IAAC – Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction
Workshop 1.2
Faculty: Pablo Zamorano, Aldo SollazzoRaimund Krenmueller.
Faculty Assistant: Soroush Garivani


Credits: Heatherwick Studio            


Craft usually makes us think about extraordinary exquisite objects, usually wonders of technique and use of material, always accomplished through immense expertise, repetition and mastery. Processes developed through generations of craftsmen and carried out as knowledge that continues to evolve through the years.

At Heatherwick is as much about object as about processes, about how we discover ideas and how we realise them. Similarly, as designers we are interested in exploring different projects introducing custom crafting solutions, depending on bespoke techniques that may never get mastered because of their uniqueness.  In collaboration with Heatherwick, IaaC and the MRAC program propose to challenge existing paradigm of design and fabrication, questioning current construction methods. 

Is it possible to reconfigure traditional techniques from a machine and computation enabled reality? How can we translate material properties and fabrication constraints into a creative digital process of design and construction? Robotic fabrication provides a digital protocol to manipulate physical components, defining hardware operations engineered to perform specific material transformations. 

This workshop will focus on the production of an architectural system based on the spatial repetition of a single component, establishing an aggregation strategy informed by material properties and structural performance. Robotic fabrication and assembly will translate into the physical world digital design and structural simulations, reconfiguring material constraints into innovative protocols of construction.    Students will explore how craft processes can creatively inform design solutions from initial concepts through fabrication. Novel and existing solutions explored by Heatherwick studio will be reconfigured through robotic fabrication, towards the definition of a new craft negotiating among creativity and digital protocols of manufacturing.                             

Learning objectives

At course completion the student will:
– Design Optimization strategies for manufacturing
– Robotic fabrication and assembly strategies
– Produce a 1:5 prototype of its architectural system
– Explore assembly techniques integrating material constraints