speculative-architecture – mammoth // building nothing out of something

Category Archives: speculative-architecture

hyper-reality: a new vision of the future

Long-time readers of mammoth may recall our excitement at Keiichi Matsuda’s short films Domestic Robocop and Augmented City, both of which present believable near-future visions of a world in which “synthetic spaces created by the digital information that we collect, consume and organise” supersede “the physical space of buildings and landscape”, while at the same […]

unknown fields division: madgascar

[The Betsiboka River's delta, flush with eroded sediments; source: NASA EO.] This summer’s Unknown Fields Division is headed to Madagascar: …Unknown Fields heads to Madagascar to catalogue the push and pull of economy and ecology and to trace the shadows of the world’s desires across the landscapes of this treasured island.  Along our way we seek […]

the commonwealth approach

[The following is the text and (a slightly condensed set of) slides from the presentation that Laurel McSherry and I gave at the Drylands Design Conference in late March. The presentation walks through our highly speculative proposal for the reconfiguration of the political geography of the United States to better conform to the spatial distribution […]

dead website archive

[David Garcia Studio's "Dead Website Archive", from MAP-003 "Archive"; read about the Dead Website Archive at DPR-Barcelona.]

“a state of perpetual fracture”

["The faults induced by military speleogenesis will lead to gradual yet certain failure of the jet noise barrier."] Nick Sowers (Soundscrapers) has recently posted a series at the Archinect school blog project exploring his recently-completed thesis project from a succession of disciplinary perspectives, which he titles the Archaeologist (who introduces the project), the Forensic Engineer, […]

absent rivers, ephemeral parks

[American Falls de-watered, via Flickr user rbglasson] For six months in the summer and fall of 1969, Niagara’s American Falls were “de-watered”, as the Army Corps of Engineers conducted a geological survey of the falls’ rock face, concerned that it was becoming destabilized by erosion.  During the interim study period, the dried riverbed and shale […]

“blooming landscape, deep surface”

[Model of "Blooming Landscape, Deep Surface"; all images from and by Smout Allen] I can’t let Stephen’s mention of Smout Allen pass — particularly in the context of a discussion of process and event in architecture — without also saying a word about their proposal for the Grand Egyptian Museum, which is one of my […]

the north american storm control authority

[Comparative historic and contemporary heat maps of the wind energy potential of the continental United States, via NASCA.gov; NASCA documents indicate sources for their imagery include AWS Truewind/NREL via Wired Science and NOAA/NASA] The North American Storm Control Authority (NASCA), like its predecessor, the North American Water and Power Alliance (NAWAPA), which rebuilt the Rocky […]

a glacier is a very long event

The following post, which is more a catalog of related items than a singular argument, has been written to engage the “Glacier/Island/Storm” studio BLDGBLOG is currently teaching at Columbia GSAPP, as a part of a timed release of material into the blogosphere coordinated across a bank of architecture, design, and technology blogs; you can find […]

the large higgs field galactic archive

This post was originally written for inclusion in our list of the decade’s best architecture, but then excluded, both for fit and because we realized the novel it references — Darwinia – was published in 1998. [We haven't got any images of the Large Higgs Field Galatic Archive, for reasons that will become obvious, so […]

our collective spatial memory, modeled

From the description of the above video at PopSci: Using nearly half a million Flickr photos of Rome, Venice, and the Croatian coastal city of Dubrovnik, a team of computer scientists at the University of Washington’s Graphics and Imaging Laboratory assembled digital models of the three cities in 3-D… Each video includes clusters of small diamond […]

mammoth suburban land infusions

Here is a little something Rob and I put together for the Re-burbia competition.  Our entry asks the questions: What if the challenge suburbs face is not that they over-consume land, but have too little? How could an infusion of new land simultaneously (and paradoxically) mitigate some of the issues caused by the under-utilization of […]

cloud skippers

Studio Lindfors, who previously proposed blimps as an inflatable emergency extension of the metropolis for the What if New York City… design competition, speculate further about the inhabitation of the air in their entry to [bracket], “Cloud Skippers”: Imagine a community of adventurous pioneers who leave the Earth’s surface to drift and glide amongst the […]