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Module I

Claire Gabriel 584657 Semester Two Group 4

Figure 1&2 Brain Coral

“There is no universal theory of pattern formation in nature. Nonetheless, it has proven possible to identify many common principles, such as the universality of certain basic forms (hexagons, stripes, branches, fractal shapes, spirals)� -Phillip Ball

Above: I began exploring with different panel textures inspired by the aesthetics of coral. Initial ideas included linking together honey comb shapes.

Left inspired from the reading by Ball and the week 1 lecture, I begun thinking of natural patterns and processes. One of the first patterns that came to mind was coral inspired from a recent trip to the Great Barrier Reef. Coral with its wondrous colourful masses and branches, and their skeletal like forms have always interested me. I begun to do some initial research and found the coral process particularly interesting. Process of coral growth > As the lava produced by mature coral it rises to the top of the sea and then floats back down again to where it will begin growing. >As the coral grows the polyp divides repeatedly producing more skeleton >The way it divides determines the shape of the new coral environmental factors also effect the shape.

Coral Growth Process Idea Exploration

Below: I explored different ways of representing the coral growth process. Using the paneling ideas from the previous page linking together the honey comb shapes and circles starting in an organized way and progressively becoming more busy. I used a variety of different shapes and then modeled them in a 3d format.

Figure 4; Stalet Coral

Figure 3: Sinosteel International Plaza, MAD Figure 5: Ren Building, Copenhagen based group of architects

Above: The designs were inspired by the Honey Comb like Starlet Coral. I think the facades of these structures provide a Dynamic design which I have reflected in my initial design.

Coral Growth Process Idea Exploration

Above: The sketches above explore coral further, they look at the texture of the coral but in an abstract way.

There are certain limitations associated with this concept. The design can be perceived to literally and abstracting the idea of the coral growth process can be difficult.

Above: Snake inspired concept by students. Although the building is not inspired by coral it has many qualities similar to coral.

Coral Growth Process Idea Exploration

Second Concept “Diffusion is the passive movement of molecules or particles along a concentration from a region of high concentration to a region of low concentration� World Book

I was drawn to the diffusion because of its flowy, yet abstract shapes the natural process creates. The patterns diffusion creates have a sense of energy and movement about them. Diffusion is similar to growth the molecules are placed in the water and then grow and eventually blend as one. From the moment the diffusion begins a series of magical patterns form. With their abstract quality there are 100s of photographs taken of the moment other forms of art are as bellow.

Water Diffusion Idea Exploration


The qualities of pattern of diffusion were difficult to transfer into 3d modeling. I played around with a series of different paneling but I think I need to spend more time exploring ways of illustrating this concept as I still feel it has a lot more to offer.

Above: Is titled throwing curves, the artist was inspired from the rhythmic qualities of water diffusion


The changing flowing shapes inspired me and I found projects which have used the flowing abstract shapes that give you a sense of movement. The process of modeling such a shape using the Rhino software and Paper Lantern would be very complex and I did not want to compromise the flow and delicate effect that the diffusion process has.

Water Diffusion

Idea Exploration

After reviewing many natural visible process I begun deconstructing what a process actually is.

“A series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end” Oxford Dictionary I began looking at processes that aren’t visible but occur naturally such as the replication of DNA . My third concept for my design was inspired by the biological shape formation and process of DNA. The concept of DNA is a continuation of my research of the coral growth process. DNA is the a self replicating material that is found in all living organisms

Above: The twisting of the DNA provides a blended layering formed by the twisting of entire facades. The twist of the DNA provides an aesthetically pleasing inspiration for my design.


Idea Exploration

Above: Is a design by Yau Shen Chav an English student who designed it for a skyscraper competition in Yen Magazine the design won third place. I appreciate the way the DNA although not that exposed has inspired the design.

Above: Are examples of sketches and various 3d models exploring how DNA can be represented visually.


Conceptual Development

The reading Analytical Drawing explained analytical drawing techniques articulated by Kandinsky. “Investigation of structural relationships around objects� Poling Clark Kandinsky follows a three step process that I have followed to the left and the right. In the example of mountain ranges and an exploration of my idea. Simplify - subordinate both individual parts and the whole complex to represent the whole construction. Analyses - Represent structural tensions in linear forms emphasizing principle tensions with broader lines and colours, indicating the structural networks by meaning of a focal point. Translate - Explore more dramatic differences between forces with primary colours.

Analytical Drawing Conceptual Development

The designer Charles Jenckss is an American theorist, landscape Architect and designer. Because he has worked as a critic and a writer before becoming involved with earth machinery Jencks theory is “ I am aware that they are like giant works of art on a certain level� - Ahead of the Curve 2011 Left: Jenckss background has enabled him to create work like The spiral is a 4.5m tall spiral in galvanized steel representing the DNA double helix. The work strongly reflects the rhythmic qualities of a double helix it also complements the Centre for Life building opposite it. The DNA Spiral is a dazzling futuristic landscape work of art that is completely original. His works are said to be unlike anything else on earth.

The DNA Spiral


Bellow: Is a digital replication of proposed skyscrapers by a Chinese architect, each tower has a helical edge which turns around the tower at a 180 degree angle like a DNA structure.

Above: is of another proposed sky scraper for Bounteous Aires if built this tower would be nearly a 1000 meters high. The building has a eye drawing rhythmic beauty that draws the eye to the point of the design.

Double Helix Inspired Precedents


I decided after much research through precedents to explore the qualities of a split DNA strand. When a DNA strand replicates it splits and the two strands are separated by enzymes. This does not visually happen. I want to represent this natural process visually. Above: Are sketches of how the DNA may split would it open slightly or would it tare open and all spill out? These are different ideas I played with.


Conceptual Development

“DNA replicates and splits when hydrogen bonds between the two nitrogen bases are broken by the enzyme helicase� World Book



Right Side Left Side

Scale Model 1:5

The clay model is a visual representation of the above concept. It uses the analogy of the spiting of the DNA in an abstract form. This idea effectively communicates the splitting of the DNA incorporating paneling created in coral growth process looking to the next module I may need to refine my idea further for Rhino.

Final Model

When I started module 1 I felt overwhelmed, I begun by reading Phillip Ball’s, Pattern Formation in Nature, which gave me a sense of direction. Ball examines the existence of pattern and form in nature; he explored the mathematical ideas of Da Vinci and the technical and aesthetic possibilities of pattern. From the reading I was able to explore shape, pattern and form as building blocks to analyze natural phenomena that surround us. From Ball’s ideas I explored my first two conceptual ideas of the coral growth process and of the diffusion of water. I explored the possibilities of the through 2d and 3d media and sketching as well as gaging precedents. I realized there are certain limitations when modeling on Rhino and I have kept this in mind when designing. I felt that I would not properly be able to illustrate the beauty of water diffusion. I also found limitations of the coral growth process as after hearing Segerman speak I wanted to explore something less literal. Mathematical artist Harry Segerman explained the process of using mathematics to create sculptures presented in the second lecture. The ideas presented in the lecture were closely related to Ball’s ideas. Passing the models around allowed us to see the complexity in the pattern of the 3D media. Segerman demonstrated the endless possibilities that can be found in non literal pattern. The second reading was by Clark Polling titled Analytical Drawing exploring Kandinsky’s drawing techniques The drawings were created through a process of simplifying, analyzing and translating. In this module I was able to look at the work of reputable designers and their work influenced my designs. Through the research I found many amazing architectural works that demonstrate how nature used as inspiration can results in some outstanding and striking results. Above: Examples of Henry Segerman’s work

Reflecting on this module I found the greatest challenge to be abstracting patterns and creating literal translations. As I discovered through the module there are no limitations to the degree of abstraction I could use I found this rather daunting maintaining a balance between abstraction and literal representation. Moving forward I believe I have a concept that maintains a balance between literal and abstract. I am looking forward to the next phase as this first stage has left me inspired.

Reflection Moving Forward

Texts: - Ball, Philip (2012): Pattern Formation in Nature, AD: Architectural Design, Wiley, 82 (2), March, pp. 22-27 - Davina, J (2000) Australian Architecture Now, Thames and Hudson, London. - Dickson, R (2010) Addicted to Architecture, Wakefield Press, Australia - Hoffman, J. (1966) Building in Visual Aspects, Stuttgart, London. - Poling, Clark (1987): Analytical Drawing. In Kandinskyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Teaching at the Bauhaus, Rizzoli, New York, pp. 107-132 Images: Page 1 - Emin, T 1998, Brain Coral, viewed 12 August 2012, <>. Page 2 - Cook, I 2004, Starlet Coral, viewed 1st August 2012, <> Eastment, L 2011, Architectural works, viewed 3rd of August 2012, <> Page 3 - Bender, S 2008, Snake Design, viewed 15 of August 2012, <> Page 4 - 2012, Water Images, Tumblr, viewed 12th of August 2012, <> Page 5 - Emin, T 1998, Waterdifusionwood, Saatchi Gallery, viewed 16 May 2012, <http://www.saatchi-gallery.> Page 6 - Paine, M 2011, Ahead of the Curve, viewed 7th of August 2012, Page 7 - Eastment, L 2011, Architectural works, viewed 3rd of August 2012, <www.archiectualworksonline. com> All other images students own photography, sketches and models.


finish product  

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