Year 2 students at the Welsh School of Architecture have attended workshops at Llysdinam Field Centre with the premise that the process of design is inextricably linked to the creative act of making.
Architects, such as Le Corbusier, Jean Prouvé, Jørn Utzon, Alvar Aalto, Glenn Murcutt, Renzo Piano and Peter Zumthor have all shaped their architecture through an understanding of site and the nature of technology, materials, production techniques and design.
It is often tempting to think of 'designing' as the act of working out a plan, before 'extruding' the plan into three dimensions and finally assigning materials and developing elevations. This studio encouraged students to begin the process of design from other viewpoints: materials, light, three-dimensional model making and sections. To design at 1:1 means to know how it will be made. In order to make you must first understand the material. To understand the material means to understand where it has come from, how it is made and what it can do...
The workshop at Llysdinam provided an opportunity for students to focus on 2 stages of designing and making with timber:
1. A study of the properties of timber from woodland to processed timber, using the mixture of mature, recreational and commercial woodlands on the Llysdinam estate and the BSW sawmill in Newbridge-on-Wye.
2. The live 1:1 design, fabrication and installation of timber structures and interventions using local timber and the Coed Cymru workshop at Tregynon.