Mediatic Surfaces: Shaping Urban Environments

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The article illustrates how the current logic of capital is driving spatial production —and hence the urban environment—by transforming buildings into scaffolding for mediatic1surfaces for fluid media. Mediatic surfaces are defined as physical surfaces that are capable of emitting media, while fluid media is characterized by a constant and usually graphic and/or acoustic flow of uninterrupted information. As a result, building types have become increasingly irrelevant as designers respond to the market’s demand that the public experiences projects as public sphere billboards. In order to understand the transformation of spatial production from typologically driven to mediatic surfaces, the article utilizes the Industrial Revolution precedent to explain how capital orientation led to the emergence of new building types. Consequently, I discuss sociological and philosophical critiques that resulted from the Industrial Revolution which demonstrate the current Digital Revolution’s potential impact on design. Then, I compare attitudes towards building design and surfaces during the period of 1890 to 1990, to current spatial production attitudes. Finally, the article shows how contemporary re-organization of capital is now conceptually and physically transforming attitudes towards building design.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCritical Practice in an Age of Complexity
EditorsJ Bean, S Dickinson, A Ida
PublisherAMPS (Architecture, Media, Politics, Society)
StatePublished - 2018
EventAMPS - University of Arizona, United States
Duration: Feb 22 2018Feb 23 2018

Publication series

NameAMPS Proceedings Series
ISSN (Print)2398-9467


Country/TerritoryUnited States


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