Thursday, March 01, 2007


David Benjamin and Soo-in Yang of ‘The Living’ Architects presented their recent work at the Interactive Architecture event which Ruairi Glynn organised at Eyebeam last month. They have just released 2 lovely little books called ‘Life Size‘ 1 & 2 which explore the possibility of creating open source design processes. The first volume of Life Size includes ‘DIY directions for making a responsive kinetic system, an energy self-sufficient display, and a collapsible framing structure out of weak materials.’ & the second volume of this series includes essays by Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Livia Corona, Holly Kretschmar, Seth Mnookin, William Wu and SISYPHUS.

Whats most interesting for me about David and Soo-ins work is their methodology they call "flash research," which they define as an architectural research project with a budget under $1000 and a ninety-day timeline, expected to result in a fully functioning, 1:1 scale prototype. To me this seems a challenging approach that forces you to consider low tech solutions rather than spending a fortune on answering problems often with unsustainable answers.

David and Soo-in run a graduate class at Columbia Architecture school where with their students, they continue to experiment with these ideas of rapid experimentation often in the context of responsive & kinetic spatial design. Check out their website where you can find out more about their projects such as living River Glow, a network of pods that act as an interface between the water quality of the river and local inhabitants awareness of environmental conditions and Living Glass, a silent transforming and transparent surface that responds to inhabitants proximity.

[+ website]
via interactivearchitecture

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