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Maribor 2112Ai: City in Extremis

Design Research Studio, RMIT University

SAALA has been invited by the School of Architecture & Design to conduct a practice led studio to develop one of the University’s project proposals for Maribor 2012Ai, a global design research and exhibition project conducted as part of the 2012 European Capital of Culture Program. The outcomes of this studio will be included in the Australian Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2012 and in a large exhibition and symposium in Maribor, Slovenia.

The SAALA studio will explore the potentials of computational design techniques and tools for generating meaningful landscape architectural and urban design propositions for the City of Maribor. Through an engagement with various dynamic modeling methods the studio aims to effectively model future scenarios which respond to the ambitions of the Maribor 2112Ai brief.

Of particular focus for this studio will be ecological urbanism, patterns of growth, and the exploration of various spatial and temporal organizational strategies through which a
thriving and resilient city of the future may emerge and evolve.

Throughout the semester there will be an emphasis on experimentation, testing, design through making, and the production of rich and beautiful drawings and models.

This studio will navigate its way through four interrelated and overlapping phases:

Phase 1 : Tools & Techniques
A series of mini workshops exploring dynamic spatial organisation and systems modeling.

Phase 2 : Urban Dreaming
Investigation of the rich history of future visions of the city from from utopias to dystopias, from prehistory to the 21st Century and beyond.

Phase 3 : Data Pooling
Gleaning information about the various historical and contemporary forces which constitute Maribor. Through data accumulation, readings and analysis we will generate a pool of relevant base material to enable a close engagement with both the existing conditions of Maribor as well as its predicted future scenarios.

Phase 4 : Design Propositions
Generation of design provocations / proposals / visions for the city of Maribor in the year 2112.
NB: All design work will be developed in groups. SAALA is assembling an interdisciplinary consultation team for this studio. Participants include Roland Snooks (RMIT / Kokkugia), Tim
Schork (Monash / MESNE), Jerome Frumar (RMIT / MESNE) and Clark Thenhaus (RMIT / Endemic). Additional guest presentations by a range of design professionals will run through the course of the studio.

Studio Poster

Studio Poster