the semiological project

Informing meaning through architectural processes


Architecture in the 21st century is confronted with a PARADIGM SHIFT. This is a need that is
generated in part by a new globalised NETWORK SOCIETY and on the other hand, the needs of coherence in the architectural discourse itself. A new paradigm is needed in order to respond to the increasingly more complex demands of our global society. The call-out to stop generalised garbage-spill architecture has been made across the Field, both in academia and practice, in avant-garde (speculative architecture) or mainstream Fashion. There is an inherent, general feeling for a more qualitative way of materialising our abstract world into the physical world space. Reaching out from the abstract need of sociology, economy, politics or ecology to the material processes that architecture, as an independent and autopoietic social system provides (i.e. Patrik Schumacher- The AUTOPOIESIS OF ARCHITECTURE vol. I) and is sole responsible For their affects. Architecture’s core competency is to articulate, in a responsible way, the complexity of the built environment. We are no longer to think of a world detached, isolated, as a quasi-feudal, anachronistic and esoteric place, where the responses to global views and modi-operandi are irrational and anarchic loose objects but, rather a more responsible adaptive discourse to societal needs. The world exists independent of our minds and is not bounded to one individual or independent behaviour that doesn’t take into account or neglects the contemporary information based, post-Fordist network-society. Materialism is presented by Deleuze & Guattari in their Capitalism and Schizophrenia as an escape from the old XIXth century thought. In a new ecology of matter, this is reflected by an increased interdependency of social processes. A world where we need to take-in and operate, independently & collectively manifested complex parameters that exist independent of our minds. Architecture gives form to function and orders social communication. Architecture’s new paradigm shift is called PARAMETRICISM (Patrik Schumacher -Autopoiesis of Architecture) and it is able to negotiate a vast array of layers and superimpose them seemingly and gradually, in order to create a flowing longitude of differentiation. The latitude of its affects, structure and help navigate with a higher degree of coherence the built environment. From the philosophical concept of semiology given by the linguist F. Saussure, exemplifying how anything acquires meaning through language, language as Framing communications: ” Words are not mere vocal labels or communication adjuncts superimposed upon an already given order of things. They are collective products of social interaction, essential instruments through which human beings constitute and articulate their world.” We can articulate architecture’s goal as to framing social communications (Patrik Schumacher – The AUTOPOIESIS OF ARCHITECTURE vol. II) (e.g.) “the meaning of a word (sign) is its use.” (L. Wittgenstein) = > “if a space has meaning, the meaning of a space is its
use.” (P. Schumacher). The goal of this paper is to present one of the techniques operated within the Parametricist agenda, in order to create a responsive built environment to society’s world tendencies and needs. This is the semiological project, framing communications by informing architectures.

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