Project: Elevated Dog Feeder
Type: Furniture Line
Project: Elevated Dog Feeder
Type: Furniture Line
Project: La Burbuja/ The Bubble
Type: Mobile Structure
Client: KCRW_Sonic Trace
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Length: 8 weeks
La Burbuja is a portable sound studio designed to aid the multimedia storytelling initiative Sonic Trace to record and collect life stories of immigrants as it travels through the city of Los Angeles. Some of the basic questions interviewees are asked to confront include: Why do you go? Why do you stay? And what makes you return? Pure in its form the bubble sound booth comes apart in sections, like a chocolate orange, and is able to isolate sound, creating an intimate environment for users to share their stories without distraction from the immediate context which surrounds them. It presents them with a ‘non-environment’ in which they can reflect on their personal experiences as immigrants and individuals in a foreign culture. The reflective exterior skin on the other hand promotes a certain amount of interaction with the crowd as it allows passersby to see their own reflection in the bubble, so even if they aren’t contributing their own stories, they are able to see themselves in the ones that are told.
Project: Nissan Global Auto Show
Type: Auto Show
Client: Nissan/ George P Johnson
Location: Tokyo, JP; Shanghai, CHN; Paris, FR; Geneva, CHE; Detroit, US; New York, US
Poised to become the internationally recognized image for the Nissan Brand, the new Auto booth design strives to capture Nissan’s dynamic identity which for decades has been driven by a philosophy of innovation in forward motion. The architectural response carries forward this idea through a set of distinct but unifying elements: the central nucleous from which everything evolves and shifts, the rings which encapsulate the heart of display, the long ramp which carries the viewer through the space and products in a fluid evolutionary motion, and an observation deck where the ramp gives way to a plateau from which the viewer is able to look back at the journey taken, filtering back down through the different layers of space and product once again. The Architecture becomes, by virtue of its sculpted and indelible dynamic form, a Modern Responsive Event Space evoking an instantaneous and indelible impression as a global icon with an optimistic and vision and commitment to the future.
Project: The Cube
Type: Mobile Structure
Client: Sound & Story Project
Location: New York
Length: 16 weeks
Designed and built for the Sound & Story Project New York, the Cube is a traveling recording studio which, with its sound-proof properties, transportability and iconic form, helps promote the story telling experience of the residents throughout the New York Hudson Valley. The purity, yet complexity of the shifted cube geometry along with its mirror finish conveys a sense of familiarity while providing for a visually and spatially dynamic experience, a multifaceted experience that projects its observers from point to point, revealing a different plane as one turns each corner. Made up of thirteen panels, the Cube is easily transportable and can be assembled and dismantled in less than two hours on site.
Project: Guiuan National High School (Concept)
Type: Educational/ Disaster Relief
Location: Guiuan, Philippines
Topology of Resilience
On November 9, 2013 the devastating Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines, causing more than 5,000 deaths and destroying the homes and cities of millions. Natural disasters due to climate change have become extremely commonplace all over the world. We can’t do much to stop them, but as architects we can help design and build stronger and more resilient buildings to withstand them. As part of a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) by OOAc in support of the Typhoon Haiyan victims, the objective of this project is to generate a design concept for a typhoon-resilient school to be implemented in the affected area of the Philippines, where sadly over 4,500 schools have been destroyed by the massive storm. The ultimate goal of this design proposal is not only to raise awareness about the relevance of the cause it serves, but also to present it to respective government officials and organizations such as Architecture for Humanity of the Philippines for its potential implementation. Conceived on an open source platform, the project is also to serve as resource and prototype for Resilient and Sustainable School Design that can be used in other natural disaster-prone areas of the world in the future.
Departing from four key characteristics of the geometry of resilience, Modular Diversity, Internal Grid Web-Network Structure, Scalability and Boundary Unification, our proposal is a one-form structure which applies these elements to create a compact and aerodynamic building that simultaneously serves as school, community center and mass shelter in case of a natural disaster.
Using local building techniques and simple readily accessible materials, the school can be constructed by hand without the aid of heavy machinery or complex building systems. Learning from local vernacular architectural applications and adapting their tectonic details systematically, the design grows into a larger structure that aims to perform better and prove to be more resilient to increasing threats from natural disasters without losing its human scale and relationship to context and typology. The incorporation of a series of individual courtyards and open spaces in each cluster within the larger structure provides an intimate feel to its internal spaces. The enclosed structure creates a space that inspires and promotes fluidity and continuity, unity of interaction and the connection within the parts that make up the entire school, its surrounding and its users. It is more than a resilient enclosure. It is a school which creates a sense of space, promoting a more communal way of interaction, a more holistic approach to the learning environment.
The school is elevated above ground on top of concrete pilotis on a uniform structural grid. This structural grid supports the main deck flooring system constructed out of bamboo, allowing for passive cooling and ventilation of the entire structure while offering protection from rising water due to floods. All structural systems for walls and space frame will be constructed out of bamboo and clad with a light modular skin. The facade features operable louvers which help control sun, wind and rain, and a roof-based rainwater harvesting system.
The intent is to create a resilient overall structure (roof) that is supported by a series of smaller internal structures (classrooms), working together in creating an aerodynamic form that would perform better than having smaller individual units scattered on the site. The total aggregation of simple modules of varying scales, ranging from the desk module, the classroom module, the library module, the office module, the bathroom module, all the way to the seat in the court yard, will yield a more robust system, both in form and scale. We believe the aggregation of simple interconnected systems will create a more resilient architecture and provide a better sense of unity for a learning environment. The form thus responds to climate, context and typology.
Project: Hyundai Highboy
Client: Hyundai/ Jack Morton Worldwide
Location: North America
Materials: Aluminum, Wood, Acrylic, Stainless Steel.
Designed and manufactured for the Hyundai Racing team the Highboy table is a unique and transportable custom piece of furniture. The design captures the precision and raw feel of performance racing and forms part of the Hyundai Drift Racing auto experience across North America. Made from raw materials, the table components are machined, water jet and mechanically joined with bolts and screws. A simple pivot point at its center of gravity allows the highboy to easily collapse and be set to its correct height. During the Hyundai Racing events the Hyundai Highboys offered a series of gathering points for people to interact.
Project: Nike_Los Fearless Award
Client: Nike/ Jack Morton Worldwide
Location: Los Angeles Underground
Materials: Concrete, Steel, Wood.
Designed and manufactured for Nike Basketball, the Los Fearless trophy was the final recognition presented to the winners of a highly secretive invitation only underground basketball 2-on-2 tournament that was staged in an improvised underground basketball court where the best talent around the city of Los Angeles was invited to compete against each other until one team would stand as the best of the best. The award was designed to capture the essence of the tournament’s rawness, to look and feel like a ripped part of the court given to the finalist as a memento of the final battle.
Project: Lounge Chair
Type: Furniture Line
Type: Single Family Dwelling
Location: Southern California
Project: Intel Innovation Award
Year: 2011, 2012, 2013
Client: Intel/ Jack Morton Worldwide
Materials: 3D Print, Polyurethane, Chrome.
Client: Willie’s Shoe Service
Materials: 3D Print
Project: Heimat Island (Competition)
Type: Skyscraper/ Disaster Relief
Location: Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh
Heimat_ISLAND is an architectural response that promotes greater interaction and human understanding of nature and its codependency to it. Situated in ground zero for climate change disasters of the coast of Bangladesh, Heimat_ISLAND is a series of controlled and natural ecosystems as well as five vertical Biomes that explore the symbiotic relationship between humans and nature. Providing a permanent place for refuge for thousands of the displaced due to climate change and allowing them for a second chance to responsibly coexist with nature while their homeland they were forced to leave returns to a natural equilibrium. It is an architectural exploration of vertical habitats and its relationship to the collective community that survives and adapts to its new vertical world on the ocean. Through a system of ecosystems we will encourage the reconnection that over time has diminished between humans and the natural world. It is an architecture that protects, and at the same time enhances a sense of identity and awareness towards our natural world, providing a collective social environment that facilitates a truly multi-cultural conversation and interaction between the diasporic. Heimat-ISLAND is a vertical world where Homeland is no longer defined by borders nor by cultural differences, but by the common understanding of our place in nature -a place where nature is not seen as the enemy acting upon us, but rather as the solution to our survival.
The main tower and its ecosystems will utilize and depend on an OTEC Temperature controlled system that will harvest the energy and temperature differences in the ocean in order to aid the vital systems of the biomes and the residential areas. It is a closed loop system that will run trough the entire site and tower dictating specific regions and program placement based on the temperature flow of its cycle. Changing from cooler regions to hot regions the OTEC system dictates the specific placement of certain ecosystems in terrestrial regions and vertical biomes. OTEC technology drives the desalinization plant for fresh water generation, electricity generation through steam turbines, and basic cooling and heating.
Mankind is at the pivotal point to make things right. It is a second change for humanity. It is taking the steps to reinvent ourselves through education and self-awareness. Recognizing that geographical limitations are disappearing and distances shortened in these hyper globalized societies, the mission is to conglomerate in a collective environment that will serve as a Tabula Rasa from where we can only move forward. It is making intelligent choices when it comes to the use of earth’s resources.
“The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays is coming to its close. In its place we are entering a period of consequences.”
Project: Ark Flood Observatory (Competition)
Location: Tenosique, Mexico
A Culturally Integrated Modern Responsive Ruin
The Ark-Usumacinta Flood Observatory is poised to become a nationally recognized icon for Tenosique and Usumacinta River. One that is synonymous with the dynamic vernacular of Tenosique de Pino Suarez that for decades has been economically driven by its river. The observatory serves as a powerful symbol -one that evokes an instantaneous and indelible impression as a global steward of the environment with a culturally optimistic vision and commitment to the future.
The Usumacinta River represents the symbolic and active epicenter of culture for Tenosique. The river at the heart of the town is the impetus for our design. The scheme is unequivocally unique to the ecology and topography of its site. Redefining the site boundaries to embrace an entire town as it reinvents a new gateway into its own cultural identity. A way-finding landmark, the observatory becomes the link to historical natural phenomena embedded in its own history. The Architecture becomes, by virtue of its sculpted and indelible figure, a Modern Responsive Ruin in nature. The building’s primal form is deeply embedded in nature, with distinct facets visible from all corners of the city from the banks of the Usumacinta River and vantage points throughout Tenosique de Pino Suarez. Positioned, literally at the heart of the mountain, the Ark not only serves as an Observatory, research center, disaster refuge and museum, but also connects the social and cultural fabric on both sides of the Usumacinta River. Its Architectural program typology is fragmented in space but connected by knowledge and information. The observatory is located at the top of the mountain while the research facility is located at the level of the river. It embraces the water level changes in order to gather knowledge. Also embracing floods as a natural phenomenon, bringing water onto the site to integrate with the architecture, accentuating Architecture in a symbiotic connection to the river.
Project: Safe Trestles Footbridge (Competition)
Location: San Onofre, California
Organized by Architecture for Humanity, Safe Trestles is an International Design Competition that called out for the design of a safe and compliant route between the existing parking lot and the surf beach, while preserving and enhancing a symbiotic co-existence between human recreational activities and coastal ecology. The competition would provide a design to be implemented in repairing the San Onofre wetlands, damaged by excessive foot traffic. Considering the notion of time, our proposed footbridge will serve as a symbolic datum for this site history and ecology, providing a path that transitions the traveler in a series of slow movements while feeling suspended in time and place. Disengaging from the destination for a moment, the bubble provides protection and a place of safe observation. In this space of detachment from purpose, awareness begins. The path feels fluid and fragile like the wetland below. Mundane thoughts are slowly drown out by the steady rhythm of the waves on the shore as symbolically recreated sound wave pattern of the vertical railings. Motion activated electrical generators throughout the structure collect the vibrations of these cable strung poles, storing energy to be released to LEDs at night. The wind catches each bubble, dynamically suspended in its intersection with the path. The fiberglass bubble and structure is allowed to oscillate horizontally with a degree of independence from the wooden path; the frothy moment at the edge of the surf when a powerful wave surrenders to the sand and returns to the ocean.