Posts tagged ‘architectural design’

December 4, 2014


by yannis zavoleas

Master’s Course, The University of Newcastle, Australia

Course Coordinator: Yannis Zavoleas


This studio aims to expand the body’s performative behaviours as these are manifested in its structure and logic, also in its relations among the parts and the metabolic functions directing its form. A found body is scrutinized through processes of analysis and then it is given new meanings through a series of transformations aiming to tie it to a new context. Analysis involves tracing literal and metaphorical meanings about the body, as these are later used as semantic tools to define architectural space and form. The list of references includes – but not limited to – behaviours associated with the body such as structure, symbiosis, prosthetics, trauma, deformation, anatomy, skin, covering/revealing, flows and actions.

Found Body Vs. Mutant Body

A found body is viewed as a weak topology whose inherent properties are rediscovered and reenacted, in so doing showing multiple potentials for rejoining with a new context. The body is an organic entity that constantly adapts to its environment for its survival. Adaptation involves dynamic exchanges between the body and its environment, expressed in the form of energy transformation and negotiation of different systems sharing the same resources. Due to adaptation, the body is constantly subject to mutation causing the emergence of new species.

The mutant body talks about systems whose overall characteristics and behaviour are addressed in relation to internal processes as well as to the environment. Systems, geometric shapes, patterns and other typological references may be viewed as dynamic entities. Mutation aids to understand the properties of architectural space as changing values that reflect upon different scenarios, described by relational rules. Properties become variants holding the body’s propensity to initiate coalitions, hybridizations and unprecedented mixtures. As with the organisms, the principles of form may be codified into a DNA-like code. Architecture’s code is set in response to multitude factors, causing structural transformations, mixed-use programs, typological variations and associations at different scales. Implementation, adaptation, local alterations due to changing conditions, all of these may be viewed as outcomes of negotiation between architectural species and their environment. An understanding of architecture as a mutant body helps to break from unnecessary preconceptions, in an attempt to reconcile between its generative causes and the final form.

January 10, 2014


by yannis zavoleas

8th semester

Instructor: Yannis Zavoleas

Theme subject: Systemic approaches in architectural design. Archetypical schemas and their transference to space

Short Description

In the research framework outlined by a systematic understanding of space design, the course focuses on an analysis of archetypical schemas coined in the modern and the late modern era. Archetypes with reference to the grid, also to linear arrangements and their derivatives such as the web, the mat and the matrix, were developed as schematic interpretations of verbal descriptions about space, being descriptive of its structure. The related quest has evolved over the last twenty years. Advanced archetypical systems have been generated, whose nominative characteristics respond to contemporary issues about architectural design, also to a variety of conditions and qualities describing space, including the relationships among its units.

In reflection of the above, new archetypical alternatives are investigated over the course. As a general observation, there is a shift of interest concerning design methodologies. Specifically, an interest in preset typologies describing space would give way to a quest of its inner logic, stemming from the interaction among the parameters about an architectural project, thereby bridging the gap between analysis and synthesis.

November 1, 2013


by yannis zavoleas

Eleftherias Square, Thessaloniki, Greece | 2013

Ctrl_Space Lab & Ahylo Studio

Concept, coordination: Yannis Zavoleas, Ioulietta Zindrou, Pavlos Xanthopoulos

Team: Y.Zavoleas, I.Zindrou, P.Xanthopoulos, N.Kogkelli, S.Antonopoulos, N.Patsavos, G.Zamani, E.Ioannidou, D.Lada, I.Kalogeropoulou, A.Tsesmetzi, Ch.Gavra

Mechanical Engineer: Y.Kaonis

Landscape: M.Tertilianos

Civil Engineer: A.Gavalas


Eleutherias Square stands out as a highly symbolic and programmatically important place. It comprises of a series of non-unified elements calling for a new holistic  synthesis. This is indeed an area operating as a multi-programmatic node fed by the commercial and recreational activities of Ladadika, the central commercial streets of  Eleftheriou Venizelou and Mitropoleos and the seafront Nikis avenue and promenade. The square is located at a critical distance both from the main monumental axis and public spaces of Aristotelous and Dioikiterion Squares as well as the remains of the western Byzantine walls. The current shape and condition of Eleftherias Square is the product of Ernest Hebrard’s Thessaloniki canonizing reconstruction, while on a socio-cultural level, maybe the most haunting local event challenging the social memory of the city was the second world war concentration of the Jewish Sephardim community of the city before their eventual tragic deportation and annihilation. This was the last act of Thessaloniki’s cosmopolitan drama and in being so, it provides with a powerful inherent dynamic awaiting to be channelled back to the reality of the place. From a strictly architectural point of view, the square is defined by an array of non-standing out buildings, characteristic standard office buildings of the last 100 years, with few exceptions such as the Stein Megaron and the traces of the Wall. At the same time, the existing green needs to be enriched in order to claim the mass and the variety which would turn it to an important asset for the area as well as for the wider city.

Based on the above, the following compositional priorities may be defined: i. The Square, as a multi-programmatic node condenses the surrounding activities (commerce, leisure and culture). Venizelou and Mitropoleos are being channelled to the plateau on its northern part and then whirled towards its central area while eventually output towards Ladadika and the Quai. the outcome of this process is that the future functions are spread via a network of flows and activity poles dynamically introduced to the emergent urban scape. ii. The historical memory is related to the following elements of the concept: a. the old city and the Ottoman city front are being symbolized as a whole by the trace of the Byzantine City Wall present as a border between the flat zone connected to the commercial district and the irregular topography unfolding towards the sea front. b. The tragic incident of the Holocaust is metaphorically transferred to the semantics of the water which is adopted both as an element of purification and as an ubiquitous dynamic force active as a parameter defining the new topography. iii. The existing trees defining a Π shape surrounding three sides of the squares while their scale equals that of the adjacent buildings. At the core of the square a composite complex of new trees and other smaller scale plants are allowing the gradual bridging with the relative scales of the humans, the intermediate sub-areas and the whole area.

Thus, the proposal presents with a socially and environmentally viable opportunity to re-engineer the image of the area in study and Thessaloniki as a whole by means of an emergent dynamic new topography allowing a multi-faceted spatial narrative developing along spaces with polyvalent programmatic and aesthetic attributes. The strategy profits from all the currents inherent dynamics while also triggering the development of new extrovert socio-spatial activities.

May 19, 2013


by yannis zavoleas

Short-listed project for Rethink Athens competition.

Project title: TOP-DOWN.

Location: Athens, Greece.

Year: 2012.

Credits: Ctrl_Space Lab. Yannis Zavoleas, Nikolas Patsavos. Team: Y.Zavoleas, N.Patsavos, S.Yannoudis, A.Kapsalis, C.Daflouka, G.Dimitrakopoulou, I.Chinoporou, T.Dogani, D.Mairopoulos, N.Batakis, N.Papavasileiou, I.Apostolopoulos, P.Charvalakis, I.Thanou


The proposal puts forward a relative multi-layered strategy shortly described as “revisiting the architectural typology of the arcade”. The two facades of each side of the boulevards are addressed as the interior of a building block themselves. In the semi-private space of the proposed arcade a series of initial polarities are put at work. Big-small, high-low, movement-stop, social-private, natural-artificial, formal-informal and monumental-everyday are the most influential relations at hand.

The overall concept of the arcade is broken down into a series of layers adaptive to different conditions. Starting from the top, the first element is a ubiquitous bio-climatic shed covering the street space. It may be filled by a layer of local and enduring creeping plants offering a variety of effects ranging from filtering the air and the light, shadowing and cooling, to creating a new green landscape flowing at the center of the metropolis. The transition between this big scale supra-structure and the ground is taking place with the mediation of a second layer comprised of framed structures relating on one hand to the flows of the tram, bicycles and people and, on the other, to the existing arcades. These local structures are invested with a thin wire-frame system which can either allow air to circulate or be covered with plants or zero-energy media walls. These frames provide with the possibility for a more intimate set of urban rooms, spaces within the more metropolitan space of the shed and they are followed by yet a third level of intervention which is more linked to the ground per se.

A set of elements may be combined and customized according to local spatial parameters and users’ choice. They could easily produce a variety of possibilities, move to different locations if needed and expand.

February 8, 2012


by yannis zavoleas


Thursday, February 09, 14:00 – 17:00

Wooden Amphitheater | School of Architecture | University of Patras

Short Description

Structural adaptations of the organic in architectural design. The notion of the organic is approached in various ways, for example in response to the relationship between building and landscape (urban – natural), also among the the elements making up the whole and the parameters of the program. Architectural design is approached as a multi-faceted problem, being rephrased to its resolution.

The studio proposes the following studio themes:

Artificial/Natural Landscape, Aguia

Paris Market Lab  (competition)

Rooftops-Why Not?  (competition)

CoWorking Building  (competition)

December 25, 2011


by yannis zavoleas

Instructors: Yannis Zavoleas (coordinator), Vasilis Stroumbakos, Demetri Zisimopoulos, Vasili Patmios-Karouk, Nancy Psaraki, Natassa Kantidaki, Anna Chartofili.

Location: School of Architecture, University of Patras.

Years: 2008-10.

Theme subject: Analysis – Synthesis. Principles of architectural design with the aid of digital technologies.

Short description

The course aims at developing the ability to conceptual thinking, also to comparative research and experimentation in architectural design by exploiting the potentials of computer systems. The computer is introduced as an advanced medium that is also symbolic of the analytic operations it supports. In such, operations with the computer interfere with perception and spatial experience being understood as an aggregate of information. This introduction helps to nurture the critical framework upon which expressive processes related to presentation, representation, rendering and communication, take place.

Architectural design is about the analysis and the reformation of information invested in architectural elements, in order to create new spatial experience. In such, the dipole analysis/synthesis describes schematically two opposite processes. The computer is used as a medium and as a referent to methods first applied onto the material object, then onto its projection to image and drawing, giving emphasis to the reduction of its form and its aesthetics to the structural relationships lying low.

December 24, 2011


by yannis zavoleas

Systemic analysis as a basis for design. Preliminary diagrams.