Sunday, February 22, 2009

Japanese Ritual Bathing

The bathing ritual found in Japan is different in many ways from other cultures and their bathing rituals. Emphasis is placed on the elements that inspire the desire for relaxation, water, the element that has made this cultural bathing ritual unique.

The Japanese during ancient times had the belief that water held the memories of the different interactions it made with the natural earth. They found the natural hot springs and rushing waters to be most effective in cleansing their mind and spirit. Onsen is when you visit the mountain and coastal springs and enjoy their scolding waters that emerge from nature. Resorts have been formed around these springs since the ancient times.

The movement of the water is one of the ultimate inspirations that the Japanese embraced when cleansing their spirit. All of the senses are intrigued during the bathing ritual. The Japanese took this to the level where they respect the water and its ability to relax and cleanse them.

Japanese view the bathing process as something where you shower off and actually wash yourself before you enter the bath. The bath is ultimately for relaxation, enveloping the water to cleanse you spiritually. Typically you soak in the water for about thirty minutes to an hour with the water raised up to neck level. The temperature of the water is extremely hot and only goes as hot as you can bare it before any burning of the skin occurs. The water remains in the tub for several people to cleanse themselves instead of emptying the water between each bather.

Google Book Preview
Spiritual Bathing
By Rosita Arvigo, Nadine Epstein

Furniture Fashion ese_soaking_tub.html


ADA Standards for Accessible Design

Wheelchair Passage Widths
• Minimal width for wheelchair passage at any point is 32” but for continuous width 36” minimal
• For two wheelchairs to pass 60” is required
• 60” of clear space is required for wheelchairs to make a 180 degree turn
• the minimal clear floor space required for a stationary wheelchair is 30” by 48”
• passage for one wheelchair and one person to pass in a passage way is 48”

• Ramp slopes between 1:16 and 1:20
• A ramp with a slope of 1:12 for 30’ is hard to manage for any person.
• Levels landings are essential

Floor Surfaces
• Wheelchairs move easier on hard, stable, and regular surfaces
• The Transportation Barriers Compliance Board recommends that a regular walking surface should have a static coefficient of friction of 0.5 and a coefficient of 0.8 for ramps

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Urban Pathway

I am really happy how this turned out. This assignment caused lots of problems [like losing six hours of work the night before it was due] but in the end I think it resulted in a better final project than what I originally had. I am not quite sure where this pathway is located but I feel that it made an interesting composition contrasting the darkness of the tunnel and the sun shining on the stairs.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

place to dine

Through this post I hope to fully explain my intent behind the design. During my critique I felt that I did not provide myself with the best opportunity to completely sell my design to the class. In doing this post I hope that it will help to get a better understanding.

Responsive Duality:

duality means the means the harmony of two opposite and complementary parts that integrate into a whole

The Duality Principle
Uzma Mazhar
© 2002

Everything is responsive in some way to something else. There is interaction and responsiveness on several different levels. The table is capable of making adjustments to the size of the dining party that is being serving. Lighting as well makes the same adjustment to people and the mood that is intended to be set. The interaction with people that use the space falls at the highest level. From here the form of the space takes on the idea of linking and the response of two forms coming together to create a newer form.

It all started with the table and the ultimate desire to design something that contained the table for twelve and the side table all within one piece. This led to the decision to have some form of a divider between the two but something that does not disconnect the two completely. Upon making this decision I realized that typically this table would not be serving twelve people all the time. From here I started working with the idea that the divider could move and adjust to the number of people it will be serving at the time. The detail created down the center of the table resulted from the movable wall idea, something that reacts to this motion. It works in a zipper motion where the underneath strand is forced to move upward during the movement of the wall and interlock with the top strand, uniting the pieces. At this point in the design process I really started thinking about the major elements of the room and how the table relates outward to the many parts of the room.

It became apparent that the idea of linking or fitting together either physically or through appearance would be the best approach to create something unified and holistic. The form of the room was inspired theoretically from the table and the linking together idea. I eventually came to the idea of two U-like shapes offset appearing as they link together. This resulted in two passage ways, one leading the guest to the food first where they would then walk around the movable wall and proceed with eating, and another that acts as an exit inviting the guests into the living space where they can enjoy good conversation.

The word complement became an important word in the design process. It enabled me to make decisions on whether elements should complement the table or resemble specific aesthetics of the table. The table was to be the focal point and the only means of furniture within the space. Excess was not necessary, because it would only distract the attention of the inhabitants from the presence of the table.

The dark wood floors complement the tables lightly stained wood tabletop. Two of the major walls are of a tinted glass just as that of the movable wall intertwined with the table. To balance this, the other walls complement the table wall but simultaneously resemble their adjacent walls in same hue to resemble a simplistic, continuous form. The drop down ceiling in form resembled the table form but complements the color. The opening in axis with the table leads to the kitchen and is the same size as the table wall, giving the illusion that the table wall was pulled from the room’s wall. The chairs resemble a similar material as the glass walls but are completely clear so the vision of the table’s details are not hindered. So in order to create a duality of parts all aspects of the room would either complement or resemble the table, the center of attention for the space.


Exploded Axonometric of Table


Floor Plan

North Wall Elevation

East Wall Elevation

South Wall Elevation

West Wall Elevation

Wall Section

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

scene of discourse


This composition shows a progression from a crazy moment to a moment where more breathing space is evident. The cleanness on the right allows one to contain to a refreshed feeling. A mixture of several images combined create this composition along with a image that is only present through the shape it created.