unclear whether this small scale effort would work. How many bowls, shelves, and cupboard panels would it take to clear it all, he thinks to himself. He tries to remember the colour of the sand under the thick slippery stuff. He can not recall.77 78His daughter having easily wriggled free from her father who was still deeply lost in thought was now awkwardly wrapping herself in a thick set of drapes.  Her fingers slowly traced along where little colonies of bacteria had painted the fabric a deep blue hue. She traced and she wondered how something so little could make such a big and pretty pattern.79 80In some distant but altogether familiar kitchen, there sits a dark and drab kitchen island. It sits and waits along with the rest of the kitchen to be animated by its user who has yet to come home from a late night out. Without the user the kitchen is made up of a series of minimal surfaces whose only purpose is to house a few very basic kitchen commodities. A faint sound of staggering footsteps can be heard over the low humming of lasers disinfecting the apartment. The user is making his way down the hall. Registering the users proximity the apartment unlocks the door. Make New With Nothing Narrative81 82Suddenly the kitchen illuminates. The user has remembered their verbal password. The kitchen glows, its light gently pulses as if it were taking deep breaths. The user blocks the light from their eyes and yells dark set! In a split second 10s of thousands of tiny lasers trap particles in the air, effectivelyetching into them a 3d dimensional drawing made of light.The user falters through the door, but the space remains dark, the user has forgotten their verbal password to activate the space. In total darkness, they a line it towards the drab kitchen to grab a glass of water. Getting there is a challenge, scuffing the floor, banging up the walls, and chipping the counter, but the user isn’t the least bit concerned. Even if it’s deep in his subconscious, the user knows no real damage has been done because this is a world in which new things can be made with nothing.83 84Suddenly the kitchen illuminates. The user has remembered their verbal password. The kitchen glows, its light gently pulses as if it were taking deep breaths. The user blocks the light from their eyes and yells dark set! In a split second 10s of thousands of tiny lasers trap particles in the air, effectivelyetching into them a 3d dimensional drawing made of light.Again the lasers spring into motion. A mirrored kitchen island appears, the floors turn into an electric blue terrazzo, turquoise paneling lines the walls,and the light pink countertop, and shelves gleam as if they were coated in many thick layers of epoxy. Fairly content the user presses a pre programmed button next to his nutrient pill dispenser, a peach coloured pill pops out, he dunks it in his water glass, and stirs what is now a whiskey sour with his finger.85 86Less than a block away, a group of pigeons sleep soundly atop a slim windowless tower radiating a dull but constant heat.Inside are endless hallways lined with racks upon racks of metallic boxes, with rapidly blinking lights that dimly illuminate the floor. This tower is one of the many server hubs that work to power the town’s volumetric imagery. Suddenly the tower lets out a loud roar of hot air, the pigeons awake and scatter into the night. This tower’s cooling system just started working on overdrive. The user has just activated live mode.The user starts to blurt out the first things that comes to mind.87 88Blubber wall, pink tentacled floor. The walls of the kitchen take on a glistening goop quality, the floors begin to grow into a grassy valley of pink tentacles, that gently wave back and forth. Amused with himself he yells zero gravity. The tower’s cooling system powers up again, the servers are now frantically blinking, this is beyond the day to day capabilities of these local servers. This more complex request forces the system to switch to a more far reaching wireless transmission, a pricey service add on the user has decided to initialize.The users request fires into the cloud. It will travel through a string of satellites that hover over the many landscapes that have been cultivated to make its trip possible.89 90After shooting over the town, the data will cross over glistening tables of snowy white salt flats that cradle enormous evaporation pools coloured many hues of turquoise. These tropical like pools are where lithium is extracted to be made into hardware that facilitates the users requests.Further along its path the data will shoot past a deep hole carved into the earth. This is a rare earths mine, where metallic elements are extracted to be made into the users new server hardware. 91 92Finally the users data will arrive at its destination, a massive render farm that fulfills the users request in real time. Frantic mouse clicking and feverish typing resound in the warehouse where hundreds of labourers craft thousands of material requests. A labourer swiftly presses enter as he completes the users request and modified data is sent back the way it came, bringing the users kitchen to life.The user now 4 whiskey sours deep has slipped onto the kitchen floor where he is gleefully watching his countertop oscillate between a metallic glob, and a fuzzy sponge. As he gently lays his head down on his very own pink meadow for a floor, his eyes flutter shut. He lays there snoring, without a care in the world, as the local service towers catch a second to cool off, and the many labourers continue to click into the night.93 94The Speculative Kitchen Quartet has been a sampling of 4 projective worlds that tries to ask better questions, rather than give absolute solutions. Neither prescriptive nor comprehensive, these kitchen and their worlds, are stories meant to nurture new ways of seeing that ask us to reflect on our current ways of being. The materials we interact with in our everyday lives are ones with social, political, economic, and ecological implications. The more we question the multidimensional implications of our material world the better equipped we will be to build realities we deem worth living in. Fig 21. Axonometric Speculative Kitchen Quartet95 96Make New with New Kitchen 1234Fig 22. Axonometric Make New with New Kitchen97 981 -  Blush Gold Satin Cupboard Pulls 10-pack 6 in.  Model number 161718Designed by The Company4.1 out of 5 stars based on 1,208 reviewsThe Blush Gold Satin Hardware Collection is designed to maximize the illumination of your decor. By adding the Blush Gold Satin Cupboard Pulls, your project will instantly be brightened and revived by the light it gently reflects*. Pair these pulls with a bright, sunny color and your guests will be awed by the bright transformation. Blush Gold Satin - here to expand all design possibilities.- Contemporary style- Easy installation in less than 30 minutes by The Company specialized swappers.- Order at your door in under 24 hours.- Available with all Subscriptions. 2 month limited warranty.*Intensity of brightening may vary.2 - Malibu Beach Plank Flooring System Made to fit, 3/8” thick engineered wood click flooring.Model number 131415Designed by The Company3.8 out of 5 stars based on 609 reviewsTake a stroll on the beach with these exquisitely made Malibu Beach Floor Planks. Soft to the touch with a slight grainy feel*. Wait, is it sand or a kitchen floor you’re walking on? There’s nothing quite like it*. - Premium sandy wood look- Choose from trendy sand colors to match your decor and interior-Sealed with 7 layers of the latest super low gloss urethane finish - Installed in less than 30 minutes by the Company’s most trusted employees. - Order at your door in under 24 hours.- Available with Monthly, Bi-Monthly and Quarterly Subscriptions.Available for a limited time only. 6 month limited warranty. * No guarantee on sandy grain sensation.* Available only with Premium Subscriptions.* Nothing except for all the other flooring made by The Company.3 - Scratch and Sniff Limited Tropical Edition CabinetsMade to fit, 3/4” medium-density fiberboardModel number 1234567Designed by The Company4.7 out of 5 stars based on 1,204 reviewsMade to fit, 3/4” thick wood composite panels with scented melamine.  Winter blues have you down? Not taking flight this year with the other snowbirds? Bring the sunny vibes home to you this month with your very own limited set of Tropical Scratch and Sniff Cabinets! Featuring gentle aromas of pineapple, coconut and exotic papaya, these scented cabinets will transport you to faraway warm tropical waters with margaritas and calm sea breezes. This delightfully scented laminate is paired with a cheerful colour palette of Aqua, Coral, Lime, and Yellow that beams sunshine. Built to be replaced, these cabinets a great choice for any kitchen that needs a warm  pick me up. Get ready to bust out your blender this winter season, pina coladas are on the house in this Tropical kitchen. -Smooth and delicious lasting tropical scented laminate finish.* - Light and breezy wood composite doors complete with a sleek, profiled edge.- Installed in less than 30 minutes by The Company Speedy Swappers.- Order at your door in under 24 hours.- Available with Monthly and Bi-Monthly Subscriptions.*Available for a limited time only. 4 month limited warranty. *No guarantee on scent duration. *Available only with Premium Subscriptions. 4 - Sunset Rose Granite Countertop Made to fit, 1 1/4” thick engineered marbleModel number 89101112Designed by The Company 4.2 out of 5 stars based on 800 reviews Made to fit, 1 1/4” thick engineered marblePut your feet up and sail into the sunset with this exquisite Sunset Rose Marble Countertop. Soft speckled rose and orange fleck gleam like sand kissed by the evening sun. - Easy to clean with Stain Swap Guarantee*- Installed in less than 30 minutes by the   Company’s most trusted employees.- Order at your door in under 24 hours.- Available with Monthly and Bi-Monthly Subscriptions* Stain Swap Guarantee ensures delivery of a new countertop within 24 hours of a stain notice. 99 100Make New with Less.Fig 23. Axonometric Make New with Less Kitchen101 102Luxury Vinyl, Ceramic Tile,   AcquisitionTraded with the neighbour for a set of off cut stone coasters, these mix of ceramic and luxury vinyl tiles were originally found in the leftover piles. They are mint shape and are arranged in the kitchen in a way that will best preserve them. The water resistant vinyl is placed closer to the sink area, where it can handle the frequent moisture. The assortment of ceramic tiles that are prone to cracking are placed on the edges of the kitchen where they get less wear. Maintenance The maintenance for vinyl is very low, just a daily sweep with a soft bristled broom and a weekly mop with a gentle soap solution. Same goes for the ceramic tiles, except for when it happens to crack. To mend the crack an adhesive paste is mixed filled between the cracks and and then finely painted over the crack. Nowadays some prefer the cracked aesthetic and simply skip the paint. - vinyl kept close to water heavy areas- vinyl swept with soft bristle broom - vinyl moped weekly with a gentle soap solution - ceramic tiled on the perimeter- mend cracked tiles with adhesive and finely paint over the break. Assorted MDF Cupboards and Mixed HardwareAcquisitionCupboards and hardware are the most common find in the town’s material landfill. Most of the cupboards found are made of MDF. The MDF itself is usually in good shape as its pretty good about not warping or cracking and is highly water resistant. The melamine that usually covers it is less resilient. Its usually crumbling or peeling and has to be taken off. That was the case with these cupboards which were stripped and painted. The hardware is rarely found in sets, these are a mismatched pair of a blue resin knob and a brass plated handle.Maintenance The resin knob is easy to clean, a simple soap and water will get any grime off of it. The brass plated handle if rusted requires acid to dissolve the rust. Mix lemon juice or vinegar with salt and mix in to a paste. Apply the paste and wait 5 minutes before rubbing it off with non abrasive cloth. - Soap and water- Lemon juice or vinegar and saltHeirloom Wood CountertopAcquisition It was the dead of winter when my great grandparents went to pick up the wood that is this countertop. They were building their own cabin, and even then materials were not that easy to come by. Determined they set out on the 6 hour drive to a town where an old decommissioned grain mill was being taken apart. They braved the slippery roads, and drove in their pick up through a winter blizzard without making any stops afraid they wouldn’t be able to make it back onto the road if they did. Once they got there the mill had already been pretty heavily striped by the locals, but they still managed to get a good truck load of old growth fir 2 inch thick,  12 inch wide, 6 foot long floor planks. After loading up they drove right back into the snow afraid to stay the night with so much exposed wood in their truck. That wood would end up lining the walls of my grandparents small but sturdy cabin, then the floors of my parents apartment in the city, and now some of those planks have made it to my kitchen carefully joined together as a kitchen island countertop. Maintenance This countertop stains easy, to keep it looking as much as it did when I first got it I am careful not to place anything except for stone coasters directly on top. Only once when someone was house sitting did the countertop island get damaged by a hot mug ring. The ring was carefully sanded off and then the whole table was refinished but there is still a slight dip where the ring once was. The surface itself has to be oiled once a month. Twice a year the surface is fully refinished. This entails gently sanding the surface first with 120 grit sandpaper then sanding again with 180 grit sandpaper until the wood is smooth. Once sanded the wood wiped down and a mineral is rubbed into the wood with an old cotton rag. After 20-30 minutes it is wiped down clean. - Oiled once a month - Lemon juice for fresh stains- Mineral Oil - 120 grit, 180 grit sand paperEngineered Quartz Countertop Acquisition Salvaged from the town’s material landfill this quartz countertop was a good find. I was two or three hours into digging when something from the depths of a pile glittered in the high sun. I gently moved a few pieces of broken marble aside to unveil this nearly unscathed piece. A little dirty, I wiped it as clean as I could, wrapped it up and tucked it under my arm and quickly made my way home so others would not see it. I unwrapped it and held it up to the wall along the other mismatched countertops in the kitchen. It fit perfectly. Maintenance This countertop can take a light beating. Because it’s an engineered quartz it has a high volumes of resin in it, making it incredibly resistant to everyday dust, dirt, stains, and even mold. To remove light stains I mix vinegar and water and let the solution soak into the surface before wiping it down. Not a time consuming clean. When it chips it can be sanded down with a 200 grit sandpaper pad and ending with an 800 grit, then wiped clean, and coated with a sealant. - Cleaned daily with a gentle soap solution - Vinegar and water mix- 200 grit, 800 grit sandpaper- Sealant103 104Make New with Different.Fig 24. Axonometric Make New with Different Kitchen105 106Oct 03, 10:00, 12C, 42% RH Just returned home with enough  activated mushroom materials to replace  a worn mycelium countertop. The worn  countertop is being composted as I  write this log. Our local mushroom  grower Rachel recommended this new  substrate material of sawdust from the  nearby mill mixed with a potato derived  cellulose. He said the cellulose promotes more  fungal growth since it is rich in  simple sugars easily digestible by the  mycelium, giving the final countertop  mass a more dense and durable finish. Supplies:-Activated Mushroom Materials -Flour -Water-Clips to Seal Bag of Activated  Mushroom Materials-Disposable Gloves After careful sanitization, the  mushroom material bag was opened. 500 g of flour was added and then 250 ml  of water was added. The bag was then gently shook  for 1 minute and 40 seconds.The bag was then sealed using clips,  while leaving a small flap open for the  mycelium to breathe. The bag was then  placed inside the kitchen cupboard away  from direct sunlight. Let the growing  begin!Oct 05, 13:00, 11C, 42% RH A few days have passed  since the incubation process has  started. There is a noticeable web of  root-like threads starting to grow all  over the substrate. It looks fuzzy, the  colonization of the substrate is well  on it’s way!  Oct 05, 13:00, 14C, 45% RH The mycelium has now fully started to  eat its way through the substrate. It  has turned completely white and can now  be broken apart and put into a  countertop mold.Supplies: - Mixing Bowl- Isopropyl Alcohol for Sterilization- Fan or Heat Source to dry finished project- Baking SheetAfter carefully sanitizing the area and supplies , the mycelium is removed from the bag and crumbled apart into the bowl. Once the mycelium has been loosened, 3 tablespoons of flour is added to the material and mixed by hand for 1 minute and 50 seconds.  The mycellium is then packed into a thick rectangular mold covered with our homemade bioplastic and poked with holes approximately 1-inch apart to allow for the mycelium to breathe. Oct 11, 11:00, 9C, 41% RH Mycelium Weight: 2.61 lbsThe mycelium has fully grown into its mold! Removing it from its mold proved to be difficult but it managed to come out in one whole piece. It weighed in at 2.6lbs. It will now be laid out to dry with multiple fans turned on high for the next 24 hrs.  Oct 12, 11:00, 7C, 44% RH The mycelium feels dry to the touch, it will now be heated to 200F for 30 minutes to stop the growth indefinitely. Oct 12, 12:00, 7C, 44% RH Mycelium Weight: 0.96 lbsAfter 30 minutes in the oven and 30 minutes of cooling the mycelium weighs in at 0.96 lbs a near perfect 35% of it’s original weight. It is ready for sealing and installation!Friday, Oct 11Took the dog to the vet today. He managed to get on top of the counter and knock down one of the seaweed pulp bowls. Of course it shattered into a million pieces which he tried to eat really fast. I managed to salvage some of it but I was worried it might still be able to do some damage. After an hour of waiting, the vet said theres nothing to worry about. Apparently this isn’t the first case of seaweed pulp ingestion he’s seen. Apparently dogs go after the salty smell of the stuff. The vet assured that the seaweed pulp was just algae and wood dust. Very safe, the algae is harvested locally without any added preservatives, same goes for the wood dust. Very high in fiber too he said, probably high enough to turn the dog poop into something if I liked. I told him no thanks...Tuesday, June 5thWe went to visit the river today. One of dad’s friends works at for tile shop so he usually spends his mornings at the river scooping out clay. Dad wanted to ask him if he could take our old cracked tiles and make them new again. He told dad that he could grind them and mix them up with some fresh clay to make our new tiles. He said to come back in a few days after the clay he collects separates from the water and becomes filtered and clean, and then dries a little so he could work with it. He even said maybe I could paint one of the tiles!    Thursday, June 9thWe went an visited dad’s friend again today. He said he would show us how to throw the clay. He rolled it up in a ball and squished it over an over again like dough. Then he threw it on the table! He said it’s to get the little air bubbles out. Then he lined up two pieces of wood put them on the sides and rolled the clay out. He made a giant rectangle and then cut it with wire into many different squares. He said to come back in a whole week to paint my tile! This is taking forever :( Thursday, June 16thI FINALLY painted my tile today!!  I gave my tile big blue polka dots. Then my dad’s friend put it in the kiln to cook. He said to come back tomorrow to pick it because it needed to cool down after. Tomorrow I can finally pick up my tile!:):)Thursday, Oct 3I asked dad about the spotted curtains today. I wanted to know where the spots came from. He said that tiny little critters called S t r e p t o m y c e s   C o e l i c o l o rlive on the curtains for 34 whole days. While they live there they turn the curtains a spotted blue. Are there other critters that make different colours? 107 108Make New with Nothing.Fig 25. Axonometric Make New with Nothing Kitchen109 110/ 9 j / 4 R b u R X h p Z g A AT U 0 A K g A A A A g A D A E A A A M A A A A B K j A A A A E 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-0AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVG9wIFVudEYjUmx0AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAU2NsIFVud-EYjUHJjQFkAAAAAAAAAAAAQY3JvcFdoZW5QcmludGluZ2Jvb2wAAAAADm-Nyb3BSZWN0Qm90dG9tbG9uZwAAAAAAAAAMY3JvcFJlY3RMZWZ0bG9uZ-wAAAAAAAAANY3JvcFJlY3RSaWdodGxvbmcAAAAAAAAAC2Nyb3BSZWN-0VG9wbG9uZwAAAAAAOEJJTQPtAAAAAAAQASwAAAABAAEBLAAAAAEAAThC-S U 0 c a s f g a J 2 L 2 3 E J g A A A A A A D g A A A A A A A A A A A A A /111 112Precedents/Influence113 114Invisible Citiesby Italo Calvino“Technically, this is a novel, a work of fiction, but one without any storyline. The only characters are an aging Kublai Khan and a young-ish Marco Polo. They’re sitting in a garden, where the Venetian explorer is regaling the Mongol ruler with tales of the cities he has seen journeying to the far reaches of Khan’s vast empire. Each short chapter describes a different city, 55 in all.These are fantastical, beguiling places, where things are never as they seem. There’s Hypatia, a city of beautiful blue lagoons but where “crabs were biting the eyes of the suicides, stones tied around their necks”; Laudomia, the city of the unborn, whose inhabitants have constructed a parallel city for those yet to come; Octavia, the spider-web city, whose residents live suspended over an abyss, supported by a net they know won’t last long; and Argia, a city with earth instead of air.At some point, you realize that Calvino is not talking about cities at all, not in the way we normally think of the word. Calvino’s cities — like all cities, really — are constructed not of steel and concrete but of ideas. Each city represents a thought experiment, or, as Polo tells Khan at one point, “You take delight not in a city’s seven or seventy wonders but in the answer it gives to a question of yours.”The question that Calvino seems to be asking is a big one: How should we live?” 1“Cities & The DeadWhat makes Argia different from other cities is that it has earth instead of air. The streets are completely filled with dirt, clay packs the rooms to the ceiling, on every stair another stairway is set in negative, over the roofs of the houses hang layers of rocky terrain like skies with clouds. We do not know if the inhabitants can move about the city, widening the worm tunnels and the crevices where roots twist: the dampness destroys people’s bodies, and they have scant strength; everyone is better off remaining still, prone; anyway, it is dark. From up here, nothing of Argia can be sen; some say “It’s down below there,” and we can only believe them. The place is deserted. At night, putting your ear to the ground, you can sometimes hear a door slam.” 2115 116Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman“This book contains 30 brief fictional dreams. All are about time, and all are dreamt by Albert Einstein in Berne, in the spring and early summer of 1905, as he works on his paper ‘On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies’ and proceeds inefficiently towards the special theory of relativity. Some contain distorted traces of his discoveries. In one dream, people live up mountains and build their houses on stilts, having discovered that time flows relatively more slowly as one moves further from the centre of the earth. In another, banks, factories and houses are all motorised and constantly on the move, for time is money and slows down as you accelerate, so the faster you go the more you have.Each dream presents a world. In one, human beings live for a day; in others, they live forever, or prepare for the end of the world, fall into the past, get stuck in time, know the details of their future in advance, or have no grasp of the future at all.” 3“In the world in which time is a circle, every handshake, every kiss, every birth, every word, will be repeated precisely. So too every moment that two friends stop becoming friends, every time that a family is broken because of money, every vicious remark in an argument between spouses, every opportunity denied because of a superior’s jealousy, every promise not kept.And just as all things will be repeated in the future, all things now happening happened a million times before. Some few people in every town, in their dreams, are vaguely aware that all has occurred in the past. These are the people with unhappy lives, and they sense that their misjudgments and wrong deeds and bad luck have all taken place in the previous loop of time. In the dead of night these cursed citizens wrestle with their bedsheets, unable to rest, stricken with the knowledge that they cannot change a single action, a single gesture. Their mistakes will be repeated precisely in this life as in the life before. And it is these double unfortunates who give the only sign that time is a circle. For in each town, late at night, the vacant streets and balconies fill up with their moans.” 4117 118Seeing the UnseenSeeing the unseen is central to the ambitions of this project. As we occupy the domestic realm seldom do we take pause to think about the materiality of our surroundings. As our domestic interiors currently exist, they speak little to their complex material origins. With some attentiveness we can observe their industrial beginnings through perfectly straight cuts, standardized sizing, residual industrial mold seams, and prefabricated voids to house standard hardware. However, these left behind industrial clues tell us little about the complex string of events taking place which bring about our domestic spaces into liveable fruition. This complexity is unapparent in the context of our domestic spaces, and it is thereby left unseen, unassessed and arguably unimportant. To see the unseen is to be given a chance to engage, assess, position, reimagine, or simply dwell within existing but largely invisible realities. It is giving form to that which is absent but nonetheless embedded within our current reality. Ghost, and Untitled, by Rachel WhitereadGiving form to absence is central to Rachel Whiteread’s aesthetic. Her work is largely situated in the domestic realm, varying in scale from objects such as chairs to entire rooms and houses. Whiteread’s focuses on the immaterial space surrounding her subjects, casting them in plaster, rubber, concrete, resin, rendering the invisible visible or ‘mummifying the air in the room.’ Through this process the unseen everyday is revealed but also expressed in a way that slightly alters the perception of a familiar form. Seeing a common domestic object in its negative form brings on feelings of the uncanny, as the positive physical object always remains slightly altered and out of reach.5 Whiteread cultivates a dual presence of both object and its embracing negative space. Fig 26. Rachel Whiteread, Ghost, 1990, Plaster on steel frame 106 x 140 x 125” Fig 27. Rachel Whiteread, Untitled (One Hundred Spaces), 1995, Resin (100 units) Dimensions variable119 120The Manhattan Transcripts, by Bernard Tschumi A precedent in which drawings become a devise for exploring unlikelyrelationships between spaces, objects and events through the visual transcription of elements that do not typically appear in architectural representation.“The Manhattan Transcripts differ from most architectural drawings insofar as they are neither real projects nor mere fantasies. They propose to transcribe an architectural interpretation of reality.  To this aim they use a particular structure indicated by photographs that either direct or ‘witness’ events (some would say ‘functions’, others would call them ‘programs’). At the same time, plans, sections and diagrams outline spaces and indicate the movements of the different protagonists - those people intruding into the architectural ‘stage set.’  ...   Even if the Transcripts become a self-contained set of drawings, with its own internal coherence, they are first a device. Their explicit purpose is to transcribe things normally removed from conventional architectural representation, namely the complex relationship between spaces and their use; between set and script; between ‘type’ and ‘program’; between objects and events. ...  Ultimately, the Transcripts try to offer a different reading of architecture in which space, movement and events are independent, yet stand in a new relation to one another, so that the conventional components of architecture are broken down and rebuilt along different axes....By going beyond the conventional definition of use, the Transcripts use their tentative format to explore unlikely confrontations.” 6Fig 28. Tschumi, Bernard. Manhattan Transcripts.1978.121 122Conical Intersect, by Gordon Matta-Clark A precedent that demonstrates how sculpting space can change the way we engage with the ordinary.“Conical Intersect—a temporary project that, like other of Matta-Clark’s perfor-mative interventions, now exists only as video documentation—is a good example of the artist’s literal “de-construction” of existing structures to reveal hidden or unexpected urban narratives. This work is a critical commentary on the transfor-mation of a Parisian neighborhood as a new cultural center—the Centre Georg-es Pompidou—was prompting a gentrification process in the area. Matta-Clark’s painstaking perforation of a building about to be demolished is a sculptural and spatial statement, but it also provides a different way of looking at the city, a re-minder that he studied architecture before turning to a full-time artistic practice. The artist’s actions, Matta-Clark stated, provide “an alternative vocabulary with which to question the static, inert building environment.” His belief in art’s social drive and his innovative, experimental approach to urban space and built objects have grown significantly in influence over the last decades.” 7Fig 29. Matta-Clark, Gordon. Conical Intersect. 1975.123 124Here, by Richard McguireGraphic novel “Here” exemplifies a novel approach to time, scale, and history within an exceptionally banal context. The novel traces the history of the site of an American living room, revealing its complex lineage over the span of many decades. It employs overlay, a collaging of time of sorts to engage the reader with a story that is curated but not outwardly morally prescriptive. “Temporal complexity and reader engagement are entwined in Richard McGuire’s graphic narrative Here, originally published as a strip in RAW Magazine (1989) and recently expanded into a book (2014).[2] Here constitutes an intervention into some of the conventions of graphic narrative and stands as the apotheosis of others. Each page is itself a dated panel representing a moment in time with further differently dated panels overlapping it. Sequencing is unconventional. There is little to no recognizable plot. It toys with the spatial grammar expected of a graphic novel and relies on the resonances of braiding to suggest relationships between images, characters, and themes beyond a linear sequence of events. Here is a graphic narrative that does not so much tell a story as it invites the reader to confront their own processes of reading. It forces the viewer to consider what might be left out and to examine their own narrativizing impulses in a bid to synthesize andcomprehend a multivalent text. In this way, Here is an important book not only for graphic narrative studies, but also for the study of history. Not only does it complicate linear time, it also demonstrates the historian’s impulse to narrativize, to clean up and organize a messy and sometimes overdetermined reality.”The text does not have much of a plot, moral, or any extraordinary events—in fact, all of the action is stubbornly ordinary. What is extraordinary about Here is not the content, but rather the way the images are laid across the pages and the temporal and spatial framing. The content is deeply banal; the form, however, upends our expectations of comics panels arranged in a linear chronology, and thus complicates our ideas of how the text should be read. Here presents itself as non-narrative in order to get the reader involved and reflecting on their own process of reading. It is not just about what happens on the page; it is about how that page expects to be read and how that expectation works on the reader.” 8Fig 30. McGuire, Richard. Here. 2014.125 126Tides, Wang & Soderstrom and Kwangho LeeA precedent in which complex planetary systems are interpreted spatially through a playful material configuration. “The exhibition takes inspiration from the layers of time, pulse and temporalities in the universe that we cannot easily feel or sense. Part of this interconnected cosmos is the complex dance of gravity between the Moon, Earth and Sun that gives us Tides here on Earth. During a low tide, the water pulls away and reveals a mysteriously hidden landscape, reflecting puddles and curious shapes. A momentary experience where time, colour and light becomes fluid like the ocean. Tides showcases 100 modular stool designed by Kwangho Lee from The Moment of Eclipse series. Each eclipse shaped stool creates a union with the next stool forming chains of endlessly intriguing variations. Wang & Söderström present the exhibition as an otherworldly landscape in dreamlike colours. Along with Kwanhgo Lee’s stools Wang & Söderström present their coral inspired sculptural vessels. The visitors can take a low tide walk in changing light and colours, reflect themselves in the puddles and discover objects and sculptures on uncommon ground. A tribute to the moon and the powerful rhythms in nature.” 9Fig. 31 Wang & Soderstrom. Tides. 2019127 128Scenes in and around the Capital,17th century, Japan, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.Fig 32. Scenes in and around the Capital,17th century, Japan, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.129 130Ugo Gattoni, Bicycle, 2012, Sold Art Gallery, France. Fig 33. Ugo Gattoni, Bicycle, 2012131 132Notes 1. Weiner, Eric. Urban Oases: Getting Lost in ‘Invisible Cities.’ NPRBooks, Online, January 21, 2013. Accessed November 14, 2019. https://www.npr.org/2013/01/21/161712231/urban-oases-getting-lost-in-invisible-cities.2. Calvino, Italo, and William Weaver. Invisible Cities. Vintage, London, 1997.3.Strawson, Galen. Book Review/ Time out of mind: Einstein’s dreams by Alan Lightman.Independent, London. February 7 1993. Accessed November 14 2019. https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/book-review-time-out-of-mind-einsteins-dreams-by-alan-lightman-bloomsbury-pounds-1199-1471604.html4. Lightman, Alan P. Einstein’s Dreams. Pantheon Books, New York, 1993.5. Townsend, Chris. “When We Collide: History Aesthetics, Space and Signs in the Art of Rachel Whiteread.” The Art of Rachel Whiteread. Thames & Hudson, London, 1998. 6. Tschumi, Bernard. The Manhattan transcripts. Rev. ed. London;New York, N.Y: Academy Editions, 1994.7. Museum of Modern Art Manhattan. Conical Intersect, 1975. Accessed April 21,2019. https://www.moma.org/collection/works/1144058. Moncion, Laura. Time frames: Graphic narrative and historiography in Richard McGuire’s Here. Imaginations Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies/revue d’Études Interculturelle De l’Image. 2016. 9. Wang & Sodestrom. Tides. 2019. Accessed April 13, 2019. https:/wangsoderstrom.com/Tides-Exhibition133 134BibliographyCalvino, Italo, and William Weaver. Invisible Cities. Vintage, London, 1997.Goodbun, Jon. “Marx Matters, or: Aesthetics, Technology, and the Spirit of Matter.” Material Matters: Architecture and Material Practice. New York: Routledge, 2007.70.Goodbun, Jon. Mud and Modernity. ARENA Journal of Architectural Research. Online: Ubiquity Press, 2016.Lightman, Alan P. Einstein’s Dreams. Pantheon Books, New York, 1993.Massey, Doreen B. For Space. London: Thousand Oaks, 2005. 11.Moncion, Laura. Time frames: Graphic narrative and historiography in Richard McGuire’s Here. Imaginations Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies/revue d’Études Interculturelle De l’Image. 2016. Morton, Timothy. Realist Magic: Objects, Ontology, Causality. Open Humanities Press, 2013.Museum of Modern Art Manhattan. Conical Intersect, 1975. Accessed April 21,2019. https://www.moma.org/collection/works/114405Strawson, Galen. Book Review/ Time out of mind: Einstein’s dreams by Alan Lightman.Independent, London. February 7 1993. Accessed November 14 2019. https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/book-review-time-out-of-mind-einsteins-dreams-by-alan-lightman-bloomsbury-pounds-1199-1471604.htmlTownsend, Chris. “When We Collide: History Aesthetics, Space and Signs in the Art of Rachel Whiteread.” The Art of Rachel Whiteread. Thames & Hudson, London, 1998. Tschumi, Bernard. The Manhattan transcripts. Rev. ed. London;New York, N.Y: Academy Editions, 1994.Wang & Sodestrom. Tides. 2019. Accessed April 13, 2019.  https://wangsoderstrom.com/Tides-ExhibitionWeiner, Eric. Urban Oases: Getting Lost in ‘Invisible Cities.’ NPRBooks, Online, January 21, 2013. Accessed November 14, 2019. https://www.npr.org/2013/01/21/161712231/urban-oases-getting-lost-in-invisible-cities.135 136Illustrative CreditsFigure 1. Burtynsky, Edward. Assorted Series of Photographs. Photographs. The New Yorker (New York, NY), December 11 2016. https://www.newyorker.com/maga-zine/2016/12/19/edward-burtynskys-epic-landscapesFigure 2. Piontek, Birthe. Assorted Collections. Photographs. https://www.instagram.com/birthepiontek/?hl=enFigure 3. Nazar, Roxanna. Site of Speculation: The Kitchen. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 4. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen Plan. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 5. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen - North Elevation. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 6. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen - South Elevation. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 7. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen - East Elevation. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 8. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen - North Foyer Elevation. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 9. Nazar, Roxanna. Visual Itemization - Millwork. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 10. Nazar, Roxanna. Visual Itemization - Walls. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 11. Nazar, Roxanna. Visual Itemization Flooring. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 12. Nazar, Roxanna. Visual Itemization - Hardware. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 13. Nazar, Roxanna. Material Palette Index. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 14. Nazar, Roxanna. Millwork Composition Chart. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 15. Nazar, Roxanna. Millwork Origin Map. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 16. Nazar, Roxanna. Melamine Foil Composition. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 17. Nazar, Roxanna. World I - Make New with New. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 18. Nazar, Roxanna. World II - Make New with Less. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 19. Nazar, Roxanna. World IV - Make New with Different. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 20. Nazar, Roxanna. World V - Make New with Nothing. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 21. Nazar, Roxanna. Axonometric Speculative Kitchen Quartet. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 22. Nazar, Roxanna. Axonometric Make New with New Kitchen. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 23. Nazar, Roxanna. Axonometric Make New with Less Kitchen. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 24. Nazar, Roxanna. Axonometric Make New with Different Kitchen. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 25. Nazar, Roxanna. Axonometric Make New with Nothing Kitchen. Unpublished Im-age. 2019Figure 26. Rachel Whiteread, Ghost, 1990, Plaster on steel frame 106 x 140 x 125.” Saatchi Gallery. https://www.saatchigallery.com/aipe/rachel_whiteread.htm Figure 27. Whiteread, Rachel. Untitled (One Hundred Spaces), 1995, Resin (100 units) Di-mensions variable. Saatchi Gallery. https://www.saatchigallery.com/aipe/rachel_whiteread.htmFigure 28. Tschumi, Bernard. Manhattan Transcripts.1978. MOMA. https://www.moma.org/artists/7056Figure 29. Matta-Clark, Gordon. Conical Intersect. 1975. Photograph. SF MOMA. https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/92.426/Figure 30. McGuire, Richard. Here. Illustration.The New York Times (New York, NY) October 12, 2015 https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/18/books/review/richard-mc-guires-here.htmlFigure 31. Wang & Soderstrom and Kwangho Lee. Tides. Photograph of Installation.2019. https://wangsoderstrom.com/tides-exhibitionFigure 32. Scenes in and around the Capital,17th century, Japan. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/53428Figure 33. Gattoni, Ugo. Bicycle. It’s Nice That. July 27, 2012. https://www.itsnicethat.com/articles/ugo-gattoni 2012Figure 34. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - 3 Panels. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 35. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 36. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 37. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Millwork. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 38. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Flooring. Unpublished Image. 2019137 138Appendix Previous Explorations and ProcessFigure 39. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Hardware. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 40. Nazar, Roxanna. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Walls. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 41. Nazar, Roxanna. Origin Series - The Water Cooler. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 42. Nazar, Roxanna. Origins Series - The Concert Hall. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 43. Nazar, Roxanna. Origins Series - The Dinner Table. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 44. Nazar, Roxanna. Origins Series - The Grocery Store. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 45. Nazar, Roxanna. The Party Series - 1. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 46. Nazar, Roxanna. The Party Series - 2. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 47. Nazar, Roxanna. The Party Series - 3. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 48. Nazar, Roxanna. The Party Series - 4. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 49. Nazar, Roxanna. Assorted Sketches - Set 1. Unpublished Image. 2019Figure 50. Nazar, Roxanna. Assorted Sketches - Set 2. Unpublished Image. 2019139 140Material Origins The exploration of  The Kitchen began with a desire to re frame how we perceive materials of the everyday. Through the discovery, assembly, and formalization of material narratives, the overarching goal was to redefine the materials in The Kitchen as planetary stories mobile in time, scale, and place. This final drawing is a beginning in attempting to tell this complex story. This drawing focuses on the three most volumetrically abundant materials within The Kitchen: Polyvinyl, MDF and Engineered Quartz found within the Flooring, Millwork, and Countertops respectively. Each panel is read from top/bottom to the middle, the ends housing raw materials while the middle containing assembly and final production. Moving across all panels is a layer of cloud/smoke that carries parts of the kitchen to be assembled at the site of  The Kitchen. The two core raw materials of The Kitchen, oil and wood, take up an area that roughly represents their amount used int he space itself. As quartz is the least abundant material it takes up only a small portion of its board leaving the rest of the space for wood and The Kitchen itself. Panels from left to right are Polyvinyl Flooring, MDF, and Engineered Quartz.Fig 34. The Kitchen’s Origin - 3 Panels.141 142Fig 35. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings. Fig 36. The Kitchen’s Origin - Select Drawings.143 144MillworkMaterials by VolumeParticle BoardFibre BoardMelanine FoilSteelPolypropylenePlastic FoilAcrylic PaintPigmented EpoxyPolyester Powder Coating12.674.251.350.390.200.20ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³65%23%7%2%1%1%>0.5%FlooringMaterials by VolumeConcretePVCCorkUrethane Finish20.571.950.710.39ft³ft³ft³ft³88%8%3%1%Fig 37. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Millwork. Fig 38. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Flooring. 145 146HardwareMaterials by VolumeSteelPolypropylene WoodZinc22.18³in³in³in³56% 44% 0.37%2%Materials byVolumeGypsumFoaming AgentWaterCellulose PaperCalcium CarbonateAcrylic LatexFiber GlassTalcumTitanium Dioxide4.201.152.312.10.100.05ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³ft³42%23%21%12%1%1%>0.5%WallsFig 39. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Hardware. Fig 40. The Kitchen’s Origin - Material Palette Walls.147 148Site: The OfficeProgram: Small TalkObject: The Water CoolerMaterial: Water Lineage: River Springs Site: Community Hall Program: Concert Object: GuitarMaterial: MetalsLineage: MineFig 41. Origins Series - The Water Cooler. Fig 42. Origins Series - The Concert Hall.149 150Site: Living Room Program: Dinner PartyObject: Dinner TableMaterial: MahoganyLineage: RainforestSite: Grocery StoreProgram: ShoppingObject: GroceriesMaterial: WheatLineage: Farm Fig 43. Origins Series - The Dinner Table. Fig 44. Origins Series - The Grocery Store.151 152You follow the two ahead of you and let yourself ina narrow hall bustling with streamers, gelatinous strandsmade of crinkled pink tinsel, ocean limbs,you’re enveloped, it tickles or does it sting? you slip between the strands until you hit the expanseyou come up for a breath of boozy air where there is dancing, dancing of all kinds, arms move,toes tapballoons, swept up by the ceiling fanbumping they too are swept up by the beat of the moment Fig 45. The Party Series - 1 Fig 46. The Party Series - 2153 154dodging moving parts you meet your hosts for the nightwhisky, lemons, and eggstightly wound proteins unravel and stretch tiny bubbles fold into foam with sulfur dioxide, calcium chloridesuspended in the colour red on topsuspended in a boozy buzz how many hours has it been?You pick up to leaveYou look backon a regular webof many tangled beings. Fig 47. The Party Series - 3 Fig 48. The Party Series - 4155 156Fig 49. Assorted Sketches - Set 1 Fig 50. Assorted Sketches - Set 2157 158


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