La Tour de la Vache


This investigation began with the combinatory use of the I Ching with user-defined rule
systems to generate chance-based constructs. These were then randomly manipulated or
incorporated into subsequent architectural components, before being formalised into an
architectural design proposal.

Key themes derived during this process included the invasion of nature; urban fragility;
intentional destruction / burning; urban oddities; unorthodox material combination /
application and the cyclical reuse of resources – all of which were surprisingly evident in
Marrakech. In a similar fashion, the site itself was randomly selected as well as the
superimposed building programme of: leather tanning slaughterhouse with supporting shop
units and insect fighting arenas.

The resulting building is appropriately ambiguous; the rhetoric of decay and insanitation is so
embedded into the architecture that it is difficult to define ‘when’ (or ‘what’) the building is (or
was) – much like the urban fabric of Marrakech. Is it an ancient ruin, a recently abandoned
eyesore, a partially constructed monolith, or a complete building with Skeuomorphic
tendencies? Likewise, is this a finalised design or a set of design / construction principles
that guide a purposely haphazard build?



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