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ARCH 571 – Digital Fabrication


This seminar will use the chair as a vehicle for exploring pragmatics, polemics, and prototyping in digital design and manufacture. 

_pragmatics. In western society, the chair is an everyday ubiquitous presence – a fact which underlies its complexity as an object which needs to support, comfortably or not, all shapes of human bodies. Tactility, structure, materiality, detail, economy, sustainability, craft and speculations on the myth of comfort will be areas of concern. 

_polemics. From art object to seat of power to chair of death, the chair has a fascinating history which traces that of civilization. As much a reflection of how we understand the relations between bodies, posture, utility and power this history also marks that of industrial and material development. 

_prototyping. In addition to being an element of style and expression, the chair, for architects, has been a testbed of new materials and fabrication methods. We aim to explore the potential of a range of fabrication technologies in the design and production of our chairs.

_beginning. We will start with the most basic of chair types…the humble stool. 


Mon 3:30-6:30pm 2210 A&AB


Glenn Wilcox


Course Brief