Curated by Fumio Nanjo and Kenichi Kondo
2018-11-19 / 2020-3-29
Muqarnas - elaborate ornamental vaultings - are some of the earliest and most impressive examples of a rule-based architectural design. They combine architecture, mathematics, and art to form highly intricate and complex stalactite structures. Today, advances in computational design and digital fabrication invite us to revisit these typologies.
For their Future and the Arts exhibition at Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, the curators commissioned a Muqarna Mutation: an algorithmically designed, robotically fabricated, full-scale muqarna to be installed in a central exhibition room.
A selective subdivision algorithm generates hundreds of thousands of tiles set among dozens of tiers to create an extragavant ornamental transition from column to ceiling. The muqarna is materialized using 15,000 hollow, reflective aluminum tubes suspensed from a robotically-milled, tiered base.
Standing beneath the muqarna, visitors are struck by a mix of bewilderment and curiosity: a disorientating sensory overload partially obfuscates the underlying compositional logic. Patterns are readily discernible as one changes perspectives, only to disappear again amidst the endless reflections.
|Installation:||Muqarna arising out of the central column of a 110m2 exhibition room|
|Geometry:||300,000 individual tiles in 16 tiers|
|Material:||15,000 aluminum tubes, high density EPS base|
|Dimensions:||5.8m diameter, 2.3m height|
|Fabrication:||ROSO Coop Lab, Feng Chia University, Taiwan|