“Why are you doing this?” Here is why.

On the 31st of December 2022, I put an end to an important chapter of my career as educator and professor.

In fact, after 6 years of intense dedication, I decided to step back from my position as Director of Design by Data, the Executive Master in Computational Design for Architecture I have founded at Ecole des Ponts ParisTech.

Quitting one of the most prestigious school of Europe while letting go a series of incredible adventures and relations with my students was not an easy decision to make, but I had important reasons to do so.

A few days ago, I published on Linked-in a post to explain and disclose the story of the Master, and also to share which projects I am focusing next: directing Volumes company to expand worldwide, bringing back Villa Buonaccorsi to the commons, and founding a startup studio for the construction industry and supporting independent education.

Below is a copy of my post – you can also find the original one here

Somewhere in 2015, while having a drink with my friends Aldo and Minh after one of our computational design workshops in Paris, Aldo declared it was time to stop running workshops and to launch a master program in computational design, the first of its kind in France.

When Aldo Sollazzo says something, you’d better execute it.

Continue reading “Why are you doing this?” Here is why.

We Workshop, an online platform for my events in Paris

Why do I spend my time publishing things on my blog ? Since the beginning I can’t stop asking myself this question and I think that the main reason why I’m doing this is because it helps me understand what I do and where I am going.

I principally refers to my projects. For instance, since 2 years I’m working as curator and organizer of international workshops in Paris about computational design and parametric architecture. I know that I love to do that but I don’t understand why. Sometimes I can’t figure out what are the connections between different things I do.

The other day I was in Amsterdam with one of the participants of a past workshop and we havre been discussing for an hour about art, architecture, computation, life and cities. I understood then clearly that working as workshop curator means constantly meeting new interesting people coming from different countries and with different approaches and ideas. And it’s one of the reasons why I love it.

Continue reading We Workshop, an online platform for my events in Paris

Parametric VS Computational Design

There is big trend about parametric approach and computation in design and architecture. In the last months, I’ve repeatedly been involved in discussions about if it would be more exact to call what we do as designers “computational design” or “parametric design”. It is not a useful discussion, I have to say.

I have the feeling that computational design is more trendy and parametric design is more nineties, would you agree with that ? As Aldo from Noumena Architecture said during our last workshop : “Don’t say parametric design!”.

But what is the difference between “parametric design” and “computational design” ?

I don’t know. “Computational design” refers to the use of computers and mathematical approach to the generation of geometries, objects and architecture. “Parametric design” is about using parameters to design things. It means that if parameters changes, the result change. Regardless of which expression is the best, what interests me the most is the idea of focusing on design process instead of designed objects.

Parametric VS Computation design

The process is everything

The process is everything (Mies would say that “God is in the process”) and that’s why I think that “parametric design” is still an interesting way to explain our approach. Parameters is about changing conditions and adaptability to user needs. We need to design process instead of objects.

François Roche recently published on his blog our emails exchanges about these topics. If you know him a bit, you would not be surprised to see that he’s not very polite. If you don’t speak French, try to google translate the post.

François Roche says that “computation is a good think, not parametric design…it’s like confusing science with the power of science”.

I answered “Personally, I’m more interested in action than language.” Continue reading Parametric VS Computational Design