The Architecture of Detention: An installation about the sociological impact of space

By: Emma-Sofia Wipper ‘22

Advising Faculty: Di Luo

Emma-Sofia Wipper Senior Project

Majors:  Architectural Studies

Project/Mission Statement

The way we interact with space allows us to perceive and shift the ways in which we see ourselves as well as the world around us. The concept I explore is how spaces of confinement shift our perspectives and experience through the lens of both architecture and sociology. The spaces of confinement that have an element of social structure include prisons, jails and holding facilities. Oftentimes these spaces are made up of small rooms as well as winding hallways and surveillance systems.Through research comparing prison buildings in the U.S. and Scandinavia,architectural and 3D modeling, and projections, this project questions how these spaces can be redesigned in a sustainable way to help the experience of those present. It would be difficult to promote a redesign of how we handle prisons in theU.S., but the goal of my installation is to bring light to these questions as well as re-envision the prisoner experience through a creative lens; this is framed by three perspectives: The Prisoner, The Architect and The Guard. Since I have never been imprisoned I knew that it was important to show the voices of those, contrasting ornot, involved within the walls of the prisons. By collecting poems, quotes, and art pieces I was able to show the experience of The Prisoner, The Architect and TheGuard through a creative lens while also having my outsider observations present inthe perception.

Related Fields: Ammerman Center