Los Angeles, California / 2011

Underwriting this research is the idea of multi­materiality, where the homogeneity of digital surfaces is replaced with complex depth, sectional, and compositional effects. The goal was to create heterogeneous building skin prototypes from a patchwork of materials and inlaid objects, similar to a calico cat or a Korean seafood pancake. Ingredients in the “pancake” included vacuum formable polymer sheets, overmolded plastics and rubbers, robotically deposited materials and coatings, embedded 3D prints for structural core and keyed joints, and low-profile technology such as OLED luminescent film. Multi­step tooling processes—as in the use of removable sub­tools and overmolding—were used to create cavities between surfaces or embed one material into another.

Research Team: Tom Wiscombe, Jonathan Proto, Brandon Kruysman