Concept

The Platonic Solids project explores how a purely operations-based geometric process can generate complex form.

Rather than studying the possibilities in combining numerous primitives, this project examines the potential inherent in a single primitive given an appropriate process. It takes the most primitive forms, the platonic solids, and repeatedly employs one single operation - the division of a form's faces into smaller faces - until a new form is produced.

The resulting forms display a novel aesthetic and an astounding complexity that largely defies attempts at reductionism.


One Process - Endless Forms

All of the forms shown are generated using the same single process, Only the variables that control the process' division operation are allowed to change. This single process affects both the form's topography and topology. It influences attributes such as the degree of branching, porosity, and fractalization - just to name a few. The process also works at multiple scales: it affects not only the overall shape, but it determines the surface development as well as the generation of miniscule textures. Spatially differentiated division ratios produce specific local conditions. By iteratively varying these ratios, one obtains a sculptural control of the forms.


A Virtual Laboratory

The computer functions as a virtual laboratory - free of all physical constraints. One can produce impossibly small surfaces, impossibly small angles, and surfaces that self-intersect. Yet instead of of only freeing oneself from physical constraints - one can also instrumentalize and play wth them. Material attributes can be simulated and thus tearing and porosity can be introduced. This further expands the scope of forms that are conceivable.

The geoemtrically complex output stands in stark contrast to radically minimalist design process: a single, simple operation repeated over and over again.