About Entrée Alpine:
The Spring Semester 2009 is a continuation of our investigations on altitude. We will develop a project in a mountainous, alpine condition in several resolutions at different scales. First, a series of mountain passes will be looked at and transformed into panoramic site models. Subsequently the program of Entrée Alpine will be introduced as a first step towards a project proposal: the design of an Alpine Motel. After the Entrée Alpine phase 16 proposals will be evaluated in a jury with external experts in a public review. One or several proposals will serve as the basis for a ‘one to one’ structure to be erected on location in one of the mountain passes or at an art festival of our choice.
To realize a construction of a pavilion or an installation with a second year design class is an experiment. The basic idea behind it is to expose students to processes in architectural production, from conception, to planning, to realization, to the ultimate removal of the architectural artifact—thus, the full life cycle of an object.
At the same time, such a project calls into question the position and the viewpoint of the designer. Here, the architect is not just a creator, he is also a craftsman, a producer, an engineer, a manager, etc. Thus the designer is not only acting from without or above—from a top-view position or a bird’s eye perspective so to speak—but also from within. The employment of digital and physical tools, in combination with the actual building of a one-to-one structure, presents a framework of multiple reference frames for the maker of the design, while at the same time transgressing these frames. This altered position of the designer-architect implies understanding architectural design as an emergent process.