Big to Small

line drawn house with 4 roofs stepping down like stairs.

The Life of a House II - Evan Martinez

A multi-faceted study of the telescope houses of the Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood, Big to Small is a collection of work from 13 graduate architecture students.


Laura Carless

Thomas Foederer

Evan Martinez


Laura Carless
Thomas Foederer
Evan Martinez



ARC 629, Fall 2018


MArch – Urban Design

The works investigate and celebrate the typology of the “telescope house” – a Buffalo vernacular worker’s cottage, characterized in elevation by a series of successive additions, each stepping down in scale.

Students explored various modes of representation as a means to reveal stories of human life, occupation, and adaptation through time, and to promote greater discussion around the history, people, and architecture of Buffalo’s East Side. The artworks found connection in the materiality of the neighborhood, observing seemingly mundane conditions, but once investigated, tell a tactile story of the evolution and use of the space over time.

The numerous times I’ve experienced a moving piece of art have stayed with me, shaping the way I view the world and engage with it as a designer.

- Tom Foederer, MArch

Varying inspirations and aims took hold amongst students. Laura Carless, Tom Foederer, and Evan Martinez each sought to convey change, reality, and nature, respectively, as it applies to the Broadway- Fillmore neighborhood. Carless and Foederer both cite an artworks’ ability to affect and influence the observer as a foundational underpinning to their work. This led them to develop their particular styles to convey more fully the message of what they observed. Martinez instead drew inspiration from context and environments, at times completely omitting the built structure from his works, bringing the interstitial open space between the houses to the fore.