By Kwan Wai Hin and Tseng Yun Ching
For the past 2 weeks, we have been assigned a Case Study as a form of initial design exploration. The building that we studied on was: Tamedia Office Building by Shigeru Ban Architects. This 7-storey office building is located in Zurich, Switzerland and completed back in 2013. We were tasked to remodel it based on Maison Domino as a reference, hence research and details have to be initially gathered to understand how its joinery system worked.
Tamedia Office Building is unique since its structural system was built entirely with wood. To understand its system, we were required to construct a kit of parts and develop an exploded drawing as shown below:
Laying out the different parts, the Kit of Parts drawing could easily inform us on how different parts were assembled to form a portion of the building.
The Exploded Drawing as shown below showcases how the parts are assembled.
The second part of our design exploration involved Experimental Design. After conducting research on the different types of joints available, we were inspired by flexible wedge joints that were found in Balinese Temples and even Japanese Buildings. Wedges allowed ease of disassembly and promote the reuse of materials. Aside from its flexibility, there was also potential in exploring how wedges could be intentionally aesthetic since they could behave as a sculptural component.
As part of experimentation, we designed and laser-cut the joints as shown below. Our first prototype failed due to a misunderstanding of how the wedge system worked.
Our Second Prototype worked and it connected 2 surfaces together.
Another part of our Studio’s requirement was Digital Aggregation Exploration. A Wasp Workshop was conducted in Week 2 for us to understand basic aggregation. Since we were still in still in the design exploration stage, the Wasp tool served as an introduction to how we can develop designs based on aggregation. As shown below are a few clips to showcase our current stage of learning and exploration.