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The Architecture of Mindfulness

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In the age of social media, the 24-hour news cycle, and an overwhelming pressure to become "successful," there is a marked lack of personal connection within communities and a constant state of stress and overwork. This constant state of stress

In the age of social media, the 24-hour news cycle, and an overwhelming pressure to become "successful," there is a marked lack of personal connection within communities and a constant state of stress and overwork. This constant state of stress then builds into anxiety, as there are few public resources for mental reprieve. The World Health Organization reports that anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders worldwide, begging the question as to how they can be addressed most effectively worldwide. As design is implicit within any environment that provides for mental wellness, it must be carefully curated to provide not only the physical necessities, but speak for something beyond explanation- a sense of mental refuge and comfort. Using the concept of mindfulness, architecture has the power to force users to truly be present in the experience, activating space to become a mental refuge rather than a passive infrastructure.

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2018-05

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What's for Dinner?

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Food’s implication on culture and agriculture challenges agriculture’s identity in the age of the city. As architect and author Carolyn Steel explained, “we live in a world shaped by food, and if we realize that, we can use food as

Food’s implication on culture and agriculture challenges agriculture’s identity in the age of the city. As architect and author Carolyn Steel explained, “we live in a world shaped by food, and if we realize that, we can use food as a powerful tool — a conceptual tool, design tool, to shape the world differently. It triggers a new way of thinking about the problem, recognizing that food is not a commodity; it is life, it is culture, it’s us. It’s how we evolved.” If the passage of food culture is dependent upon the capacity for learning and transmitting knowledge to succeeding generations, the learning environments should reflect this tenability in its systematic and architectural approach.

Through an investigation of agriculture and cuisine and its consequential influence on culture, education, and design, the following project intends to reconceptualize the learning environment in order facilitate place-based practices. Challenging our cognitive dissonant relationship with food, the design proposal establishes a food identity through an imposition of urban agriculture and culinary design onto the school environment. Working in conjunction with the New American University’s mission, the design serves as a didactic medium between food, education, and architecture in designing the way we eat.

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2017-05