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Following an interview with journalist Jason Sayer (@jsayer94) The Kickstarter Campaign for my project ‘Pursuit’ has been featured in an article for ‘The Architects Newspaper’.  The article  has been published online at ‘The Architects Newspaper’ website and can be viewed by clicking the following link: An architecture course built around Burning Man and students finding ways to fund their projects.The Architect’s Newspaper serves up news and inside reports to a niche community of architects, designers, engineers, landscape architects, lighting designers, interior designers, academics, developers, contractors, and other parties interested in the built urban environment. The Architect’s Newspaper delivers quality news and cultural reporting through print, web, blog, newsletter, or twitter—all the news you want, in all the ways you want to get it.

There are only 5 days left to support the campaign and ensure that DS10 student work is represented at this years Burning Man Festival. We have a long way to go to reach our goal by May 16th at 9pm (BST), it is still acheivable – But we can’t do it without our loyal WWTL subscribers and fans, so please head over to the Pursuit Kickstarter Campaign page now and support the project in whatever capacity you can.

Thank you,



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PURSUIT is an interactive art installation that celebrates humanity’s ongoing quest for Peace, Freedom and Joy – in Life, Love and Art. The design aims to create an interactive and unique sculptural playground for visitors of the 2016 Burning Man Festival, which takes place from August 28th to September 5th in Black Rock Desert, Nevada.


from Trey Ratcliff at

PURSUIT emerges from the playa in tiers of intertwined timber elements that ascend seamlessly in unison to form a series of congregation and celebratory spaces. The final design is the result of a year-long study into the sensuous geometry generated from a mathematical theory known as Pursuit Curvature. This theory was explored as I wanted to utilise something that could fully embody the notion of people coming together from different places and striving towards a common goal. With Pursuit Curvature, each point starts at a unique position of a polygon, and moves incrementally towards the nearest adjacent point until they all converge in the centre. The path travelled is directly influenced by the points around it, so the final curves represent the effects all of the points have on one another as a group.

Frame 25 Ornate Central Space

Central Space

Burners can rest inside the ornate central space of Pursuit, which frames the ongoings of the playa and provides burners with a place of respite from the open sun. The six inhabitable pillars connect the playa directly to the platforms that lie atop Pursuit. Here, a glorious vantage point in which to congregate and take in the festival is gifted to Burners. During the day the interiors of the pillars are concealed from the elements, and their curved form helps to guides burners ascent to the open air. Here they can bathe in the wondrous light of either sunrise or sunset, a truly magical playa experience indeed.

Frame 125 Final Light Shot Night Time

At night time each pillar’s interior is powerfully lit to envelop the burners in light, so they can experience a sense of weightlessness and freedom. The soft glow emanating from each of the pillars’ cores invites burners to commune atop Pursuit to celebrate the radiant beauty of the night sky.


Frame 75 Inside

Interior of each Pillar

“As I look back on my life, I realise that every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being re-directed to something better.” – Steve Maroboli. 

Pursuit is a gift to the Burning Man community. Every year, we apply for funding from the Black Rock City LLC (Burning Man) to help fund our projects. Unfortunately this year, nobody received funding towards their project. Despite initial disappointment, I realised that this helped elevate the project’s intent and concept to a new level than originally planned. By crowdfunding the entirety of the project, we can manifest the collective Pursuit of people from all over the world to see this project built. This is not only tremendously exciting, but also a very humbling prospect, in that we have a passion to give this gift to the playa, but we need your help to give that gift. It is through this collective pursuit that we can embody the spirit of the festival and the project in a built architectural form.



To show our gratitude for any of your generous pledges, I have created some truly beautiful and unique rewards for all levels of contribution – Each inspired by the projects form and concept, that are all exclusive to this campaign. Please do go and have a look for yourself at them and support the campaign. If you can’t spare a donation at this time, then please share the campaign to as many people as you can – so that together, we can make the project a reality.

Thank you




Frequently occuring in nature, minimal surfaces are defined as surfaces with zero mean curvature.  These surfaces originally arose as surfaces that minimized total surface area subject to some constraint. Physical models of area-minimizing minimal surfaces can be made by dipping a wire frame into a soap solution, forming a soap film, which is a minimal surface whose boundary is the wire frame.

The thin membrane that spans the wire boundary is a minimal surface of all possible surfaces that span the boundary, it is the one with minimal energy. One way to think of this “minimal energy” is that to imagine the surface as an elastic rubber membrane: the minimal shape is the one that in which the rubber membrane is the most relaxed.


A minimal surface parametrized as x=(u,v,h(u,v)) therefore satisfies Lagrange`s equation


(Gray 1997, p.399)

This year`s research focuses on triply periodic minimal surfaces (TPMS). A TPMS is a type of minimal surface which is invariant under a rank-3 lattice of translations. In other words, a TPMS is a surfaces which, through mirroring and rotating in 3D space, can form an infinite labyrinth. TPMS are of particular relevance in natural sciences, having been observed in observed as biological membranes, as block copolymers, equipotential surfaces in crystals, etc.

From a mathematical standpoint, a TPMS is the most interesting type of surface, as all connected RPMS have genus >=3, and in every lattice there exist orientable embedded TPMS of every genus >=3. Embedded TPMS are orientable and divide space into disjoint sub-volumes. If they are congruent the surface is said to be a balance surface.

The first examples of TPMS were the surfaces described by Schwarz in 1865, followed by a surface described by his student Neovius in 1883. In 1970 Alan Schoen, a then NASA scientist, described 12 more TPMS, and in 1989 H. Karcher proved their existence.

The first part of my research focuses on understanding TPMS geometry using a generation method that uses a marching cubes algorithm to find the results of the implicit equtions describing each particular type of TMPS. The resulting points form a mesh that describes the geometry.

Schwartz_P surface

schwartz_p_formation   Schwartz_p

Neovius surface

Neovius_formation neovius

Gyroid surface

gyroid_formation gyroid

Generated from mathematical equations, these diagrams show the plotting of functions with different domains. Above, the diagrams on the left illustrate the process of forming a closed TMPS, starting from a domain of 0.5, which generates an elementary cell, which is mirrored and rotate 7 times to form a closed TPMS. A closed TMPS can also be approximated by changing the domain of the function to 1.

The diagrams below show some examples generating a TMPS from a function with a domain of 2. The views are front, top and axonometric.

FRD surface

dd = 8 * Math.Cos(px) * Math.Cos(py) * Math.Cos(pz) + Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * py) * Math.Cos(2 * pz) – Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * py) – Math.Cos(2 * py) * Math.Cos(2 * pz) – Math.Cos(2 * pz) * Math.Cos(2 * px)


D Prime surface

dd = 0.5 * (Math.Sin(px) * Math.Sin(py) * Math.Sin(pz) + Math.Cos(px) * Math.Cos(py) * Math.Cos(pz)) – 0.5 * (Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * py) + Math.Cos(2 * py) * Math.Cos(2 * pz) + Math.Cos(2 * pz) * Math.Cos(2 * px)) – 0.2


FRD Prime surface

dd = 4 * Math.Cos(px) * Math.Cos(py) * Math.Cos(pz) – Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * py) – Math.Cos(2 * pz) * Math.Cos(2 * py) – Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * pz)


Double Gyroid surface

dd = 2.75 * (Math.Sin(2 * px) * Math.Sin(pz) * Math.Cos(py) + Math.Sin(2 * py) * Math.Sin(px) * Math.Cos(pz) + Math.Sin(2 * pz) * Math.Sin(py) * Math.Cos(px)) – 1 * (Math.Cos(2 * px) * Math.Cos(2 * py) + Math.Cos(2 * py) * Math.Cos(2 * pz) + Math.Cos(2 * pz) * Math.Cos(2 * px))


Gyroid surface

dd = Math.Cos(px) * Math.Sin(py) + Math.Cos(py) * Math.Sin(pz) + Math.Cos(pz) * Math.Sin(px)


This method of approximating a TPMS is high versatile, useful in understanding the geometry, offsetting the surfaces and changing the bounding box of the lattice in which the surface is generated. In other words, trimming the surface and isolating parts of the surface. However, the resulting topology is unsuitable for fabrication purposes, as the generated mesh is unclean, being composed of irregular polygons consisting of triangulations, quads and hexagons.

The following diagrams show the mesh topology for a Gyroid surface, offset studies and trimming studies.



4  23

For fabrication purposes, my proposed method for computationally simulating a TPMS is derived from discrete differential geometry, relying on the use of Kangaroo Physics, a Grasshopper plugin for modeling tensile membranes. Bearing in mind that a TPMS has 6 edge conditions, a planar hexagonal mesh is placed within the space defined by a certain TPMS`s edge conditions. The edge conditions are interpreted as Nurbs curves. Constructed from 6 predefined faces, the initial planar hexagonal mesh, together with the curves defining the surface boundaries are split into the same number of subdivisions. The subdivision algorithm used on the mesh is WeaveBird`s triangular subdivision. The points resulted from the curve division are ordered so that they match the subdivided mesh`s edges, or its naked vertices. The naked vertices are then moved in the corresponding points on the curve, resulting in a new mesh describing a triply periodic surface, but not a minimal one. From this point, Kangaroo Physics is used to find the minimal surface for the given mesh parameters, resulting in a TPMS.

Sequential diagram showing the generation of a Schwartz_P surfaces using the above method.


A Gyroid surface approximated with the above method

gyroid_full  8

This approach towards approximating a TPMS leads to a study in the change of boundary conditions, gaining control over the geometry. The examples below present various gyroid distorsions generated by changing the boundary conditions.

6  7

5  4

Being able to control the boundary conditions defining a gyroid, or any TPMS, opens up to form optimization through genetic algorithms. Here, various curvatures for the edge conditions have been tested with regards to solar gain, using Galapagos for Grasshopper.

1_1                2_1

3_1                 4_1

The following examples show some patterns generated by different topologies of the starting mesh.




















The time has come for the Church to take up the joyful call to mercy once more. (Pope Francis)

During the Jubilee Year of Mercy, the faithful are invited to make a pilgrimage to particular shrines around the world, many of them hosting a Holy Door.

In London, the Cardinal has designated a number of parishes where indulgence may be gained by passing through the Holy Door. My project intends to use this opportunity to create a pilgrim chapel which would travel throughout the year to highlight the London churches designated with a Holy Door.

London holy doors mapLondon churches with a Holy Door

Not only will this chapel be a place of prayer, it will also be a space for reconciliation. When the Missionaries of Mercy will be sent out during the season of Lent to the Diocese of Westminster, the chapel could be used for confession.

The chapel is meant to have a strong relationship with the door of the church by resembling the geometry of the rose windows usually found above the entrance to a sacred place. The configuration with eight petals was chosen for its pleasing symmetry, and because of the geometry it creates when tessellated: a Greek cross.

2.jpg‘Rose’ configurations

The canopy is formed by two layers of expandable geometries to give added rigidity and privacy. The two layers are spaced apart by metal rods fixed key nodes of the two layers.

The canopy is fixed to the rectangular base by metal bolts, at the four corners. Also attached to the base are the two confessionals, the kneeler and the cross, symbol of mercy and forgiveness.


The Pilgrim Chapel is intended to be a space of light, peace and reconciliation, where visitors of all faiths and none can experience tranquillity. Light plays an important role in the experience of the chapel as it creates intricate shadow patterns.

Chapel eye levelChapel interior

Here is a short video showing the design development process:

It’s official we are now futurologists! We knew it would happen soon enough!

A PDF of the report can be found here: Future-Living-Report

In the report we set out our visions on the future of living, the rise of technology, changing patterns of human behaviour and rapid urbanisation, huge advances in 3D printing and augmented/virtual reality in the home as well as material advances and seeking out alternative habitats such as underwater homes and even terraforming other planets.

The report was commissioned by Samsung and prepared in collaboration with Space Scientist Dr Aderin-Pocock, and professional urbanists Linda Aitken and Els Leclercq and has been featured in many international press publications:


Advances in material technology allowing huge skyscrapers dwarfing today’s versions, incorporating vertical gardens above the clouds.


Underwater city homes growing their own food and producing breathable oxygen and hydrogen for electricity through the splitting of water molecules.


3D printed space colonies harnessing solar power and the oxygen produced by plant life to create sealed internal environments.


Drone delivered prefabricated homes that can move wherever and whenever you want to creating digital nomads.

All images produced by Taylor Herring and licensed under creative commons

Toby and Arthur speaking on the BBC World Service’s Business Daily program on the incorporation of digital technology into our lives and our homes, 3D printing furniture, the future of virtual leisure,

Link to the original audio file here A Virtual Reality Future? (We start talking about half way through)



Link to the iplayer programme:


‘Da Vinci Codex’ is a latticed sculptural piece which creates unique poetics of morphology that merge structure and movement. It transgresses the artificial boundary between art, science and technology, casting seemingly established analogies in a new light while inviting visitors to rethink the relationship between form, geometry and construction. Linear and curved scissor elements form a series of recursive cubes which speak of infinity and the complexity of our world. It denotes a recognizable metaphor of ‘object-within-similar-object’ that appears in the design of many other natural and crafted objects. The precision of the cubic form reflects the organised chaos of our universe. Poignant patterns inspired by a study into the scissor movement of the cube elements are perforated into the triangulated parts of the Codex.

Da Vinci Codex 1

Da Vinci Codex 2

As they expand and collapse, the triangles form unique and intricate shadows which highlight the transitional quality of human life and emotions, changing from a state of happiness to sadness, from calm to anger, from life to death. The structure provides shelter from the heat of the sun while entertaining its guests with opportunities to engage with the structure. A deployment mechanism inspired by study into Leonardo da Vinci’s machinery sketches found in his Codex Atlanticus is actuated by a series of gears situated at the base of the structure, which are set into motion by a pedal system powered by visitors. As burners interact with the piece, they contemplate a fascinating and spectacular change of light and decor. ‘Da Vinci Codex’ stands as a piece of event architecture, a spatial construct where movement is a transformational creative force.

The visitors interact with the piece by powering one of the four pedal systems connected to the deploying mechanism. As they pedal, the burners witness a captivating movement: the synchronised expanding and collapsing of the three cubes which cast intricate shadows and stimulate a sense of play. The visitors can also step inside the cubes and experience a series of ‘in-between’ spaces before reaching the central volume and enjoying a level of protection from the wind and sun. The highly abstract aesthetic of the ‘da Vinci Codex’ is meant to affect the community with a spirit of experimentation and encourage each and every burner to question preconceived ideas, beliefs or desires.

Da Vinci Codex

Da Vinci Codex3Da Vinci Codex2

The size of each member has been carefully considered not only to allow structural integrity but also to respect the proportions of the human body. Each face of the cube moves in a synchronised manner. The relationship between the size of each face and proportions of the human body has been inspired by da Vinci’s Vitruvian man.

BM open cubeBM night render


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