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Architectural Change Driven by Technology: Urban Sneakers Conference 2018

seminarDec 07, 2018

View of the Urban Sneakers Conference 2018


The Urban Sneakers Conference 2018 was held at SJ Kunsthalle, Nonhyeon, on Nov. 7. The purpose of this event, hosted by architecture start-up URBANBASE, was to observe new trends in the architecture world in the era of the fourth industrial revolution. The conference invited experts working on architectural projects converging with new technology, such as augmented reality and artificial intelligence, and consisted of presentations and a panel talk. 

In his presentation ‘The New Possibilities of Experimental Architecture’ Taehyun Terry Lee (principal, THE A LAB) touched upon the fusion of architecture and biotechnology, and of the ways architectural design is using data analysis technology to remain responsive to the environment, aspects in which he has had a consistent interest since studying in England. Lee Taehyun explained that as the development of 3D printing technology has helped us to create more and more complicated forms, increasingly experimental projects are being carried out overseas, such as in the Netherlands and England. He noted that ‘productive results are produced not just with the new technology by itself, but when the architect’s ideas and innovative technology are combined’, adding that ‘we need to be able to think comprehensively based on a deep understanding of manufacturing related technology in order to lead in this ever-changing time’.

Cho Sunghyun (principal, SPACEWALK) presented ‘Architecture for More People’ and introduced projects that provided useful information regarding architecture and the land to more people by analysing and processing big data regarding land prices and land use plans with artificial intelligence technology. Kim Sungjin (principal, WITHWORKS) presented projects crafted with applied digital fabrication technology that delicately expresses various shapes and curves. He explained that ‘more diverse changes are expected in architecture design. Young architects and engineers today have to be proactive in creatively fusing digital manufacturing and relevant technologies’. ‘Changing Architecture’s Presentation’ by Ha Jinwoo (principal, URBANBASE) also drew attention. He introduced the augmented reality presentation service developed by URBANBASE. This service implements technology that transfigures floor plans into 3D in a matter of seconds, allowing users to virtually place furniture and walk around the inside space of a house. He commented that ‘we reached a level capable of making floor plans adaptable to any country with augmented reality coupled with cloud and AI algorithms’. In the following panel talk, Lee Yangjae (principal, Studio Elephants) served as the moderator and held a discussion on the barriers to the development of the architecture industry. Additionally, a space for people to experience URBANBASE’s augmented reality presentation service was installed on one side of the conference hall, which drew a lot of attention. <by Lee Sungje>