Awaiting the start of the Places and Technologies 2014 conference, prof. Eva Vaništa Lazarević, PhD, Technical Director of the conference, talks exclusively for CAB blog about her experiences on preparations for this event. What is the goal of this conference? The goal is, first of all, meeting and networking of young scientists, who nowdays have a hard time finding resources for travel and broadening of knowledge, meaning that they work less and less with their colleagues from the academic world. Younger scientists and schollars will have an opportunity to meet well-kown experts at the conference and learn what is new, but also to check where they are with their research; to realistically understand their achievements compared with others. That is something that no country in the World can do without: the strenghtening of its' scientific potential through comparation and competitiveness. What is special about the Places and Technologies, compared to other conferences? Is it mainly an academic or expert - architecture and urbanism event? Among numerous conferences that take place worldwide, we wanted to organize a slightly enhanced fusion of three areas: science, education and technological knowledge derived from the practice. Ambitiously conceived, the conference was not easy to organize: to gather the highest representatives of academia from the region and wider - the deans of architecture faculties, who meet in Belgrade after more than two decades, and foreign experts from the practice and top professors - experts from reputable faculties from across Europe. Why is it important to connect places and technologies? The place as term is still rarely spoken of in the domestic practice, dominant terms are areas or spaces. Places in English depicts a much wider context than our firs associative translation: space (prostor), although it probably describes it better: place (but also non-place) of cities, with the technology strongly implemented in it. Nothing is as it was a few years ago - especially in the sphere of high technologies, with rapid progress. Museums no longer contain artefacts, they are virtual, people no longer communicate directly, but through social networks, public spaces are equipped with chargers for mobile devices and interactive maps. Tourists no loger buy maps, but follow the information on their smartphones, who are rendered obsolete every year and constantly need to be replaced with newest models. Even older generations use more and more technological terms, and the communication of two people, even on a date or a business meeting at a restaurant, is impossible without constant checking of the mobile phone. This gesture, previously considered as the sign of bad manners, has spread over the Planet: even the German chancellor did not resist looking at her smart phone while standing in the first row of CeBIT conference. This phenomenon is also related to the society of extreme individualsim, that we live in today. How did you select the key speakers and guests of the conference? In what direction are you trying to stear the conference? International conferences are based on previous long-term acquaintances and collegiality. The board of this conference is formed - due to certain circumstances - of a completely female team, and the members are distingushed professors (prof. Milica Bajić Brković, PHD, who provided the support of ISOCARP, prof. Aleksandra Krstić, PhD and prof. Aleksandra Đukić, PhD). It was their privilege to invite the reputable colleagues from Europe: the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Great Britain and Italy. The scientific board members are, besides our dean and our professors, Worldwide experts: from Greece, Portugal, Spain, Cypruss, Great Britain, Poland, Turkey, Czech Republic and Lithuania, as well as members of the academic communities from the region, including professors of philosohy and other technical faculties. To make sure that the conference is not solely academic and perhaps a bit boring, we invited the guests from the practice: the French team Nodesign.net, who come from Paris and will show their achievements in creating virtual museums. Even the very active archeologist Rade Milić, the author of the first interactive board in Belgrade and the researcher of Belgrade underground spaces, will participate. The messages of the conference will be focused on the following: what we have acheived, what we can do and the possible ways of acheiving it today. In what way do you believe that the local academic and professional architectural communities can benefit from this conference? What benefits do you foresee for the development of Belgrade and other cities in the region? Has the conference met the support in the public, especially in terms of sponsorships and donations? What kind of support did the institutions (ministries, local authorities and government agencies) promise to provide? Telekom Serbia understood the importance of this event and offered to be the general sponsor - confirming the importance of new technologies as one of rare companies that does not have to worry about survival in the hard year we live in. The majojrity of embassies we contacted recognized the topic of the green aspect in implementation of high-tech improvements in space and clearly institutionally supported the conference. Unfortunately, due to the economic crisis, only the French Embassy wanted to help with the travel and accomodation arrangements of French guests. Savski venac was the only municipality who accepted to participate financially. Vračar resigned at the last moment for political reasons, and many municipalities did not even bother to respond to our letters. The Urban Planning Institute of Belgrade, as the largest urban planning enterprise in the country, institutionally supported the conference, with the technical manager of the Institute as a member of our scientific board. On the other hand, places where the results of the conference could be implemented - local governements, did not respond, not even from Vojvodina. Private companies, like Arhipro, provided the always-welcomed finantial support and showed understanding, always based on the enthousiasm of one man, in this case a woman, my dear colleague architect Anja Milić. I speak of this as the gathering of finantial resources for the conference proved to be hard and somewhat degrading work, as it took seven months. The organization team, first of all Milena Vukmirović, PhD and myself, wrote, pleaded and met around five hundred institutions, companies and embassies. The Chamber of Engineers of Serbia showed a lot of understanding as our lead financier. The ministry of science also provided important funding. We expect support from companies like Philips and Lafarge, as well as the Emabassy of Netherlands, as the most prominent donors in Serbia. The benefits of the conference will probably not be visible instantly, but will surely provide long-term strategic impact. Our intention is to prepare a book and a manual with guidance based on conference results and easily applicable in local communities, related to the application of technologies in cities, with chapters by selected authors from the conference. Besides the proceedings with all hunderd and fifty papers, two more important publications will be prepared afterwards: Cambridge offered to print free of charge selected conference papers. Also, the elite journal Energy & Building will publish a special issue with the most important papers from our conference. The whole conference will be recorded and a video will be prepared for YouTube, and Twitter and other social networks will be used to transmit the information from the conference. The first international academic conference Places and Technologies 2014 will be held at the Faculty of Architecture in Belgrade on April 3rd and 4th 2014. The Centre for Architecture Belgrade is the official new media partner.
With the technical assistance of the Centre for Architecture Belgrade, Municipality of Požega submitted the application of the recently reconstructed main city square for the European Prize for Urban Public Space. Freedom square in Požega is one of the best public spaces realized in Serbia in the last few years. Good practice in design, and especially the realization, carried out in cooperation with the authors Dragana Stevanović and Oliver Stanković, is an example that should be promoted. Before... ... and after the reconstruction. European prize for the best urban public space, organized by the Centre for Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) is a prestigious competition, carried our biennially. The results of the competition will be announced in the first half of 2014. Darko Polić, one of the founders of the Centre for architecture, has recently been appointed as a member of the Expert Committee of the European Prize for Urban Public Space.
The upcoming 3D Dreaming sustainability - Grasshopper winter school at the Faculty of architecture in Bratislava leads its way into parametric design.
The workshop is designed to fulfill students' as well as professionals' requirements. The exceptional 30 seat workshop is part of the regular series of events called Parametric Bratislava, which is itself a unique activity in the central-european space. One week long workshop focused on architectural form-making, usage of digital techniques of parametric design is going to lead participants to the new approaches in both, design and architecture. ECOTYPE workshop is going to take place on 24th February – 2nd March 2014 (1 day optional Crash course + 6 days main course) at the Faculty of architecture, Slovak University of Technology.
The workshop is going to look into digital sensing structure subsystems, constituted by associative simulations of the relations between tectonics and the environment in which human activities take place according to specific programs. It is going to provide and control a constant flow of information about the changing internal and external conditions which is processed by a computational subsystem articulated by Rhinoceros 5 ( NURBS-based 3D modeling software) + Grasshopper 3D & Sub-Plugins (generative computation tools). Through these means new design opportunities are going to be explored. The resulting proposal challenges conventions and the way that design is conceived, stepping away from linear process and embracing holistic approaches.
ECOTYPE workshop is meant for intermediate Grasshopper users. For the newcomers there is going to be available an optional one day Rhinoceros 3D + Grasshopper Crash course with Ján Pernecký (rese arch) and Fabio Palvelli (3D-Dreaming.com). The beginners are going to learn basic NURBS modelling, import/export techniques, best drafting practices and basic Grasshopper scripting – workflow, parameters, components, data structures, attractors, surface subdivision, mathematical and logical operations.
ECOTYPE's approach is focused on the architectural view of the geometry. The participants are going to get acquainted with a vital tools for producing algorithm-driven shapes with a strong sustainable concept.
More info at: www.parametricbratislava.sk
After a successful initiative that lasted through the months of September and October last year, Centre for Architecture Belgrade continues the work on the promotion and affirmation of Women in architecture, as well as architectural values in general.
In cooperation with Belgrade Elementary School Branislav Nušić, at the invitation of Informatics teacher Katarina Aleksić, the project Women as Belgrade Builders was initiated. Conceived as a research and part of the children’s Informatics course, this project aims to present the cultural heritage and Belgrade architecture to the pupils and introduce them to the historic development of women’s rights in Serbian society, and all this through the use of information techologies and achievement of computer literacy.
During the Women as Belgrade Builders project, sixth grade pupils of Elementary School Branislav Nušić will work in groups to research topics such as the life and work of some of the women of Serbian architectural history, their built work in Belgrade downtown, architecture as a profession, as well as the position of women in Serbian society from 19th century until today. Through photographs, videos, drawings and Web 2.0 tools such as infographics, timelines and interactive maps, pupils will present their research and work. Centre for Architecture Belgrade will also organize a walk through city center where the pupils will visit the subject buildings and gather their research material.
Through support and participation in this project, the Centre for Architecture Belgrade develops also an educational aspect of its activities, which are mainly focused on promotion of architecture and architectural values. We believe the development from early age of consciousness for architectural and aesthetic values of Belgrade buildings and the need for their preservation and protection will contribute to a better future of our city.
You can follow the project’s course on its own blog edited by Katarina Aleksić and Milena Zindović: http://graditeljkebeograda.blogspot.com/
Center for Architecture will, as well, report regularly on the development of this projects and its results on our blog.
Bulletins of the former Centre for housing, published in 1970s and the beginning of 1980s, at the time when the Centre for housing, as part of the IMS Institute, was active, are a valuable testimony not only of their work, but of the general state and way of work and thinking in architecture and urban planning of that period. Bulletins featured reviews of designs, competition entries and realizations, but also researches and theory. The editor was arch. Božidar Janković, the author of numerous outstanding buildings, like the blocks 22 and 23 at New Belgrade. Authors include dr M. Čanak, B. Janković, B. Karadžić, prof. A. Stjepanović, Ž. Kara-Pešić, dr I. Janković, prof. dr K. Petovar, D. Simić, P. Napijalo, N. Novakov, S. Kovačević, prof. M. Timotijević... All volumes have a summary with abstracts in English.
Informacije, Bilten Centra za stanovanje Instituta IMS
(Informations, Bulletin of the Centre for Housing of the IMS Institute)The library of the Centre for Architecture Belgrade has the following volumes of this magazine, in original or digital form (that can be downloaded at this page): Bilten CS 15 Bilten CS 16 Bilten CS 17 Bilten CS 18 (only in digital form) Bilten CS 19 Bilten CS 20 Bilten CS 21 Bilten CS 22 Bilten CS 23 Bilten CS 24 (only in digital form) Bilten CS 26 Bilten CS 27 Bilten CS 28 Bilten CS 29-30 We wish to thank our colleague Đorđe Alfirević, as well as our friends from the organization Group of architects, who have let us use their scanned material. More info on the work of the former Centre for Housing, as well as on the activities of the informal association of the same name, founded in 2012, can be found at www.centarzastanovanje.com. The Centre for Architecture Belgrade also has the magazines that were published at the same time by the Centre for prestressed concrete of the IMS Institute. Besides the more technical articles, these bulletins also featured interesting texts on architecture. The editor was dr Ivan Petrović, the pioneer of research in the field of (architectural) design methodology. Along with the names of authors who contributed in the Bulletins of the Centre for Housing, this magazine featured, besides I. Petrović, articles by others, like dr I. Svetel or prof. Z. Lazović. This magazine was published as:
Bilten IMS(IMS Bulletin) Year I, No. 1, January 1974 to Year XI, No. 5-6, November 1984.
Bilten Instituta IMS(IMS Institute Bulletin) No. 1, January 1986 to No. 1-2, December 1993. All listed volumes are available in original (paper) form. If you have some volumes yourself (especially the ones that we do not have), scanned or on paper, contact us!
We have prepared an abridged version of a text on the diagram at the service of arhitecture - and the other way around, by Nevena Novaković, previously published in Prostor magazine, entitled Dijagramatična arhitektura (Diagrammatic Architecture, in Serbian).
Industrial society may be said to have most particularly been marked by change in how humans perceive time. Sanford Kwinter’s definition of this change is an evocative one: The once imperceptibly slow and stable rhythms of history that earlier furnished a kind of immobile ground for the more labile and fluid human figure began to oscillate and vary in pattems of shorter and shorter duration, effecting an epochal reversal in social and historical experience. What once appeared as a fixed and global continuum subtending human temporal experience - the historicomaterial assemblage, for example, known as ‘the city’ - began to multiply, mutate, and atomize so quickly and finely that it itself could no longer be conceived as anything other than a turbulent, punctuated fluid. 
Apart from the passing of time becoming more accelerated, inescapably imposing greater speeds on the quality of living today, another phenomenon has come to mark contemporary urban environments, that of data storm, of the incessant flow of information altering social patterns, typical urban activities and the organisation of cities.  All these changes as to how space and time are perceived and experienced pose fundamental questions before the stakeholders considering, planning and designing cities. What is the right course of action in the ever-faster changing social and spatial context? This question is a good place to enter into a discussion of the relationship between architecture and the diagram.
The term diagrammatic architecture was first used by the Japanese architect Toyo Ito in 1996 in a text in which he interprets the architecture of famous Kajuyo Sejima. Ito’s verdict is that the power and delicacy of Sejima’s architecture arise from the close similarity between the buildings themselves and the scale drawings representing them. Here works of architecture become one or merge with the diagrams, as the diagrams showing spatial functions are transformed into constructed spatial forms. 
Figure 1. Kazujo Sejima, medium-height residential building, design prototype, roof and floor plans, 1995.
Several years after Ito opened the contemporary diagram debate, architect Peter Eisenman published a book entitled Diagram Diaries. The book is a review of Eisenman’s designs dating back to 1970, in which he expounds on the modus operandi of architectural design.  Eisenman’s essays are richly illustrated with graphic appendices, and together they explain his diagrammatic approach to architecture, in which architectural structures and their contexts go through iterations in diagram form. It was the first time for Robert Somol, author of the book foreword, that the diagram became synonymous with architecture, and not simply its representation. According to Somol, the diagram is an implement of architectural production and discourse generation, which operates between form and words, space and language. This makes the diagram performative rather than representational. 
Figure 2. Peter Eisenman, Diagrams of transformation of House IV, 1971.
Robert Somol links the increasing focus of architectural theory and practice on the diagram to the 1960’s and the new phase in how architectural profession was perceived. Somol claims that the basic techniques and methods of architectural knowledge changed in the second half of the 20th century, transforming from the drawing to the diagram.  The diagram grew in importance in what may be called the information age. Swimming against the current of information, the architect is faced with the necessity to make selections, define priorities and opt for the best ways in which to use the selected. Previously, information had always been seen as a subcategory; now, it became the actual subject matter.
Figure 3. www.chora.org
According to Anthony Vidler, the diagram is one element or ingredient shared by the wholly distinct phenomena or projects of architecture and town planning. Designs done on paper, those created in digital space and actual, constructed buildings, to which such words are associated as topography, map, event-space, morphogenesis and process, have one common feature: they are all generated and represented using digital technologies. The diagram is their second common feature, says Vidler, one they also share with the modernist avant-garde, their common predecessor.  Unlike Somol, Vidler traces the origins of the diagram back to a much earlier period. He discovers them in the early modern period, when architectural drawings became abstract, and whose geometric linearity and simplicity pushed for diagrammatic representation. Vidler illustrates the early use of the diagrammatic drawing with Durand’s (Jean-Nicolas-Louis Durand) new methods of representation, as used at the École polytechnique opened in Paris in 1785. Durand’s drawings consisted of series of lines, points and planes and contained no decorative details. Such simplified drawings were meant to point to that which is essential about architecture. 
Vidler’s narrative takes us to 20th-century modern architecture, more precisely, to Le Corbusier, who said his architectural concepts were an extension to classicist principles – formal Greek order, ancient Romans’ institutional and typological heritage, and the proportional systems of the 16th- and 17th-century modern French Classicists.  This is how diagrammatic architecture reached its apex in modernism. The abstract form promoted by modern architecture, which shied away from all decoration, was accused in the 1960’s of being sterile and drastically reduced, of being alien to man. Vidler finds common ground for all criticism of modernist architecture: too literal a transposition of new graphic techniques into physical form. Architecture literally looked like the geometric shapes that were used to design and present it in visual form on paper.  This leads to the following question, in light of what is stated above: can modern architecture be called diagrammatic architecture? If so, can Kazujo Sejima’s work be labeled modernist? Does the modernist drawing indeed possess all the characteristics of diagrams, or its similarity to the diagram does not extend beyond abstraction?
The diagram may also serve as a tool to understand the architecture that is already out there or, as Douglas Graf puts it, as a tool of interpretation. In regard to this, however, an object may never be fully comprehended or known. An architectural object may be seen as an array of abstractions, reductions, as a series of segments and boundaries which are manifested simultaneously and which are prone to expansion and contraction, never letting the eye settle on what it sees and constantly eliciting revisions.  Our analysis of architectural objects would greatly benefit from an instrument which would allow us to simultaneously move back and forth between contradicting views – those of typologies defining programmes on the one hand, and those defining form on the other; between the distinct qualities of an object and the general qualities of architecture; between cognition and perception as two discrete processes; between the dynamic quality of function and the static quality of composition. It is precisely the diagram that is capable of this. Thus, it develops its own inherent characteristics through aspects of binary oppositions. The content suggested by a diagram is preliminary and transitory. By means of its continuous debate between oppositions, the diagram reveals weaknesses, insecurity and originality, thus assuming revisionary authority in the process of interpretation.  If modernist graphic representations possess the characteristics of the diagram, then the diagrammatic quality, or rather the potential of the diagram for a great number of possibilities and combinations of architectural positions, is wasted as the diagram, being a graphic presentation, is literally transposed into physical space.
Figure 4. Plan diagram – structure of events in space. Rem Koolhaas, Melun-Senart urban design, 1987.
Toilet groups mutate into Disney Store then morph to become meditation center: successive transformations mock the word plan. The plan is a radar screen where individuals pulses survive for unpredictable periods of time in a Bacchanalian free-for-all... In this standoff between the redundant and the inevitable, a plan would actually make matters worse, drive you to instant despair. Only the diagram gives a bearable version. There is zero loyalty - and zero tolerance - toward configuration, no original condition; architecture has turned into a time-lapse sequence to reveal a permanent evolution... 
Finally, why do architects like diagrams? The diagram debate in contemporary architecture concerns several major issues: that of the relation between architectural representation and the process of design, and also of the strategy of architectural-urban design in the context of continuous, rapid change at all levels and of all aspects of the urban environment, as vividly described by Koolhas. Essentially, the actualisation of the diagram in contemporary architecture and town planning is intricately linked to the accessibility of the wealth of information which the architect must understand and format. The previously mentioned dual nature of the diagram, with its ability to simultaneously make references in two domains, that of the general and of the specific, singles the diagram out as a valuable reflective tool in the field of architecture. The diagram allows the architect, researcher, to identify and visually analyse discrete elements of a problem, theory, idea or physical object, while maintaining a holistic view of it.
Diagrams are visualisations of the thinking process, in which one image is not merely a representation of a fixed intellectual or physical state, but rather of a number of possible options and combinations of attributes juxtaposed, as binary oppositions, by the diagram. They are single graphic representations that allow the consideration of a great number of combinations and relations, i.e., that encapsulate a whole range of possibilities inherent in the thinking process, allowing the architect to carefully balance between the ideational and visual, dynamic and static.
...the diagram is the possibility of fact – It is not the fact itself. 
1. Stanford Kwinter, "The Reinvention of Geometry", Introduction to "Urbanism after Innocence: Four Projects," by Rem Koolhaas, Assemblage 18 (1992): 8.
3. http://www.archplus.net/download/artikel/1064/ (accessed on 23 November 2013)
2. Raoul Bunschoten, "Urban Gallery, Urban Curation", CHORA - Urban and Architectural Research Laboratory.
3. Anthony Vidler, "Diagrams of Diagrams: Architectural Abstraction and Modern Representation", Representations 72 (2000): 1-20.
4. Ibid, 17.
5. R.E. Somol, "Dummy Text, or the Diagrammatic Basis of Contemporary Architecture", Introduction to Diagram Diaries, by Peter Eisenman, 7-25. (New York: Universe Publishing, 1999).
6. R.E. Somol, "Dummy Text, or the Diagrammatic Basis of Contemporary Architecture".
7. Anthony Vidler, "Diagrams of Diagrams: Architectural Abstraction and Modern Representation".
11. Douglas Graf, "Diagrams", Perspecta 22 (1986): 42-71.
13. Rem Koolhas, AMOMA and &&&, Content, 167. (Tachen, 2004).
14. Gilles Deleuze, "The Diagram", in The Deleuze Reader, Constantin V. Boundas, ed.: 199. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993).
Anthony Vidler, "Diagrams of Diagrams: Architectural Abstraction and Modern Representation", Representations 72 (2000): 4.
Rem Koolhaas, "Urbanism after Innocence: Four Projects," Assemblage 18 (1992): 88.
Nevena Novaković work as a senior teaching assistant at the Chair of Urban Planning
at the Faculty of Architecture and Civil Engineering, University of Banjaluka, from where she graduated in 2003 at the Department of Architecture. She is currently a PhD Candidate at the Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade.
CAB presented a paper on the information platform of the Centre for Architecture at the International Conference On Architecture. The conference was held at the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Artsin Belgrade from 9th to 11th of December 2013.
The paper by Goran Petrović, entitled Integrated Information System of the Centre for Architecture Belgrade, can be found on the conference proceedings CD.
The paper gives a review of the results of several years of work on enhancing the communication between architects and on architecture in general. In contemporary world of digital real-time communication, our approach was to start and promote stories on architecture and urban space through maximum use of new media.
The first step towards the realization of this idea was to start an internet-blog on urban design in 2008. At the time, the idea that anyone can write something and publish it to the whole world was in, so we joined this digital wave of thousands of bloggers.
A few years later, the focus of internet communication switched to social networks as more democratic media. Many bloggers gave up, but we used Facebook and Twitter and turned our story into a wide conversation of all those interested in architecture and the city. For serious communication, we also employed the strict business network LinkedIn.
Today, along with the activities in all those social networks and a periodical newsletter, we maintain a Web site that integrates our whole system. Blog posts on different architecture-related topics and information on our work can be found at the address www.cab.rs.
Our next step will be to enable architects and all other professionally or emotionally involved with the city to access and use various resources of the Centre for Architecture through this site.
New Air Traffic Control Center at the Ljubljana airport (ATCC), designed by the Sadar+Vuga studio from Ljubljana, has been officialy opened in May this year and since then awarded the ICONIC AWARD 2013 winner by the German Design Coucil, GOLDEN PENCIL 2013 for the excellent realization in the field of architecture and nominated for PIRANESI AWARD 2013. New Air Traffic Control Center at the Ljubljana airport, comprising air control center with 24/7 amenities and office premises, is a highly demanding and complex object due to the nature of the institution it hosts. It is designed to enable safety and high operational activity as well as consistent comfort for visitors and staff 24 hours a day all year around. The building is located in the middle of the plot, at the north there is a parking platform and at the south high vegetation of the garden. Within, the object is organized by five levels of security zones with access control at each passage. The further one moves from the rim that holds administrative and rest areas towards the centre of the object, the greater the security level of the areas. The compact design serves to enhance the operational efficiency of the object, paths are short and manageable. The clear division into a pentagonal head (control center) and two wings (offices and public program) provides easy orientation within. They are connected by a central multi-leveled area with an entrance lobby, restaurant, conference room and gym. The vertical hall is a place for meeting, informal socializing and communication. The Center appears as a monolithic shell, opening towards outside only when necessary. Building is wrapped in belts of glazing and combined aluminium parapets and brise-soleils that regulate the intensity of heat and light transmission to the interior. The angle and the size of the brise-soleil are determined by the layout of the windows and the intensity of solar radiation related to it. The height of the parapet is determined by the interior of individual areas and the related wish for greater or lesser openings for views. The windows are made of bronze reflective glass mirroring the mountains in the surrounding. The beige and bronze colour coding of the façade visually reflects the building’s character of security and protection. The roof is rising in terraces, thus continuing the play of blinds and parapets on the facade, providing daylight to the interior areas, especially to the control room in the pentagonal core of the object. Andreas Ruby, Quote from the jury report about the excellent realization of ATCC: With their air traffic control centre building, Sadar+Vuga have achieved something incredible. They have managed to make a typology visible that normally does not register on the radar of our architectural culture. This structure wants you to look at it, and it looks at you: its meandering banded windows are crowned by obliquely cantilevering sunshade panels that read like eyelids. Inside, the porosity of the facade pays off in generously lit interiors, which yields another exotism – daylight in a control building. The atrium is a carefully sculpted well of light that you would expect in a cultural institution or high standard office building, and stands emblematic as an architectural strategy to overwrite the usual misery of this typology with an abundance of tectonic care and sensual consideration. This investment in design is no boutique-fetish, but acknowledges the exceptional kind of work of those who work there. Now, from the inside, you also understand the rationale for the design of windows and sunshades. The size of the window strip corresponds to the hierarchical importance of the program behind it. Thanks to this primitive parametricism (Boštjan Vuga) the design of the building never slides off into arbitrariness and formalism, which you can better witness on site than from photographs. The building uses its form not as an end, but as a means to transform the conventions of its typology. It wants to restore cultural value and dignity to a type of building all too often treated as junk or inconsequential space. One could easily (mis)take it for a cultural or public building, but that’s exactly the effect the architects worked to generate with their design: to make us reconsider the role of such buildings for our cities and endow them with a greater mission and ambition. Source: Sadar+Vuga.
The first international academic conference Places and Technologies 2014 will be held at the Faculty of Architecture in Belgrade on April 3rd and 4th 2014, with the aim to explore and present papers, studies and projects dealing with the improvement of city spaces using technologies. The conference is organized in partnership between the Faculty of Architecture Belgrade, UrbanLab and the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade, and the official new media partner of the conference will be the Centre for Architecture Belgrade. The Places and Technologies 2014 conference will showcase research from the domains of Urban design, Urban planning, Design and management, Industrial and architectural design, Architectural and building technologies. From social aspect, the conference will deal with historical and philosophical component to high tech, urban sociology, innovations, ICT, as well as elements of transportation enhanced by technology up to geodesy and cartography and the ways technologies improve these fields (GIS). The conference focus is sustainability in urban design, and it will consider social networks and microblogging, usage of technology in urban furniture, new innovative materials, high tech and high touch solutions. A hundred participants are anticipated, and around 30 experts from Europe working in the field of high technologies in both scientific and professional terms, have confirmed they participation, together with special professional guests. Conference participants will have the opportunity to hear presentations by dr Milica Bajić Brković, tenure professor, president of ISOCARP – global association of professional planners; dr Jan Belis from Belgium who is a leading expert in structural glass applications and president of COST project; dr Stefan van der Spek from Netherlands, who works in interior design and topics such as intermodal transferpoints and human hub; dr Manfred Schrenk from the Central European Institute of Technology in Austria, planner and GIS expert; and professor Phil Jones from UK who is an expert in energy efficiency and teaches in Malesia, China and Hong Kong. Besides key note speakers, the conference will feature special professional guests such as Jean-Louis Frechin from the leading French design company noDesign which deals with high tech and is working on projects from the French government, Citroen, Renault etc; dr Marija Todorović, electrical engineer and tenure professor whose field of expertise includes sustainable energy and green building with the use of solar power; dr Andjelka Mihajlov, sustainability expert, scientist and tenure professor at the University in Novi Sad, who leads the department for inclusion of the Western Balkans in the European flows of sustainability at the Ministry of sustainable development and urban planning; and Rade Milić, archaeologist and president of Center for urban development that realizes innovative projects for the protection of cultural heritage in Belgrade and Serbia. Technical director of the conference is Eva Vaništa Lazarević, PhD, tenure professor of the Faculty of Architecture, Belgrade University. The choice of keynote speakers, guests and participants of the conference speaks of the organizers intentions to encourage networking and cooperation between institutions, corporations and experts, form potential for future bilateral international cooperation, open current topics to young researchers and create a platform for knowledge exchange. The deadline for abstract submission is December 10th, and detailed requirements can be found at the conference official Web site.
The series of posts on domotics, prepared by The Centre for Architecture Belgrade in cooperation with Cubo Control company from Belgrade, continues with the story of thermoregulation and air conditioning systems. Check out previous posts on this topic here. Numerous types of devices and systems control the temperature, air flow and humidity in closed space. The heat transfer fluid can be air, water or gas, while the terminals themselves can come in form of radiators or panels, thermo convectors or fan coil systems. No major alterations to the building infrastructure are required when during the installation of a domotic system of thermoregulation into your space – it is enough to install thermo programmers, sensors and actuators. As we have mentioned before in this series, the main advantage of domotic systems comes from the intelligent communication between different devices. However, the most fun and certainly the major benefits of including the air conditioning system into the home automation system are achieved by the communication with the other subsystems – sensors that detect presence or absence of persons in a room, the closing or opening of windows and such, setting the basis for a physical type of event driven programming. An increased number of persons in a space will trigger a system that cools and ventilates the air during summer, while the opening of windows will automatically turn off the air conditioning to save energy and so on. The system’s ability to intelligently handle the weather data, comparing it to the inside conditions is the spine of the entire communication. The updating of the weather conditions and adapting the air conditioning system accordingly is simply not possible in a conventional system. The remote control of the HVAC systems and the real-time updates of all the parameters are possible through the standard internet protocols, a phone, a tablet, a computer or the wall touch panel. We will also mention that the quality of air, which is defined by levels of ventilation and carbon-dioxide, is often included in the control systems and is regulated by ventilators and air filters. It goes without saying that well-designed systems are completely adapted into space and in no way compromise the aesthetics of the space: they are purposely positioned to best suit your dynamics, rhythm, the function of the room, but also the changing weather conditions. HVAC is a separate engineering discipline, with a rich past and an exciting future. If we wanted to explore it into detail, we would need to exceed the needs of this text. It is good to know that, like in many other areas where domotic solutions can apply, the number of possible HVAC solutions is very high and varied – whether they are applied in the existing infrastructure and solutions, or if the building is still in the design phase, the home automation systems can be successfully implemented, taking into consideration the limitations, the budget, the type of HVAC system, the design requirements and the space purpose. The authors of the text are Radiša Jovanović, PhD. and Marko Aleksendrić, PhD. They are experienced mechanical engineers, whose field of expertise covers programming and design work, through intertwining of various technologijes. Cubo Control is an engineering and programming studio that loves technology, automatics, Italian design, but also programming of computers and other devices: from window shades to mobile phones, from basement temperature to ship engines. It is founded with the idea to provide a unified offer of high-quality solutions at affordable prices in the field of contemporary automatics, especially domotics and industrial automatization, through careful selection of high-class equipment and affirmation of state-of-the-art concepts of comfort and energy efficiency.