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institut für experimentelle architektur.hochbau
universität innsbruck

technikerstrasse 13, A6020 innsbruck

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Intricate Correlations - Intensification of Relations

Workshops and Symposium On Digital Design Processes in Obergurgl / Tirol


Conducted by Prof. Patrik Schumacher the institute for experimental architecture.hochbau at Innsbruck University/Austria has set its focus on script based and parametric design research within the last years, aiming to explore new design methods in order to advance the field of contemporary digital architectural design. During this time, various new approaches to digital design were developed, iteratively tested, improved and applied in different architectural scales, the urban scale, the building scale and the ergonomic scale. Research was carried out parallel to and coordinated accordingly by Patrik Schumacher at Design Research Laboratory (DRL, Architectural Association London), and at Studio Hadid (University of Applied Arts Vienna).


Assuming that the Intensification of Relations has for quite some time become a crucial topic in contemporary architecture, independently from specific design strategies or certain ideologies, the focus of research shall shift on intricate, meaningful correlations within systems and sub-systems (internal integration) and the implications of proto-designs within their environmental conditions (external adaption).


[...] an architectural designer's task is no longer to craft individual buildings in response to unique sites and briefs, the agenda's focus has been shifted on the design of inherently adaptive, parametric proto-types that intelligently vary general topological schemata across a wide range of parametrically specifiable [programmatic and] site conditions [...]. These proto-designs shall bare the potential to be compared to the small number of fundamental body plans that underlie the inexhaustibly variegated manifold of species that evolve – each within a complementary environmental niche – on the basis of primary body plans. Proto-designs are conceived in advance of any specific [external] information.

(from Studio Project Brief at DRL 2009/2010 by Patrik Schumacher and Christos Passas)


institute for experimental architecture.hochbau therefore invite experts in the field, innovative companies and groups of students to come to the Innsbruck University Centre in Obergurgl/Tirol to take part in a 3 day session of intensive workshops and discussions to further investigate the potential of this quite openly layed out topic.

The foundations for the formation of an 'Innovation and Competence Cluster' shall be discussed extensively, aiming to establish a framework for future collaborations and exchange of know how between experts/academics, producers/builders and student teams from various universities to utilise the existing creative potential,  work 'hands on' and experiment thoroughly with digital design tools and production technologies.



institut for experimental architecture.hochbau; Innsbruck University/Austria

Prof. Patrik Schumacher (Zaha Hadid Architects)

Michael Budig, Ursula Frick, Thomas Grabner, Georg Grasser, Thomas Hillebrand, Markus Malin, Paul Mandler, Valentine Troi, Bernhard Wolf

supported by Heike Bablick, Ursula Ender, Erich Gutmorgeth, Daniel Luckeneder, Teresa Stillebacher and K.Heinz Machat (heiKE/NZ)




Patrik Schumacher (Zaha Hadid Architects)

Tobias Wallisser (LAVA, Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design)

Hanif M Kara (akt Adam Kara Taylor, London)

Lawrence Friesen (Bureau Happold, London)

Wolfgang Rieder (fibreC Company, Rieder Beton)

Gernot Riether (Georgia Instititute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA)

Claudia Pasquero (Ecologic Studio, London)

Mario Gasser (Studio Hadid, University of Applied Arts, die angewandte)

Wolfgang Löschnig (TU Graz)


Critics (Workshops / Parallel Sessions / Panel Discussions):

Ursula Frick, Thomas Grabner, Georg Grasser, Thomas Hillebrand, Markus Malin, Paul Mandler, Valentine Troi, Bernhard Wolf;
institut for experimental architecture.hochbau; Innsbruck University, Austria

Michael Budig, institut for experimental architecture.hochbau; Innsbruck University, Austria; and Studio Hadid, University of Applied Arts (die angewandte); Vienna, Austria

Mario Gasser, Studio Hadid, University of Applied Arts (die angewandte); Vienna, Austria

Lucas Reames and Michael E Idoine; Gehry Technologies and STUDIO G5, LA, USA

Shih-Yuan Wang; Feng Chia University, Taiwan

Martin Schroth; Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design, Germany

Wolfgang Löschnig; Technische Universität Graz, Austria

Jan Willmann; Architekturtheorie; Innsbruck University, Austria

Markus Brück; Fa. Rieder / fibreC, Kolbermoor, Germany

Kathrin Wiertelarz, Universität Kassel, Germany


Participating Universities:

institut for experimental architecture.hochbau; Innsbruck University/Austria

University of Applied Arts (die angewandte); Vienna/Austria

Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design; Germany

Universität Kassel; Germany

Feng Chia University, Taiwan

Georgia Instititute of Technology, Atlanta, GA/USA



4 student/university teams

4 experts

4 companies

4 sub-topics*



Investigation of intricate correlations between systems and sub-systems and concentration on the architect's/designer's tasks of establishing well elaborated and highly adaptable schemes will be the focus of this session.

The generative potential and meaningful internal logics will be the focus of attention; Processing will be used as primary software tool.



More advanced schemes shall be explored in this session in order to develop concepts of associating proto-designs with specific site parameters and embedding them within multiple external conditions.

Soft Skins workshop [...] will investigate the use of associative modelling to support the conception of an architectural facade as the evolving product of multiple interacting urban systems and forces.
Environmental fields, social potentials and material performances will feed the model and define a “soft-skin” envelope. The term “soft” indicates the focus on design informed by data in real-time as well as by the nature of fabrics, fibres, tiles or embedded with biologically-active or vegetated components.
Experiments in data feeding will be based on a new design interface developed by ecoLogicStudio which allows to directly link the Grasshopper model with a web based platform called PACHUBE and to the so called “internet of things”.
The Skin will be developed as a site specific project and directly prototyped, at an appropriate scale, via laser cutting or CNC facilities.

(from Workshop Brief by ecoLogicStudio, www.ecologicstudio.com)



This session explores similar topics as session 2 Proto-Design / External Adaption. However concepts shall be taken into a more technical direction and be supervised by engineering experts, evaluating the integration of current energy design and engineering tools within the design process. Autodesk Ecotect Analysis and McNeel's Grasshopper will be used to develop environmental design solutions to respond to external environmental influences.

Data feeding from Grasshopper to Ecotect is based on an interface developed by [uto] which offers a direct link between Rhino/Grasshopper models and the sustainable design analysis software Ecotect; to improve performance and the design of a building in the context of its environment.

Students can download Ecotect and any other Autodesk Software at http://students.autodesk.com/?nd=home


The fourth session will look at relations between design and production processes. Assuming that the level of craftsmanship within alpine/middle European regions has a long tradition and reflects high quality, innovative building and production companies will support the exploration of possibilities within direct design to production processes.

Gehry Technolgies' DigitalProject will be used to create a detailed parametric entity, with a focus on how fabrication and assembly of different materials (wood, metal and concrete) affect the design process.  A series of models and drawings will be produced, including  a 1:1 model of an import structural joint/detail. The workshop will explore the fabrication process, through the use of a wood joinery machine as well as the use of other rapid prototyping machines and laser cutters. Engineers and Technicians from cooperating companies will assist this workshop group.


* The goal of these workshops and discussion panels is bringing together at least 4 student / university teams with 4 experts within the fields of parametric design / engineering and 4 innovative companies. 4 sub-topics suggest frameworks for topics that accompany the sessions (during the day) and lectures / panel discussions (in the evenings).



Participants / project teams are expected to bring projects from their design classes that will be the base for individual investigations within the workshops' frameworks. Therefore they are asked to prepare one DinA3 poster (landscape) per project that describes the project, it's underlying design principals along a short description of the expected investigations.
Documents shall be submitted by June 4th; an adress will be published on the Symposium's website.



7th – 9th June 2010

institute for experimental architecture.hochbau, Innsbruck University

Technikerstrasse 13, A-6020 Innsbruck, Austria

47°15'50.71"N 11°20'43.45"E

10am Pre-Workshop Sessions; preparation of resources, posters ... (internal event at Innsbruck University)

 6pm End

10th – 13th June 2010

Universitätszentrum Obergurgl

Gaisbergweg 5 , A-6456 Obergurgl, Austria

46°52'0.95"N 11° 1'29.26"E


10th June 2010

10am Arrival

                         Presentation of participants and program
11am Workshop Sessions
1pm Lunch Break
2pm Workshop Sessions
6pm Break/Dinner
8pm Expert Lectures

                        Panel Discussions

11th June 2010
10am Workshop Sessions
1pm Lunch Break
2pm Workshop Sessions
6pm Break/Dinner
8pm Expert Lectures

                        Panel Discussions

12th June 2010
10am Workshop Sessions
1pm Lunch Break
2pm Workshop Finals
5.30pm Workshop Presentations
7pm Break/Dinner
8pm Lectures

                        Discussions of the results with all participants

13th June 2010
10am Departure

Letzte Aktualisierung ( Freitag, 25. November 2011 )
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