The objective of the assignment was to create a responsive skin for the building of our choice and have that skin be reactive to its surrounding context.

The Building

The idea was to explore a sustainable method of harvesting water from the surrounding atmosphere. Proximity to the sea where the humidity of the air is maximum was the criteria for the choice of the building. Hence, Hotel Arts, an important landmark for the city and a building with an existing metal framework was best suited for this project.


The proposal for the structure draws inspiration from `fog catchers´used in high altitude zones. Sheets of polypropylene nets are attached to a metal framework and set up in these areas. The small gaps of the net allow water vapor to condense onto it.

The existing square grid of the metal structure draping the skyscraper was reworked and sub divided into smaller units. Each unit was designed to have a system of a contracting and expanding skin, reactive to the humidity of the air. Higher the humidity, more the surface area required by the skin to capture water vapor in the air, hence making the skin expand by the telescopic mechanism of the framework.

Animation of the Reactive Facade

Pseudo Code

  • Make an Isotrim Surface.
  • To have editable U and V divisions on the surface, construct domain.
  • Make three domains for the U direction to make vertical divisions whose sizes can be changed.
  • Set a domain for the V divisions for the horizontal sections and give a number slider to make it editable.
  • Add evaluate surface component to scale each individual panel.
  • Scale the geometry for each segment twice.
  • Introduce two attractor curves here for controlling the scale factor of Geometry One.
  • The Scale factor of Geomtery Two is set to be half of that of one.
  • Remap the numbers for the factor of Scaled Geometry One.
  • Add Bounds and give distance component between the scaled surface and the curve attractor points.
  • Construct Domain for the target of the Remap Numbers.
  • Deconstruct Brep for the Original Surface segments and the scaled geometry one.
  • Create a line between the vertices and pipe them.
  • Deconstruct Brep from scaled geometry one and explode the edges and add a curve component.
  • Move Scaled geometry two and add an amplitude for the movement.
  • Deconstruct brep from the moved scaled geometry two and explode it.
  • Add Point on Curve component.
  • Merge all the curves together.
  • Add Nurbs Curve Component.
  • Add Trim tree Component.
  • Add List item Component.
  • Flip the direction of two alternate curves.
  • Use Sweep 2 to join these curves to form the undulated surface.




Fog Catchers- A Responsive Facade System is a project of IAAC, Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia developed at Masters in Advanced Architecture in 2021/2022 by
Students: Tanvee Joshi / Neha Jayanth Pattanshetti
Faculty: David Andres Leon / Ashkan Foroughi Dehnavi
Assistant Faculty: Laukik Lad  / Uri Lewis Torres
Course: Computational Design- Basics