AA Athens and AA Istanbul Visiting Schools 2015




Symmetry Sentience

Wednesday 3 – Friday 12 June 2015

In 2015, the AA Athens Visiting School initiates its’ agenda to challenge the phenomenon of perceptual constancy through the design of architectural prototypical families. In line with the basic principles of the Gestalt principles, a diversity of shapes and sizes models will be designed through means of digital computation. Various morphologies will be derived through a bottom-up approach via various coding techniques. To bridge the gap between the digital and physical aspect of the design iterations, AA Athens makes use of digital fabricating machines to produce its’ architectural prototypes and adds mechanics to amplify their communicative characteristics. A complete 1:1 scale structure will be constructed, enabling interaction via sight, hearing and touch as a result of a series of initial testing models. These proposals will be formulated through the combination of different design software.

The programme is organized in a two-stage process:

Stage 1: Participants gain an understanding of formation processes in nature, coupled with core concepts related to design complexity. During this stage, basic and advanced tutorials on generative design algorithms and analysis tools will be provided. Building on its core methodology from its previous versions, AA Athens VS will perform as a team-based programme promoting collaboration and research. Participants will be introduced to advanced fabrication techniques.

Stage 2: Participants propose design interventions based on the skills and knowledge gained during the first stage. Study models of various scales will be produced, leading to the fabrication and assembly of a full scale working prototype which unifies the design goals of the programme.

The design agendas of AA Athens and AA Istanbul Visiting Schools will directly create feedback on one another, allowing participation in either one or both Programmes.

Prominent Features of the workshop/ skills developed

• Participants become part of an active learning environment where the large tutor to student ratio (4:1) allows for personalized tutorials and debates.

• The toolset of AA Athens includes but is not limited to Rhinoceros, Processing, and Grasshopper, as well as analysis software.

• Participants gain access to digital fabrication tools such as 3-axis CNC router, laser-cutter, and 3d-printer.

• Design seminars and lecture series support the key objectives of the programme, disseminating fundamental design techniques and relevant critical thinking methodologies.


1) You can make an application by completing the online application found under ‘Links and Downloads’ on the AA Visiting School page. If you are not able to make an online application, email visitingschool@aaschool.ac.uk for instructions to pay by bank transfer.

2) Once you complete the online application and make a full payment, you are registered to the programme. A CV or a portfolio is NOT required.

The deadline for applications is 27 May 2015.

All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £600 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting Membership fee. If you are already a member, the total fee will be reduced by £60.

The AA Visiting School fee includes a £60 Visiting membership fee. Should you wish to enhance your membership, a Subscribing Membership is available at an additional £70 (£130 in total), full details of which can be found at: https://www.aaschool.ac.uk/MEMBERSHIP/JOIN/becomeamember.php

Discount options are available. Please contact the AA Visiting School Coordinator for more details.

Fees do not include flights or accommodation, but accommodation options can be advised. Students need to bring their own laptops, digital equipment and model making tools. Please ensure this equipment is covered by your own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen at the workshop.


11Α Evelpidon Street (Pedion Areos), Athens, 113 62, Greece


The workshop is open to current architecture and design students, PhD candidates and young professionals. Software Requirements: Adobe Creative Suite, Rhino 5.


ArchDaily, Archinect, Bustler, SuckerPunchDaily, ArchiSearch, EK, ElcCulture, Yapi, Mimarizm

Director’s Bio

Alexandros Kallegias is an architect currently working at Zaha Hadid Architects in London, teaching at the Architectural Association (AA) and University of Liverpool. He is the Programme Director of AA Greece Visiting School, AA Athens Visiting School, and AA Summer DLAB Visiting School. He received his M.Arch degree from University of Patras in Greece (2000, High Honors). As a graduate from the AA Design Research Lab (DRL) (M.Arch / 2009), he explores computational means of transforming static built models to animated kinetic prototypes. He has been teaching as a studio master in AA Istanbul Visiting Schools. He is a registered architect in the UK and Greece, where he has worked for several architectural practices.




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