Ludics
Zenovia Toloudi, Dartmouth College

Technoecologies: The Interplay of Space and its Perception

Synopsis

Based on the current Technoecologies exhibition at the Storrs Gallery, College of Arts + Architecture, UNC Charlotte, this talk reconceives the relationship between humans and their environment in architecture through prototypes and models that explore emerging forms of bioarchitecture, living systems, and evolving environments. Technoecologies exhibition proposes a metabolic architecture as a provocative alternative approach, being manifested by speculative yet tangible ways. Metabolic architecture is contemplated here both literally, and metaphorically. Literally, it deals with material transformations caused by either growth or decay of organic matter. Metaphorically, it relates to immaterial transformations of light or sound caused by environmental or artificial stimuli. Through these processes, metabolism within architecture becomes an apparatus that produces constant changes in form, space, and in user perception.

By bridging the gap between technophilia and technophobia, Technoecologies projects root into tradition and society to reinterpret in contemporary terms past history, culture, and traditional habits. With examples ranging from artificial sonic gardens and living wall prototypes to interactive models of seed banks, Technoecologies projects examine processes of material transformation, eventually generating a series of themes for architecture to consider, such as laboratory experimentation, objectification of nature, temporality and theatricality, the vernacular and cultural, modular and infrastructural elements, vulnerability and voyeurism, autonomy and complexity, as well as user participation. This exploration forms both a theory and a design approach, which subsequently advocate how art, technology, and architecture might progressively transform the environment, society, and culture.

Biography

Zenovia Toloudi is architect, artist, and Assistant Professor of Architecture at Studio Art, Dartmouth College. Her work critiques the contemporary alienation of humans from nature and sociability in architecture and in public space, and investigates spatial typologies to reestablish cohabitation, inclusion and participation through digital, physical, and organic media. The founder of Studio Z, a creative research practice on art, architecture and urbanism, Zenovia has exhibited internationally, including at the Biennale in Venice, the Center for Architecture, the Athens Byzantine Museum, the Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art and the Onassis Cultural Center. She has won commissions from Illuminus Boston, and The Lab at Harvard. Zenovia's work belongs to permanent collections at Aristotle University (AUTh), and the Thracian Pinacotheca.

http://home.dartmouth.edu/faculty-directory/zenovia-toloudi