Architectural Association
Media Studies

AA MEDIA is an experimental testing ground for exploring and interrogating the tools of the discipline – tools with which we speculate, manipulate and play; compute, control and test; communicate, seduce, and provoke.

Acting as both training camp and laboratory, it is a diverse, multidisciplinary program where unexpected collisions and obsessive attention to detail expose a rich seam of creative potential. Media Studies presents an opportunity to develop individual practice, where students hone their dexterity with established and progressive media, actively testing modes of production through focused acts of doing and making.


Kate Davies
Head of Media Studies
Inigo Minns
Acting Head (maternity cover)

Oliviu Lugojan-Ghenciu
Lab Coordinator

Architectural Association
School of Architecture
36 Bedford Square
London WC1B 3ES

+44 (0)20 7887 4000





Tuesdays, 2-5pm

A course that explores the fundamental qualities of everyday materials. Through a series of tests using familiar materials we will transform the dumb and cheap into the sophisticated and exquisite. Taking familiar materials in their raw form we will misuse and abuse them, developing details that force new readings and interpretations of often overlooked substances and products. The end result being a 1:1 object that flips expected fabrication processes and reconsiders overlooked material qualities seeing them instead as beautiful and surprising.

Session 1: STUFF INTRODUCTION: Tuesday 8th January 2019
Talk on stuff (verb and noun), material misuse.
Testing your material - Examples: Foam, rubber, silicon, poured latex, sponge, wax, cling film, insulation boards, steam, plaster, glue gun, corrugated card, house paint, string, clay, cable ties, plaster, milk, tubing, dung, chocolate, Urea crystals, copper sulphate crystals.
Discussion on documentation and portfolio

Session 2: MATERIAL QUALITIES: Tuesday 15th January 2019
Defining Qualities – Refine your fabrication process by further exploring the base qualities of your material. Eg stretchy, fat, transparent, fragrant, reflective, crude, heavy, sticky etc
Testing the Effect – Explore how best to achieve your material qualities and the experiences they give

Session 3: FORM AND COMPOSITION: Tuesday 22nd January 2019
1:1 - Designing your Object – Using the material as a guide, design an object that reflects the material qualities

Session 4: REFINED DESIGN: Tuesday 29th January 2019
Detail Design – We will continue to work on making versions of the physical refinement of the detail. How could you refine the fabrication process? What steps are required? What tools could be helpful? How can you achieve accuracy? Do you need to make new tools/apparatus to achieve your intended output?
Documentation – Explore the best means of expressing the qualities of your tests through images


Session 5: REFINED DESIGN: Tuesday 12th February 2019
Detail Design – Continued from the previous session
Documentation – Continued from the previous session

Session 6: RESOLUTION: Tuesday 19th February 2019
Detail Design - During the session you should aim to finish the made piece – including final tweaks or refinements.
An Object Performed – describe how the object will be performed and discuss the staging and recording of this

Session 7: TESTING THE EFFECT: Tuesday 26th February 2019
An Object Performed – Test the object created: How do you use it? How is it performed? What does it tell you to do? Where does its power lie? How can it be recorded?
Documentation – Present all documentation and proposals for next weeks presentation
Session 8: MS JURY DAY: Tuesday 5th March 2019
Submission –Your final 1:1 piece and all of your tests and mock-ups, your beautifully photographed/filmed objects and event (formatted), your draft portfolio