Overmining – Andreas Kostopoulos & Avra Tomara


If Tom Wiscombe is your studio professor you know you are going to be exploring the relationship of the architectural envelope and its relationship to the human body and the creation of space.  Andreas Kostopoulos & Avra Tomara put it as an exploration into creating loose and tight spaces that are then “overmined”.  The exploration leads to how spaces begin to push and pull against each other, when spaces kiss, and the junk space.  The program is then forced to push against its external envelope to define the buildings ornamentation, instead of being placed within a box.  The models gif alone is pretty awesome; check it out after the jump!

STUDENT: Andreas Kostopoulos & Avra Tomara 
University of Pensylvania, PennDesign
PROFESSORS: Tom Wiscombe & Nate Hume


“How can we reinvent the “sectional object”? The “box-within-a-box” architecture serves as an alternative to the homogeneous Modern free plan and section. The inner “box” or figure, in-congruent with its envelope, creates complex interstitial spaces which deny homogeneity. “Blankness,” the resistance of the mass to external referents such as ornamentation or formal recognition is of high importance. External surface and internal programs are loose and non-linearly correlated, the skin is definitely a loose-fit envelope.


Part-to-whole theory and object oriented ontology can be a place to start in order to create new relationships of object to object, objects inside of other objects, and grounds as objects. “Rather than undermining objects by dissolving them downward into some component element, we can dissolve them upward or “overmine” them, to coin a new English term.

Untitled-123 Untitled-127

Sometimes, the figures are starkly visible through apertures in the skin and others remain mysteriously hidden. Different degrees of looseness or tightness of the outer skin around figures creates void spaces. “The entire issue of spatial heterogeneity rests in the aesthetics of the form and in the opposition between un-programmed event and function.”


The skin negotiates the correlation of surface features with underlying formal features and explores deviations from this alignment towards free form figuration and dissonance. Apertures are woven into patterns in order to either dissolve skin or allow views of internal cavities. In this way, skin articulation become an active participant in the readability of figure vs. sack. ‘Their union will not be quite perfect and not quite in sync. Their kiss will produce a rapturous event, a perceptual swerve in the middle of nowhere.’ “

All Images and Text from:

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