LEAD RESEARCHER: Andrew John Wit
1. FAM “Investigations in Robotic Craft” + “Making Machines Uncomfortable W/ Andrew Wit”
1. T_THREE displayed @ the Muncie Makes Gallery for First Thursday. Summer 2014.
2. T_SERIES displayed @ the French & Michigan Gallery. San Antonio, TX. Fall 2015.
1. McNay Art Museum. San Antonio, TX. Mash-Up. Furniture + Fashion. July 2015
DESCRIPTION: These projects are a continuation of our offices research into the relationship between Materiality + Architecture + Digital Craft.
In today’s rapidly changing architectural environment, advancements in digital tools both in design and fabrication have given architects the ability to create “Form and Space” with a higher precision and in less time than ever before. But with these advancements can come a tendency to create a disconnect between materiality and craft. Each individual material or fabrication methodology whether being an additive or subtractive process, have their own unique properties to be harnessed or exploited by the architect within the design process.
Tools such as CNC milling, 3D printing and robotic fabrication are becoming more common within the everyday practice of architecture offices. These machines, typically designed for the replication of the same movements or identical object tens of thousands of times gain an even more interesting potential when used in the fabrication of custom projects. In mass production specific tools are created to allow for a specific, unaltered appearance to be produced every time. In contrast, one-off projects give us the ability to test tools which would typically be considered unacceptable in mass production.
Allowing the designers to use varying tools or atypical tool paths within a single applications creating movements or artifacts with character and craft. Examples of this can be found on the underside of T_FIVE. Areas with extreme curve radii begin to show the imperfections in material as well as in the machine itself. Once under standing this, tool paths can then become programmed for the unique characters of the machine rather than for speed or accuracy.
This series of studies will look further into this relationship between materiality + fabrication + craft through the creation of a series of artifacts. These artifacts, although created with the same tools will posses a completely different visual and tangible craft.Through these artifacts, we will present a series of different prototypes showing how craft can be reintroduced into digital fabrication through the careful selection of material and methods.
The following project is the third of many investigations looking at the intersection of design and fabrication. Following the completion of this project, the second phase will initiated which investigates creating the same artifact utilizing new tools and materials.
Special Thanks to: Meliar Design: For the use of their MPanel Software for the formal operations. Bel Air Woodworking: For their donation of all hardwoods used in the fabrication of the final artifact.