AA Visiting School Dubai 2015 -
ExpoCITY 2020 :
PROJECT | AA Visiting School Dubai - Expo2020
PLACE | Dubai
ROLE | Director
DATE | 2015
MATERIALS | Fabric fomrwork, fibreglass, plaster, polypropylene sheet, mdf, wood
The second edition of The Dubai Visiting School will advance the research of the previous workshop by exploring avant-garde methods of materializing architecture. The outcomes will consist of a speculative body of work, representing a UAE pavilion for the upcoming Expo 2020, which will take place in Dubai.
This year, we will focus on challenging the prevailing modus operandi of the construction site, where laborers take on complex and sometimes dangerous tasks in the process of constructing iconic architecture for emerging cities.
AA Visiting School Dubai will re-examine the potential of building ad-hoc robotic fabrication arms, which are built on site, to work hand in hand with the workers, enhancing their ability to construct complex tectonics. Subsequently, we will be looking at materializing spatial elements that would be simulated digitally to quantify processes for simplifying the construction of complex architecture.
The teams will aim at producing full-scale prototypes using our in-house technologies, alongside full representations of their Expo interventions. We will aim to test materials at full scale, switching back and forth between physical and digital design realms.
Set up as an independent exploratory architectural lab in the Middle East, The second edition of AA Visiting School Dubai advanced the research of the previous workshop by exploring avant-garde methods of materialising architecture. The outcomes consisted of a speculative body of work, representing a UAE pavilion for the upcoming Expo 2020, which will take place in Dubai.
The teams aimed at producing full-scale prototypes using our in-house technologies, alongside full representations of their Expo interventions. We aimed to test materials at full scale, switching back and forth between physical and digital design realms.
At AAVSDXB 2.0 we used funicular logic to form-find tensile fabric formwork for casting lightweight shells - a material system that we have been developing, inspired by Frei Otto's work on the 'Biotopic Building' a building of minimal mass. The idea is to simplify the construction of doubly curved surfaces, using current computational and ad hoc processes.
Within the short time of the workshop, only one shell was cast. We will continue our exploration to advance this system to be able to cast many components that allow for constructing a spatial and structural enclosure.
We exhibited in A4 Space, Alserkal Avenue, Dubai with the support of Expo 2020.
This edition of AAVS DXB will build on the body of work that will continue over the following years. Our ambition will be to allow for the emergence of an experimental design laboratory, which pushes for embedding generative design logic, fabrication methods, and open source operations into the architectural discourse in Dubai. A city that is evolving as a hub for art, culture and design in the region.
Bayan Mujahed, Yahya Kaddoura, Farah Zandaki, Hashem Joucka, Maryam AlMulla, Suha Al Salamain, Noha Jaheen, Alin Voitescu, Hira Amjad, Basma Ajoor, Hamzah Mohammed, Dunia abu Shanab, Sarah Sager, Abdulrahman Bucheeri, Noora Bucheeri, Nijoud Alqadi, Rishem Adnan, Jehad Khayyat, Noura Mhied, Aya Riad, Mohamed Rowaizak, Anna Haji Shahmohammadi, Mishari AlNajjar, Thanyaporn Sriskulpinyo, Sireen Al Khatib, Reem Thawabeh, Yasmeen Khalil, Tamara Hamad, Shahad Al-hadeethi
Unit-1_ Material composites
This unit will investigate the potential inherit in coupling the efficiency and flexibility of tensile membranes, with the rigidity of composite materials. Starting with the very simple manipulation on fabrics within certain geometric forces and physical pressures, this unit will develop a construction technique to achieve lightweight stiffened panels that assemble to generate interesting spatial conditions at full scale.
Unit-2_ scaffolding fabrication
The unit will take up the fabrication of digitally manufactured scaffolding required for the construction of the pavilion. Design strategies for effective use and construction of the formwork will be addressed. Potential integration of the formwork along with composite materials to further enhance the structure will also be investigated. This unit will be the primary user of our fabrication facilities, developing a system that will be easy to assemble, use, disassemble and reuse.
UNIT-3_ ROBOTIC RECURSION
The use of robotics in Architecture today is mostly limited to research labs and academic projects at universities. Using industrial robots is anything but intuitive or simple. We built our own robotic arms last year to understand robots better, and make it simpler to program and use them. Over the year, our robotic arms have seen much improvement, and in this next iteration of the AAVSDXB, we will use them help the team with complex tasks which might be too intricate, repetitive or for human builders to carry out. We will develop hardware to enable our robots to perform tasks such as 3d printing and weaving to enhance the processes involved with building our experimental pavilion.
Unit-3_ computational simulation
This unit will explore computational simulation and non-linear strategies applied to the logics of fiber-composites. A basic understanding of material properties will serve as launch pad to proceed into programming simulations, coupling 3D modelling, material processes and agency in the development of fiber-composite tectonics.
AAVS DXB 2.0 2015 Final video
Farah Ragheb & Maryam Altaf