Introduction to virtual architecture at State of Play III
First Monday

Introduction to virtual architecture at State of Play III

 


 

Groups and institutions can cohere around specific geographies as community in the three–dimensional virtual world once again comes to be defined by the social and technical construction of space. But our familiar understanding of the relationship between architectural design and social regulation is dramatically altered in the virtual world. The distinction between private and public may make less sense, not only because all space is privately “owned” but also because virtual architecture is neither completely physical nor completely representational. At the State of Play Conference on Law, Games and Virtual Worlds, held at New York Law School, October 6–8, 2005, architects, law professors and social theorists discussed the future of public space in the virtual world.

To launch that conversation, the State of Play sponsored the first ever public space architecture competition. The competition solicited entries, primarily from residents of virtual worlds (and not from professional architects) to provide their take on public space and civic design for the virtual world.

Twenty–six, wide–ranging submissions were received and the following were selected by the judges for special recognition.

  First Place   Second Place Third Place Fourth Place
   
  Relay for Life
by Randal Moss
  CINE: Infinite City 360
by Studio IMC
"Fracture"
by Jeffrey Palenski
DEVMAP
by Workspace Unlimited

An illustrious panel of judges presided over the competition.

Ann Beamish
University of Texas
School of Architecture
 
Nathan Glazer
Harvard University
 
Carl Goodman
Museum of the Moving Image
 
Yehuda Kalay
University of California, Berkeley
School of Architecture
 
Helen Stuckey
Australian Centre for the Moving Image
 
Ed Valauskas
First Monday
 
Martin Zogran
Harvard University
Graduate School of Design
 
Jonathan Zittrain
Oxford Internet Institute

 


 

Architecture Competition Announcement

Do you enjoy building things in a virtual world? Ever built a virtual house or terraformed a virtual landscape? How about designing public space for your metaverse? Maybe this public architecture resembles the public spaces of old like town squares, markets, transportation hubs or town halls. Maybe not. This competition invites designers and architects to submit examples of the best public, democratic or civic architecture in a virtual world.

Architects from virtual worlds across the universe are invited to submit their designs for public spaces and structures to the State of Play Virtual Public Space Design Competition by September 28, 2005. The State of Play is the annual conference on Law, Videogames and Virtual Worlds co–sponsored by New York Law School’s Institute for Information Law & Policy, Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society and Yale Law School’s Information Society Project.

Entries will be critiqued by a panel of professional architects, architectural theorists and game designers including Harvard’s Nathan Glazer, renowned public intellectual and author of The Public Face of Architecture; Anne Beamish, architect and professor, University of Texas; and Yehuda Kalay, architect and professor, University of California, Berkeley and others to be announced. Submissions will be showcased at the State of Play conference on law, video games and virtual worlds in New York, October 7–9, and form the centerpiece of a panel on public architecture in the metaverse. That panel asks:

Unlike the flat, text–based Web world, virtual worlds reintroduce space and place online. I can occupy a plot of land, build a house there, and invite guests over to break bread or man the barricades. Groups and institutions can cohere around specific geographies and community once again comes to be defined by the social and technical construction of space. But our familiar understanding of the relationship between architectural design and social regulation is dramatically altered in the virtual world. The distinction between private and public may make less sense, not only because all space is privately “owned” but also because virtual architecture is neither completely physical nor completely representational. In this panel, architects, lawyers and game designers talk about the future of public space in the virtual world. End of article

 


Copyright ©2006, First Monday

Introduction to virtual architecture at State of Play III
First Monday, volume 11, number 2 (February 2006),
URL: http://firstmonday.org/issues/issue11_2b/intro/index.html





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