I began senior studio with a question on my mind: How can we tell the stories of the people and places and histories we encounter through the spaces we design? And, in doing so, how does our built environment not only reflect who we are, but empower us to be something greater?
I tried to fulfill this promise of storytelling through my design for a way-station in the Salton Sea basin by keeping a feeling of agency central to my project. From what I could tell during our visit to California, the poetics of place and lifestyle was in the freedom of its inhabitants, the nomads. At the heart of my design, is a solar-desalination system inspired by the qanat’s of ancient Iran. Water follows its own rules and logic; much like the authorship nomads seek when leaving urban life behind. As such, the occupiable structures functions as a roofscape, directly reflecting the walls and support columns buried underground, and broken up by a series of pools that do the same. By creating the base infrastructure and very simplistic inhabitable spaces, I designed the canvas to be built upon, the foundations of a possibly more permanent community.