Elizabeth Hillier

358446 Architecture Design Studio: Air Semester 1, 2012


“Sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”
Arthur C Clark Hazards of Prophecy: The Failure of Imagination


Image courtesy Shawn Knol http://www.todayandtomorrow.net/2009/04/28/ferrofluid/ Ferro fluid, otherwise known as liquid magnet, is made of nanoscale ferromagnetic particles that react to a magnetic field.


Part I: Expression of Interest 4-9 10-13 14-17 18-23 24-27 28-31 32-35 36-39 Part II: Project Proposal 40-47 48-55 56-59 60-65 66-69 Part III: Learning Outcomes 70-73 Advancing Architectural Discourse Parametric Design Scripting Design Project: Cut Reverse Engineering Responding to a Brief Development of Ideas EOI: Wyndham Gateway Project Responding to Feedback Further Refinement Fabrication Photography Final Presentation Reflection 3



Architecture as an “urban experience”

The New York High Line

Situated above the streets of Manhattan, the New York High Line is built on an historic freight line. This public space allows pedestrians to move over the city and its traffic in peaceful park surrounds. I was intrigued by Georg Simmel’s views on the effect that urban spacial conditions may have on human behaviour, “where the perception of city life is consciously dulled due to the city’s multitude of sensations”. The High Line is an antidote to this by somewhat acknowledging the fact and providing a refuge for its inhabitants. The obviously much-loved greenery is complemented by rusty steel columns that support the structure and has been described as “one of the most innovative and inviting public spaces in New York City and perhaps the entire country.” Paul Goldberger (National Geographic). I hope to achieve a similar human interaction with my approach to the gateway project. ●○


Architecture as a “sign”

City of Wine Complex
Frank Gehry
Frank Gehry’s architecture has prompted much discussion and argument in modern architectural discourse. Would one classify his building’s simply as large works of art? Do his outlandish forms get in the way of other, more important aspects of architecture? Some argue that architecture should not be a representation of a style or asthetisism as this can bring about a lack of utility. As the forms created by him are so different to those seen in everyday life, the viewer can’t help but become involved in it - as though invited to make sense of the strange shape. According to Gehry, all elements of this building represent something, whether it be the colours of wine flowing from the roof, or the silver wrapping that covers a cork. This particular example is contributing to the discourse of modern architecture. Being so literal in my design would definitely be a more obvious way of making a connection with the site. Such an approach may also be more suited to the project as I am aiming to create more of a sculptural piece. ●○


Personal Project

Headspace Studio
Virtual Environments
This abstract headpiece was constructed of cardboard but designed in Google Sketchup. It was interesting to consider the program as something that could create a 3D object in the “real world” as I had never completed a fabrication process such as this. Although capable of producing 3D models, Sketchup is merely for computerization of an existing design as there are no parametrics involved. This is as opposed to “computation”, which creates a design out of parameters rather than someone’s personal taste. It is advancing architectural discourse in its own right as it has created an easier form of communication between (advanced) professionals and (lay) clients. The program is available for free, it is quick to use and can create simple shapes in order convey the basics of an idea. This is unique as the design development stage has become more thorough. The fact that it is available for free as well as in a professional context, has broadened the spectrum of potential designers at different skill levels. ●○


Responding to a brief

Wyndham Gateway
These design methods and ways of thinking will be utilized when putting forward a proposal for the Wyndham City Gateway project. As the structure is to become an icon of the area, there must certainly be a degree of story-telling and the use of architecture as a “sign”. However, it is important for the design to not be too literal. The sculpture will reflect the growth of the region as well as emphasizing it as a destination of the arts. There is also a need to acknowledge the design as something that will not be accessed or experienced directly by its audience, given its position between two major roads. The structure will have to be somewhat monumental in order to make an impression over 30-40 seconds, as commuters move past at 100km/h. Overall, the installation will be welcoming, using its space within the site to create a strong image for Wyndham. ●○


Parametric Design

Unique innovations presented by contemporary computational design techniques


Parametric Design

Adelaide Oval
Cox Architects
Rhino plugin, Grasshopper, was integral in designing the new grandstand for Adelaide Oval. In what would have otherwise become a tedious manual task, Cox Architects easily adjusted parameters in the program to best provide for patrons of the stadium while also meeting cost. As mostly all designs begin on paper, the step to computer aided design is that of computerization. Once the general form and design intent has been established, the finer details are to be “figured out” on the computer. In the case of the Adelaide Oval design process, the Grasshopper plugin was utilized for refining and optimizing the design as opposed to truly “form finding”. With the capacity to then export these files in great detail and in a number of formats, Cox was able to communicate with engineers in a language familiar to them. In this dialogue, structural engineers were then able to feed back into the design process and make recommendations on what was more efficient or financially viable. The use of parametrics literally cut months off the drafting process, as well as saving a lot of money. If I was to test this practice in my approach I could have a more intimate understanding of how my object would be created in the real world. ●○

“The recent addition of computers to the repertoire of means of communication has expanded access to information and opened up the design process for more people to become involved.”
Kalay: Architecture’s New Media


Parametric Design

D’Arcy Thompson
Explorations in form finding
In D’Arcy Thompson’s book “On Growth and Form” he outlines connections he observed between biological forms and mechanical phenomena. He coined this “Evolutionary Design”, and I see many links between this theory and the opinions of Branko Kolarevic.

Parametric Design

Greg Lynn

Explorations in form finding
The use of parametric modelling allows us to “find

form” by means of mathematical limitations and guides, “An organism is so complex a as opposed to just the individual taste of the architect. thing, and growth so complex Professor of Architecture, Greg Lynn, has established this as a phenomenon, that for a true possibility through his works of biomimicry calculations in generating architecture. growth to be so uniform and constant in all the parts as As seen with the Korean Presbyterian Church, forms have to keep the whole shape manifested themselves with the instructions of a program created by the man, rather than being designed by the man directly. unchanged would indeed be an unlikely and an unusual This is not to say that there is no “taste” in the design of the building, as a certain design aesthetic is still implemented through circumstance. Rates vary, the creativity of the architect regarding certain geometries and proportions change, and material selection. the whole configuration Is it possible for a computer to define what is aesthetically pleasing? alters accordingly.”
D’Arcy Thompson

Can scripting lead to “beautiful” design without any human input? These are questions that may lead to even more advanced computational techniques, although the result of which will always be subjective. ●○


Greg Lynn’s Presbyterian Church

Light penetrates to varying degrees



Scripting Cultures

Mark Burry

Programming Architectural Design

To really progress in architectural design, we must not just replace the pen with the computer. A generation of “lay” computer uses are simply utilizing algorithms or scripts that are well established by the program or have been done before. “There seems to be a tendency to swarm towards a particular approach such as generative design using genetic algorithms....” Stock standard program functions and plugins or variables such as sun paths have well-worn processes and are no longer advancing the way we design our buildings. The challenge is to move away from this and know the program so intimately that you are acting as your own “plugin”. We must push the possibilities of existing programs in order to actually progress. What else can be explored as NEW parameters for an algorithm? ●○

“Scripting can refer to higher level programming... as a means to produce manufacturer-independent digital design capability”
Burry: Scripting Cultures


It is not always obvious when a building has been created using this generative scripting. Such processes are sometimes used for more simple calculations regarding: Detailing Space distribution Material efficiency

These aspects are not always obvious and may only be considered as an “extra” understanding of the design - Offering multiple levels of interpretation.


Scripting Cultures

Philips Pavilion

Le Corbusier and Iannis Xenakis

Although it is not a contemporary example of “generative” design. The Philips Electronics Pavilion expresses different ways of approaching design ideas. Designed by Le Corbusier in 1958, he was excited to have the cutting-edge technologies of the Philips Company at his disposal. He designed the interior of the building and enlisted the help of his protege Iannis Xenakis for the exterior. As Xenakis was a composer, he used his in-depth knowledge of music as an “input” for the design of his form. “There is correspondence between musical generative systems and the formation of mathematical series, probabilistic theory and algorithms in other design disciplines.” Being under the guidance of Le Corbusier also resulted in a large mathematical influence. The architecture has a heavy grounding in mathematics and is draws it curves from hyperbolic and parabolic shapes. ●○

“I will not make a pavilion for you but an Electronic Poem and a vessel containing the poem; light, color image, rhythm and sound joined together in an organic synthesis”
Le Corbusier


Scripting Cultures

Iidabashi Subway
Makoto Sei Watanabe
Representing the roots of a plant, these strips or “tubes” of lights begin in the underground station and eventually follow a path that escapes the building. This design was conceived by Makoto Sei Watanabe and although it was made possible by utilizing an existing program, Watanabe adjusted this to his requirements. Rather than purely enlisting computer aided techniques or relying on his own mind’s capacity to generate design ideas, Watanabe has combined both. What has come to be referred to as “controlled unpredictability”, he has created the rule that produces the desired effect - as opposed to simply allowing a complex script to reach an unknown conclusion. ●○



Para- CUT Project:
Using Grasshopper to explore inputs, associations and outputs



Utilizing Grasshopper

A Matrix

Inputs, Associations and Outputs

Create a rectangular plane in Rhino This is then referenced as a SURFACE in Grasshopper


The surface can be DIVIDED to create a grid of UV points NUMBER SLIDERS used to adjust number of points in the rows (u) and columns (v) Specify CIRCLES on these points ●○ The circles on the grid are CULLed according to a BOOLEAN pattern (true, true, false) ●○


The IMAGE SAMPLER is used as an association between the inputs and outputs In this case, the radius of the circles is relative to the brightness of the image

U and V sliders can be adjusted to make pattern more or less obvious Slider is also combined with a MULTIPLICATION to adjust outputs of image sampler (radius of the circle) ●○ The circles can be changed to a POLYGON Slider used to adjust number of sides (in this case I have set it to 3 to create triangles) ●○


Polygons are then ROTATED relative to their DISTANCE from attractor POINT (Those further from the point will turn to a greater degree) ●○


By REBUILDing the original plane in Rhino, it is possible to adjust the control points to warp the surface As the pattern is still sitting on the horizontal, it is then aligned with the NORMAL of the surface (the polygon follows the tangent of the curved surface)

While this changes the angle of the polygon, the shape still doesn’t follow the curve exactly We then PROJECT the pattern onto the surface and then BAKE it to be utilized in Rhino ●○


Utilizing Grasshopper

Further Explorations
Inputs, Associations and Outputs

There are many ways in which parametric design can be approached. When considering data inputs, these can become the driver for a design, or simply a constant that is then manipulated through various associations or adjusted by the outputs.

These cuts have been made based on mathematical functions. The functions in this case have two variables and represent the sin, cos, and tan of x. As this is representative of angles, the x value has been remapped to a domain around the value of pi (3.14) REMAP is used to give a set of numbers a different domain DOMAIN specifies the upper and lower extremes (can use sliders if you want this to be variable) ●○



Inputs that source data from text files are very versatile as they can interperet many variables, such as sound waves, environmental factors and customized lists. ●○

The technique used to achieve this effect is CURVE CP. The component finds the closest point - the shortest distance from grid points to any point on the referenced curve. These distances are then remapped and used as the input for the radius of circles. ●○


The extrusion method works in three dimensions as is “pulls” the pattern out of the page. This means it moves along the z plane in reference to the darkness of the image. To find the inverse I used a negative of the image. Mad Max is a relevant input as the iconic film was shot along this same stretch of road. ●○


Based on a grid, these circles are then rotated out of position by the ROTATE component. A number slider is adjusted to change the degree of rotation along the plane. Although this is a very interesting effect it would not necessarily be a realistic cut, as there are many overlapping lines that would produce a different outcome. ●○


Reverse Engineering
Applying Grasshopper skils with a design objective


Utilizing Grasshopper

Reverse Engineering
Spanish Pavilion, Expo 2005
Designed by Foreign Offices Architects for EXPO 2005 in Japan, The Spanish Pavilion’s facade is constructed of a hexagonal tesselation, repeated across its steel frame. This exercise required us to effectively rebuild a design with techniques available to us in Grasshopper. Although a regular hexagonal grid is easily generated as a Grasshopper component, it was difficult to control the rotation or warped appearance of individual parts. We experimented with multiple attempts that achieved varied success. ●○

Subdivided surface and referenced each point with its own plane. Allocating a polygon to each point, their planes were rotated. Repeated process with Polygons of a smaller radius.

A similar rotated plane was applied to a regular hex grid. Extra set of polygons allocated with smaller radius. These were then exploded according to a graph component.


After these unsuccessful attempts, we needed to analyse the design detail more closely. As the motif is constructed of a repeated tesselation, it was necessary to adjust a few points in the original set of six hexagons. In some cases however, adjusting one point required the replacement of three vertices, as it was the point at which three independent hexagons met. The main processes learnt and undertaken in this “rebuild” were that of sorting, culling and moving individual points in an existing grid. These points then replaced the original vertices on the hexagon and were re-joined with a closed polyline. ●○

It was most important to first gain control of these individual points, then it was only a matter of moving these along the desired vector. Once this had been completed for one polygon, another was located and adjusted along the same path. Once the initial hexagons had been adjusted to the desired shape, they were then Offset to a small degree, to create an identical polygon of a smaller size. ●○


Utilizing Grasshopper

Reverse Engineering
Spanish Pavillion, Expo 2005

As we had created a tesselation, this motif could be repeated any number of times to create the large-scale pattern.


Responding to a Brief
Explorations responding to the Wyndham Gateway Project



Utilizing Grasshopper

Application of Brief

Inputs, Associations and Outputs

With a need to apply a growing skillset to a real-world situation, I began using more relevant inputs in my design explorations. A population density map of Melbourne has been chosen as an input through the image sampler. It is interesting to look at the areas of Weribee and Wyndham compared with the rest of the city. As this data is dated 2006, I would like to find a more recent map to gage the growth of the area. ●○

>> Size of polygons relative to brightness of the sourced map Polygons spin at an increased degree the further they are from Wyndham!


>> Data-driven rotation used to displace points within the urban area. This could represent movement and activity. Cropping the original map allowed me to focus on the immediate area of the site and use population density of Wyndham and Weribee. To obtain a more graduated difference between “populated” and “nonpopulated” areas I adjusted the source image. I think the use of triangles is also interesting as they could represent the expanding boundaries in every direction. There were many iterations in this process that proved to be unsuitable for consideration as they were either too populated or unrationalized. In the case of the latter, many “cuts” crossed over one another creating an unfeasible design solution. ●○


Developing Ideas
Combining cut with form


Working with the ideas we had generated from inputs of GROWTH and data maps, our group was interested in ways of expressing this through form also. Interested in concepts of CHANGE OVER TIME, perceived volume and illusion, we experimented with planar forms and how they would be perceived from different angles.

The idea of MOVEMENT was also a driving factor behind our concepts, exploring how a static form could potentially have more of a DYNAMIC appearance.

Our aim was to create an intrinsic link between the cuts and form, with the possibility of developing something ANIMORPHIC. ●○


Design Development


Architecture as sign and illusion
Guangzhou Opera House Zaha Hadid


Guangzhao has been an industrial and trade city up until present, with the aim of the project to create a building that represented the increasing culture of Guangzhou Wyndham, like Guangzhou is currently increasing in culture and the Gateway needs to show this. The Gateway is the first thing people will see when driving into Wyndham and therefore must create the right impression of the area with its sense of monumentality.

Nigel Peck Centre for Learning and Leadership John Wardle Architects


The sign is an abstracted unfolding world sphere. The form of this is particularly interesting as it appears to change as one walks past it. Like this sign, the gateway is aimed at symbolizing Wyndham and signify entering/exiting Wyndham.

Nuit Blanche Festival Installation Robert Stadler

The installation appears to change depending on what angle is it viewed from. Relating this to the Wyndham project, the aim is to create a moment of animorphism, where seeming random cuts align to create the appearance of a consistent image. ●○
Extracted from ABS website: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@. nsf/Products/3218.0~2010- plane.



Design Development

Cuts relating to form

Multiple cuts were chosen and applied to different surfaces to gain an understanding of what had the greatest effect. Low lighting was then applied to achieve the shadows, appearing to manipulate how the form was perceived.

Two distinctly different cuts were applied to surfaces depending on their orientation, with an idea that point of view will determine the perforation seen, as well as a seemingly different form.



Expression of Interest
Wyndham Gateway Project


Expression of Interest

Wyndham City Gateway

In approaching the Wyndham Gateway project, we aimed to produce a monumental landmark as well as providing an experience for passers-by. With ideas of illusion, movement and the influence of urban growth, w achieved a successful combination of form and cut. Bringing these ideas together, we created a sculpture that provides many contrasting viewpoints and interpretations. On approach to the site, a signifier of Wyndham is clearly seen as a dominant figure in the landscape. This seemingly one-dimentional form could be viewed as a ‘welcome’, ‘crown’ or ‘ka-pow!’

Once the commuter has moved to the side of the sculpture, it appears flat, and what looked to be random cuts, align to form a consistent penetration through the form. Although this is momentary, the effect will create a special even for those who see it. Once moving away, the commuters may notice a quite dynamic object that continues to extend as each angle changes. ●○
>>The interesting shadows created by the dynamic form and cuts create a perfect subject for postcards and advertising schemes.


Approach: Monumental entrance Experience: Growth (exponential) Past: Movement Our aim to express a change over time is successful given the three distinct viewpoints and is made even more special by the animorphic alignment of cuts.

The combination of form and cut also inspires multiple levels of interpretation. While the viewer admires and experiences the sculpture’s form, there is further opportunity to understand the triangular cuts and their reflection of the growth in Wyndham’s urban density.

>>Imagery of the sculpture translates well in a logo context. Used to identify Wyndham in official documentation, promotional material or local communications, it is simple yet bold and attractive.


Responding to Feedback
Expanding and refining original design



Further development

Expanding an idea
Wyndham City Gateway

Expanding on feedback gained in the crit we concluded that the design needed to become more monumental through creating a less specific form. Given the large size of the site, there is considerable scope for either repetition or extrusion of the existing design. Other adjustments under consideration are that of developing an experience that is more than fleeting. There is the possibility of creating multiple experiences or an elongated feedback from the structure. ●○

>> “Growing” the structure to reach over the road was one of the first steps taken in creating a continued experience and fully utilizing the site.


New Elements

Combining concepts
Sketch ideas

After repeating this new form, we adjusted alignment and width of the bands to create a more dynamic structure. Interested in the idea of creating an element of continuity, we explored extrusions and perforations throughout the panels. Placed at the eye height of passers by, these elements will provide a separate experience from that of the monumental sculpture seen on approach. With ideas of natural growth such as veins or tree roots, continuous extruded lines would multiply as the car passes. ●○




>> Different possibilities of how these options would be fabricated.


>> Number of curves and “charge” points can be adjusted as an input to this component. ●○

New Elements

Flow Lines Plugin
Utilizing Grasshopper
In order to acheive the growth in irregulaity of our form, we implemented the use of a Grasshopper plugin FLOWLINES. This component provides a simulation of magnetically “charged” points and adjusts the surrounding curves accordingly. By increasing the charge of these points with a number slider, this example also displays a link with growth as the progressive arrangement of curves can be interpereted as cells multiplying. ●○

>> A sketch of a more refined idea and the detail of ribs to be viewed at eye height.


New Elements

Developing the form
Curves created with Flow Lines were baked and size was inverted to achieve desired appearance of “Growth”. Once adjusted to sizes consistent with our design they were then spaced and re-scaled according to projected lines form a point. In simulating the viewpoint of approach on the road, we created a form that appeared as one mass but in fact is broken into parts ●○


New Elements

Fabricating an Idea
Three panels were fabricated in order to “prove” the success of the animorphic form. Ways in which this could be improved is eliminating the any non-morphing panels and ensuring that the expanding arches do not move too far from the side of the road. We must ensure the height allows for safe passage of trucks as well providing a continued experience for commuters. ●○


2.7mm Plywood was laser cut and glued together to create the model. Although it is beautiful, we were advised against producing our final model in this way as it is not indicative of the true construction method.


Further Refinement
Expanding and refining original design





Defining Inputs

Location Driven


Directly building on our previous design attempt, we continued to utilize and develop our skill with Grasshopper plugin Flow Lines a component that allowed us to create 2D equipotential lines. By gaining a greater understanding of the required inputs and what they could achieve, we customized our own script. By referencing the points of key locations, we were then able control the amount of “charge” each of these points had. As seen in the diagram below, this can be easily controlled by a simple number slider. The “charge” up until this point can not be seen, unless we provide additional reference points that dictate the position of curves around the charge points. These curves create a closed loop around the set and provide us with many varied shapes.

>> The CHARGE POINTS for our Grasshopper script were determined by the locations of Geelong, Wyndham and Melbourne.



Obtaining Curves
Location Driven

With this knowledge, we set out to create a set of curves that would reference each location. As the commuter is travelling from the direction of Geelong these are the first charge points to be increased, thus warping the curves “towards” that location. To create the desired emphasis, the charges of Wyndham and Melbourne are minimized for this set. The steps are repeated for Wyndham and Melbourne, with an inner and outer curve selected for each. These curves will provide the basis of our design and we require an inner and outer layer to create depth.




The set of curves were then converted into arches by splitting them with a common ground line. They were also rescaled to achieve consistent heights and widths.



Composing the Form
A Design Matrix

Once we had achieved our desired set of “base curves”, we had to rescale the arches to fit within the boundaries of the site. A width of approximately 30 metres was required to span the road, and a minimum height of 6 metres to allow for passing traffic. These were then lofted to create a fluid structure that morphed at the desired points.

A series of extruded curves were then added to the internal surface of this structure. We named this element the “veins” as they were in keeping with the organic nature of the design intent and they are present throughout. This detail provides an added experience for the commuter as they are placed at the eye height.

With our tunnel complete, we then divided the structure into strips. This was in order to achieve the appearance of individual roots rising out of the ground (as explored in earlier iterations). This approach also allows for a greater experience of the immediate surrounds, providing views of local scenery. ●○



Problems Encountered

To avoid unfolding an element that curved in two directions it was important to rationalize the panels between arches. In order to do this, we used the Rhino command DUPBORDER to duplicate the new outline of the element and then re-lofted each one individually. Although this eliminates any curve seen from the side of the sculpture, the form still retains its fluid appeal as the arches it spans between are constantly changing. ●○

>> We decided against unfolding these to fabricate as the scored card would not be as smooth as hand-cut strips.

The application of veins to the structure was a lengthy process that had much room for error. As the base structure is a shape that constantly shifts, it was difficult to create a continuous surface for the veins to sit flush with. This required individual placement of many of the “veins”, which were then lofted separately to the undulating internal surface. ●○




Finalized Design

Wyndham Gateway Proposal




As Wyndham grows both as a municipality and

The final design spans the true turnoff to Wyndam as well as the Princes Highway. Using this site, the drivers of our design are the locations of Geelong, Wyndham and Melbourne, which directly references the journey of each commuter. Using these points, we created individual curves with the locations acting as charges that grow and distort the form along 130m of the site. This dynamic object is divided into strips, allowing for a continued view of surrounds, rather than “shutting” the commuter in, as a tunnel would. The gateway is finished with internal “veins” that heighten the experience for those passing through, providing a sense of movement and continuity along each of the elements.

as a cultural centre, awareness of it has begun to flourish, thus creating the need for a long lasting urban signifier. This design achieves a combination of sophisticated urban design and innovative computational techniques. Created by exploring the meeting point between place and form, the design will enrich the surrounding landscape through its stylish response to the brief as a sculptural gateway.


Realizing the design through the construction of physical models



Construction Process

1. 200UB Steel portal frame

with pad footing.

As the gateway is located in an open area with plenty of available space, it is possible for the sculpture to be constructed on site without the need for large prefabricated parts. This is an advantage as it allows the individual construction elements to be easily delivered to the site on trucks and minimizes any interruption to traffic during construction. ●○

Steel portal frame is fully erected, being bolted together on site.


3. 100mm light-gauge steel

(at 1500mm centres) brace steel portal frame.

4. Exterior cladding of steel

ribs added and are bolted to steel portal frame.

>> A 1:20 scale construction model that displays the method of production and composition of the structure.

Rigid steel ties at 600mm centres supports internal metal cladding load.


6. Aluminium internal metal

cladding added, including external ‘vein’ details.



Construction Process
1:100 model


Super glue

2mm black acrylic sheet 250 GSM grey card embossing metal super glue


Once the design had been finalized, each arch was flattened onto a horizontal plane and labeled as either the front or back of each panel. Nested onto pages that corresponded to the dimensions of our chosen material - Black acrylic. Individual elements were then laser cut to achieve highest accuracy. In pairs, these arches were glued together with strips of card, with the width of the card determining the width of the panel. Strips of malleable metal were cut to these same dimensions with the added detail of the “veins” and then clad the inside of each arch.

Moulded embossing metal


8B 6B 9B 2B 5B 3B 4F 10B 11B


Laser cut black acrylic sheet


>> The card acted as a backbone for the structure, to which the soft metal sheeting was then applied.

>> The use of different materials added to the model’s texturality, enabling a more realistic representation of the structure’s appearance. It is evident in this photograph that panels without the metal cladding are far less prominent.

>> A 1:500 model was also produced to be placed on a larger site model.



Depicting the model in different lights and contexts



>> Photomontage of model in context The texturality of our model enabled us to shoot it in many different light conditions to great effect. As the metal sheeting is fairly indicative of how the sculpture would interact with its true setting of the highway, natural daylight and dim lighting were especially telling of its performance as a gateway.



As the design does not include any lighting of its own, it is important to demonstrate that the gateway will become a feature in the headlights of passers-by.



A long exposure of three seconds enabled these photographs to capture a light moving through the model at high speed Indicative of headlights passing through the sculpture



Final Presentation
Wyndham Gateway Proposal


Right 1:200

Left 1:200


As Wyndham grows, both as a municipality and as a cultural centre, awareness of it has begun to flourish, thus creating the need for a long lasting urban signifier. This design achieves a combination of sophisticated urban design and innovative computational techniques. Created by exploring the meeting point between place and form, the design will enrich the surrounding landscape through its stylish response to the brief as a sculptural gateway.




SITE 1:1000


1. 200UB Steel portal frame, with pad footing. 2. Steel portal frame is fully erected, being bolted together on site. 3. 100mm light-gauge steel (at 1500mm centres) brace steel portal frame.

4. Exterior cladding of steel ribs added, and are bolted to steel portal frame. 5. Rigid steel ties at 600mm centres supports internal metal cladding load.


Front 1:200

6. Aluminium internal metal cladding added, including external ‘vein’ details.

Hillier, Hodge + Innes WYNDHAM GATEWAY PROPOSAL to the panel >> The final presentation made

Back 1:200


by our team Hillier, Hodge & Innes



Learning objectives and outcomes



Learning Outcomes
Parametric Design

this semester has been nothing short of phenomenal. Beginning with not even knowing what the term “parametric design” meant, to using such techniques to develop a sophisticated response to a real-world brief.

The amount of knowledge and skill I have developed I found my experiences in FlowLines to be a great

During early feedback with my tutor, I expressed my interest in ferro fluid and how I thought it related closely to the topic of parametric design. Otherwise known as liquid magnets, it is made of nanoscale ferromagnetic particles that react to a magnetic field. I found it interesting as when a part of the substance moves within a magnetic field it creates a chain reaction through the liquid that then morphs the form as a whole. It bears a strange resemblance to the method of scripting in programs like Grasshopper, and proved to be the main inspiration behind my designs. Keen to contribute, my tutor instantly recommended downloading FlowLines as a plugin for Grasshopper. It allows the user to implement components that create 2D equipotential lines, effectively creating curves according to the magnetic charges of reference points.

example of what was discussed in week three’s topic of “Scripting Design”. Like Makoto Sei Watanabe’s Iidabashi Subway Station, our group used an existing Grasshopper plugin and tailored it to our design intent. As we had a general idea of what we wished to achieve, yet still wanted the design to work within the bounds of the program’s parameters, it was a case of somewhat “controlled unpredictability”. This created a form that was unique and organic in nature – something that our own minds were unlikely to conceive. After weeks spent immersed in the program, I feel that I not only comprehend the components of Grasshopper, but am able to combine and manipulate them with a desired design intent. ●○

>> Early experiments with the FlowLines plugin



Future Learning
Parametric Design

field of sustainable design, I see a lot of scope for such programs and scripts to be used in the future.

As one of my main passions in architecture is in the

In the way that Greg Lynn’s design of the Korean Presbyterian Church correlates to the amount of light penetrating the building, there are any number of variables that can be taken into account. A more relevant example includes conceptual designs by Federico Rossi who has designed small units for the harsh climate of Oman. Such aims are to increase wall thickness in high temperatures and create shade depending on the positioning of the sun. Although this design is purely conceptual in its current stage, it’s an exciting look at what might be possible in future. The organic and unpredictable nature of such designs seem innately “natural” to me, and if able to harness accurate environmental variables and inputs, I imagine the possibilities to be astounding.

“Through the accumulation of independent variables into a system of relationships, interdependencies generate a variation of possibilities that are able to adapt to local conditions”
Federico Rossi

<< Sustainable parametric units designed by Federico Rossi




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