BIOMORPH- THE 2016 PUNE VISITING SCHOOLProfile
by AAVS BioMorph Programme Directors Nicolas Cabargas Mori, Marco Corazza, and Tejas Sidnal
20 June 2016
Nicolas Cabargas Mori, Marco Corazza, and Tejas Sidnal, AAVS Pune BioMorph Programme Directors, explain more about the intricate research and technologies the workshop will explore.
AA BioMorph Visiting School workshop is focused on material efficiency in nature, and how this can be the inspiration for innovative structural solutions. This will be a digital craft workshop that considers the forming of structures inspired by biology and realised through a feedback to computational platforms. BioMorph is developed in a three year cycle, each year the workshop will keep this theme as a core principle but change the material which is explored.
[caption id="attachment_6014" align="alignnone" width="360"] Analysis into the material qualities of bamboo[/caption]
BioMorph 2015 was the first workshop of the cycle and was developed in Mumbai during July 2015. This was conducted in collaboration with the AA in London, Studio-X in Mumbai, and the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University, in the USA. The focus of the workshop was to teach world class techniques and methods in developing a material system inspired by biomimetic strategies. The basis of this was to develop a broader local knowledge base on concrete casting techniques using innovative technologies. Six units were formed, each tasked with researching the structural logic of an organism in nature. This logic was then translated into architectural tectonics and fabrication, resulting in a component-based system that demonstrated the structural and spatial possibilities which was then assembled as an installation by teams of students.
[caption id="attachment_6015" align="alignnone" width="360"] Experiments from a previous AAVS BioMorph[/caption]
Prior to the workshop a ‘Porosity Pavilion’ was installed at Kalaghoda Arts Festival in 2015. The strategy for variable porosity in this pavilion was an inspiration from nature. This is evident in many aspects in nature, for example bone, as they have more material at required places, and less where it does not have a structural/functional need.
‘In nature form is cheap and material is expensive’ - J. Vincent
[caption id="attachment_6016" align="alignnone" width="360"] A previous AAVS India design in context in Kalaghoda[/caption]
This is why the installation tried to optimise the form by reducing the amount of material where it was not necessary according to the structural stress analysis.
AAVS BioMorph 2016 will be conducted in collaboration with the AA, and BNCA College of Architecture in the city of Pune, India. The Digital Department at BNCA is a pioneering effort, the first of its kind in India, upending conventional architectural learning models. To foster new design possibilities, the department has established a state-of-the-art Fabrication Lab, fully equipped with rapid prototyping and computational and numerically controlled machines such as the CNC router/miller, 3D printers, laser cutting machines, and will soon be equipped with 6-axis Robotic Arm. With this setup, the school joins the league of a handful of universities in South-East Asia to have such facilities. Facilities like these not only effect the manufacturing of architectural prototypes but also encourage possibilities of research collaborations within various allied fields and peer groups.
[caption id="attachment_6017" align="alignnone" width="360"] Porosity Pavilion at the 2015 Kalaghoda Arts Festival[/caption]
AAVS BioMorph 2016 looks at investigating the potential of bamboo as a lightweight structural component. Bamboo is a well-known and widely used material in Indian context. India is the second largest grower of bamboo in the world.
It is known for being strong, lightweight, and incredibly affordable. The precedents from nature will guide the material systems as well as inspire geometrical solutions. Each unit will be assigned a specific example in nature to study and should use the base principles of their example to develop a material system. Their material system should be limited to using bamboo and one other material to create a shelter that can withstand the environmental conditions of the monsoon season in Pune.
The academic agenda of the workshop is to develop a material system driven by biomimetic logic and optimising this through the use of specific digital tools. The workshop expands on the theory of biomimetic and organic evolutions abstracted into innovative design/material solutions. Material explorations will be developed using new low tech methodologies, generating dynamic forms and tectonics, and fabrication methods related to the specific material.
[caption id="attachment_6018" align="alignnone" width="360"] Experiments from a previous AAVS BioMorph[/caption]
The workshop runs over 10 days, in which the first 3 days are about understanding the background theory of material processes and biomimicry. The 2nd phase is about group formation, case studies, and physical and digital experimentation. The field work will be coordinated within the 10 day workshop to demonstrate core principles in built form within Pune. The aim is to allow students to see physical examples as case studies for the workshop’s agenda as well as exploring the city. Between day 5 and day 10, students will design and build prototypes, followed by an exhibition and the distribution of certificates to the participants, affiliated with the AA. The workshop will be a learning experience for students in understanding how precedents from nature can guide material systems as well as inspire optimised design solutions. Students will be working on the art of assembling, shaping, and manipulating materials for construction.
AAVS BioMorph Workshop 2016 is conducted by directors:
Nicolas Cabargas Mori, licensed architect in Chile, AA MArch 2014 with Distinction with the Emergent Technologies and Design Programme (EmTech);
Marco Corazza, Graduate of the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg South Africa, AA MSc with Distinction (EmTech);
Tejas Sidnal, AA MArch 2013 with Distinction on Tata Scholarship (EmTech).
The workshop is open to current architecture, design, biology, and engineering students, PhD candidates, and young professionals. To apply for the workshop please see the links below.
For more information:
Apply for AAVS BioMorph
Contact AAVS BioMorph
AAVS India BioMorph Microsite
AAVS BioMorph Agenda
AAVS BioMorph on Facebook
AAVS BioMorph on AA Conversations