Stereotomic Vs Tectonics

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Light and heavy. Tectonics and Stereotomics. Two contrasting architectural systems working together to create a space – to express beauty, craftsmanship, gravity, light and a strong narrative through well considered design. Upward reaching, inundated with light, is the tectonic system, “in which lightweight, linear components are assembled so as to encompass a spatial matrix” (Frampton 1995, 5). In contrast, the dark, heavy, cave like (Baeza 2009) stereotomic structure, in search of light, “seeks opportunities to create space through the carving of masses” (Eckler 2012). The Federation Square Atrium illustrates the characteristics of tectonic and stereotomic architectural systems, demonstrating how structural expression and decoration can influence the spatial experience.
Melbourne’s iconic public space, Federation Square, is constructed partially on a concrete
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The concepts are what inform the way in which we perceive everything that occurs in our lives. These concepts create our experiences. Likewise, tectonic design thinking allows a free, artistic expression, crafting and ornamentation of the structure itself and exposing it to the observer. Its narrative flows freely from the form – as a tectonic language – in dialogue with the emotions of the human occupant; the subsequent emotional response is what we interpret as the spatial experience. Narsey (2013) writes: “Tectonics conveys the expression of forces through form, structure and materiality; all of which can be used to generate space. This space then expresses an emotion onto the viewer”. The beautiful expression in the craftsmanship of the Atrium’s structural system can be clearly identified; the building asks the observer to feel, understand, feel slightly confused, to look – to view the shapes, forms and patterns. To immerse themselves in the experience of light, movement and space. Tectonic architecture is the