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Folding as a Morphogenetic Process in Architectural Design Transition 1. or meanders. becomes a map of its origination process. pierce.: Matter and Functions Ivory Carton 1 is introduced as quintessential foldable material given the paper's weig11t and structural capacity. compress. The paperfold unfolded. fold. a program. we can appreciate tile tunctlon of folding as a design generator by phase transitions. crease. de livered here as a list of verbs. an abstract machine knowing nothing of forms and substances. the sequence of transformations that affect the design object. Our interest lies on the morphogenetic process. unfold. 8 The paperfold is a dynamic artefact. wrap. Paperfold generative transformations are structured in sequences . The task is to extensively explore transformations of a single paper surface into a volume. pleat. revolve. stress forming.zation. with one constraint only. Transition 2: Algorithms research into a field of Folding as a generative process in architectural design is essentially experimental: agnostic. unstable and evolving. hinge. intuitive responses. knot. spline curves.critical thresholds where qualitative transformations occur. we can appreciate the paperfold 2 as a diagram in Deleuzian terms. spati al-structura l-organlzationel d iagrarns and architectural prototypes. that does not represent but rather constitutes a new type of reality introduces architectural actual i·. press. We consider the succession of transformations resulting to the paperfoldartefact as a genetic algorithm of form. Tne paper's transformative origins are si mple actions. It bares the traces of the activity that brings it into being: scores. twist. rotate. The task in 9 . maintaining the continuity of the material. spirals. algorithms. . stratification of folds. or patterns like strips.. score. Repetitive paper folding performances evolve initial intuitive responses into primary techniques: triangulation. Cut off from the continuum of the studio process. four phase transitions are presented further illustrating the case with a visual essay: matter and functions. In the early folding performances. Manipulation of paper surface in order to produce volume constitutes a curriculum of activity. Reading the paper told as a oiagrarn. operating purely by matter and functions. folds within folds. creases or incisions drawn in the surface of the paper. that is. weave. Considering thls an open and dynamic development where the design evolves with alternate periods of disequilibrium. cut pull up. non-linear and bottom up.

this phase is to decipher tile paperfold algorithmas a morpnogenetlc mechanism.. The void bounded between the folds of the paper manifests a curvilinear form that cannot be exactly defined. The task in this phase is to perceive and configure the space between the folds as actual space. augmented techniques. program and context. enclosure and contiguity . Not yet as the virtual form of a possible bl. Given the consistency of . spatial succession. Geometric characteristics are initially irrelevant. Mapping the paperfold as a spatial diagram requires an abstraction of spatial relations. structural or organizational diagram th at has acqui red . interlacement and stratification. Structural and Organizational Diagrams Space emerges in the paper Iold during a dynamic volume generation process. a succession of 10 . the spatlal. Due to the warping ofthe surface. In the folding process of surface warping creases receive and distribute tension and compression. We introduce the itinerary of a human body.ivory carton. requi ring notation as a set of instructions that inc Iude time as a variable. 4 movement and stasis as abstract program. the pleat and tile hinge acquire structural properties in the paper fold artefact. This re-introduces the problem of documentation. Blurred boundaries between spaces indicate constant transformations in conditions of enclosure. a regular structure susceptible to maximum variability.. Understanding and developing the paperfold algorithm transgresses the singularity of the object spawning a series of sirnilar but varying artefacts. defined by Leibn Iz 5 as an extensi on. Loops and Crossings are emergent space concepts. unfolding. proxiniity. instructive plans and inventories of transformation are submitted here as definitions of the paperfcild algorithm. that needs to be occupied in order to be calculated . TIlUS we can define here as architectural prototype the spatial. The task here is to attribute architectural properties to the diagram introducing parameters of material. Uke its delimiting surfaces it manifests increased continuity despite its fragmentation. separation. Accessibility ls the essential operation. Transition 4: Architectural Prototypes In a design generative process by folding. Structural patterns mostly encountered in the development of paper fo. Generative sequences. Topological properties are crucial to describe the space emerging in the paperfold artefact. the dominance of tile oblique plane is expressed through a series between horizontal and vertical. Serial variation of strips has been observed as a folding technique that can evolve into an organizational system. the architectural object is not an a priori target to be achieved.architectural substance' 7_ II Transition 3: Spatial. A smooth space.lding techniques are triangulated surfaces of increased variability.Jilding or as an abstract geometric space but as space accommodating an abstract program . Paper fold derivative organizational diagrams are entanglement. where the object expands into an infinite series of variability containing neither a fina'i term nor a limit.structurat and organizational diagrams emerging in the process are developed into architectural prototypes. the crease. Thus the paper fold can be considered an event.. The flshbonev is a major structural pattern deriving from the domain of origami paper folding. Connectivity is consequential performance. transformation mappings. Given the educational context.

The argument for diagrammatic & Guatarri's abstract machine: notlon of the diagrammatic being an Intrinsic property of the machine as the aspect or moment From A thousand Brian Massumi. Press. life-pods for urban nomads. the living-working machine. 1993 The MIT Press. 1994 The MIT Press. So:phia Vyzoviti. Nevertheless this reciprocity goes beyond deterministic interdependence into a multiplicity of possible associations. Japan. otsu. Academy Editions. Minneapolis. 'Architectural In 'Folding in Architecture'. attributing architectural substance to the paperfold diagram is a research project that seeks reciprocity between spatial properties. Through the evaluation of these prototypes we could verify the discursive claim of folding in architecture as a strategy that manages complexity by integration of disparate elements into 'a heterogeneous yet continuous system'». the hollow dike and the urban camping. 4 capitalism and matters remain. neither content University of Minnesota Stan Allen. Origami Science and Art· Proceedings of Origami Science and Scientific For further reference consult Meeting of of the Second International in Architectures Culture. 15 defined here as the result of the process of folding paper. June 2003 7 Stanford Kwinter. 1993 See also page 18 and 138 of this publication. 'mapping technique 5 6 G+B Arts International. Unlike disjunctive notions of cross.A concise account of the prototypes developed In the studio course Illustrated here includes the warped surface series. 1996 Bernard Tschurnl. 12 13 . 'The complex and the singular' a Theory of the Event In Modernist 2001 and disJunction. Crlttcal Voices in art. London. Cambridge curvilinearity· the folded. Lelbnlz and the Baroque. Massachusetts. the architecture comes in accordance to Oeleuze product of a folding performance. London. the niche. and schlaepbrenla. Tom Conley. theory and culture. voL63. trans. in Practice: architecture. Architecture Greg Lynn. The fold. the uornappable-on 2000. The Athlone Press. 'We define the abstract at w~llch nothing but functions plateaus. Time-Towards 8 9 Cambridge Massachusetts. or dis-prograrnrninge. tile wrapped Interior.' translation 1987 notation' subs lance nor form. organization of program and structure. robust but easy to cut white paper available from 90 to 300 g. Gilles Deleuze. Origami. the pliant and the supple' Archi!eClUrai Design. and representation. Footnotes 1 2 3 Ivory carton is direct translation Paperfald from the Dutch tvo« nertoo: thin. trans. A diagram has nenner nor expression. intertwining tubes.

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Transition 4 Achitectural Prototypes Warped surface series Wrappedhouse Niche Intertwinnlng tubes Ufepods for urban nomads Living .working machine Hollow dike Urban camping 104 105 .

Natacha Fricout warped surface series 106 107 .

Safia Benayard-Serif wrapped house: structural prototype 108 109 .

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cannot be reproduced identically. Husserl's unexact geometries are essential for the comprehension of pliant forms: rigorous geometries that in contrast to exact geometries. Featuring an excerpt from Deleuze's. Leibniz and the Bsrooues. the architecture of the fold is considered a cunning tactic for intensive integration of difference within a heterogeneous yet continuous system. Lynn and Shirdel. Eisenman. The issue released in 1993 comprises an anthology of essays and projects by a group of architects seeking an alternative to the contradictory form al logic of Deconstructivism. Leibniz and the Berooue» Deleuze submits a set of Baroque traits that stretching outside its historical limits are contributing to tile appreciation of contemporary art. Concise Genealogy of the Practice Sophia Vyzoviti Greg Lynn. employing the Baroque as a theoretical tool to analyze contemporary artistic and intellectual movements. In the perspective of a concise genealogy we can consider the Architectural Design Profile. Folding emerged as an architectural discourse aspiring to become the new architecture of the end of the 20th century. Gehry. Ole pliant and the supple'. The fold. 'where thlngs tend to adhere to'. Considering them crucial for the understanding of the evolution of the discourse on the fold into a practice of folding architecture these traits are summarized: :1. titled - 'Architectural curvilinearity . New-Modernism and Regionalrsrn.Folding Architecture. draws philosophical substance from the work of Deleuze. Folding in Architecture. Forms of viscosity and pliability are considered its new instruments: forms that are sticky and flexible.31 . and includes among othe rs Cobb. Etymologically relating complexity with pliancy'. at that time recent English translation.the folded. a concept demonstrated with analogues from geology as mineral sedimentation. As a paradigm for geometry of multiple probable relations Lynn introduces the supple topological surface of Rene Thorn's catastrophe graph. guest-edited by Greg Lynn. and culinary mixing techniques. 130 In The fold. are irreducible to average points or dimensions but can be determined with precision. introduces folding as a third architectural response to complex and disparate cultural and formal contexts. in his contribution to the above issue. Kipnis. Folding' In Arcintecturei its earJy manifesto. operating neither by conflict and contradiction as Deconstruction nor by unity and reconstruction as Neo-Classicm. For Lynn curvilinearilty is the formal language of 'pliant architecture'. working beyond addition by smooth layering. a radical understanding of Leibniz.

the facade and the closed room. Textures: as resistance of the material. projective and infinite variation.a continuous variation of matter as a continuous development of form. The inside and the outside: the infinite fold separates or' moves between matter and soul. In this frame Cache argues for a new definition of the technological object. In S. Koolhaas uses the metaphor of the 'the social magic carpet' addressing the continuous floor surface of the building. 133 . The design exemplifies architecture neglecting tile idea of the facade. the "objectile ' as all event-assuming place in a continuum by variation where industrial automation or serial macnmertes replace stamped forms.5-meter human occupation heightconstraint whi'le instigating a flaneurie through the library interior.pubHslled in 1995 Bernard Cache proposes to re-detlne architecture as a folded practice of interior and exterior relations and as the art of the frame. 6. not how to conclude but how to continue. The fold: the infinite work in process. 2. producing a continuous path.XL6 the paperfold is not only illustrated as a concept model but also introduced into the practice as a new architectural strategy and imagery.L. all programmatic e'ernems' thus transforming the library experience into that of an urban landscape.M. Cache sets the conditions for the new in architecture by the 'inflection image' focusing on furniture as hinge between geography and architecture. Quoting his student Bernard Cache.:S". The floors slabs are sloped to coincide with the superceding and underlying ones. 'a warped interior boulevard that exposes and relates. The paradigm: tile told of the fabric must not conceal its formal expression. The unfold: not as the contrary to the fold but as the continuation ofthis act 5. to bring to infinity. Deleuze regards inflection as the ideal generic element of the variable curve of the fold. In this competition entry for the public library on the university campus folding is employed both as organizational diagram and a spatial device that produces density. he defines the point of inflection as an 'intrinsic singularity' involving three transformations: vectorial. rather concentrating on the floor as a catalyst of spatial connectivity and social interaction. the inside and the outside. 132 Perhaps the most influential unexecuted project of the 90's and probably the earliest to transcribe Deleuzian traits in an architectural design are 2 Bibliotheques at Iussieu. Paris by OMA in 1993. Folding as a spatial device abolishes the 2. The high and the low: being divided into folds. the fold greatly expands on both sides thus connecting the high and the low. This new status of the object no longer refers to a spatial mould but to a temporal modulation that implies as much the beginnings of .1. In Earth moves: the furnishing of territorir. the way a material is folded constitutes its texture. 3. 4.

Utrecht 1997. including zones of predictability of activities as in Thorn's catastrophe curves that are constrained by percentage of inclination and material texture. Virilio claims tile origins of the theory of the oblique in his Childhood explorations.< habitable surface and circulation to become one continuous space. cannot be exactly defined but require a geometry of multiple probable relations. an angular plane . Kunsthall. Paul vlrillo and Claude Parent published in 1. spawning a series of single surface projects in a generation of architects worldwide. The oblique plane. a central facility shared by the faculties of the 135 that constitutes the 'third spatial possibility for architecture' subverting the norms of horizontal and vertical oriented space. by a kind of eroticization of the ground. 'Architecture will no longer be dominated by the visual. as third axis in the Euclidean system. The allocation of human activities on sequences of oblique surfaces.. The oblique plane alters the relationship of space and weight: gravity affects perception since 'the individual will always be in a state of resistancewhether accelerating as going down or slowing down as climbing up. The continuous slopped surface evolves within OMA's practice into the folded floor.966 Architecture Principe. Since an exhaustive enumeration of such designs would exceed the limits of a concise survey only a few references will proceed. comprises a knot of paths. The Jussieu library project fertilizes tile folding discourse into archltecturai practice. a series of architectural and urban manifestos. The oblique is idealized as the field where the corrupted by the static architecture of horizontal-vertica I 1 ntense spati al percepti on Is re-gal ned. passers by and vehicles. offers the opportunity for 134 . admittedly a prolific decade in respect to folding. Here Vlrll!o develops the theory of the 'oblique function'. of the most fertfie concepts in the evolution of innovative Architecture in the nineties. whereas when one walks on a horizontal plane weight is nl1'7. but will relate to the human body as a receptive totality'.Investigating the origins of Jussieu's continuous sloped floors we should acknowledge as precedents Virilio's concepts of the oblique ground and habitable circulation. The folded concrete floor manifests tectonic mastery in the Educatorium. The oblique plane Is considered the instigator of a tactile relationship / . Interiors of upturned or tilted bunkers on the coast of Normandy provided his first experiences of 'unstable spaces'. ~--- " --« between building and body primarily activated by disequilibrium. Particularly in the Netherlands the oblique floor acquires tectonic substance in a number of projects becoming a simulation of a landscape. circulation spaces involving different kinds of movement: exhibition visitors. The oblique plane as habitable circulation will prove to be one. the tacade. Rotterdam 1993.

The bicycte-ttei or fietsf/at in Dutch designed by Amsterdam based VMX Architects in 1998 and completed construction in 2001.''' Despite this. Red asphalt will be laid over the slopes like a carpet. whose presence supports VirHio's claim for inhabitable circulation as an instigator of social interacti on. consisting of a continuous strip unfolding in length to 110 meters. the otcycte-ttet hosts a number of other visitors: touri sts. even though staircases are here and there. A reference to the work of Diller + Scoffidio serves as an ideal introduction here. Once inside. by installing temporary storage for 2500 bicycles.University of Utrecht. Besides the mass of commuters.visitors glide into the building.25 meters a system of slopes (3 degrees) has been created on which the bicycles can be stored. Vehicular movement as an overriding architectural program is the ideal brief for a folded organization. the building in its performance appears to be transgressing thelnfrastructural efficiency of the bicyclestorage to become a new kind of public space and a contemporary icon for the city of Amsterdam.' B If we consider flow as a prerequisite of a continuous surface. The architects state that the design is based on a very functional storage: 'Using the existing height difference along the station square of 1. Bicycles can be staltsd on both sides of the track. is hard to tell where the exterior ends and the interior begins. three lellel self·supporting. Passing through doors without noticing the transition. fi I mm akers and brnx-freestylers. Described by Bart Lootsma 'the Educatoriutn brings about an entirely new k. Short cuts tor going up do exist in a number of bicycle stairs. is conceived as a continuous-enfolded bicycle path. one does not observe any staircases or even thresholds. but undoubtedly cyclists will prefer to go down using the ramp. but chiefly by the sculptural form of the slopes. another paradigm Of the oblique continuous plane as a superseding architectural element would be b icycte parking. of inhabitable circulation. VMX architects proposed c. Avoiding repeated reference to the car. movement is imperceptible from one level to another. The expression of the building will be made by an efficient detailing and material choice. a new notion will be exemplified further through the folded texture: the fabric revealing its form.ind of spatial experience in which. a major feature of folding architecture. where vertical distance to be bridged Is sufficient to warrant one. de-mountable structure 136 . the Amsterdam municipality decided to free the entrance plaza of its Central Railway Station from the mass of bicycles. 137 the garage as well as the Guggenheim Museuln of Modern Art would qualify as architectural prototypes. Having elaborated on the continuous oblique surface. In the process of infrastructure upgrading.

film and moving image art. is organized by the layering and interlacing of paths. The new Eyebeam building will house a museum of art and. neglecting its symbolic presence as a gate. 139 . Museum of Art and Technology in New York 10 completed in 2002 the folded strip is deployed both as spatial and organizational diagram. The pleated section of the Eyebeam building computes. It has been described by the architects as ' . The final reference in this survey embraces an emergent architectural paradigm of a folded organization. technology. The facility will provide unprecedented production and exhibition opportunities for artists exploring new media in video. OVO production. The building's formal determination manifests a topological surface concept in sequences of inclined curvilinear spaces that accomplish smooth transitions between programmatic elements. The structural and construction principles intensify the overriding spatial concept by assigning the origami folded steel plate as the structural principle thus dernollsnlng the traditional separation between building envelope and structure. 138 In their 1995 winning international competition entry. visitors. considering the projects scale and influence: the Port Terminal at Yokohama Osanbashi Pier.In Bad Press folding materializes as a process resulting in the re-contiguration of the masculine shirt as a critique to standardization and a subversion of the constitution of contemporary self-image.. education center. passengers. vehicles and luggage. The urban proposal introduced the continuous ground as a mechanism for the penetration of urban space on the terminal's roof and an instigator of a public space at the interface of terminal functions and city events. installation. artist-in-residence studios. consisting of a bundle of diffuse and directed movement including the flows of citizens. 20/30 digital imaging. completed in 2002 by Foreign Office Architects. The cruise terminal program. into an intelligent architectural smoothly layered skin. de-codifying the rituals of travel and a functional structure which becomes the mould of an a-typological public space. The double folded strip displays the buildings formal cietermination. a landscape with no instructions of occupation'u. It is a plexus of technological infrastructures and their interfaces. a publ ic space that wraps arou nd the termina I. net art and sound and performance art forms. state-of-the-art Theater and digital archive. it provides the interface for the digital media space and encloses its supporting Infrastructures. Yokohama Port Terminal. architects Alejandro Zaera-Polo and Farshid Moussavl dellverecla single surface prototype where folding traits permeated all scales of the design. multi-media classrooms. in the winning competition entry for Eyebeam..

Curviliniarity: inflection. the fishbone pattern is the origin of the folded plate In conclusion. A series of alternative structural prototypes where developed before resolving to the combination of girders and a folded plate structure . Folding Architecture . manifested tectonic properties and can be delivered now as design knowledge. and non Euclidean geometries Warping of surfaces 4. Multiplicity: the object as a plexus of elements. This genealogy has. omitted a line of work intersecting Deleuzian discursive traits with computer generated design. obliqueness. Stratification: layering and interfacing between contradicting architectural factors 5. The attributes of the new architectural object emergent in the re-detinltion of the practice are contended below in a set of propositions: visible on the roof of the terminal's halls. As Alejandro Zaera-Polo states 'the structural development of the project has become the main source of Ideas for its implementation and a trail of discovery that reaches far beyond the images that have become the better known side of the project'».During the seven years implementation period of the project the stress has shifted towards research based construction pragmatics. potential i nteractivity 3. Continuity: topological properties organizational principles of surfaces and 6.. Given the opportunity of an extensive survey an update on the recent work of Bernard Cache and Greg Lynn would be fundamental. The traits introduced by Deleuze stimulated the thlnking of a generation of architects. An origami archetype. Extension: the object as an infinite series. 140 1. Thus the structural pattern extends til rough an infinite series of variability. Even though the fishbone comprises a regular generic structure. narrowing tile perspective to end of 20tl1 century techniques. constantly varying in a lesser degree. The purpose of this survey was to ground the studio research Folding as a Morphogenetic Process in Archftectural Design in a theoretic and professional framework. every unit in the specific folded plate is differentiated. the geometry of the pattern is tangential to the circles regulating the complex curvilinear girders. Fluidity: interlacement of boundaries. fuzzy demarcations and zones of probability 141 . Research on engineering processes in different levels was conducted in collaboration with Japan based SGD engineers. Consequently the fold has acquired architectural substance. however. Following the terminal's geometric guidelines that are themselves inflected. serial variability 2.Concise Genealogy of the Practice has registered the effect of the discourse of the fold in the practice of architecture focusing on a small number of landmark projects that have essentially contributed to its evolution in the 10 years following 1993. Origami structure can be appreciated as regional reference supporting 'tile introduction of context as a process of material organization rather than image'.

TM fold. 4 5 complex and rnultlptlcrtous 10 name a few. & Bruce Mau. 2002 www_eyebeam. Tom Conley. Thames and Hudson. 1995 'Roller coaster construction'. describe nus emerging urban sensibility Ibid.g. . 1993 Gilles DeleUle. Given the fact that a new of architects is being educated on the foundation of discourse we can only expect an even more rigorous innovative performance in the future.XL. A multiple plaited. Deleuze and the re-definition of the practice.. Academy Edltions. 3 lbtd. LOMon.53. the pliant and the supple' possible between dlfferentiated comptlcrt. 2000 Netherlands tnstttute. 1995 K. complicated. context flexible. Anne 8oyman. 'Folding in Architecture'. supple.L. 'The unforeseen programs 'tactlcs. 2001 boog_azlne.ootsrna. London. Ilexible and ojtan cunning are involved with the haterogeneltles.rilio. 'Fresh facts'.. pleated. Gilles Deleuze. the folded. pliancy.can be evoked to of lntenslve connections. progr-ammatic and pliant. !leibnlz an. New Provisional 1995 Archltecture 010 publishers. cornpucttous. 1993. placating. Earth moves: tile fu m i sh lng of te rrltorles. Rotterdam. Actar. by atigning formal flexibility with economic. YDn.1 Speaks. connections and the Ba'oque. as an alternative title which may further research presented in this essay Folding Architecture Genealogy of the Practice. (p_ll) compliant. ·ed. the .Park eds. Barcelona. architects require concllietory. vol. Utopias.o. 6 7 Rem Koolhaas. trans. 1988 Greg Lynn.. Micllil.13 . complaisant. and 8 9 10 11 12 8art l."rokoharnalnternatlonal Port Terrnlnal'. lalbniz Le PIi:' Leibnlz et Ie baroque. 1. 'Arctutectural curvilihearltysites and alien Orlglnallv publlsheo In french as Archi1ectural Design. and differences pliant.d tile Baroque Bern ard C at he.. S.By which I can submit the fold. Rotterdam. 'Paul Virlllo and the Oblique'.-nuseumjarcll_lltml Foreign Office Architects M Files 1l029. an interview in Sites and Stations· Lusltanla Press. The Athlone P'ess.M. London. Presently numerous discontinuities structural inherent within any cultural and pbysical of pll based words-totoec.' trans. Landon. 1995 Massachusetts Institute of Technology. in Archltecture'. Allen with Paul V.Concise generation this and Footnotes 1 2 'Folding. SUPERDUTCH. S. The fold. Enrique Li'mon. verb_architecture Alejandro Zaera-Polo.

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