En{coded}fields. Fibrous Agency | Advanced Design Summer Workshop 2017
Fibrous Agency. Advanced Design Workshop Summer 2017. Florence, 1st-5th July. Insight into the world of parametric architecture and urban design methodologies.
Agency, Workshop, Processing, Maya, modelling, software, design
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Fibrous Agency


En{coded}fields has grown through multiple events and the infusion tutors’ personal teaching experience in academic arenas like the Angewandte in Vienna, the AA DRL in London and Innsbruck University and the professional environment of Zaha Hadid Architects and CoopHimmelb(l)au. The approach to design is a holistic operation negotiating the macro and micro scales of the built environment.


En{coded}fields. Fibrous Agency is meant to be an advanced design workshop in Florence, taught by Bogdan Zaha and Daniel Bolojan. The workshop’s contemporary discourse will introduce a series of global methodologies through formal explorations enacted by the medium of computation and parametric design. The workshop will offer a comprehensive insight into the world of Parametricism and devise a global design language by implementing various computational techniques built on a solid theoretical foundation.

We are exploring possible design heuristics via computational and parametric tool sets. The multidimensional offerings one has at hand within the design space, offer the possibility for almost endless problem space speculations. From the animation industry and graphic interfaces to coding platforms the array of possible architectural findings is boundless. The need for such explorations comes as an inherent architectural problematic of the ever more increasing global connectivity and changes within the ways we interact.

In order for speculation to become lawful one has to acquire meaning. As a core competency, architecture’s task is to articulate form and function into a binomial relation that meaningfully addresses societal needs. Through our approach we always carefully articulate this relationship through architecture’s physicality as an information vessel, a milieu specific receptor that transpires as a semiological medium. Architecture’s capacity to “speak” to its users is an essential parameter for a fluid and legible built environment.


In the first part of the workshop we will be looking at field conditions and how to generate or design such fields that can help structure a possible urban condition.

“Field conditions move from the one toward the many, from individuals to collectives, from objects to fields.” (Allen, 1999: 92).

We will be exploring dynamic systems, geometric systems and network theories to generate and design an abstract field condition. A field builds complexity upon its capacity to integrate modularity, gradients and differentiation within a highly legible and coherent system. The system builds up complexity based on a series of redundant single operations. The degrees of change within the system will be based on a simple set of rules that would drive parametric versioning and typological differentiation. Simple operations that would span variations from an initial state will give rise to high level of complexity.

The goal of this exercise in its initial phase is to create a rich and diversified intelligible urban field that can be later on be subjected to local interventions an zooming in to locally enhance each design.

The second part of the workshop will build upon first phase. Students will select one archetype (high rise tower) generated in the first part, which will be used as a study model to develop the second part with.  This part will be using a mixed workflow across main platforms – Processing (Eclipse – IDE) for agent based systems, Rhino-Grasshopper structural and environmental analysis, and Blender for voxels, meshes, Keyshot – visualization. Agent based systems, which can be described as the collective behavior of decentralized, self-organized, natural or artificial systems, are going to be used as a force that will drive the design of the second part. Designing through self-organizing agent based systems, implies encoding design intent within individual elements that interact at local scale to give rise to the emergence of complex order at macro-level. Besides engaging with multi agent algorithms design strategies, the students will address strategic utilization of structurally and environmentally generated morphologies, to generate coherent and highly differentiated fibrous tower exo-skeletons.

This is an opportunity for architects, students of Architecture and Art, professionals designers and artists to join, learn new tools and share design ideas.


: Under generic environmental parameters explore field conditions, test geometric population and articulate on phenomenological and semiological levels the different scales of the design

: Introduction to Maya polygon-modelling, deformers, dynamics animation and blendShapes

: Encoding meaning into architectural geometrical operations and operators

: Discourse specific design heuristics

: Introduction to Processing and Object Oriented Programming (OOP) logics

: Multi agent algorithms design strategies

: Agent based systems local interactions to operate at a level of complexity that give rise to emergent behaviour

: How to encode design intent within individual elements that interact at local scale

: Swarm behavioral algorithms

: Structural and environmental informed behaviours

: Systems of articulation

: Principles of tectonic articulation – strategic articulatory utilization of the morphological differentiations that emerge from engineering logics like structural engineering, environmental engineering.



5th-9th July 2017


10am – 1pm | 2pm – 6pm


L’ Appartamento

Via Giraldi 11, Florence


English – Italian


Autodesk Maya



Maxwell render

Keyshot 3D


All tutorials are beginner level

No previous knowledge of Maya and Processing needed

Early Bird (until 21st May)

Students: 390€

Professionals: 440€

Late Registration (after 21st May)

Students: 450€

Professionals: 500€

Participants of previous D.Chromosome Workshop (Discrete Assemblies)

Students: 350€  (until 21st May)

Professionals: 400€ (until 21st May)


The workshop is limited to the first 25 applicants

Each student will receive a certificate of participation


Daily meetings will take place from 10:00 to 18:00 at L’ Appartamento, via Giraldi 11, Florence. Participants need to bring their own laptops with software installed

Wednesday 5th July

Introduction to parametric urbanism: arguments, methods and parametric urbanism design brief

Introduction to Maya

Introduction to modelling, animation and dynamics tools

Thursday 6th July

Division in teams

Introduction to field conditions and urban strategies

Development and adaptation of presented tools on urban fields

Design tests, development of urban fields

Friday 7th July

Design development

Extract one archetype

Output diagrams, renderings

Introduction to agent based systems: arguments, methods and proto-tower design brief

Introduction to Eclipse-Processing

Saturday 8th July

Introduction to agent based algorithms

Introduction to behavioural algorithms and sematectonic communication

Development and adaptation of presented algorithms to work with the extracted archetypes

Experiments and design tests of façade tectonic articulation

Sunday 9th July

Design Development

Output diagrams, renderings

Final presentation and discussion


Bogdan Zaha is a Vienna based computational designer, researcher and architect. He has spent the last seven years alongside Zaha Hadid and Patrik Schumacher, both as educators and professionals. He graduated from the Zaha Hadid Masterclass at Die Angewandte in Vienna and spent the following three years working at Zaha Hadid Architects in London.

On his evolutionary path he has been teaching various workshops and lectured or exhibited his work in different venues. Past collaborations and exhibitions include Die Angewandte in Vienna and Architectural Association in London as technical tutor and The Venice Biennale as exhibitor.

Bogdan is currently a Research Fellow and PhD candidate at Die Angewandte. As a professional and researcher he likes to think about experiencing architectural space as binomial intelligent relationship articulated through carefully crafted aesthetics, He believes in the capacity of architecture to adapt and perform on milieu specificity through embedded global intelligence.

Daniel Bolojan is a Vienna based computational designer, researcher and architect. He received his diploma from University of Applied Arts, Studio Zaha Hadid, were he was also a Research Assistant, teaching Processing, Mel scripting and Grasshopper.

In 2013, he founded his research studio nonstandardstudio, which focuses on generative strategies (e.g. growth processes, multi-agent systems etc.), targeting creation of highly complex autopoietic systems that offer new opportunities for architectural organization, articulation, and signification.

Since 2014 he is a Junior Associate with Coop Himmelbau where he has been practicing on numerous international projects and competitions. He is leading the office push to develop custom computational tools, computational design strategies, virtual reality/augmented reality applications, and robotic fabrication processes.

He is currently a PhD Research Fellow at University of Applied Arts Vienna, under the supervision of Patrik Schumacher, and also an External Lecturer at Innsbruck University for Studio E1.


Amoretti Elisa

Armogida Luigi

Bailey Grayson

Basha Abeer

Benaida Khaled

Brakke Aaron

Bus Peter

Comanescu Sebastian

Delithanasis Argyrios

Faulwetter Patrick

Grasser Alexander

Gavrielides Kristof

Kokoshi Aishe

Lalumera Elisa

Magnani Filippo

Marina Rao Tanvi

Parger Alexandra

Pietri Samuel

Sabetghadam Atena

Salsi Matteo

Schlusche Johannes