AI & Typology

Xiang Yin, Yanfeng Chen, Dongjian Yuan


For thousands of years, people always have a perceptual recognition of churches although the configuration of churches varies within history. The essence of religious spirit does exist in the space of the churches but it is never detected and summarized as a design method. And nowadays, ritual space is gradually diversified in the modern church due to the flexible modernity and technological development. Inspired by Aldo Rossi’s architectural typology theory, we conclude “church” is a “type” that we intend to train AI to learn the basic logic within it. AI can generate new styles of church by using neural networks. Church is always the place of spiritual aggregation of humans, as Rossi mentioned the best way to understand a city is finding the collective memory. That’s also the main concept that narrates why we tend to research churches and their ritual space. Therefore, we wonder could AI learn this historical typology of churches and develop their own method of the “type and style” in the new digital era. We seek silence, quietude, rituals, and symbolism, not only in form but in sentiment. Our project aims at creating new church spaces by training the AI to learn hundreds of church models, and by the way of 3D GAN.