Athol Ruston: Unmasking language of Architecture to Children.

‘Through the use of diverse ground conditions of texture and form, my third year work has investigated how architecture can unmask its language to children. Through the movements of play, run, climb, jump, slide, hang, swing, throw, hide, chase, my work has become the surface for a child to test the relationship between their body and its surroundings. With a further exploration into post-war social housing, stemming from both previous years of study, and third year dissertation, the techniques learnt have been translated into both design projects.

The term one proposal focused on improving the entry and arrival sequence to Leach Court’s first, most westerly housing block. It provided better access for residents, presenting them with new communal spaces that reconnected residents to both the street and the disused external space surrounding Leach Court.

Whilst implementing the first term proposal into the second term, the new project proposed two additional housing schemes; a low-rise mat housing development that respects the existing residents windows, views and lighting qualities of Leach Court. And two mid-rise blocks to the rear of the site, featuring an entry sequence that dances up the front facade; providing exterior spaces that can be appropriated by its occupants.

The schemes are connected by new streets and paths through the site that create connections for both new, and existing residents. With the Brighton Youth Centre (BYC) as an additional program, the final proposal focused on forming spaces that would encourage children to play. It uses discreet changes in levels and materials to distinguish both a change in place, or shift in privacy level.’

Athol Ruston.