Experimentation is a pretty standard part of the creative process, but it usually ends with an “a-ha” moment; once you know what you want to make, the trial and error part of the equation is dunzo. For architect Andrew Kudless, however, R&D is never over; he often pushes his sculptural work so far it accidentally ends up in a ten-foot wide puddle of plaster on his studio floor.
Kudless founded his Oakland-based studio Matsys back in 2004, and has spent the last decade developing a wide range of new, bio-inspired production techniques that reverse the traditional approach to construction. “I’m interested in how living systems relate to architecture,” he tells Gizmodo. “Architecture usually follows a top-down design process—you have some type of genius idea, then everything is relegated to that one idea. There’s no consideration for how it might change over time.”
Kudless’s work is a kind of geometric adventurism, exploring the functional limits of the materials he works with, making them clamp, slot, bolt, or hinge together in new ways.
The “Seed" project, for example, is a huge, bulbous, 3D-printed concrete ball inspired by the shape of redwood seeds, snapped together and built up from modular components like patterns in a spherical textile.
Or take the bizarre, ironically very alien results from a straight-forward exploration of egg shapes. Called “SEAcraft Eggs,” and produced by his students at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco, these show what can happen when expected materials are rigorously and systematically swapped out in new and unexpected formal combinations.
In all, an organic approach is key, with a twist; instead of setting out with a by-the-book blueprint, Kudless establishes certain physical constraints with the help of algorithms and computer simulations, then lets the materials do their thang, interacting in unexpected ways that result in an unpredictable physical result.
The “Chrysalis (III)" lamp, for instance, is a big, weird, coiling coral form of glowing geometric cells made from paper-backed wood veneers, and the eruption of each individual cell—its size, its placement, its angle—could never have been guessed in advance. It’s like living math, emitting light.
American architect Seth Goodman is on a mission to illustrate the absurdity of parking requirements. The above image, shows mandatory parking requirements for office buildings in different American cities.
Goodman notes that the majority of U.S. cities exempt their downtowns from these requirements, but says that’s not enough.”In many of these cities, the relatively small footprint of these exempt areas has failed achieve the critical mass necessary to create robust transit ridership and fully-functioning pedestrian oriented communities.”
It’s kind of crazy right? maybe a way to address this would be to change parking requirements if a building is located within 800m of a regular and reliable form of public transportation? imagine all the extra space!
More info here.
Waves of Color
Colorful is the word for the new art installation in Madison Square Park. New York-based artist Orly Genger has (literally) weaved three colorful, electric structures. Her work, titled Red, Yellow and Blue is a collection of 1.4 million feet of re-purposed rope and over 3,500 gallons of paint, all sculpted in various areas of the park to embrace the space and enhance the landscape. Visitors are able to get up close and see the intricate hand-work put into weaving the rope and layering it to form such detailed waves.
After its summer-long run at Madison Square Park from May 2nd to September 8th, it will travel to the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum outside of Boston in October 2013.