Manuel A. Báez – Crystal & Flame: Form and Process

Manuel A. Báez is an Associate Professor at Carleton University, Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism, where he is also the Coordinator of Crossings Inerdisciplinary Research and the Director of the Carleton De-Formation Research Unit. Previously, he worked and practiced in New York City while teaching at the Architecture Schools at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art and the Rhode Island School of Design.

His work as an architect, artist and researcher draws inspiration from the generative potential of the forms, structures and integrative systems generated by elemental processes that exist throughout the natural environment. His educational concerns, interests and objectives are focused on the development of teaching methods and procedures derived from the research.”

Below are some images of his work, students work and his TED lecture. He explores the “malleability of weaved bamboo cells assembled as a fabric” and produces beautiful thin and delicate generative structures.

 Above: ©Manuel A. Báez, Suspended Animation: Coiled serpent, from the Phenomenological Garden Installation , Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bamboo dowels & rubber bands.   Fabrication from membrane assembled with square cellular units. 

Above: ©Manuel A. Báez Crossings Workshop, Suspended Animation Series: Cellular Forms Studies.  Work from the Crossings Workshop by Diana Park using heptagonal cellular units casting shadows on wall. 

Above: ©Manuel A. Báez, Phenomenological Garden Installation, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bamboo dowels & rubber bands.  Two columns are transformed into an intricately patterned ceiling structure.  Emergent patterns are revealed as one walks around the installation or, as shown in Fig. 2, as one looks at the reflected ceiling.  Fabrication from membrane assembled with square cellular units.  

Above: ©Manuel A. Báez, Crossings Workshop Exhibition, Suspended Animation Series: Cellular Forms Studies, Koussevitzky Art Gallery, Berkshire Community College, Pittsfield, MA, Bamboo dowels & rubber bands.  Works by Crossings Workshop students using membranes assembled from cellular units. 

Above:  ©Manuel A. Báez Crossings Workshop, Suspended Animation Series: “Torus”, Cellular Forms Studies, Bamboo dowels & plastic tubing.  Work from the Crossings Workshop by Natalia Kukleva using square cellular units, 6′ – 0″ diameter.  Top: side view, bottom: view from above. 

Author: Arthur Mamou-Mani

Arthur Mamou-Mani AA dipl, ARB/RIBA FRSA – is a French architect, director of Mamou-Mani Architects, specialised in a new kind of digitally designed and fabricated architecture. He is a lecturer at the University of Westminster and owns a digital fabrication laboratory called the Fab.Pub which allows people to experiment with large 3D Printers and Laser Cutters. Arthur has been selected as one of the RIBAj's 2017 cohort of Rising Stars. He has won the Gold Prize at the American Architecture Prize for the Wooden Wave project installed at BuroHappold Engineering and since 2016, he is a fellow of the The Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce. Prior to founding Mamou-Mani in 2011, he worked with Atelier Jean Nouvel, Zaha Hadid Architects and Proctor and Matthews Architects.

3 thoughts on “Manuel A. Báez – Crystal & Flame: Form and Process”

  1. Very interesting talk!
    I also found in this article (see image of 3d standing waves)

    that Buckminster Fuller and Hans Jenny (founder of Cymatics) created 3d standing waves by dipping a balloon in dye and pulsed it with sine wave frequencies. The nodal patterns formed across the balloon are platonic solids.
    Four evenly spaces nodes form a tetrahedron.
    Six evenly spaced nodes form an octahedron.
    Eight evenly spaced nodes form a cube.
    Twelve evenly spaced nodes form the icosahedron
    Twenty evenly spaced nodes form the dodecahedron.

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