Projects Logbook 01

In this post we try to summarize the discussion in the meeting of Friday, September 16th, about the results of the participants’ personal researches. The first week of the workshop was a warm-up and it was essential to get in contact with local realities, survey the ground and gather information on the history and the evolution of the city. In the second, the participants began to develop a personal research that would allow them to process all the input gathered and develop their own strategies and creative processes to be developed the next after.

Project: Open Design School

She needs to clarify the general concepts of "open process".
She would like to understand how to set up a project to create objects to link local history, and techniques, with digital fabrication, as well as the possibility of commercialization.

Group comments: Recommendations of working with ‘memory’ by connecting open design with its ability to give new life to existing objects. Research the concept of the 3 R's: to Reuse, to Renovation and to Recycle.


Project: Cava del Sole

Rosa is investigating the concept of the ''RSVP cycle "(Resources/Score/Valuaction/Performance) of the American landscape architect Lawrence Halprin and, together with Francesco, is conducting surveys and data collections on past projects for the Cava del Sole: regulations, definition of public property areas and the private property in the area of the park of the quarries.

She questioned the possibility of combining her personal research with the rest of the group. Perhaps her role would be to create the interpretive maps that summarize and communicate the ideas of the group.

Group comments: she should be careful to focus her research on specific fields in order to avoid the risk of becoming too general, and to give too much weight to historical research. A possible focus could be that of the connections between the quarries and the city. What are the current difficulties to reach them?

She should also try to understand how to process the information from her research: diagrams, drawings, interactive tools, etc.


Project: Both

Cava del Sole: Along with Rosa, he is conducting research on the properties of the land in the area of the quarries, and how to improve pedestrian routes. He is also considering regulations for public spaces that host performances and concerts.

Group comments: In parallel, other participants can search for case studies in relation to property rights for similar experiences.

Open Design School: he would like to study how the school could self-sustain from an economic point of view and how it could guarantee free courses for students. Also he would like to define the use of public space strategies.

Group comments: there are two interesting experiences that could serve him: Teatro Valle in Rome and the former Asilo Filangieri in Naples.

Alex and Luca
Project: Cava sun

They made video interviews around the city. The main point that emerged was the fact that almost no resident has ever been in any of the quarries. Alex also noticed the great hospitality of the citizens who, at the same time, contrast with some resistance to be open to diversity.

They would like to understand how to communicate in a better way with the city and expose what we are doing in regards to the two projects.

They are also investigating the relationship between the patterns of the excavations in the quarries and sound: how could one tell the story of the quarry without actually "telling the story"? They would like to create an interactive experience in order to find a different way of creating a connection between the quarries and the local people. Perhaps with an interactive tool open to all.

What kind of software can translate the patterns into sounds? They did various experiments with different types of possibilities.

One idea is to design a playful and interactive system – analog and digital, onsite and online – to allow one to live the experience the quarry in an immersive and performative way.

Group comments: How can they turn this research into a design tool? Look at other experiences already made. e.g. Soundscape.

Project: Open Design School

His early research focused on various proposals:


    1. A call to invite and create a collective of musicians along with his seminars on interaction design using Arduino.


    1. He began collecting materials to create sound objects


    1. He is experimenting with how to transform the patterns of the quarries into sounds. Translate the patterns on the tufo into drawings and develop an electronic device that can read these drawings into sounds. Example


Group comments: This collective of artists will only be about electronic music? Could it mix analog and digital music using informal scores based on the patterns of the quarry as the base for the whole group. Sound objects could be connected to the idea of Alex and Luca to create an interactive experience in the quarry. Should try to consider the patterns in 3D as well and not only 2D – that is the same for Alex and Luca.

Could his experiments gather objective acoustic data in the Cava del Sole that could be shared with the other members of the group?


Project: Cava del Sole

She started outlining that vegetation was part of the development of the Sassi in the previous centuries and that it was an integral part of the support system of the city dwellers. Sasso = stone; Sassi = carved stone. The city can be thought of as a large excavated rock.

The church of San Sabino in Bari was built with a very similar material, but the wooden roof introduces a contrast between a light structure and a heavy structure that is very attractive. The sassi designed as a large rock, and the light element is introduced by the vegetation. She would like to map the existing green spaces and think about how to add more, between the stones, the roofs, and therefore, develop a system of urban gardens. She wants to use food as an attractive element to implement the events of daily life in the Sassi.

In order to realize this idea, she is considering reinterpreting the form of the curved ceiling to create the modular structures of urban farming.

Group comments: connect with the experience of the Basilicata Fiorita. Map also wild gardens that are born spontaneously among the abandoned houses. Also think of the various factors to develop any garden based on specific factors: exposure, wind, climatic variables, solar map, water supply and water channeling to find the best space for each production.


Project: Cava de Sole

Research on the different patterns of the quarries: what kind of machines created them? how do they work? She has identified three types of patterns and would like to find out what was the technology that created them. She would like to produce a scheme to share online and make it open.

Group comments: There are two steps: data processing and understanding the output. How could these data be useful to the projects?

Why do they use that exact size for the blocks of tufo? Have they always been the same or have they differ in ancient times? Perhaps this line of research could become a department of the future Open Design School that deals with technologies and techniques of processing tufo. Maybe she can think of hacking this technology. Could the standard size of the tufo be changed  to make it compatible with the "open structures" and enter a system used worldwide?

Project: Open Design School

Considering that the floor of the quarry is the floor that generates everything (the walls are a derivative), she is pursuing a redesign of the quarry floor with a generative matrix where you can add different series of possible configurations.

Therefore, one might think that the Open Design School could develop projects based on the matrix lying there and develop all the necessary configurations for the quarry.

Group comments: to study the experiences of Space Syntax and Constant and Liona Friedmann. Also for the quarry she has to create the program with the functions that the Cava de Sole will have.

The idea is very interesting because it combines the two themes of the project and also raises  the subject of the economic viability for both projects. References: Cellula Automata, Superstudio, "points and lines" book by Sten Allens.

Research cases studies: how can modularity be open to flexibility?

Tommaso Schiuma
Project: Both

He proposes holding a social event to present to the city: Open cialledda

The cialledda is a typical dish from Matera that mixes different ingredients and can be regarded as a symbol of our working group. In this event we could be each associated with one of the ingredients. These ingredients/presentations would be arranged along a path as to allow everyone to create their own cialledda with whoever one desires.
Also he proposed a walk in Serra Venerdì on Saturday, 17/09 to get to know the first neighborhood created in Matera after the evacuation of the Sassi.

He wants to research on the tufo as a material: which system to develop to create new blocks of lighter tufo?

Group comments: he should also think in other aspects of the working technique of this material, such as excavation. The light can also be understood as a lightweight structure instead of compacted block. He can look into the experiences of the German architect Frei Otto (study of biological systems to understand how to reduce the amount of material required), the catenary of Antoni Gaudi and studies produced by 'ILL (Institute of Light Structure - Stuttgard).

Fedele Congedo
Project: Open Design School

He focused on a generative survey: mental mapping the knowledge already produced about Open Design as the first tree of open knowledge. The pioneers, a comparison between schools, for the emergence of principles, strategies, objectives and methods: the Bauhaus, the Ulm School, Global Tools, Barefoot College, IAAC Barcelona, Hooke Park Campus AA, Rural Studio and etc.

The transformation of themes, speeches, meetings and shared content in trees by crossing destinies, towards a future, for the emergence, from a common imperfect landscape, key to the many doors of the Open Design.


Camilla Brunelli, Valeria Semenzato and Thomas Cayro
Project: Open Design School

The patterns of the quarry, the patterns of Matera, the patterns of man and that of nature.

Graphic representation and synthesis.

Collection, study, classification of patterns in view of a project identity.

Communicating open design school, and perhaps also the Cava del Sole, through a language capable of starting from the raw material of Matera, an ancient gesture like that of cavamonti, and to become a global language.

If the school is a building tool that can be interpreted as the creation and development of a language, analogically, they have decided to start with a study of the syllables and an elementary syntax.

An encyclopedia of signs, forms, repetitions, rhythms, of the compositions as a graphic and practical tool, as a matrix, a new way of doing design.

Presentation of a proto-paper prototype that could become a work or introduction to the collective work (sign as a supplementary element of Constantino’s musical research, the structural quarry project, research on the urban gardens of Aleksandra, etc)



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