Despite the multifarious entities with some partial claim to authorship of a large construction project, the architect remains at the forefront in terms of formulating public legibility as the player empowered to decide both the structure of the organization giving rise to the project and the overarching aesthetic rules under which they operate.
“[If a] system is dynamic there has to be the ability to exchange information all the time. At all scales data is fed through and transformed…what begins as a small set of instructions is multiplied into a complex web.” (Cecil Balmond, Element, 7)
What happens when the small set of instructions that begins the design process is purely formal, rather than being about the discreetization of use (as was OMA’s plan for the Seattle Public Library)? How does might the evolution of a façade progress when the rules are geometrically derived, not program-based? In order to explore this question, I imagined that OMA was fired from the Seattle Public Library project after the team was assembled but before schematic design had progressed; Aranda-
Lasch was brought on board to promulgate a recursively geometrical formulation for the library. This formulation I took from their Tooling volume of Pamphlet Architecture; the two geometrical rulesets I extracted (cracking and tiling) then applied to the volume of the Seattle Public Library