Entomomaniac_The Architecture of Revulsion
Alejandro Quinto & Maria Mas Mengual
Common belief is that entomophagy will become one of the main gastronomic tendencies due to the high optimization of spatial and environmental resources in its management and productive system.
The project takes as a testing ground the city of New York and more specifically the neighbourhood of Hell’s Kitchen, an area we wanted to explore in relation to the new worldwide gastronomic tendency. New York exists as showcase to the world and even more Hell’s as it has been historically a commercial area with numerous restaurants as well as being extremely divers in character.
The project does not want to just defend the physicality of the building historically and architecturally, but wants to take part in the tendency, to contribute values to the neighbourhood and make them be part of the new economic and cultural life.
Through the activation of the new tendencies which we baptise as ‘gastronomic micro activism’ a sort of collaborative relationship between all the agents who participate is established.
Restaurants, infrastructures and even housing must be adapted to new times with the entomophagy as an engine of change.
The cohabitation with the new species will obligate the population to the design and use of shared spaces and to established new relations of ecosystems between different beings (animals, vegetals, insects..)
Thus, the project is an imaginary speculation on on how the urban and domestic will cohabite in 2050.
Who influences you graphically?
From the beginning, we wanted the project to be graphically strong. One of our main influences was the work of one of our colleagues and friends at university. They developed the project 1311. Inspired by their method of representation we also wanted to explore the drawings in extreme detail trying to reveal as much information as possible. Building upon this initial layer we experimented with different drawings styles (render, flat colour, textures, line…) to obtain our own architectural language.
What is your take on colour?
Pink is used to give a strong expression to the drawings and catch people’s attention. Also, in a big world pink acts as a softener, giving tenderness to what is supposedly not (culturally) accepted.
What was your work process in terms of project development and production of images?
We narrate our project through three different scenarios. Our first objective was to decide what kind of images we needed to explain each scenario. From there the images were developed simultaneously. As we added and drafted more and more detail to the big drawing we developed other schemes and images. As such one drawing did not follow the other as a linear process but rather each drawing evolved simultaneously where ideas and strategies were continuously tested and exchanged amongst these.
What defined the types of images/ drawings through which you reveal the project?
Changes of scale, we tried to explore views which ranged from that of an insect to that of the huge urban scale of Manhattan. These changes of scale in addition to the extra attention to detail and the texture of the environments defined our project.
How important is the diagram in the communication of an idea?
Such a complex project undoubtedly needed a selection of diagrams to be expressed properly. Thanks to these methods of representation we could express the different fields (economic, social, networking…) that the project embedded. In this sense the diagrams are as important as the main axonometric drawings.
What programs did you use? How did you work on the images as a group?
Our project is not defined by a specific program as each drawing is made in a different way. We used Rhinoceros to 3d model and Vray to render, Photoshop for texture, illustrator for diagrams and layout whilst we also used Autocad for some other diagrams and schemes.
As a team, we were just trying to boost the abilities in which each of us excelled. Every drawing and decision is the result of a combined thought process whilst the drawings were developed independently.
Alejandro Quinto is a spanish architect and interior designer. He graduated from the University of Alicante whilst also pursuing his studies at Hogeschool van Amsterdam and Politechnika Wroclawska for a four-month period each, taking part in several workshops and competitions.
In 2016Alejandro worked in Solis Betancourt and Sherrill (Washington DC) and in 2017 in OneArchitects in el Albir (Altea). He is currently in Doha for a 6 months period doing an international internship in Luna Design and he keeps looking for the next challenge.
Maria studied architecture at the University of Alicante, during which she participated in the Wessex Institute congress “Sustainable cities”, and get involved in many international workshops, like “More than green”, by Play Studio, “Cooking sections” by the studio whit the same name or “After pop is looking for an architect, by fru*fru.
She participated as student at the Oslo Architecture Triennale 2016, before graduating in June 2017 under the academic supervision of María José Marcos.
Maria is currently working as an architect in a studio in the city of Alicante.