Fairy Tales of the City

Course Instructor

Mackenzie Waller

Course Date

Summer 2020

Course Type

Undergraduate + Graduate Studio

Fairy-tale scholars Pauline Greenhill and Sidney Eve Matrix (2010) have defined fairy tales as “fictional narratives that combine human and nonhuman protagonists with elements of wonder and the supernatural.” This intensive design studio was inspired by the Fairy Tales design competition (www. blankspaceproject.com) and tackled real world issues through the lens of creativity.

The studio focused on presenting different interpretations of urban and urbanization to consider the social, economic and environmental transformations underway in our cities. The rise of negative social processes is most evident in cities, where key social conflicts often center on socio-spatial rights and needs.

Students each selected a city that they held extensive personal experience and during the course of the studio they developed a text based fictional fairy tale (800-1400 words). Each fairy tale identifies a unique challenge and uses narrative to present landscape architecture responses.

The studio tasked each project to embody the following:

  • Setting acts as a vehicle for ecocriticism, that is, the focus on nature/city and questions about the interaction between humans and the environment.
  • Engage story based strategy to develop a critical narrative engaging in complex problems evident in each city.
  • The central character of each story reflects the social identity of the author and offers evidence of critical reflection of their role in their community.

Download the PDF
View the studio report online

Birds + Climate Change

 

Course Instructor

Mackenzie Waller

Course Date

Winter 2020

Course Type

Undergraduate + Graduate Studio

As climate change becomes an increasing challenge there is still opportunity and hope for ensuring resiliency for our birds and the natural world. National Audubon’s Climate Report suggests about 2/3 of the birds in peril can be helped by acting now.This provides hope and a pathway for action.

The Birds + Climate Change Studio worked in partnership with the Tahoma Audubon Society at their small wetland park site in the South Puget Sound region, Adriana Hess Audubon Center. We tasked students with a series of questions. How can design balance the intersection of habitat specific solutions and urban public space? How might the Audubon Society create bird habitat while still ensuring the safety of park visitors? How can we creatively incorporate traditional park elements with natural habitat spaces and stormwater management?

This document attempts to capture the outcomes of these studio investigations across scales, from regional to small fabricated prototypes.

Download the PDF
View the studio report online