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Visual Mechanical Hydraulic Landscape

Part 1 Project 2002
Jack Newton
Jessam Al-Jawad
London Metropolitan University, UK
My project is a study of the landscape – the relationship between physical and non-physical frontiers and the landscape formed from this. These narratives are developed into the building, located on the edge of the Camargue in Southern France. The building is a hydraulic landscape made of five separate parts of agricultural functions: Seed Bank, Seed Farm, Kibbutz, Shipping Port and Water Distillation. The building functions are relevant to the region to regenerate a disused sea port. Using the process of the landscape, to create a model of the landscape within the building.

Different functions and environments in the building interact creating a visual and spatial dialog between the building parts, inhabitants and the surrounding landscape.

The hydraulic landscape represents an architecture that is continually evolving and resounding to the environment. The processes of the building are integrated with that of the natural landscape powering the building services and environment requiring minimal external energy. The experience for the inhabitants and the general public is an architecture that is experienced for an instant.

Referencing elements chosen from the City of London sites surveyed in the scope drawing, a landscape assemblage (the ‘scape board’) places these each in their own space. The physical landscape is continuously evolving and changing with the movement of the environment.

Jack Newton
Jessam Al-Jawad

Jack's projects – culminating in the Hydrological Landscape building for Port st Louis in the South of France investigate and inform the notion of architecture as a spatial event.

His early work looked at the visual reach of the Corporation of London ‘square mile’. Reflections, in a basic form, extend visual reach and begin to allow co-ordination with other points around the City that might not otherwise be visible. His diagrammatic studies are conceptual architectural spaces; the architecture acts as the contextual information but begins to fragment the changing visual landscape. A 3-d piece positions each new configuration as an expansion of the landscape—its state implicitly dependent on its environment.

The hydrological landscape is a study of form, environmental technologies and architectural pragmatism. The container basin and lock, now almost unused, locates a seed bank, rice farm and kibbutz accommodation. Channels of water link each building element, which cool, irrigate the land, and transport seeds. Forms are clustered to avoid the scorching heat of the sun and to provide a sustained agricultural environment for the Camargue. The buildings and landscape are integrated in a precise ‘factory’ program underlayed by a sensitive, imaginative and accomplished sense of massing and architectural theatre.

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