Archive for February, 2011

25 Feb 2011

Rustic Lodge or Hospital?

Category: Design

captionPointer.jpgDuke Integrative Medicine | Duda/Paine Architects

Wow - check out this medical facility I just came across.

Talk about healthcare mimicking hospitality . . . this place is so beautiful, it makes me hope I get sick.

captionPointer.jpgDuke Integrative Medicine | Duda/Paine Architects

23 Feb 2011

The Sweet Smell of Victory

Category: News

captionPointer.jpgContest Award | designed & photographed by Galen Leith

Congratulations, once more, to all the winners of the 3form 5th Annual People’s Choice Best Installation Contest!

We received so many amazing installation entries this year! We count ourselves lucky to be involved with such outstanding and talented architects and designers. Our hats go off to all who entered.

The plaques above went out to all the winners, in addition to the various prizes.

We're already looking forward to the next contest, and seeing your wonderful creations . . .

22 Feb 2011

How DID They Do That?

Category: News

captionPointer.jpgStar Spangled Banner | Smithsonian Museum

The 3form Advanced Technology Group gets to work on some incredibly complex and challenging projects. For example, the Star Spangled Banner installation at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C., on which we collaborated with design firm SOM. This was one project that really stretched our minds, tested our talents, and broke boundaries with unique solutions. The behind-the-scenes story of how this custom installation came together is fascinating.

Rob Rothblatt, Design Director at SOM, will be lecturing at NYIT about this project on March 3rd at 6:30 p.m.

It's part of an exhibit at NYIT on the redesign of the Smithsonian Museum, where the abstract flag installation is located. At this lecture, you can learn about this trailblazing project - including the technology used to analyze the movement of flags in the wind, used to create the structure that supports our 900 Varia Ecoresin panels.

More info on the Architecture and Design Lecture Series here.

captionPointer.jpgStar Spangled Banner | Smithsonian Museum

21 Feb 2011

Material Beyond Material

Category: News

captionPointer.jpgCIT Aerospace Lobby

I've been invited to participate in the Materials Beyond Materials Conference at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-ARC). It takes place March 25th and 26th in downtown Los Angeles.

The conference combines progressive presentations in the fields of architecture, the arts, engineering and materials research. Conference participants will present and discuss their most innovative ideas, projects and positions concerning materials, technology and the impact on the architecture and construction disciplines and professions.

I'll be representing the 3form Advanced Technology Group. Please join us - admission is free.

18 Feb 2011


Category: Design, Technology

captionPointer.jpgDeep Ellum Station | Dallas Transit (DART) featuring art by Julie Cohn

What’s hot right now in materials technologies? Composites. Fusing ideas and materials.

Creating new combinations, taking the best of both worlds. Technology meeting technology. Making the most of the properties inherent in different resins to multiply strengths, minimize weaknesses, and bring out the best attributes.

For example, the Dallas Transit shelter installation uses both acrylic and polycarbonate materials in the panels. The acrylic skins have the weatherability – resisting UV degradation – while the polycarbonate core’s great strength is its . . . strength – that is, a high resistance to impact breakage.

Additionally, using these two materials together creates a perfect way to encapsulate high resolution art within the panel.

The benefits of composites - fusing new materials technologies - are exponential.

captionPointer.jpgDeep Ellum Station | Dallas Transit (DART) featuring art by Julie Cohn

captionPointer.jpgEcocradle | Evocative Design

Check out this for eco-friendly shipping. No polystyrene packing peanuts here - these Ecocradles are actually fungus-based and grown to order - then completely biodegradable after use (and reuse).

Now that's innovative!

captionPointer.jpgEcocradle | Evocative Design

9 Feb 2011

Nature in Healthcare Design

Category: Design

captionPointer.jpgDental INN | Stasek

Not only are healthcare designers looking for cues from hospitality, but they're getting inspiration from nature - capitalizing on the known connection between natural environments and the healing process.

For example, check out this dental clinic in Germany (that uses a material that is not made by 3form). The forested walls are actually a monochrome overprint of the Viernheim forest, a local landmark. This use of region-specific visuals also hearkens to the hospitality industry, which is currently looking to localize design, giving each project a touch of the proximate flavor.

captionPointer.jpgDental INN | Stasek

8 Feb 2011

Stripes and Striations

Category: Design

captionPointer.jpgArt by Andy Vogt

The artist Andy Vogt and architects Chyutin Architects let their materials drive the design.

Both architect and artist use "stripes," creating a striated pattern.

I love these images together as they have a similar feel, but with different scales and media.

captionPointer.jpgBGU University Entrance Square | Chyutin Architects

captionPointer.jpgA Dutch artist upcycles blow-up dolls into clothing

It’s true; there’s potential for treasure in each trash can.

It’s disappointing that most of us aren’t looking at that potential. It’s even more disappointing that most of us aren’t looking at our trash at all. On average, each person in the U.S. throws out 4.5 pounds of trash every day.

Grist challenges us to panic about all the crap we throw out. To see what happens to it, check out The Story of Stuff.

At this point, hopefully it's a no-brainer to adhere to the old dictum of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, but I have to ask, is it possible to take it too far?

captionPointer.jpgResearch Pavilion, University of Stuttgart, Germany | photo: Julian Lienhard

What an extraordinary exercise in material innovation!

So many projects today are merely about fabrication - but what makes this pavilion possible is the depth of research achieved in the material exploration - a truly new way to use a material that's been around forever. This is what new digital technologies allow us to accomplish, but seldom do we see the depth of material research that we see in this project.

The limits of what can be achieved with wood are pushed to the extreme, creating a beautiful balance between material engineering, structure and aesthetics. As this article states, the pavilion is innovative in “the manner in which it links various disciplines.”

It reminds me of the ICA building by Frank Gehry, where the glass used in the façade was cold formed in different geometries to accomplish the design intent. Only through in-depth material research can you really understand and appreciate such fabulous material performance. Check it out at the link above - it's stunning.

Material research really is a fundamental condition of high design!

captionPointer.jpgResearch Pavilion, University of Stuttgart, Germany | photo: Simon Schleicher