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The Leading Edge of Architectural Innovation

Building Facades as Beautiful, Infinite Patterns. Origami-Inspired Architecture: Geometry’s Role in Architecture.

04 | 2014

81 Intrinsic Values.

55 Kaohsiung Port Terminal.

25 Bricks and Stones : Six Stylish and Sustainable Masonary and Concrete Products.

New Exterior for Petersen Automotive Museum by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates.

68 Timber Structure on a Budget.

40 Charles H Shaw Technology and Learning Center.



Contents STRUCTURE Building Facades as Beautiful, Infinite Patterns.

92 Origami-Inspired Architecture: Geometry’s Role in Architecture.

102 Best of Design Awards.


86 Dynamic Facades: Buildings Show Off New Moves.

96 Algorithmic Architecture : 14 Mathbased Structures.

105 Interview (Bollinger+Grohmann).

Letter From the Editor The architecture for performance and exhibition, being museums, galleries, music halls, pavilions, etc., has been in the leading edge of architectural innovation throughout the history and evolution of the discipline. Architects and designers experiment on new aesthetics, concepts, and ideas with projects that tend to have a flexible program and a large budget. In many cases, the main requirement of such structures is not only to accommodate a specific program but also to inspire the imagination of its users and challenge the current state of architectural design. Some examples, such as the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao by Frank Gehry or the Sydney Opera House by Jørn Utzon are considered design masterpieces of the 20th Century. Gehry’s Museum transformed the city of Bilbao from a small industrial Spanish city into a world destination, while Utzon’s Opera House become the symbol of Sydney and Australia. This issue of eVolo studies the most innovative examples of performance and exhibition architecture today. These are projects that revolutionize architecture on many levels, including sustainability, aesthetics, technology, and urban design. It is interesting to point out that win every corner of the globe; from MVRDV’s Comic and Animation Museum in China, to the new Broad Museum in Los Angeles by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, or Kengo Kuma’s Victoria and Albert Museum in Dundee, Scotland.

Harbor Court Hotel, 5 The Embarcadero, San Francisco,California. 1 Embarcadero Center, San Francisco,California. One Front Street, San Francisco,California.

Building Facades as Beautiful, Infinite Patterns BY LIZ STINSON

If you walk through Midtown in New York

Jacques began the project after visit-

City and look up, you’ll see a string of

ing NYC for the first time. With a fresh

nondescript buildings towering over the

pair of eyes, he was able to see things

street. Taken in as a whole, the buildings

that you and I tend to take for granted or

are mostly underwhelming—just 50-story

miss altogether in a rush of getting from

slabs of concrete and glass that look

place to place. “I saw lines and patterns

indistinguishable. But tweak your per-

everywhere. It was amazing,” he recalls.

spective just a little bit and those masses

“I spent whole days looking to the sky.”

of material can turn into a beautiful pat-

Before he gets to a city, Jacques usually

tern worthy of hanging on your wall.

has a pretty good idea of which buildings

I know, it’s hard to believe the Marriott

he’d like to shoot. He looks for a few main

Marquis hotel, a notoriously ugly building

things: Is there a main color? What shape

in the heart of Times Square, could be

is the building and windows? Is the build-

considered art, but Alexandre Jacques

ing made of concrete or glass? “Any of

has a knack. For the past few years, the

these details can make for a very different

French photographer and creative direc-

picture,” he says.

tor has been taking photos of buildings,

He does little in the way of Photoshop

or more specifically the striking facades

alterations, so the patterns you see are a

of buildings in New York, Paris and

direct reflection of what’s actually on the

Brisbane, for his Architectural Pattern

building, which is actually pretty incred-

series. By zooming in on the exterior of

ible. It’s rare that we get to see the gilded

buildings, Jacques is able to transform

strings of Renzo Piano’s New York Times

even the worst eyesore into a mesmer-

building up close. Or the clouds and blue

izing, infinite pattern.

sky reflected in the shining glass windows

86 | Architectural Structure

Tivoli Concert Hall, Copenhagen, Denmark.

of 7 World Trade. But even cooler yet are the strange geometrical patterns shot around Paris.

“I saw lines and patterns everywhere. I spent whole days looking to the sky.”

Side by side, it’s an interesting comparison of international architectural trends. While New York City is full of denselywindowed skyscrapers, Paris’ facades rely on shape and color in a way NYC buildings refuse to do. Jacques plans to extend his series to more cities later this year, maybe Shanghai, Hong Kong or Dubai. He says every city has its own distinct architectural trends, and he’s happy to shoot all of them, as long as the weather’s good. “Sometimes I have to wait as the clouds pass, and rain has ruined my travel,” he says. “Photography is about patience. I will come back, Amsterdam!” Architectural Structure | 87

ARCAM - Amsterdam Centre for Architecture Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Antinori nel Chianti Classico , San Casciano Val di Pesa, Firenze, Italy.

88 | Architectural Structure

Antinori nel Chianti Classico , San Casciano Val di Pesa, Firenze, Italy.

Architectural Structure| 89

Booster pump Station, Amsterdam,Netherlands.

90 | Architectural Structure

Jahrhunderthalle, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Atlantic Pavilion, Lisbon, Portugal.

A landmark building in the heart of San Francisco's Financial District. 101 California Street, California.

To enhance environmental performance and to create dramatic visual effects, architects devise facades that adapt to changing conditions. The outer layer of the double-skin facade for the Design Hub at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) consists of more than 16,000 individually mounted translucent glass discs repeated on all four elevations of the eight-story main building. The repetition of cellular units has long interested the Design Hub’s Melbourne-based architect, Sean Godsell, an alum of RMIT. In this case, selected groupings of the discs automatically pivot around a vertical axis in response to the sun’s position. This use of a dynamic system represents

Dynamic Facades: Buildings Show Off New Moves. By Russell Fortmeyer

the latest—and largest—investigation of kinetic technology by Godsell’s eponymous firm, as well as one of the more distinctive examples of the rapidly developing genre of dynamic facades. In the past projects, such as a house in Glenburn, Australia, completed in 2007, Godsell has used low-tech devices like metal louvers or gridlike mesh screens to shade glazed facades, an approach adopted by other architects. For the Design Hub, he was asked to pursue a more innovative strategy that would speak to the multidisciplinary design programs planned for the building. “The university was keen to demonstrate its interest in solar technology and green buildings, so we gave them a smart facade that could evolve,” he says. The outer facade consists of 774 panels, each with 21 sandblasted glass discs, 3/8 inch thick. The panels sit in a steel frame separated by about 3 feet from the building’s inner facade—a more conventional double-glazed, argon-filled curtain wall. In each seven-disc column of the outer skin’s panels, the top three discs are fixed. The bottom four, which are in the occupants’ line of sight, are operable. The west, east, and north facades, exposed to the harsh Australian sun, contain the movable components. They pivot in waves based on the Architectural Structure | 93

time of day and year.

did not deter architects at Solomon

Over the course of an hour, the discs

Cordwell Buenz (SCB) from proposing a

open as little as 5 degrees up to a maximum

dynamic facade for the Richard J. Klarchek

angle of 80 degrees.

Information Commons, completed in 2007

However, their movement is so gradual it

at Loyola University in Chicago. SCB’s

is hardly noticeable to passersby. The uni-

ultimate success with that building’s dou-

versity has the option of one day installing

ble-skin, fully glazed curtain wall, automatic

electricity-generating photovoltaics on the

venetian blinds, and operable windows laid

discs as part of a technology-development

the groundwork for a series of recent pro-

and -testing program. Dynamic facades,

jects for the university that deploy similar

like the one cloaking the Design Hub, are

strategies, resulting in significant energy

a response to the industry’s latest preoc-

savings and highly transparent, comfortable

cupation: performance. With architects no

facilities that have been a hit with Loyola’s

longer satisfied to merely decorate a shed,

students, faculty, and administration.

facades have become the primary platform

Devon Patterson, the principal at SCB

for energy efficiency, thermal comfort, cost

who has led the design effort for Loyola

savings, branding, and image.

(no relation to Mic Patterson), built on his

The industry has yet to formally agree

experience with the information commons

on terminology, so it’s easy to find labels

to implement a natural-ventilation strategy

like adaptive, transformable, movable, and

for the university’s Marcella Niehoff School

kinetic applied to these building-envelope

of Nursing and Center for Collaborative

systems. But dynamic, in its clear opposition

Learning, a 60,000-square-foot, four-story

to static, emerges most often as the choice

classroom and office building opened in

among architects, facade consultants, and

August 2012 at the medical school’s campus

manufacturers. “In the most straightforward

in Maywood, Illinois. Working with a team

sense, a building with sensors, controllers

that was almost identical to that on the ear-

for adjustable blinds, and dimmable lighting

lier Loyola project—local mechanical firm

all tied together is a dynamic system,” says

KJWW Engineering Consultants, the New

Mic Patterson, director of strategic develop-

York office of the German energy-efficiency

ment for the national facade design-build

consultant Transsolar, and Enclos—the archi-

contractor Enclos. He views projects like the

tects devised two glazed solar chimneys for

52-story New York Times Building, designed

the nursing-school building’s south eleva-

by Renzo Piano Building Workshop with

tion. These bookend a glazed facade with

FXFowle, as essentially dynamic. Even

fixed shading louvers. The chimneys feature

though the veil of 3-inch-diameter ceramic

double glazing with a low-emissivity coating

tubes that cloaks the Midtown Manhattan

and a relatively high solar-heat-gain coeffi-

tower is fixed, he points out, the curtain

cient (SHGC) of 0.62. (SHGC, expressed as

wall, manufactured by Portland, Oregon–

a number between 0 and 1, measures the

based Benson Global, is integrated with other building systems, such as lighting and interior shades, to affect solar-heat gain,

solar radiation transmitted through a glazed unit. The lower the number, the less radiation transmitted.) In contrast, the building’s typi-

daylighting, glare, thermal comfort, and,

cal vision glass, enclosing spaces where heat

ultimately, energy performance.

gain is less desirable, has an SHGC of 0.25.

The conventional wisdom regarding dynamic building envelopes is that they are costly, require burdensome ongoing maintenance, and are best suited to a Northern European climate. Such industry challenges 94 | Architectural Structure

During the so-called shoulder seasons of the spring and fall, automated windows on the north facade open to provide cross-ventilation to the building’s public spaces and offices. The air, assisted by a

combination of the stack effect and external pressure differences, exits through the

to maintain optimum daylight levels for the plants housed in two gridshell- and arch-

solar chimneys. In the winter, the operation

supported glazed conservatories enclosing

of the chimneys is reversed, with air-han-

over 200,000 square feet. The architects

dling units in the basement drawing fresh

needed to achieve approximately 4,200

air from louvers at the roof. Solar gain

foot-candles of sunlight without overheat-

along the glazed chimneys preheats the

ing the interior of the bulbous structures,

fresh air before it is distributed throughout

which, from some angles, look like hump-

the building. The strategy results in a 40

back whales surfacing in the ocean.

percent improvement over the ASHRAE

Singapore has a hot, humid climate with

90.1-2007 energy standard and an energy-

ample sunshine, but it is also cloudy and

use intensity (EUI) of 43 kBtu/square foot

rainy for a large portion of the year. The

(EUI is a standard way to gauge the annual

envelope had to adapt to these changing

energy consumption of a building relative

conditions to maintain daylight levels and

to its size). Typical academic buildings have

minimize heat gain. The design team inves-

EUIs well above 50.

tigated several options, including balloons

Erik Olsen, the managing director of

tethered overhead and venetian blinds, but

Transsolar’s New York office, says that

finally settled on external shades because

shading devices, as well as dehumidifica-

they could be more easily integrated and

tion, are critical for the proper function of

automated, according to Matthew Potter, a

a natural-ventilation scheme—especially in

Wilkinson Eyre associate director. “We also

Chicago, with its hot and humid summers.

wanted the shades to have some spectacle.”

The nursing school’s east facade abuts

he adds, describing the fractal pattern of the

another structure, but the triple-glazed

deployed shades as similar to the surface of

west elevation features automated exter-

a pinecone or pineapple.

nal blinds. These are made of stainless steel blades approximately 1/8 inch square in section with 1/16-inch gaps between them—an interval that allows daylight to be reflected into the building off the top surface of each blade, while reducing

“We also wanted the shades to have some spectacle.”

radiant-heat gain by 90 percent. Without these operable shading elements or the south facade’s

The shades are controlled by sensors that

fixed shading louvers, the building would

monitor light levels, as well as temperature

have needed a much larger HVAC system,

and humidity, throughout the interior land-

says Olsen.

scapes. When light levels increase beyond

Transsolar also advised on the design

acceptable thresholds, motors automatically

crite ria th at info r m e d th e 1 3 3 - a cre Gardens by the Bay project in Singapore,

unfurl triangular pieces of tightly woven canvas rolled up and concealed within

England–based landscape architects Grant

the buildings’ structural components. The

Associates and London-based Wilkinson Eyre Architects and opened in June 2012. Unlike the Loyola buildings, which are focused on human comfort and energy efficiency, the Singapore project sought

shades unroll from one arch, pulled in an almost continuous loop configuration by a cable that spools on a rod concealed in the opposite arch. As they are pulled across the double-glazed envelope, the shades visually Architectural Structure | 95


Origami-Inspired Architecture: Geometry’s Role in Architecture Article by Steph.

96 | Architectural Structure

“Logical and mathematical operations are the language for structuring geometric relationships within computation, and are no doubt the key reason for architects’ piqued interest in mathematics today.”

Vasco da Gama Tower, Lisbon, Portugal.

Architectural Structure | 97

Olympiastadion, Munich, Germany.

Architectural Technology | 98

The Italian Cultural Institute of New York recently hosted an exhibition of the work of 20 students from Rensselaer’s School of Architecture. Called “Reinterpreting the Baroque,” the show featured research conducted by the students while they studied abroad in Rome, Italy, during the fall 2007 semester. While abroad the students took a studio course that explored how geometry operates in Italian Baroque architecture—an opulent style characterized by irregular shapes and ornamentation, which became popular in the 17th century. The first phase of the studio employed parametric modeling to reveal how integral geometry was to the conception of these Baroque works. The second phase utilized the generative qualities of these parametric analysis models to speculate

“Great buildings that move the spirit have always been rare. In every case they are unique, poetic, products of the heart.”— Arthur Erickson on how these principles may inform and become relevant to contemporary design. The models were re-contextualized, under an entirely new set of criteria and parameters in order to generate new effects and performance. Each project positioned the parametric principles in very different ways, and the results varied greatly, according to Assistant Professor of Architecture Andrew Saunders, who led the studio in collaboration with School of Architecture Rome Program Coordinator Cinzia Abbate. “Logical and mathematical operations are the language for structuring geometric relationships within computation, and are no doubt the key reason for architects’ piqued interest in mathematics today,” says Saunders.

Architectural Structure | 99

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