From my office, it takes about 55 minutes to get to sci-arc in downtown. I don't know, but it seems really far. When Delgiu
told me to go to the Andrew Kudless's lecture, scheduled for today, I thought: "Oh well, around here it is all smokey (because of the huge fires around LA),
it is not healthy to ride a bike. But anyway let's go, hopefully will be worth", we decided (me
, showed us what I have been looking for for years. The relationship between the '60s module research, nature and industrialization.
He thinks about scripts that are like tools. He learned how to build wood houses in Japan. But, he said, the first thing you learn, it's not to cut or to shape the wood in the way you'd like to, instead you learn to know your tools. That's the first thing: understand deeply the tools, before even touching the material.
Often in architecture we get lost in the shape - a cool shape that doesn't go further than to be just a shell. Andrew's orientation though, goes in the same direction of Kengo Kuma
's philosophy. The shell is the body, it is the architecture itself, not just a skin, but a structural skin, like in the human body the skin that is a part of a whole complex system.
Starting his research with the honeycomb structure, he undertands that nature adapt a structure slightly depending on the forces that the structure has to deal with. Working on a project, dealing with the finished object, he started noticing the natural deformations that occur in the the honeycomb structure under the force of gravity.
The complexity of such problems finds a partial solution thanks to the Voronoy
script applied in Rhinoceros, that he started using a few years ago. It allows him to get closer to "nature's rule". The Voronoi diagram, well known in mathematics, has lately also found applications in architecture and design.
From the same repetitive module of the 60's to a system that changes slightly the basic module adapting it to the contest/forces.
I still remember when professor Ceragioli, of the Politecnico in Turin, once said that in Africa the walls that surround the house are more expensive than the house itself. If they would use high tecnology, like infrared systems alarms with solar panels, it would cost a lot less than building a brick wall, allowing them to invest more money into the house itself.
I was a little skeptical at the beginning about the whole Voronoy idea, but now I think that the tecnologies, like laser cutters, are getting more and more accessible, allowing us to build these systems more easily than decades ago.
From the 60's module concept, architecture is today developing a new way of rethinking the same idea, getting even closer to nature, the best architect ever.
Pictures by DaG