Site and Composition
Design Strategies in Architecture and Urbanism
Site and Composition examines design strategies and tactics in site making. It is concerned with the need for a renewed understanding of the site in the twenty-first century and the need for a critical position regarding the continued tendency to view the site as an isolated ‘fragment’ severed from its wider context.
The book argues revisiting the traditional instruments or means of both siting and composition in Architecture to explore their true potential in achieving connections between site and context. Through the various examples studied here it is suggested that such instrumental means have the potential for achieving greater poetic outcomes. The book focuses on the works of twentieth century architects of wide-ranging persuasion – Peter Eisenman, Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright, Alvaro Siza, Herzog and de Meuron, and Charles Correa, for example – who have strived in quite different ways to achieve deeper engagement with the physical qualities of place and context.
Departing from a reconsideration of the fragment, Site and Composition emphasises the role of the ‘positive fragment’ in achieving both historical continuity and renewed wholeness. The potential of both planimetric and sectional compositional methods are explored, emphasising the importance of reciprocity between ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ – between fragment and the whole, as well as materiality. Written in a clear and accessible manner, this book makes vital reading for both researchers and students of architecture and urbanism.
Table of Contents
Preface 1. Introduction: Site and Composition 2. Truth and the Primordial Fragment 3. Site Readings 4. The Planimetric Composition of Site 5. Enmeshed Horizons: Interior and Exterior Spaces 6. Materiality and the Culture of Place 7. Conclusion
Enis Aldallal has been practising architecture in the United States since 2011 and is pursuing licensure in the state of Illinois. Before coming to the USA, he practised architecture for six years in renowned architectural firms in the Middle East. He holds an MArch from Illinois Institute of Technology (2011) and an MPhil from the University of Liverpool, UK (2009). His interest in place-specific approaches to architecture supports his research on site-related challenges and how they engage with his architecural designs.
Husam AlWaer is an urbanist with a background in architecture, urban design and sustainability. He is Senior Lecturer in sustainable urban design and evaluation in the School of Social Sciences, University of Dundee, having previously researched and taught at Reading and Liverpool universities. Husam’s work has had considerable impact in academia, practice and in the field of community out-reach. With Barbara Illsley he is currently editing Place-making: Rethinking the Master-planning Process, with contributions from internationally reputed scholars and experts in the field (ICE Publisher, expected 2016).
Soumyen Bandyopadhyay holds the Sir James Stirling Chair in Architecture at the University of Liverpool. Director of the research centre, ArCHIAM (Architecture and Cultural Heritage of India, Arabia and the Maghreb), he has published widely on aspects of Indian modernity and vernacular architecture of Arabia. His recent publications include The Territories of Identity (Routledge 2013, co-edited with Guillermo Garma-Montiel) and Manah: Omani Oasis, Arabian Legacy (Liverpool University Press 2011).