I am currently in a class called Experimental Architecture in the U of M Art and Design school. We were assigned to create a tiny home for Camp Take Notice, a developing homeless camp near Stone School Rd.. I was excited, a real client.
Half way through the semester, one design was going to be chosen. However, I continued with one goal: Help Camp Take Notice in some way. I knew from the very beginning that the reality of getting a tiny home design, built and implemented throughout the camp wasn't feasible within the semester, but it was to show a concept.
We presented our projects to the class and two leaders of Camp Take Notice to receive feedback. The next class, two designs were brought up to the front, my design and another. It was brought to a vote for which one to build. My design was outvoted 12-4. I wasn't disappointed, it was what the class wanted to pursue. However, a week later, our professors tell us that Eli’s design (Chosen design) is too complicated to build, which it wasn't, resulting in a complete new design created essentially by our professors. Then I was disappointed.
I began to think about my design and think about whether or not I was okay with being done with it. I wasn't. I went back to Camp Take Notice asking them if it was possible to build my structure on the camp. I got approval. However, Tate and I both agreed it was going to be a long process and not something I can just start building. I understood it required more refinement.
After, I started to ask him about the class. I was surprised. I had the impression that my professors worked a lot with Camp Take Notice with what they wanted when choosing the design, and I was told they didn't, which saddened me. When I met with my professor I asked “I thought Tate said there wasn't going to be a sink?”, my professor responds, “Were taking the design in a different direction”. I lost my mind. My classmate said it best, “They want something to show at the exhibit”.
Funded by Ann Arbor, MI (December 2014)