Sapeer Hillel

Sapeer Hillel

Advisor: Marcelo Spina

This thesis engages a discovery about the simultaneity of ground, decomposing of podiums, deferring of floor plates, and creating new, un-recognizable identities that deal with scale, distance, and proximity between these entities. As Jeffrey Kipnis describes in the lecture “Discrimination”, different relationships to the ground land are called out. Mies Van Der Rohe’s Farnsworth House can be described as having a performative relationship to the land. Step by step, Mies removes the person from the ground, giving them a ceremonial entry, and putting them on stage as a ‘character’. 


As simultaneous grounds come into play, their performance becomes questioned. The world made of floor plates creates a blurring of identity between what a floor slab is and what a volume is. This project attempts to separate the real land from the simultaneous, deferred, decomposed grounds, to produce a new ground that becomes the mass of the building, keeping the true land in a state of deferral. Tom Wiscombe’s Interview by Zachary Tate Porter in Sci-Arc’s Offramp “Ground” issue, refers to Wiscombe’s work as maintaining the ground in a state of deferral throughout the design process. Architecture “does not begin with earth-relations, but rather ends with them.”  


Horizontality raises the question of connection. Vertical elements are necessary constituents of architecture and verticality is nearly implied when considering the role pf simultaneous grounds that are continuously piling up or superceding one another. As podiums rise and exterior areas arise, their enclosure is questioned. New thoughts on public space arise with the questioning of how these vertical elements truly perform. Suggesting human scale, like a stair, they come into play to distract the user from what could actually be going on. Certain elements can begin to suggest other recognizable elements from afar. This project attempts to create new, unfamiliar realities through the use of deferral, decomposition, and simultaneity. 

Maria Flores