What would a building look like if you could translate music into architecture? Well, that would depend on the music. Maybe Daft Punk would be the Lloyd’s building in London, Mozart the Sistine Chapel, and Kraftwerk the Sydney Opera House? Contemplating this conundrum is designer Alexander Smaga, whose Postgraduate Master Thesis from the University of Applied Arts in Vienna looks at how music could be translated into architecture.
In his project Excessive Music Hall, Smaga imagines a Viennese music hall where sound is embodied in the building’s cellular structure, created from acoustic mass using various biocomputing techniques. Minimal electronic music repeated in cycles creates varying levels of density in the structures and different rhythms create different permutations and subdivisions in this bizarre, insect-like colony, which seems jarringly at odds with its proposed surroundings of an English-style country park.
Cavernous spaces and porous forms are created in this rhizomatic space, where deep, looping corridors mean getting lost would be part of the experience. Containing this bio-structure is an outer skin or shell, a semi-transparent concrete grid. It all sounds rather speculative at the moment, but with advances in nanotechnology and biomimetics, architecture could be taking on a more mutable, biological form.
In addition to blowing our minds and making our brains hurt with the concept of biomimetic sound-generated concert halls, Smaga also wants to explore the relationship between architectural mutation and music-making, and how the built environment can provoke new styles in music.