Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Second Draft & Design Development: Urban Tianguis (Market) of Maize

             Swaying of the stalk and the leaves that glide together with the wind, as the tassel pollinates itself to the ear, the Maize God has generously sacrifices itself to the birth and stability of the humankind until the next cycle comes again. He, who temporarily dies, has chosen his people over himself for their permanence through cultivation of the maize.

            Within the Historical Center of Mexico City, a new reinvented tianguis system has emerged to serve visitors with 3D technologically processed everyday diet meals like tortillas, tlacoyos, tamales and flautas from the urban rooftop maize-field. The tianguis poised as a medium between past and present, between unknown and familiarity with objective to bring maize back as to its once actualized importance of the cultural embedded meaning for Mexicans as the "Children of the Maize." Through the location's vital palimpsest of significant events translated as Aztec Empire's Templo Mayor, Spanish Conqueror's Metropolitan Cathedral to the Modern internationalization of Mexico; the site is a challenge to superimpose the layers of the context together, drawn with one essential value: stability and permanence. In my perspective, the Mexican's gratitude for their everyday diet through traditions of corn production and quality of kernels to its purity will be diminished if the United States' massive quantity of GMO corns and ethanol soon conquered the original. The only prevention is for a symbiosis value of maize to be enforced towards the everyday life of the "Children of the Maize."

            The urban tianguis of maize follows through a system of processes starting from the rooftop cornfields surrounding the Templo Mayor ruins, or where the Aztec Empire's prophecy happened. Through this cultural ties, the beginning of life for human beings are led towards prosperity through agricultural system. The rooftop cornfields are adapted to the city with a pyramidal space-frame superstructure design that connects all elements together for coherency. The space-frame not only be adapted for the weight for the cornfield and their activities, but also to be adapted to the envelopment of processing plants on the rooftops while turning the potential of corn to corn starch, and corn starch to polylactic acid (PLA) filaments. This requires area for walkway for workers interaction with each phases of the production, but also walkway towards rooftop visitors' interaction areas as well. After the completion of PLA filaments from the processing plants, the 3D printing machines, also held by the superstructure on the rooftop will vertical led down to the ground level to print ornamented motif blocks and foods for the new market surrounding the ruins. Thus, the integration of 3D technology through PLA filaments based from processed corn is a fundamental role in the connectivity between the past cultural references of maize towards the present and the future. The project will also involve the formation of the market space through using the ornamented motif blocks fitted to the superstructure; this will produce the details of the market space that will in return shape the actions of the users. The Urban Tianguis of Maize, hence, revitalizes maize's importance through a direct interaction and shapes the visitors ways of consuming.

            There it was, gleaming itself for the world to see. Its presence in Zocalo was filled with bright lights of varietal motifs, emulating the sun. Wind blew against my collar and washed me against the sounds drumming my ears. Little by little, slowly, it enclosed me with every forwarded step ahead; I was consumed by the level of details that enveloped me by 360 degree. Before I knew it, in front of me was an explosive contrast of people chattering, footsteps clanking against the stone floor, 3d technology printers emitting aromatic smell from printing masa tortilla, swift motions from pots and pans, and a fainting music in the background. So this is the tianguis and the cornfields that arrayed until the end of perspective line. This is where the story begins. 

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Pyramidal Space Frame Module for the Cornfield
Connection of the Pyramid Module
Constructed 3D Model of Buildings Surrounding the Templo Mayor

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