Product design

Snøhetta’s ‘social cabin’, new designs from Kengo Kuma and Yabu Pushelberg, and the latest advances in 3D printing... what’s new in product design

MIT researchers create 3D printer capable of printing buildings

Neri Oxman, group director and associate professor at MIT / Photo: Noah Kalina
Neri Oxman, group director and associate professor at MIT Photo: Noah Kalina

Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have announced a new breakthrough in the architectural applications of 3D printing, with the design of a system that can produce the basic structure of an entire building.

MIT’s Mediated Matter Group claim that the machine they have invented will eventually produce buildings faster than traditional construction methods.

What’s more, a structure could be customised to the needs of a particular site, with different materials and densities incorporated to provide optimum combinations of strength and insulation.

The Digital Construction Platform (DCP), consists of a tracked vehicle that carries an industrial robotic arm, with a smaller, precision-motion robotic arm attached, and can be used to direct construction nozzles.

Unlike typical 3D printing systems, this free-moving system can construct an object of any size.

To prove the concept, the researchers used a prototype to build the basic structure of a 50ft (15.2m) diameter, 12ft (3.6m) high dome in 14 hours.

CLAD-kit keyword: MIT

"It’s not merely a printer, but an entirely new way of thinking about making. Our system points to a future vision of digital construction that enables new possibilities on our planet and beyond."

MIT’s Mediated Matter Group has unveiled a 3D printing robot capable of printing an entire building
MIT’s Mediated Matter Group has unveiled a 3D printing robot capable of printing an entire building

Snøhetta go back to basics with wooden ‘social cabin’ designed for any landscape

Snøhetta’s Kjetil Trædal Thorsen
Snøhetta’s Kjetil Trædal Thorsen

Fresh off the back of revamping New York’s Times Square and designing a major museum celebrating Europe’s oldest cave paintings, architecture studio Snøhetta have completed something rather more intimate: a new range of ready-made mobile cabins.

Called Gapahuk, the simple structure is designed to fit into nearly any landscape.

The product has been designed for Rindalshytter, Norway’s leading producer of leisure homes and mobile destinations.

Snøhetta’s focus was on making the cabin adaptable to different terrains and environments.

In a statement, the architects said: “Drawing inspiration from the traditional gapahuk, the cabin is shaped with the aim of adapting to the many varying weather conditions.

“The twisting roof creates a two-way gapahuk which gives protection from wind and sun. The angled roof surfaces can be used for energy production by placing solar panels on them, making it possible to have a cabin off the grid.”

‘Gapahuk’ is a Norwegian word for a simple wooden structure, often made to create shelter from rough weather conditions. Snøhetta’s version includes façades, interior walls, flooring and structural elements all made of wood.

Designed as a ‘social cabin’, the layout gives priority to the common areas – including a spacious indoor living room and kitchen, and a sizable outdoor patio.

CLAD-kit keyword: Snohetta

"Drawing inspiration from the traditional gapahuk, the cabin is shaped with the aim of adapting to the many varying weather conditions" - Snøhetta spokesperson

Snøhetta’s focus was on making the cabin adaptable to different terrains
Snøhetta’s focus was on making the cabin adaptable to different terrains

Marcel Wanders collaborates with Christofle for opulent lighting range

Marcel Wanders
Marcel Wanders

Christofle has extended its celebrated Jardin d’Eden range with a luxurious lighting collection by Dutch designer Marcel Wanders.

Described as the marriage of beauty and function, the collection features a ceiling chandelier, standing candelabra lamp, a table candelabra and a votive tea light.

Handcrafted in high-silversmithing workshops by Meilleurs Ouvriers de France (some of the best craftsmen in France) both the chandelier and the candelabra feature flowing, arabesque ‘branches’, punctuated with hand-carved blown crystal lampshades in either clear or smoked glass.

The table lamp and votive are made from intricately engraved steel. They feature the ornate pattern, also designed by Wanders, of twisting vines, plants and flowers that has come to characterise the Jardin d’Eden collection.

CLAD-kit keyword: Christofle

"While each collection is unique, the products have been conceived for designers to use in a wide range of settings" - Marcel Wanders

The collection has been described as the meeting of form and function
The collection has been described as the meeting of form and function

Seloy Live creates touchscreen window

Henri Kiuru, CEO Seloy Live
Henri Kiuru, CEO Seloy Live

Interactive glass manufacturer Seloy Live has partnered with Kalevala Innovation Lab to create the world’s first ever see-through, touchscreen store front at Kalevala Jewelry’s flagship store in Helsinki.

To create the display, Seloy Live worked with Helsinki-based digital agency Great Apes, who developed an app that allows shoppers to create stunning 3D snowflakes, which can be shared via social media.

The display was made with Seloy Live’s SENSE, a patent-pending ‘supercharged’ glass with integrated state-of-the-art touch screen technology.

Integrating the technology into the glass protects it from adverse weather conditions and vandalism, and extends the life of the product.

CLAD-kit keyword: Seloy Live

"There’s nothing like our unique range of embedded-touch interactive window products on the market" - Henri Kiuru, CEO Seloy Live

Shoppers can create snowflakes on the touchscreen window
Shoppers can create snowflakes on the touchscreen window

Lee Broom commemorates decade of design with Time Machine collection

British designer Lee Broom celebrated his tenth anniversary with the launch of his latest collection.

The limited edition collection, entitled Time Machine, honours Broom’s 10 year career and features a range of design highlights from his previous collections, reimagined in new finishes and materials with an all white palette.

The colour scheme was selected to create a cohesive uniformity across the collection, and give the pieces a clean, modern aesthetic.

The collection includes the award-winning Crystal Bulb, the Bright on Bistro chair, the Carpentry Console and the Drunken Side Table.

Broom also unveiled a monolithic grandfather clock. Handcrafted from Carrara marble, the clock has solid brass hardware and features a traditional clock mechanism and pendulum.

The collection debuted at Milan Design Week and was showcased on a custom made carousel, set inside a disused vault in the Milano Centrale station.

CLAD-kit keyword: Lee Broom

Lee Broom commemorates decade of design with Time Machine collection / Photo: Arthur Woodcroft
Lee Broom commemorates decade of design with Time Machine collection Photo: Arthur Woodcroft
The Altar Chair are part of the new collection / Photos: Beth Davis
The Altar Chair are part of the new collection Photos: Beth Davis
The Ring Lights are part of the new collection / Photos: Beth Davis
The Ring Lights are part of the new collection Photos: Beth Davis

Dramatic wooden roof dominates
exclusive Hurlingham Club racquet centre

Frank Werling, Metsä Wood
Frank Werling, Metsä Wood

One of London’s most exclusive sports and social clubs has opened a new racquet hall, featuring a dramatic curving green sedum roof.

The Hurlingham Club in Fulham commissioned David Morley Architects to create the sporting facility for its guests – who in the past have included men’s tennis world number one Andy Murray.

The roof measures 35m (114.8ft) long and 55m (180.4ft) wide and is made from curved steel beams and Kerto Laminated Veneer Lumber (LVL) panels provided by Metsä Wood.

The design team selected LVL panels, – made by gluing together rotary peeled softwood veneers – as they are very thin, but strong and would be able to support the landscaped top layer of the roof, without adding any bulk to the structure.

CLAD-kit keyword: Metsä Wood

"The roof was largely built off-site, which meant those involved had to work very closely without any issues on site" - Frank Werling, Metsä Wood

David Morley Architects were commissioned to create the facility
David Morley Architects were commissioned to create the facility

Kengo Kuma and Yabu Pushelberg among stars to launch Lasvit light collections

Czech glassmaker Lasvit has celebrated its tenth anniversary by introducing new lighting collections created in collaboration with some of the world's foremost architects and designers.

Kengo Kuma, Zaha Hadid Design, Ed Ng & Terence Ngan and Yabu Pushelberg are among those who have designed lighting products for Lasvit’s Laterna Magica range (see interview with Yabu Pushelberg on p84 for details of this collaboration).

The products were inspired in part by a 17th century image projector that used hand-painted sheets of glass, a lens and a bright light-source to project images in space. Lasvit is researching ways in which to simulate the principle using video mapping technology.

CLAD-kit keyword: Lasvit

Eve and Duna 
by Zaha Hadid Design
Eve and Duna by Zaha Hadid Design
by Yabu Pushelberg
Cipher by Yabu Pushelberg
The Yakisugi collection 
by Kengo Kuma
The Yakisugi collection by Kengo Kuma
by Ed Ng & Terence Ngan
Flux by Ed Ng & Terence Ngan
company profile
Company profile: DJW
DJW offer a way to interpret your story through the use of technology. We can provide Audio Visual consultancy to assist in the planning stage, follow up with AV system design, supply and installation, and provide a bespoke control system to suit your operational needs.
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