tomàs saraceno’s solar bell floating sculpture takes flight
all images courtesy of taak
the latest project from argentinian artist tomàs saraceno is ‘solar bell’ — an aerial wind sculpture which examines his vision for the future of flying architecture. the floating model plaza is lighter than air, fully lifted by the wind, and built using the latest technologies in the fields of sustainable wind energy. the design engages progressive construction materials — light carbon fiber tubing for the framework and thin, flexible solar panels for the sails. through ‘solar bell’ saraceno conceptualizes the hypothesis of levitating architectonics, eventually hoping to apply his system to the construction of a floating arena, or a hovering observation tower. saraceno imagines the final realization to be 60 meters high, lifted entirely by the power of the wind — a flying building which people can steer, sit or stand on. working closely with the aerospace engineering faculty at TU delft in the netherlands, saraceno predicted the weight that can be supported by the triangular, four sided pyramids that comprise the kite structure.
the approach behind ‘solar bell’ draws influence from the early inventions of alexander graham bell, in his experiments with aviation. saraceno contemporizes bell’s ideas using breakthrough technology and materials available today. the sculpture-in-progress is a continuation of the themes of saraceno’s large body of work, which explores the ideas of floating architecture and the interconnection between wind and sound. ‘solar bell’ is part of the exhibition portscapes 2, a series of art projects alongside the construction of maasvlakte 2 in rotterdam. demonstrations of the five-meter-tall scale model of will take place throughout the month of august 2013.
the team examines the construction of ‘solar bell’
photo: bart maat
working on the framework, which is made from light carbon fiber tubing
photo: bart maat
solar bell taking flight
photo: camilo brau © studio tomás saraceno
take a look at tomàs saraceno describe ‘solar bell’ and his vision for the future of architecture, below: