Robotic Arm

Students Engage Robotic Fabrication as a Design Tool in Sponsored Studio

By UM News

Students Engage Robotic Fabrication as a Design Tool in Sponsored Studio

By UM News
Newly-Funded UL Studios to be taught by Lamere

This Fall marked the beginning of a new era of digital fabrication at U-SoA, through the inauguration of "On Making and Matter: A Studio Sequence for the Emerging Future." This newly-funded set of four upper-level studios, to be taught by Professor Joel Lamere over three years, emphasizes robotic fabrication techniques and computational design centered in material reality. Through playing, testing, experimenting, prototyping and other modes of making, students will transform materials into architectural matter. The sequence of studios is made possible through two important industry partnerships. ShopClass – a technology company focused on the future of robotics in the building construction industry has funded the studio, including necessary research and development. Grupo Arca a leading global supplier of high-quality natural and technological materials will provide materials, knowledge and facilities central to this kind of design research.

The first studio in the sequence, "CLOUDY: Acoustic Textures & Robotic Architectures" is now underway, with students investigating two topics. They are exploring the relationship between surface and sound, its implications in the experience of architectural space, and the agency of the ceiling in inscribing spatial subdivision. In parallel, students are also using robotic fabrication and computational design environments to understand the changing role of the architectural designer in the making of architecture. Students have already begun experimenting with acoustically-performing surfaces fabricated from various foams. The second half of the semester will be dedicated to the robotic fabrication and assembly of full-scale of cloud prototypes, to be mounted in the Murphy Studio space.