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13 MARCH 2013

Concrete Canvas and Concrete Canvas Shelters

"Concrete Canvas Ltd. manufacture a ground breaking material technology called Concrete Canvas that allows concrete to be used in a completely new way. Concrete Canvas was originally developed for the award winning Concrete Canvas Shelters, a building in a bag that requires only water and air for construction."

(Concrete Canvas Ltd.)

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TAGS

architectural building cladding • buildingcanvas • canvas building • cement • cement impregnated fabric • civil engineering • cladding • clothconcrete • concrete canvas • concrete cloth • concrete layer • construction • durable • fabricfabrication • flexible forms • form and spaceformation and materialisation • humanitarian crises • hydrated • hydrophilic • impregnated fabric • inflatable • inflatable concrete building • infrastructurematerial interventionsmaterial practicematerials innovationmaterials sciencemutability • mutable structures • new materialsproduction and assembly • rapidly deployable infrastructure • sheltertemporary buildingtemporary structures

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
14 APRIL 2012

Achim Menges: Architecture and Product Design Research

"Architecture as a material practice is predominately based on an approach to design that is characterised by prioritising the elaboration of form over its subsequent materialisation. Since the Renaissance the increasing division between processes of design and making has led to the age–long development and increasing dependence on representational tools intended for explicit, scalar geometric descriptions that at the same time serve as instructions for the translation from drawing to building. Inevitably, and with few exceptions, even in today's digital practice architects embrace design methods that epitomize the hierarchical separation of form definition and materialisation.

The research of the Institute for Computational Design explores an alternative, morphogenetic approach to design that unfolds morphological complexity and performative capacity from material constituents without differentiating between formation and materialisation processes. This requires an understanding of form, material, structure and environment not as separate aspects, but rather as complex interrelations that are embedded in and explored through integral computational processes.

The notion of material system constitutes one central aspect of this research. Material system does not only refer to the material constituents of a building alone, but rather describes, in a system–theoretical sense, the complex reciprocity between materiality, form, structure and space, the related processes of production and assembly, and the multitude of performative effects that emanate from the interaction with environmental influences and forces. This conceptualization of material systems enables the utilization of computational design processes. The ability of computation to simultaneously do both, stochastically derive and systemically process complex datasets within a defined or evolving constraint space, can be utilized to explore a material system's performative capacity within its materially determined limits. Furthermore, continuously informing the form generation with different modes of computational analysis enables a direct link between the ontogeny, the history of structural changes of an individual, and its interaction with external forces and energy respectively, that is its ecological embedding. This enables to conceive of material systems as the synergetic outcome of calibrating and balancing multiple influencing variables and divergent design criteria, which always already include the interaction with the system–external environment. The resultant environmental modulations can now be understood as highly specific patterns in direct relation to the material interventions from which they originate.

The design of space, structure and climate can be synthesized in one integral design process."

(Achim Menges, Achimmenges.net)

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TAGS

Achim Menges • architectsarchitectural conjecturearchitecture • bifurcation between theory and practice • building • complex datasets • computational design • computational design processes • computational processes • cultural technologydesign and makingdesign methods • design of space • design processdesign researchdigital practice • elaboration of form • environmental influences • environmental modulations • European Renaissanceform • form definition and materialisation • formation and materialisation • hierarchical separation • history of structural change • Institute for Computational Design • latticematerialmaterial interventionsmaterial practice • material systems • materialisationmateriality • materially determined limits • modes of computational analysis • morphogenetic approach to design • morphological complexity • ontogenesis • performative capacity • performative effects • product designproduction and assembly • representational tools • scalar geometric descriptions • space • stochastic • structure • synergetic outcome • synergy • system-theoretical sense • systemically process • theory and practice • translation from drawing to building • wood • wood lattice

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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