A portrait can inevitably be iconic. Oleg Dou allows the emersion of human qualities through a pristine bleached screen of porcelained skin. The face is a construct; it unveils its frailty. Although the painting itself remains static, the human and non-human qualities glide back and forth on a scale stretching from frigid to warm. The Vanna Venturi house is taken as an example of face like features in the shape of a building. The application of similar techniques of Puppet by Oleg Dou, to the facade of the building is an attempt at recreating a closer resemblance to the human, and then distancing it again away from it. In addition to a geometrical shift, a similarly treated surface can further enhance the duality of the face and a reconstruct of itself. The reduction of a photograph, an image into dots for instance can still provide the notion of a face, but with much dierent sensibilities. The testing of the reconstructed image helps determine the threshold of where the shape starts to loose itself. To take such discourse into architecture, I have looked at Herzog and de Meuron’s work as the closest example in using the building envelope to continuously hide and reveal the interior of the same building. This surface manipulation also allows for reduction of information of the envelope itself and a blurriness of where that occurs. My thesis claims that the coexistence of faciality and its abstracted qualities is a new diagram for building envelopes. The image abstraction is a potential veil for both the image itself and the building. This thesis lies in the glide between the recognizable face and recognizable building by means of depth, reconstruction and reduction of the portrait into geometry and its proximity to the face. Thesis advisor: Elena Manferdini, SCI-Arc 2013

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