Diploma 7

The Department of Not-Usually-Valued-Knowledge: New Nature


This year Diploma 7 continued its search on both a global and local scale for the characteristics of New Nature - possible architectures for a post-print-post-industrial-post-consumer landscape. Our main area of interest, a 50-minute journey northeast of London, was the coastal wetland of Wallasea Island in Essex. Here more than six million tonnes of subsoil - the by-product of London’s Crossrail tunnel construction - has been relocated to now function as an aid for managing Britain’s retreating coastline. Searching not-usually-valued knowledge, students worked in that scratchy layer where subsurface meets ultrasurface, where the very fast meets the very slow. With film-as-sketchbook as the primary means of investigating, accumulating and recording information, moving drawings became the primary mode of representation for proposals based on the tenets of speed, time and interval.

The principal design endeavor was to work out how much or how little architecture is required. Projects were informed by visits to the British Geological Society London, the Royal Corinthean Yacht Club in Burnham-on-Crouch, and workshops in Venice. Theoretical, technical and critical issues were searched through a series of talks and seminars with a diverse group of distinguished artists, architects, environmental scientists, anthropologists, and architectural and landscape historians. Importantly, all the projects developed over the year have contributed to expanding the lexicon of New Nature, and all fall into one of four distinct new chapters: 

Earthly Delight in the New Nature - Inter-tidal Geospheres
Politics in the New Nature - Spaces of Collective Attention
Learning in the New Nature - Digital Bricolage
New Nature Noospheres

Evgenia Andersson
Eduardo Andreu Gonzalez
Lorenza Baroncelli, Daniela Meyer, Swiss Pavilion, Venice
Giulio Bertelli
Stefana Broadbent
Barbara Campbell-Lange
Javier Castanon and the TS team
Jane da Mosto, Venice
Kate Davies
Ryan Dillon
Albane Duvillier
Wendy Eagling, Royal Corinthean Yacht Club
Alvaro Fernandez
Liza Fior
John Frazer
David Greene
Selim Halulu
Samantha Hardingham
Yijun Huang
Andrew Jin Dar Hum
Sho Ito
Christopher Johnson
Holger Kessler, British Geological Society
John Lyall
Tae Hyuk Kim
Yin Lee
Bruce McLean
Lucy Mary Moroney
Jiadong Qiang
Humphry Repton
Mike Russum
Irénée Scalbert
Maddalena Scimemi, Venice
Colin Scott, ABPmer environmental consultancy
Toby Shew
Brett Steele
Pier Vittorio Aureli
Gloria Pou Wai 
John Walter
Ken Worpole
Yiling Zhang

Unit Staff

David Greene, born Nottingham England 1937, usual English provincial suburban upbringing, art school, elected associate member of the RIBA and onto London to begin a nervous, nomadic and twitchy career, from big buildings for developers to T-shirts and shops for Paul Smith, to conceptual speculations for Archigram, which he founded with Peter Cook. This peripatetic journey from form to absence was docu- mented in L.A.W.u.N Project #19+20, a book-thing and an AA exhibition, co-edited and co-curated with Samantha Hardingham. RIBA Gold Medal 2002. Joint Annie Spinks Award with Peter Cook (2002). Currently maybe the Provost of the Invisible University?

Samantha Hardingham is an architectural writer and editor publishing work in several editions of the original ellipsis architecture guide series. She graduated from the AA in 1993. She was senior research fellow in the Research Centre for Experimental Practice at the Univer- sity of Westminster 2003-09. She is the writer and editor of the forthcoming two-volume anthology, Cedric Price Works 1952 - 2003: A Forward-minded Retrospective.