Dialectic Form

Contemporary designers of shape-resistant curved structures seem to be guided by only one of the following design drivers: (i) analytical geometry, (ii) sculptural esthetics, or (iii) structural efficiency. The behavior of shape-resistant structures depends mostly on their global spatial configuration, and less on the properties of their individual components.  The structurally efficient free-form design challenge lies in determining the ‘right’ structural shape that will resist loads within its surface without the need for extra structural systems. Our research entertains a dialogue between structural curved form and other non-structural design drivers, an approach we refer to as “dialectic” form-finding. The word “dialectic” stems from the Ancient Greek and refers to a method of argument for resolving disagreement. In the context of our research, it stands for the resolution/integration of competing (and sometimes conflicting) design drivers through a rational engineering approach. Our research focuses on dialectic forms driven by structure and environment, construction, material and human health.

Related Publications

Adriaenssens, S.; Rhode-Barbarigos, L; Kilian, A,; Baverel, O.; Charpentier, V.; Horner, M., Buzatu, D (2014). ‘Dialectic form finding of passive and active shading enclosures.’ In: Energies 7(8), 5201-5220; doi:10.3390/en7085201.

Horner, M., Rhode-Barbarigos, L, Adriaenssens, S. (2014). ‘Site-specific louvered shells for shading harmful Ultraviolet radiation.’ In: Building and Environment http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2014.04.005

Jordan, AJ, Adriaenssens S, Kilian A., Adriaenssens, M, Freed, Z. (2013). ‘Material Driven design for a chocolate Pavilion.‘ In: Computer-Aided Design, DOI:10.1016/j.cad.2013.12.002

Adriaenssens S., Ney L., Bodarwe E., Williams C., (2012). ‘Construction Constraints drive the form finding of an irregular meshed steel and glass shell’. In: Journal of Architectural Engineering. 18(3) ,pp.206-213,doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)AE.1943-5568.0000074

Adriaenssens S., Brown N., Lowinger R., Hernandez J. (2012). ‘Structural Analysis of Reinforced Concrete Folded Hyperbolic Paraboloid Shells: a case study of the Modern Miami Marine Stadium’. In: International Journal of Architectural Heritage. DOI:10.1080/15583058.2012.694967

Photo voltaic  adaptive sunshade (prototype) (Photo courtesy Heid A, Bragianski S, Krupka M)

Compound grid shell (prototype) (Photo courtesy Jordan A, Kilian A)