How do you learn to perceive spaces in new ways? How does a designer depict a space so that a customer can understand something that has yet to be built? It’s one thing to draw a building but it’s completely different to walk into one. Models can only get you so far especially when they are table top size and the project is projected to take up 2 city blocks.
One of the classes I am taking deals with representing architecture and more importantly space, through video and film. Our assignments so far have included an older part of Shanghai called Zhangyuan https://wufamilynanjing.wordpress.com/2013/11/26/shanghai-zhang-yuan-project-final-update-2/ , which we did last term and was the introduction to a much larger conceptual design project, an oversize door that is in a place most people would never see it, and most recently a wonderfully odd staircase in the astronomy building at Nanjing University.
The above photo is a sketch layout of the different shots I wanted to use in the film. This particular staircase raps around the lobby as it spirals upward three floor before cutting through itself at the top floor and giving access to the roof. Its odd yet interesting and it makes for a great space. My first impression was a reminder of M. C. Escher’s drawing of stairs that don’t go anywhere or that flow along the ceiling in only to exit at doors that are impossibly turned upside down. That in turn reminded me of that wonderful scene towards the end of the 1986 classic ‘Labyrinth’ staring David Bowie and Jennifer Connelly, when they follow each other through a similar space.
So with those two examples in mind I set out to show that this odd little staircase was a vivid reminder of that kind of impossible space! Below is a link to the video.