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Asha Wiltshire

German Expressionism and Architectural Thought: A Deep Dive into Cinema’s Potential Impact on the Architectural Narrative Process

Architecture’s history is not solely confined to detailing the accomplishments of architects and the evolution of building styles and construction; it is also a history of architectural representations and depictions in other fields of art and popular culture. Another medium similar in its engagement with parameters of space, movement, and time for the expression of its narrative is cinema. Cinema uses space and spatial cues to advance narratives in order to evoke emotions in the viewer. In understanding this process of storytelling, architects are empowered to similarly assess the process of narrative translation in architecture. In understanding this process, architects are prompted to draw similarities between the process of narrative translation in architecture to the processes of storytelling in cinema in order to fully navigate the evolution of the way in which cinema and architecture collaborate – no longer as stepping stones for the mere representation of the final product but rather as an integral part of the design process itself, an apparatus for the translation of architectural thought and concepts. The visuals for this project interact with principles of architectural and cinematic mediums and devices such as forced perspective, lighting and shadows, and movement. The constructed architectural renderings serve as architectural apparatuses from which inspiration can be drawn. Four films from the Weimar era were chosen to represent German expressionist and cinematic thought.

Sector C

Advisors: Eric Bellin (ARCH), Karen Redrobe (ARTH)