Architecture exhibit built on student imagination

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Blueprints found life at the Architecture Student Showcase in a marriage of the practical and the artistic.

Beckoning visitors to the gallery was “The Crawler,” a massive wooden claw created by Ana Karen Solorzano, Miguel Vargas, Sergio Ituarte III, Marko Hernandez, Nate Gil and Rene Soler. It was an outdoor dwelling composed to hoist hammocks which emulated a monstrous hand. It was recently entered in the Design a Village competition at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Wood beams curved like lumber bones gave the piece structure. Steel plates and bolts emulated joints and provided support.

Recycled water-bottle display welcomes visitors into the student art gallery. Photo by Bianca Quilantan

Recycled water-bottle display welcomes visitors into the student art gallery.
Photo by Bianca Quilantan

Visitors to the gallery were greeted by colorful plastic bottles hanging from a wood frame at the entrance. Their warm hues were inviting and it added to the gallery’s appeal.

A centerpiece constructed from recycled wood pallets held miniature models of buildings and interior spaces.

Several pieces of rustic furniture were made from recycled discarded Christmas trees. A rough-hewn bowl and spoon, a dark-stained recliner and a hand-painted table demonstrated ways that visionaries can turn waste into something practical and attractive.

One of the more intriguing projects deconstructed books and carved them to create space and movement. Most were too delicate to release their potential energy, however, save for one mounted on a wheel. They still conveyed their subjects cleverly.

Freehand drawings initially felt out of place, especially since some subjects were not building-related. A placard explained the need for freehand skills in the architectural world, giving them context. While some lacked skill, others were very impressive considering the artists could not use mechanical tools to help with lines.

Next to them were graphics for buildings, bright with colors and very modern in their designs. Though a somewhat dying art, the renderings gave insight to the initial planning that goes into buildings.

Jutting from the wall was a scalloped, waving shelf holding up additional models. It was a particularly striking and modern design, and demonstrated the work that went into even the displays.

Two boards from the 2013 Lumberman Competition hung bright, whimsical Dr. Seuss-inspired designs for an art gallery. They both used grass and psychedelic colors to give a surreal Geisel-esque impression.

Though helpful explanations gave non-math visitors a layman’s insight to the mathematics and principles behind some works, many of the pieces would have benefitted from a more thorough explanation, the visionary designs brought to light the intricacy behind the science and artistry behind architecture. Work from a variety of majors was displayed and the spectrum of skills needed in the trade were exhibited at their gallery.

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