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Experiments with Body Agent Architecture

The 586-year-old Spiritello in Il Regno Digitale

Explore the human figure as an agent of design through scholarly analysis and fiction narrative.

Experiments with Body Agent Architecture proposes the notion of body agents: non-ideal, animate, and highly specific figures integrated with design to enact particular notions of embodied subjectivity in architecture. Body agents present opportunities for architects to increase imaginative and empathic qualities in their designs.
Beginning with narrative writing from the viewpoint of a body agent who finds himself uncomfortably inhabiting a digital milieu, the book combines speculative historical fiction and original design experiments. It focuses on the process of creating multimedia design experiments, moving from the design of the body itself as an original prosthetic to architectural proposals emanating from the body.
A fragmented history of the figure in architecture is charted and woven into the designs, with chapters examining Michelangelo’s enigmatic figures in his drawings for the New Sacristy in the early sixteenth century, Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s physically ephemeral putti adorning chapels and churches in the seventeenth century, and Austrian artist-architect Walter Pichler’s personal and prescient figures of the twentieth century. 

262 pages | 150 color plates | 8 1/2 x 9

Architecture: History of Architecture

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Table of Contents

List of figures Acknowledgements Prologue: who is P_1435? 1. Our narrator’s present circumstance: an excerpt from the journal of P_1435 2. Situating P_1435’s predicament: an outline of the topic and structure of this book 3. Memories of an awakening at a great height: excerpts from the journal of P_1435 4. Figures becoming architecture: Michelangelo’s new Sacristy drawings: a dialogue 5. The design of, and designing with P_1435: a collection of design experiments 6. Memories of life after Michelangelo: manneristic transgressions and starring roles: excerpts from the journal of P_1435 7. Virtuosic Putti in Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s work at St Peter’s Basilica: a dialogue 8. The abstract flesh of the D_I: a collection of design experiments 9.  Memories of events leading to a hiatus and current revelations on figures of the early twentieth-century: excerpts from the journal of P_1435 10. Memories of awakening in St Martin and a fortuitous meeting: an excerpt from the journal of P_1435 11. Landscapes, doubles, and cyborgs: Walter Pichler’s figures at St Martin: a dialogue 12. Torso_2.0 and the emergence of the body agent Tempietto and its site: a collection of design experiments 13. Body agents: reflections and further potentialities: concluding thoughts on findings and future avenues of investigations Bibliography Index

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