What if Bioplastic could be used as a green construction material ?
Plastic can acquire any shape you give it.
But what about the natural behaviour of the viscous material?
Experiments consisting in elongating the viscous material can reveal an interesting form configuration that has inherent structural properties.
The rules defining the the material configuration are then coded into a script that enables to digitally replicate the shape. The structural performace of the shape opens the opportunity for many applications.
A bridge is imagined following the same formal configuration.
Here is a video explaining the workshop “In Silico Building” (tutors: Paul EHRET & Philipp EVERSMANN) taking place in the Faculty of Architecture at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). They produced the stunning folded steel structure which you saw on during our unit trip and which was part of the “Material Matters” exhibition at the Centre George Pompidou in Paris, france.
Ecovative are a New York based research group who are growing a new material using fungi. The process uses an organic aggregate, such as seed husk or other agricultural / industrial by products, as its base. This aggregate is mixed with mycelium fungi and packed into a former to give it the desired geometry. Being a loose aggregate it will fill any former created. The mixture is then left for several days, over which time the fungi grows into a microscopic web of fibres which bond the aggregate into a solid mass. This growth requires no water, light or petrochemical inputs. Every cubic inch of material contains a matrix of 8 miles of tiny mycelial fibres. At the end of the process, they put the materials through a dehydration and heat treating process to stop the growth. This final process ensures that there will never be any spores or allergen concerns.
The company are currently exploring applications of the material in multiple industries from packaging and consumer products to architecture and automotive manufacture. They are also looking for potential partners with which to develop aspects of the material further.
A team of american engineers claim to have developed the world’s lightest material made up from a micro lattice of tubes. Its strength is derived from its low density and is said to be 100 times lighter than Styrofoam! The research was carried out at the University of California, Irvine, HRL Laboratories and the California Institute of Technology.
I came across an article from the Architecture/Art website Muuuz which Andrea Graziano posted on his very prolific Facebookpage. The sculpture below were created by a Japanese artist called Harumi Nakashima (1950- Bio Below). He took part of the Sodeisha group in Japanese Modern Art, his main interest lie in the Earth and its constant dialogue with his own hands as well as Movement (source). The sculptures are currently exhibited at the Galerie Nec Nilsson and Chiglien in Paris.
“Born in Japan in 1950, Harumi Nakashima studied at the Osaka Art College, where he switched from a design to a ceramics concentration. He has since gained notoriety for his free-form sculptures and his dot patterning. He also did a series similar to the Ecstatic Series, in which he did not employ his characteristic dots. Without the patterning, the dynamic bubbling shapes are nevertheless undulating and vibrant.” Artist’s statement: “Attaching a coil pinch by pinch as if I listen to the voice of the clay, clay, techniques, and I become a trinity to produce a work.” – Honoo Geijutsu article From the Museum of Arts and Design
Above: Porcelain Sculpture from the “Suffering Form” Series