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SUPERNORMAL 2 – RMIT Bachelor of Architecture Design Studio // Year: 2015 Semester 1 with Helen Duong
Students: Justin Dinh, Weixian He, Chenxin Li, Sarah Neaves, Alexis Omwela, Shang Peiwen, Norma Saini, Chen Ann Tan, Erdem Tetik, Grace Xiao, Huang Yufei
Guest Critiques: John Doyle, Martin Heide, Porl Van Herk, Timothy Pyke, 

SUPERNORMAL – RMIT Bachelor of Architecture Design Studio // Year: 2014 Semester 2 with Helen Duong
Students: Bing Jie Chang, Jinan Daou, Jiayi Li, Harry Ha, Bailing He, Jarrod Palmier, Yang Ren, Phoebe Wong, Siu Ming Wong, Yingjie Xu
Guest Critiques: Martin Heide, Vivian Mitsogianni, Timothy Pyke

The studio will expose students to two very different but we believe very complimentary design methodologies; 1. Rigorous site investigations and 2. Process-based experiments. This will allow students to examine opportunities and possibilities for the architectural project through a very particular methodical processes.

The studio is structured around  a series of workshops and exercises that privilege form making, leading to the design of a speculative suburban hybrid public library. Each exercise will focus on pure civic form, form and spatial, programmatic arrangements and form and landscape.




The studio is interested in understanding and finding order to complex and unstructured banal urban situations.  The hunch is that by applying generative processes, these moments can be amplified and exaggerated to generate architectural propositions that are provocative, elegant and convincing.


Students will be introduced to process-based design methodologies with the intention of amplifying the core behaviours of an existing typology (with a focus on banal and the generic) to affect form, urban conditions, internal organisation, façade, circulation, massing, ornamentation, etc.  The idea is that the core behaviour of a type can be manipulated through the process-based experiments to amplify its behaviour for the public library.



The studio will focus on the design of a speculative public library + hybrid program.  It will be a hypothetical scenario where the current Footscray Library will be relocated closer towards the gateway to the west and will be re-imagined as a hybrid public library and community hub in central Footscray.  It will question the evolving role of the contemporary public library and how variations and contaminations of other urban and architectural typologies can generate new propositions.

“Because libraries today are in transition, both as institutions and as a building type, every library that embarks on a building program is in a sense on its own. While there is a long tradition to draw on, there is no agreed-on paradigm for the library of the future. Getting to this paradigm is the task before us” – Craig W Hartman



Footscray is at once a banal inner city suburb with a rich eclectic and culturally specific use of space and appropriation. It will be a fertile testing ground for seeking out both “found” phenomena and ordinary typologies in order to amplify them through rule based processes. The studio aims to create innovative proposals that supersize and heighten these normal qualities.  Material and spatial delight can emerge from these exaggerated projects that are at once be familiar and strange at the same time. This is where will explore how architecture can be sensual, remarkable and surprising.