Manual Materiality and Interior Construction

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This item has been added to your basket View basket Checkout. Materials Manual is a comprehensive reference manual of building and decorative materials, and finishes.

Materiality And Interior Construction Gesimondo Nancy Postell Jim (ePUB/PDF)

Introducing the properties, conditions, and attributes of a wide range of materials used by architects and interior designers, Materials Manual considers their use in a holistic and integrated manner by explaining how materials contribute to the construction and fabrication of floors, partitions, ceilings, and casework. The reader is guided directly to the options for the location or assembly they are considering to select a material for and learn about the pros and cons of various applications.

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Your review has been submitted successfully. We live in an age where the territory on which we subsist is not the same as the cartographic territory which we inhabit.

Materiality and Interior Construction

Through the building materials we specify as architects, we are partly responsible for the state of both, wherein our choice of material for a building in one place can produce a series of detrimental impacts elsewhere. In the same way, these choices also have an impact on climactic conditions; a material that affects indoor air quality within a particular building may, in its making, have contributed to emissions that affect outdoor air quality somewhere else. Our choices, in effect, influence the capital flows of an underlying system based on the extraction of finite materials that are ultimately let go to waste.

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As architects and designers we are complicit in matters of climate change matters because we have a certain degree of agency over the building materials and components that we specify, and by extension, what infrastructures we help support. We are implicated in what holes are dug, what climate-altering gasses are released and what economic systems are served. In an age of accelerating environmental degradation, climate change and wealth disparity, we know that we can no longer sustain the way that we make things.

The intersection of morality and materiality is patent in the very buildings that we design, bringing with it a complex series of conflicting problems. How can we re-think what we design in order to re-design what we make? Digital technologies allow us to monitor the performance of components and building materials in real-time and measure them against specified outcomes, such as air quality. So, rather than specifying products to make a building sold as another product, we could design performance in service of the environments that we need to thrive.

Designing robust feedback loops between performance, policy and design could, in turn, open opportunities for investment in our buildings and cities to be tied to performance over time.

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  • Through the use of platform technologies, buildings could be financed by stakeholders, that would invest in and mutually benefit based on the outcomes set at a building, neighbourhood or city level. In this way, value could be defined not according to how much a building and its materials cost, but according to how much they will save us in the future.

    The pragmatics of outcome-based design were recently outlined by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation as comprising three principles for the circular economy — a system designed to eliminate CO2 emissions and reduce waste through recycling loops made possible by new materials, energy systems and financial instruments supported by industry, institutions and government.

    The first principle is to preserve and extend the life of what is already exists, allowing us to specify services—such as the provision of light —rather than the hardware that generates them.

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    Here the provision and maintenance of components remains with the service providers, distributing risk and responsibility across stakeholders. The second principal is to treat waste as a raw material, which encourages design for disassembly. The third principal focuses on renewable energy and the regeneration of natural systems, shifting our perspective from resource scarcity to resource abundance, provided that we take care to sustain the ecosystems that support us. As architects we can shift the focus of our design efforts from products to outcomes that are aligned towards a better future.

    But whose future are we talking about? There is no universal roadmap that everyone can adhere to or even agree on.