ISE 2017 Keynote: Architect Ole Scheeren Talks About Human Interactivity With Buildings

By Jacob Blount

Ole Scheeren served as the keynote speaker at #ISE2017’s Opening Address. His address shared the vision of contemporary architectural and urban development and explored how technology and architectural design combine to influence the creativity of one another.

In sharing some of his recent projects, he analyzed the connectivity of humans and building-inhabitants in both physical and digital space. Scheeren referenced The Matrix movie to describe this relationship.

Buro Ole Scheeren, Scheeren’s company, uses human interactivity with spaces as a steering force in their work; this interactivity is the base of their designs. Furthermore, Scheeren shares that a building is an organism and thus can be dissected into different systems and structures. However, the focus of the building as an organism is that of the building having life.

Buro Ole Scheeren’s Olympicopolis design in London allows the choice of a visitor to experience the space in their own manner and order and technology is integrated rather than used as a design factor. The focus of integrated technology was the focus of his address; technology and design complement each other to enhance the creativity of the space.

Scheeren shared the definition of smart buildings: a focus of energy efficiency, consumer-focused and technology-driven. However, he challenged this traditionalist view in saying that “a building can be as energy efficient as it is designed, but if the focus is not on a user’s experience it might as well be an uninhabited ghost town.”

A rather impressive project that Scheeren discussed is that of the Vertical Village in Singapore. The client, he described, prefered Buro Ole Scheeren design 12 vertical buildings on the land that was allocated for the project. Scheeren literally rotated the vertical design of the building into a horizontal structure that allowed for more green space than would’ve been present in the client’s preference of a layout. Furthermore, the design highlighted sustainability and comfort in that it took into consideration the wind flows and shading created by the structure.

Scheeren’s MahaNakhon project is exceptionally related to the AV industry in that the design features a large display sharing content relevant to any citizen on the street.

All in all, Scheeren’s work is revolutionary and that was present in his address at #ISE2017. He truly embodied the thought process of uniting technology and architectural design to influence the creativity of another.