City Smart

7-15 July 2017

2017 77—715

Programme Head:  Tom Verebes


In an era of unprecedented city building, the 11th consecutive AA Shanghai Summer School continues to focus on issues related to urbanization in China. The Yangtze River Delta Metropolitan Region, (pop. 90m), which comprising Shanghai, is the laboratory for the study of the complexities of the contemporary city within this context of massive urbanisation. AAVS Shanghai has persistently championed computational approaches applied to the problematic of the twenty-first century city. This year, the programme shifts towards speculations of an Intelligent Urbanism, shaped and materialized through flows of information through responsive infrastructure, interfaces and the Internet of Things. This year’s new agenda, City Smart, will investigate the potential for design intelligence to be transferred towards the materialisation of information in urbanism. As an intensive nine-day studio-based course, clusters of tutors and students will engage experimentally with computational simulation, analysis, design, production and fabrication, to query the design repercussions of these information-based technological methods for urbanism. Given the aim to discover the cultural, social and spatial repercussions of today’s quickly advancing technologies upon the city, AAVS Shanghai will introduce students to skills and concepts with which to harness the complexities of quickly changing Chinese cities.



The course will be taught by a team of tutors from the AA School and other visitors, with expertise, skills and experience in computational and fabrication in teaching, research and practice. The programme is structured in two subsequent phases. Over the first three days of the workshop, a series of intensive ‘tooling-up’ sessions will serve as the basis for investigating associative design and fabrication concepts and methodologies. In a second stage of the workshop, students will develop design proposals responding to studio briefs focusing on developing intelligent models, interfaces and prototypes of urbanism.



Students will be introduced to expertise in generative, algorithmic and parametric design approaches and their immediate materialisation as urban prototypes. The main computational tools are Rhinoceros and a series of plug-ins and add-ons, Maya, Processing, and others. Students will gain expertise in fabrication technologies, including robotics, 3D printing, laser cutting, cnc milling and virtual reality, as a basis to applied these emerging technologies towards innovative ontologies of cities in the twenty-first century.



Alongside studio-based design tutorials and seminars, a series of lectures will be scheduled. Each year of the programme, AAVS Shanghai hosts a public symposium, with a large group of invited guest speakers and panelists, addressing contemporary topics related to the theme of the workshop, City Smart.  As part of the schedule of events, AAVS Shanghai will also have a book launch event for the publication of SHANGHAI TEN FOLIO, a monography of the work of the programme’s students, staff and visitors, with essays and symposium transcriptions. The 9-day programme is hosted at the new China 3D Printing Museum in Boashan, Shanghai.


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