Tell a Story of Space: A Narrative-Based Case Study through Abstracted Materials


ABSTRACT In the present study, by means of spatial narrative, it is aimed to investigate dimensional relation of spatial perception through abstract sequences, employed in basic-design education. Scrutinizing a space through its two and three-dimensional relations are carried out by different methods in architectural education. Moreover, surface and volumetric contents of fragments, completed contextual shell, are discussed by diverse methods ranging from linear composition to three-dimensional relations. During education process, first-year architectural students are taught spatial representation, spatial content as well as spatial dimensions as architectural language. Therefore, in the present study, fundamental sequences of spatial narrative notion are conceived by transmission of spatial coincidences in two and three-dimensional axes. From this point of view, a notional-case study investigation as spatial narrative is brought together as an experimental method in the content of Introduction to Architectural Culture-I, taught in winter period of 2016-2017 educational terms in the Department of Architecture of Faculty of Architecture at Cumhuriyet University. Thus, spatial representation techniques, taught in basic-design studio, are embodied by a case-study related with spatial and architectonic sequences. This application is entirely grounded on individual experiences that are both gained by basic-design practices and achieved by personal abilities and because of being a case-study, it is preferred that awareness of first-year students on spatial perception can be fostered by this application. In terms of referring to this idea, this experimental investigation is composed by dominant typological examples because content of spatial imagination takes an important place in order to increase selectiveness of perception and differentiate spatial grasping. For this reason, it is due primary importance to employ building typologies, which have both dominant identity and visual content as historical traces in Sivas. The main aims of the present paper are ability to make a space legible and investigate it through different building typologies. It is hoped that first-year architectural students can conduct a narrative-based case study through abstraction logic, gained in basic-design studio and transform historical buildings in Sivas into perceptional judgements by models, depending on iterative materials. Method used in this case-study is comprised of abstraction and representation thus, first-year students, though have not reached the sufficient level in the analysis of expressive techniques based on drawing (planning, cross-section, facade drawing etc.) regarding the spatial narrative topic, are grouped in terms of abstraction logic such as main space, determination spatial highness on the vertical axis, relation of compactness-emptiness and spatial equipment. In-field explorations, sketching and grasping the buildings for narration are led students to explore individual perceptions and capability of modelling with restricted material: cardboard, wood and metal. This is the most essential phase in which different materials and distinct plan typologies within the practice of abstract thought should be employed to narrate a space with its spatial and architectonic relations. In order to evaluate the data obtained from the experimental study, questionnaires were employed which enabled us to analyze which tools are used by first-year students and how they narrate a space although they cannot adequately read a plan, section or elevation as linear representation. Consequently, this experimental case study, based on spatial narration, enabled students to obtain abilities, gained by both basic-design practices and individual experiences, fostering the process of generating multiple cognitive and intuitive way of perception and to represent spatial components.