parametric design, architecture and art

A few months ago we presented in this blog ROBOFOLD and its robots to create foldable complex surfaces. Today we share an overview about the “Facade Fabrication” workshop RoboFold held in London, September 2011. Run by Greg Epps and Daniel Piker, the workshop explored digital and physical design processes for producing facade panels in curved sheet metal.

Jeg Dudley, the author of the following presentation, was an assistant tutor at this event. The processes we developed utilize the Kangaroo and Lobster IK plugins for Rhino, both developed by Daniel Piker.

The design process is a very intuitive one, combining both hands-on experimentation and digital simulation/ fabrication. We have run several workshops for students, as well as collaborating on curved folding projects with architects, engineers, facade designers and artists.


Pavillon Suisse, Biennale d’Architecture de Venise, Gramazio & Kohler, 2008

Vous pouvez voir depuis début mars sur des articles au sujet des FABLABs. Je vais donc mettre moi aussi ma pierre à l’édifice en abordant le lien entre conception architecturale et fabrication numérique. Je faisais référence dans mon dernier article à la notion d’architecture non standard, pour rappeler une exposition de 2003 qui mettait en scène des projets présentant une véritable continuité entre conception et fabrication.
En utilisant les technologies des milieux industriels, l’architecture s’ouvre de nouvelles portes. Comme le montre le travail de HDA, l’approche du projet a changé depuis l’introduction de l’outil informatique dans ce domaine. Pourquoi pouvons-nous aujourd’hui créer des projets avec des outils puissants (à l’image du paramétrique) alors que le monde de la construction tire peu profit des nouvelles technologies ?


PHOTO ABOVE: Dynamic Solar Shading sketch model. Advances in Architectural Geometry 2010 / SOURCE :

We often wrote in this blog about developability of complex surfaces.
In one of our post about geometries of bending I said:  developability is a key concept you have to understand if you are trying to construct very complex forms that are easy to draw but difficult to build.

But why? Because if you can develop a surface, then you can build it.
Now, robots from ROBOFOLD are saying something similar: if you can fold it, we can build it.



Surfing on the Internet this week I found Daniel Davis blog Digital Morphogenesis. I bumped into his last post HTML5 & WebGL where he introduces us to WebGL and its importance for CAD modeling. I am not an expert on these topics and Daniel’s article really helped me to understand what’s going on so I am going to share it with you.

Using a browser that supports WebGL means that “users don’t need to download or install any additional plugins to view 3d content”. 3d models are now viewable on the Internet and we are able to generate a model, modify it and design it on the cloud. Have a look at shapesmith, 3dtin or tinkercad.