Planetary: Cecil Balmond

‘Earthquakes’ is one of those topics that everyone knows about, but no one really knows that much about it. We’re all familiar with earthquakes, but I doubt that most people know about P waves, PP waves, AND S waves! So how do ‘earthquakes’ relate to design? Cecil Balmond is a “is a world renowned designer, artist, mathematician, thinker and writer” and he challenges traditional theories about underlying mechanisms and design. Instead of relying on a skeleton to strengthen a building during an earthquake, he relishes the fluidity and flexibility of a structure with “overflowing kinetic energy”.

An exhibit earlier this year in Tokyo, Japan featured his work in three different ‘phases’, but all three focus on geometric patterns,and finding rhythms that develop naturally through genetic codes. Besides his ‘flowing kinetic energy’ concept, Balmond also wonders if it is possible to delegate the code that gives life’ to a building, and see if it could grow and flourish from this initial genetic code, instead of having everything about the structure designed from the beginning. Really interesting stuff! There’s a much larger description of the exhibit (and source of my info and pictures) here and more about Cecil Balmond here.

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