Title page for ETD etd-10042010-113555

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Sykes, Brian Harrison
Author's Email Address bsykes07@vt.edu
URN etd-10042010-113555
Title Processing The Program: Considering The Architectural Brief
Degree Master of Architecture
Department Architecture
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Emmons, Paul F. Committee Chair
Feuerstein, Marcia F. Committee Member
Piedmont-Palladino, Susan C. Committee Member
Schippers, John Committee Member
  • Brief
  • Program
  • Architecture
Date of Defense 2009-06-19
Availability unrestricted
The architectural program is often seen as a shopping

list of requirements the client presents to the architect with the

expectation the architect will create a design solution to address

the owner’s requests. The shopping list may or may not be

created with the assistance of an architect. The program in this

form is often the result of some form of analysis. The design

is then intended to be a formal synthesis. This reductionist

approach to architectural program degenerates the capacity of

the program to merely solidified functional relationships. Additionally,

this approach limits the concept of the program to the

initial pre-design phase of the life of the building.

My thesis offers a more provisional approach to the concept

of the program - breaking apart constant architectural concerns

within the pre-design portion of the project into individual

concerns/programs to be addressed, and then recombining those

individual aspects through a series of contingent imaginings,

or processing. Accepting contingency, or the impermanence

of various conditions within the architects

sphere of influence, as a key aspect of a

“pre-graphia” moment, provides the architect with an opportunity

to embrace patterns of change within architecture and

the world at large. Architecture should address topics

such as transforming construction technologies, the individual

site as it changes over time, or patterns of bodily

inhabitation and imagine possibilities for a project . As a building’s

purposes change, at varying rates, so will certain aspects

of architectural performance.

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