hochschule offenbach exhibits responsive research materials at milan design week
hochschule offenbach exhibits responsive research materials at milan design week
apr 21, 2015

hochschule offenbach exhibits responsive research materials at milan design week

hochschule offenbach exhibits responsive research materials at milan design week
magnetic fabrics by lilian dedio 
image © designboom




the institute of materialdesign IMD at the hochschule offenbach university of art and design, exhibited research works during the 2015 milan design week, in the district of ventura lambrate. the exhibition of the world of materials and structures, showcases playful explorations that involved unconventional approaches. there was an emphasis on getting to know materials, structures and systems, as well as on understanding their technical-physical or chemical properties.

magnetic fabrics by lilian dedio in cooperation with BMW AG




the goal of this work was to explore new limits of fabrics, to experimentally further develop familiar features of them through unexpected modifications. to create these changes different aspects of magnetism are incorporated into traditional fabrics. the combination of methodically arranged magnetically active and passive components cause a mechanical accumulation of elements and thus a dynamic rearrangement of the entire medium. over and above the original intention to set the fabric in motion, a surprising set of innovative aesthetics was achieved. the work illustrates the relationship between media and shape by unique motion sequences.


magnetic fabrics by lilian dedio
video © designboom


hochschule offenbach_designboom_002
image © designboom


hochschule offenbach_designboom_003
organic interactive skin by frédéric kreutzer in cooperation with BMW AG
image © designboom




the automotive surface concept’s goal is to bring the skin of the car to life, and does this by combining elements of technology and communication. an active skin and light is used to transform the outer appearance of the car into a communicating medium. functional elements such as the brake-lights are no longer consciously realized, but are visualized through the material itself. changes of the surface is made possible through a flexible macro-structural matrix containing micro-structural parts. the transformations can be used to create aerodynamic effects and support existing systems such as ESP or control the airflow through the outer surface of the automobile.

close-ups of the machanics


hochschule offenbach_designboom_004
image © designboom


hochschule offenbach_designboom_006
f.l.air by alix huschka in cooperation with BMW AG
image © designboom




inspired by the mimosa podia plant and the milky seas effect f.l.air (flow of light and air) is a study on opening mechanism depending on different materials. with the aim to control lighting and ventilation, different gestures facilitate different functions. the student’s intention was to create a structured surface, which is activated by gesture control.

hochschule offenbach_designboom_007
image © designboom




in its passive state the surface is closed and therefore no hidden functions are revealed. when activated through gestural interaction, the material opens at the area of purpose due to distension and enables the desired function. the intensity of the light and of the air flow is adjustable by repeatedly triggering the same area.



interactive wood by johannes wohrlin in cooperation with BMW AG




examining how every piece of wood is as unique as a finger print. the aesthetic of the surface brings light to the dark interior of the car. the shimmering glow of the timber’s grain improves the orientation while driving. by touching it, the light is activated on-spot, creating a gesture-controlled functionality which re-narrates the connection until the glow slightly disappears over time. wood is perceived as a high-quality material and creates a surface with anisotropic properties and individual grain.


transformative paper by florian hundt in cooperation with BMW AG




change a disadvantage into an advantage. the anisotropic material properties of moisture expansion in industrially produced paper and natural wood are similar and are mostly tried to be avoided. combined with other materials though, the expansion of the paper reveals interesting effects, which can be used in rather atypical contexts. this project is a layered structure which reacts to short-term environmental conditions, morphing into various states. thoroughly dry, it creates a tactile and exciting surface by raising the separate segments. however, when exposed to minimal change of humidity, it creates a gesture so subtle it is almost invisible, while it performs a vast transformation when it gets wet. under the influence of rain, the layers shape a closed surface and respond by glowing gently.


3D- ceramics




lightweight construction is increasingly important especially when resource scarcity is becoming ever more problematic. bionic structures are commonly used to distribute tension in supporting structures and architectural elements. the materials created in this class were developed to minimize material costs. they were produced through innovative production processes such as printed ceramics and multimaterial 3D printing. the scientific aspect, without distinguishing between sciences and aesthetics, was the main focus of the project.

hochschule offenbach_designboom_005
image © designboom




prof. dr.-ing markus holzbach. imd
dipl. -des steffen reiter .imd


in cooperation with
prof. dr. wolfgang  kollenberg,
wzr ceramic solutions gmbh

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
    all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    design news

    keep up with our daily and weekly stories
    504,189 subscribers
    - see sample
    - see sample
    designboom magazine