Creating spaces with a minimum of material, this is the aim of the Los Angeles based architects of Ball-Nogues Studio. The temporary outdoor installation ‘Maximilian´s Schell’ – a featherweight shade structure, which casts beautiful, colored fractal light patterns onto the ground – is an impressive example of their strategy.
Ball Nogues invested more than a year into a development process that involved several prototypes, though actual fabrication took only two weeks. The designers achieved their aesthetic effects by manipulating Mylar reinforced with bundled Nylon and Kevlar Fibers on a computer-controlled (CNC) cutting machine. The result was neither a tent-type membrane nor a cable net structure in the manner of Frei Otto, but a unique tensile matrix comprised of 504 different instances of a parametric component or “petal,” each cut and labeled using the CNC system.