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michael hansmeyer: ornamented columns
original content
apr 11, 2011
michael hansmeyer: ornamented columns


‘ornamented columns’ by michael hansmeyer
all images courtesy michael hansmeyer

zurich-based architect and programmer michael hansmeyer has sent us images of his latest exploration
into computational architecture, ‘ornamented columns’. working with the CAAD group at ETH‘s
architecture department, hansmeyer has created a series of columns – both 3D and in actuality – that
utilize algorithms and subdivision processes to generate a new column order that defines and elaborates
its system of ornament.


3D models of columns

taking an abstracted doric column as a point of departure, individual components are identified
through the subdivision process which works on a number of local parameter settings based on
the input form’s topography as well as its topology. the result is a complex and idiosyncratic
language that exhibit very specific local conditions and forms.


detail

the 2.7-meter high fabrication is painstakingly constructed from 1mm layer grey board sheets
which have been individually cut using a mill or laser then stacked together on poles that run
through a common core. consisting of over six million faces, the circumference of some sheets
measured along the cutting path can reach up to 8 meters. since the initial prototype, tests using
ABS, wood and metal have been under way.


fabricated prototype


on exhibit at the swiss federal institute of technology in zurich


photograph of column segments during construction


detail of prototype


initial sketches of variants that were generated from a uniform process


stacking of the layers


calculation steps for obtaining the cutting paths

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