Vertical sublime architecture

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Hamilton, Tiffany
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Master of Architecture (Professional)
Unitec Institute of Technology
Francis, Kerry
Byrd, Hugh
Masters Thesis
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
Clifton (N.Z.)
Papanui Reserve (Clifton, N.Z.)
hotel building design
cliff architecture
Christchurch 2010-2011 earthquakes
Christchurch rebuild
architecture and space
New Zealand
ANZSRC Field of Research Code (2020)
Hamilton, T. (2017). Vertical sublime architecture (Unpublished document submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecture (Professional)). Unitec Institute of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand. Retrieved from
RESEARCH QUESTION: How can the notion of the sublime be evoked within architecture to experience the vertical realm following the Christchurch earthquakes? ABSTRACT: The sublime was a philosophical movement that translated literature to visual arts, offering the simultaneous awareness of the beautiful and the grotesque. It provoked human sensory experience through the idea of conflicting emotions. This research project investigates how the sublime can be applied as a way of approaching architecture, and offering the opportunity to facilitate a re-engagement with derelict sites resulting from the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. These earthquakes caused significant disconnection in Christchurch. Sites were boarded up and fenced off, separating them from the public. The application of the sublime is a strategy to facilitate a reconnect to the landscape, through the architecture manipulation of journey and space. The cliff site of Rapanui Reserve has been selected for this investigation, as it has been stabilised and offers the opportunity for an architectural development to enhance the qualities that remain on the site, penetrating through barriers and revitalising the area. The hotel offers the opportunity to act as an in-between realm, enabling the re-connection with the site, traverses through the building form. Circulation is specifically designed to facilitate movement through the building, bring the user to constantly experience the sublime of the external environment in relation to the internal condition
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