Student Work by Kate Wolf

Memories You Could Pet


Co-Instructor with Zahra Safaverdi

Harvard Graduate School of Design

J-Term Course 2017

Let’s have a conversation and let’s make something. Architecture up to this point has been a construct conceived through the human frame of reference. It has not been considered as if its own consciousness were the impetus for its creation. What if, in Aristotelian terms, architecture were the ‘efficient cause,’ the mover, of architecture? Inception of memories relating to existences other than our own is not possible, but how might we speculate on the memories that architecture would have created if taken as originary?


There is an evolution in the ways we have traditionally defined Architecture. Our conception of space, of embodiment, and of orientation is evolving into something with a possibility of being independent of the physical construct. Traditional ways of

remembering, of reciting events by associating them with a certain “physical condition," and of recalling all things past have undergone a transformation. Architecture is facing a possibility to become an entity independent of its usual physical elements and

palpable tectonics.


Memory plays a crucial role in formulating a perceptual synthesis of space. We ask students to consider the form that memory might take if we imagined it emanating from a non-physical, yet spatial realm. Consider decontextualizing memory, distilling an essence and reconstructing it in physical form. Would it be a small, contained emblem of genesis? Or a projected abstraction of imagery? What about a liquid, amorphous substrate?


Participants engaged in this investigation will be introduced to concepts of memory in its myriad forms and manifestations, and then asked to fabricate (both literally and figuratively) some physical creation to embody their conceptions of memory. There are no limits on the form that it may take so long as it is displaced from its purely psychological origins and results in a physical existence.

Student Work by Christina Graydon

Student Work by Kate Wolf