Posts Tagged ‘ Structure ’

That Tube Life.

There are various iterations of how urban dwellers will live in times to come, and of course, this is edged on by sci-fi films and various other architectural cityscape concepts. Above all, the vision of the future whether it be utopian or dystopian in your eyes is seemingly micro. One example of this is the OPod Tube Housing by Hong Kong studio James Law Cybertecture.

The OPod Tube Housing is low-cost, stackable micro-homes manufactured from concrete pipes. These pipes would be slotted in between building gaps rather similar to a game of Tetris. These concrete pipes are of course that of water pipes, transformed into a gorgeous 9.29 square meter home.

“OPod Tube Housing is an experimental, low-cost, micro-living housing unit to ease Hong Kong’s affordable housing problems,” James Law said, envisioning that these adorable homes be aimed at “young people who can’t afford private housing.” Albeit this ‘apartment’ is somewhat of an underground water pipe at heart, it’s hard to knock the fun-loving industrial interior. Compiling everything a young city-dweller needs, the OPod Tubes comes complete with a fold out bed, shower, toilet, fridge, microwave, cooker, microwave, and more neat add-ons.

Barensfeld Architecture Ramps Hilgard Garden Terrace


Nestled between neighboring townhouses, the ‘Hilgard Garden’ by San Francisco-based Barensfeld architecture takes advantage of its sloping topography with a series of angular terraces. Located in Berkeley, California, the brief called for an outdoor living and entertaining area, as well as an accessible seating spot at the top of the site. Based on a japanese maple sculpture park, a layered platform structure gently cascades down the steep landscape, referencing outstretched deciduous trees and navigating the change in elevation.

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The Chinese Timekeeper Year of the Snake Timepiece


Luxury watchmaker, The Chinese Timekeeper (CTK) has designed an amazing “Year of the Snake” luxury watch for the Chinese New Year. This remarkable timepiece is boasting a majestic Snake all over its case & dial. The tail starts on the back case and the Snake’s body goes along each of the 4 layers of the case structure. It comes on top of the watch where it is deeply engraved on the bezel before diving below the inner ring to reappear on the back dial. Appropriately the strap is made of taupe color Snake skin to further celebrate the 6th animal of the Chinese Zodiac.

An Architect Gone Mad

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Without the use of a camera Portland-based artist Jim Kazanjian sifts through a library of some 25,000 images from which he carefully selects the perfect elements to digitally assemble mysterious buildings born from the mind of an architect gone mad. While the architectural and organic pieces seem wildly random and out of place, Kazanjian brings just enough cohesion to each structure to suggest a fictional purpose or story that begs to be told.

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The Triennale Design Museum, Milan


Milan-based architectural practice Studio Fabio Novembre have completed the Triennale Design Museum project. Completed in 2012 the stunning building can be found in Milan, Italy. According to the architects: “Protecting the arts and sciences in our times is no mean feat, so for this fifth edition of the Triennale Design Museum it has taken plenty of human endeavour alongside the intervention of the Muses.”  In agreement with the curators, the director originally opted for an authentic mythological figure to do the interior design of the spaces for this edition, Enzo Mari, who was forced to decline due to an indisposition, leaving it up to yours truly to take on this Herculean task. It involved exhibiting something absolutely new compared to previous editions, a selection of carefully chosen items confirming the theory that there is only one Italian school of graphics, even though it has no proper structure, hardly surprising since the same could be said about everything connected with our dear old unpredictable country.

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Fall-Off Table by Sam Stringleman

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This interesting design concept was created by industrial designer from New Zealand Sam Stringleman. Fall Off is a computer generated table in which surface density is defined by the placement of objects on a virtual table through a web interface. As a virtual object, for example a laptop or coffee cup, is moved around on the table, the epicenter of the structure follows. This forms supporting density on the top surface and structural form on the underside which accommodates splayed legs. The surrounding density is controllable through a digital falloff, representing a gradual decrease. With the addition of more objects the density increases to a state of equilibrium with just enough structure to perform the required task but move it and it will Fall off.

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Linear Suspension Lights

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This linear suspension light “Crystalmeth” is created by David D’Impiero. Designed with silver anodized aluminum inside and faceted stainless steel outside, this linear suspension light has stainless steel ceiling canopy adjustable with stainless mounts. Two adjustable rods that not only hold the structure but also supply the power with hidden cables inside them.

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Coca-Cola Beatbox.

The Coca-Cola Beatbox, a multi-sensory, interactive pavilion was recently completed in London for the Olympics. Designed by architects Pernilla & Asif, the structure is comprised of two hundred red and white rectangular air cushions that provide the shell for a space intended to combine elements of music, technology, and sports.

Abstract Geometric Paintings by Matt Mignanelli

Matt Mignanelli (born June 16, 1983 Providence, RI) is an artist based in New York City best known for his abstract geometric paintings. Mignanelli’s paintings explore the relationship between structure and nature, which is relayed through his use of gradating light and structural elements to create new undefined and visually complex environments. He draws inspiration from energy, pattern, light, and emotion. Structural elements are referenced throughout his work in the form of patterning and textures, along with a vibrant color palette informed by neon nightscapes.

Beyond Infinity.

‘Beyond Infinity’, a multisensory installation by French artist and theorist Serge Salat, interweaves mirrors, light, music, and fractal art in an architecture that conflates visitors’ perceptions of space. Sponsored by Buick cars and usable during the events as a vehicle showroom, the work is installed at Shanghai’s Westgate Mall from September 16th through 18th, 2011.  Measuring 12.45 by 10.8 meters at a height of 3.8 meters, the structure is completely closed, composed of a steel infrastructure with honeycomb aluminum panels covered in mirrors. internally, the space is designed around the trigram of the Yi King, utilizing spatial techniques traditional of Suzhou gardens as a means of framing the visitor experience as a ‘mystical journey’ through abstracted Chinese courtyards.  Painted wooden grids and steps lend additional structure, while the fractal objects are composed of wooden frames covered with punched aluminum anodized panels.

The Wave Walk.

The proposal created by Danish firm ‘BIG Architects’ is one of three shortlisted submissions for the St. Petersburg pier international design competition.  The masterplan will organize and harmonize a variety of individual events along a network of paths, merging to form the iconic pier structure which will gradually flow into the waters of tampa bay.  The branching pattern will collectively form the ‘Tributary Park’ containing native plantings of diverse color schemes.  The gardens will highlight the programmatic sectors of the park including the museum, observation deck, playgrounds and natural forested areas.

Bustling activity will be channeled towards the ‘wave walk’ which undulates to dip and rise from the water, framing a swimming pool and small holding area for kayaks, canoes and small scale boats.  Similar to the waves of the ocean, the increasing momentum generated by the volumes of people circulating onto the pier culminates by looping the promenade overhead, sheltering people underneath and providing elevated views from the generated roof terrace.
The plaza below the arch may be used for outdoor markets and as a band shell pavilion for concerts.  The public spaces terminate with a platform which submerges into the bay creating an additional view towards the city. Exhibition spaces, banquet halls and other public spaces will by placed inside the sculptural building.

Villa Veth.

Villa Veth is a modern, customized villa, a private residence for a family of four. It is situated on a large parcel of land by a forest near the idyllic town of Hattem in the eastern part of the Netherlands.  The house itself and the mostly customized furnishings were designed by Liong Lie of the Rotterdam-based 123DV.  Although the structure from some angles resembles today’s favorite and by now highly overused form – long, narrow boxes situated at odd angles – the design of this villa manages to avoid that cliché by locating only one floor above ground. The result is a classic, modern residence that functions well for the family inhabiting it, yet looks like it could have existed since the 1950s.  The ground floor and principal living area of the two-story residence is divided into two. On one side are the master bedroom and two kids’ bedrooms (all with separate bathrooms) plus two small studios.

The Meiosis Backpack.

The Meiosis backpack designed by Davidi Gilad, is an equipment bag which was developed to utilize the physical properties of the elastic materials in which the bag is made.  Sounds complex, but its just a complicated way of saying the bag is strong.  It is constructed from rugged geometric polygonal shapes that harness the tension of the elastic fabrics, which is gained by attaching the rugged parts to the while they are stretched on a frame.  When released, the geometric shapes prevent the fabrics from shrinking back, resulting in the bag’s form and structure.  The tension and flexibility of the design maintains its shape while it is opened and closed.  The bag’s strength and shape is maintained when opening and closing, and it just plain looks cool.

Sugamo Shinkin: The Rainbow Bank.

Japanese practice Emmanuelle Moureaux Architecture + Design has completed ‘Sugamo Shinkin Bank’, a credit union located in Shimura, Japan.  The design, an offset volume of rainbow-like layers, is the third branch designed by Moureaux, with the first two located in Tokiwadai and Niiza. Both the interior and exterior hit all colors in the spectrum, and at night, the entire building lights up in such a way that you’d never imagine it was only a bank.

The World’s Largest Wooden Structure.

What is there not to like about Metropol Parasol?  The waffle-like crown structure in Seville, Spain has been finally completed in April 2011 after a competition held by the city of Seville in 2004.  Located at Plaza de la Encarnacion, the stunning sequence of undulating parasols comprises the world’s largest wooden structure. The Metropol Parasol project was part of the redevelopment of the Plaza de la Encarnacíon, designed by J. MAYER H. Architects, this project becomes the new icon for Seville, a place of identification and to articulate Seville’s role as one of the world´s most fascinating cultural destinations.

Project: Metropol Parasol
Redevelopment of Plaza de la Encarnacion, Seville, Spain
Function: archeological site, farmers market, elevated plaza, multiple bars and restaurants
Site area: 18,000 square meters
Building area: 5,000 square meters
Total floor Area: 12,670 square meters
Number of floors: 4
Height of the building: 28.50 meters
Structure: concrete, timber and steel
Principal Exterior: timber and granite
Principal interior material: concrete, granite and steel
Designing period: 2004-2005
Construction period: 2005-2011
Building/Cost: 90 Million Euro

A Home-Made School?

Hand-built in four months by architects, local craftsmen, pupils, parents and teachers, this primary school in Rudrapur (a village in north west Bangladesh), uses traditional methods and materials of construction but adapts them in new ways.  The architects, Anna Aeringer from Austria and Eike Roswag from Germany, made every effort to engage the skills of local craftsmen, helping them refine processes and learn new techniques that they could then use to improve the general standard of rural housing.

Sunlight and ventilation can be regulated through the use of shutters.  in Rudrapur, the traditional local materials are bamboo for constructions and earth for walls and foundations, straw for the roofs and jute rope for lashing constructions.  Earthbound materials such as loam and straw are combined with lighter elements like bamboo sticks and nylon lashing to create a environmentally sustainable foundation.  Thick walls assure a comfortable climate on the ground floor of the building.

The FYF Residence.

Los Angeles-based architecture practice patterns has sent us images of their recently finished single-family house in Argentina, ‘FYF Residence’.  Located in the outskirts of rosario, a city approximately 300 km north of buenos aires, the single-storey dwelling aims to challenge the flat homogeneity of the traditional neighborhood it sits adjacent.  The 200 m2 project was conceived as a monolithic form punctuated by subtle inflections that establish a complex spatial identity for both the exterior and the interior.  Through a number of folds and bends, the cast-on-site reinforced concrete shell forms the body of the house; perforations in areas of transition serves as openings, resulting in an internal environment that is well lit, cross-ventilated, and offers oblique views.  The effects of transparency and mass is explored through systematic cuts of both the facade and roof.

Located within viewing distance from the main communal area, a pliant pool stretches the body of the house while activating a dynamic sequence of movement and views to the landscape beyond.  The projecting roof near the pool area is broken down into a number of flat compartments that altogether form the complex curvature of the house’s surface.  The clients, who are an agricultural engineer and a landscape designer, had requested that a small greenhouse be integrated into the design.  Instead of placing it in a separate and autonomous structure on the site, the architects situated the green house in a continuous spatial sequence with the interior social spaces.  A small curving lightwell defines the central corridor of the house while illuminating the interior with natural daylight.

Enter The Hollow.

‘Hollow’ is an organic pavilion that changes the conditions for social interaction and behavior. Simply built, using compression to hold the structure, the concept is designed by Visiondivision (Ulf Mejergren and Anders Berensson) as their competition entry for sukkah city, where designers / architects were asked to design a modern sukkah (a temporary hut created for an annual jewish harvest festival) in union square, new york city.  Some of the constraints implied in the competition, for example, was that the sukkah had to have a roof made out of branches, but that they could not be in bundles. This in turn influenced visiondivision’s decision to use the construction technique of compression to build ‘hollow’.  The competition asked teams to design a sukkah to be erected in one of the most populated and dense places on earth, filled with built structures and a stressful ambience, changing its function from its initial protection purpose from sandy winds and a blazing sun to a shelter from building mass, infrastructure, scale, city pace and constant movement. The swedish duo’s intention is to build something which contrasts the scale and pace of the rest of the city. When entering the sukkah, you automatically slow your pace and behaviour, switching to  more restful position as a result of the physical restrictions which make up the small space.