The Role of Visual Images in the Choice of Building Materials

By Nathalie Tornay.

Published by The International Journal of the Image

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In the initial phases of design, visual image references aid in the process of formulating solutions in the choice of materials. In the first part of this paper, we start with epistemological concepts necessary to characterize the design process. We synthesize the exploitation process of visual image references with the modalities of the reference activity. In the second part, this study focuses on key elements of a bibliographic approach to issues of visual image references such as photographic images, plans, sections, sketches, etc. We then translate this knowledge to the materials scale. In the third part, we outline an effective strategy for using visual image references in the selection of building materials. This paper presents the basis of our work on a design support tool built with an image-based search engine.

Keywords: Visual Image References, Design Process, Building Materials, Design Support Tool

The International Journal of the Image, Volume 2, Issue 4, pp.209-218. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 768.962KB).

Nathalie Tornay

PhD Student, LRA (Laboratoire de Recherche en Architecture), LMDC (Matériaux et Durabilité des Construction), ENSA–École Nationale Supérieure d´Architecture and INSA–Institut National des Sciences Appliquées, Toulouse, France

Nathalie Tornay is an architect. She has just completed a Ph.D. thesis that focuses on technical, ecological and sensitive building materials for developing design support tools. This research is directed by Luc Adolphe and Frédéric Bonneaud, in the LRA (Laboratoire de Recherche en Architecture) of ENSA in Toulouse, France. Her recent publications, with Frédéric Bonneaud and Luc Adolphe, include: “Integrating the perceptual dimension into decision support tools related to the environmental quality of materials,” in Passive and Low Energy Architecture (2008); “The Choice of Materials in Architecture: the influence of cognitive and cultural schemas of ecology” in C. Demers & A. Potvin’s Architecture Energy and the Occupant’s Perspective, Proceedings of the 26th International Conference on Passive and Low Energy Architecture (2009); “Design Support Tools with Technical, Ecological and Sensible Apertures in the Choice of Materials,” in Proceedings of CISBAT (2011); “CleanTech for Sustainable Buildings-From Nano to Urban Scale, EPFL 2011,” and “Navigation au sein d’un outil d’aide à la conception basé sur l’activité référentielle. Exemple des modes opératoires des concepteurs propres aux choix de matériaux de construction,” in Hypermédias et pratiques numériques, Hypertextes et Hypermédias: Produits, Outils et Méthodes, Éditions Hermès Lavoisier (Ed. I. Saleh, L. Massou, S. Leleu-Merviel, Y. Jeanneret, N. Bouhai, P. Morelli).