In the Fourth-year Undergraduate studio of Judith K De Jong, genealogy, as a design approach, was presented to us at the start of this Fall 2012 semester. The objective is to project the future of the mall and its possible urbanisms, but to begin the whole process, the studio was broken up into groups of two, each of which researched two examples of six categories to study; a lifestyle center, regional, super regional, narrative, vertical mall and entertainment mall. During the research process, the reading “Philip Johnson: History, Genealogy, Historicism” by Craig Owens was introduced, to inspire a retroactive identification of the multiple formal and spatial sources for each mall version. Other research included the design logics of each mall version, the identification of audiences, and the influences of the regional shopping mall on subsequent versions of the mall. The final step groups took was a presentation of all the accumulated research from each project.
After the general research, individual work began. Up until now the goal has been to come up with a scenario based on the opportunities and interests that came up from the research. It seems to be that almost everyone has a similar goal of creating a new type of collective space and purpose based on what the mall is to the present day. Every scenario consists of our own thoughts on what the mall is to be whether in the near future or further in time. Different scenarios have been proposed from the approach of zombie apocalypse to a new form and program of the malls collective areas. The different sites to choose from are the Randhurst site in Mt. Prospect and the Woodfield site in Schaumburg, which are large areas that have brought up the thought of how the mall interacts with and influences suburbia.
Midterms are Friday, October 12, and rigorous work is still in progress in search of not only a new form of the mall, but rather a vision of a new mall urbanism.
Tags: Arch 465, collective, Craig Owens, genealogy, Judith K De Jong, Lemons, mall, Philip Johnson, SoA, studio blog, studio work, UIC, undergraduate, Urbanism