Shanghai EXPO Austrian Pavilion

The major research questions in this project were about the consolidation of several previous pieces of research in order to construct a building beyond the scale of an installation. First of all, developing methods to apply the technique of using TopMod and Maya to generate the design of the building to areas such as planning for the construction site, creating shop plans, time and payment schedules, etc. We divided the work between our partner office Zeytinoglu Architects and ourselves, establishing a 3D model in the cloud that was accessible by every party involved in the making of this building. This project was a pioneering project, especially in China, where this project marks for example the introduction of Building Information Modelling (BIM). Among other pioneering achievements is the use of Grasshopper in the design of the facade pattern, the main research was about overcoming the obstacles of construction whilst sticking to the budget and time plan.

The main qualities for the project formed the mainframe of the origin of the topological surface. The software output consisted of an extensive array of subtly varying surface conditions. According to their performative behavior, the population of over one hundred individual entities was scrutinized for their fitness according to different criteria, such as the potential to fulfill the program, the performance as a structural entity, and the effect generated by its appearance.

Geometry of Introversion

The soft clarity of the space and the focus on the introverted nature of the room create a relaxed atmosphere, unbound from the loud environment of the EXPO. The geometry of the topological body supports the architectural quality in a threefold way: The elegant, continuously sweeping trajectories of the curvilinear body generate a smooth organic flow of the visitors within the exhibition area. The pumping animation creates a constant flow of visitors along the entrance area, through the main space, and to the exit along the shop area. By reducing orthogonal forms, the quality of sound within the space is significantly increased. The application of topological forms as a mode of material organization is a widespread phenomenon in nature, enhancing the stability of the form whilst simultaneously reducing the consumption of material. This phenomenon is widely adopted within the design of the Austrian Pavilion in order to operate on a significant level of sustainability. In nature material is expensive, form on the other hand is complimentary. The application of these ideas on an architectural scale has become feasible by the use of CNC routers, industrial robots, laser cutters, and computer-controlled bending machines. 

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: