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Jul 27, 2021 By IIDA HQ
High 5: Place
We take a look at firms, projects and products that are site-specific, and/or evoke place through materials or experiences, presenting different ways to connect to place.
By IIDA HQ Jul 27, 2021
Published in

Above image: Salt crystal panels being grown using the sun and wind, image courtesy of Atelier LUMA.

This month we take a look at firms, projects and products that are site-specific, and/or evoke place. From sourcing local materials for innovative use, to transporting the user through 3D printed experiences, each of these designs present different ways to connect to place.

1. 3D Printed Homes From Locally Sourced Materials

Mario Cucinella Architects, who specialize in environmental and energy solutions and 3D-printing company WASP have teamed up to focus on low-carbon construction technology to produce homes. With a climate-minded approach, WASP has sourced clay from a nearby river for site-specific, reproducible homes they’ve called TECLA. Printed in just 200 hours using an average of six kilowatt-hours of energy, the design and process are meant to function as solutions adaptable to different places with varying available resources. The prototype of TECLA, illustrates that by embracing new technology it’s possible to reduce waste and emissions, and produce affordable housing quickly.

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The TECLA prototype, 3D printed from clay gathered from a nearby river. Photo by Iago Corazza.
The TECLA prototype, 3D printed from clay gathered from a nearby river. Photo by Iago Corazza.

2. Italian Lamp Made From Sicilian Orange Peels

Italian firm Krill Design has incorporated their Italian heritage into their design in a whole new way, by transforming Sicilian orange peels into a compostable biopolymer material, and in turn using this to 3D print a lamp, the Ohmie. With the texture and delicate scent of an orange cookie, this small dimmable lamp evokes place in a whole new way—capturing the brightness of the Sicilian countryside and the innovation of Milanese design. Originally developed for a project with a global catering client, Krill refined the technology and achieved a sturdy enough material to support a top-heavy design without compromising the shape.

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The Ohmie lamp made from and evoking the look, feel, and scent of a Sicilian orange. Image courtesy of Krill Design.
The Ohmie lamp made from and evoking the look, feel, and scent of a Sicilian orange. Image courtesy of Krill Design.

3. Sustainable Fashion Created From Marine Plastics

Fashion Designer Iris van Herpen’s most recent line, Earthrise, debuted July 5 at Paris Haute Couture Week, featuring five pieces entirely made of recycled ocean plastics from Parley for the Oceans. Parley has collaborated with other artists and brands like Adidas, Julien Schnaebel, and M.I.A, M.I.A. collaborating on the 2021 Clean Wave line, a limited edition sunglasses line made from Parley’s marine plastics. The Parley Global Cleanup Network orchestrates collaborative programs that remove plastic waste from beaches, remote islands, rivers, and more for use as upcycled materials in their partnerships all while raising awareness for marine plastic pollution.

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Sustainable couture from Iris van Herpen's Earthrise collection, made from upcycled marine plastics from Parley for the Oceans. Image courtesy of Iris van Herpen
Sustainable couture from Iris van Herpen's Earthrise collection, made from upcycled marine plastics from Parley for the Oceans. Image courtesy of Iris van Herpen

4. Print Your Own Artifacts

Scan the World, a community-built project from My Mini Factory provides over 17,000 contributed scans of iconic art and artifacts for users to experience, and reproduce via 3D printer. From Rodan’s The Thinker, to the Bust of Nerfertiti and even Stonehenge. The mission of the collective is to break down the barriers and boundaries that prevent people from visiting cultural pieces from around the world. With a recent partnership with Google Arts and Culture, the collection was able to add thousands of new pieces to the platform which also contains contributions from private collection owners and institutions like the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the National Gallery of Denmark.

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The 3D scan of the Bust of Nerfertiti, one artifact available in the Scan Your World archive. Image courtesy of Scan Your World
The 3D scan of the Bust of Nerfertiti, one artifact available in the Scan Your World archive. Image courtesy of Scan Your World

5. Bioregional Inspired Materials

Atelier LUMA, a design and research lab and program of LUMA Arles, focuses on the bioregion they are surrounded by, using different approaches to harness the possibilities of material. By collaborating with various experts like salt farmers, the program researches and produces locally rooted projects from sources like mineral quarries and salt marshes to sheep farms and rice cultivation. For the interior of the Frank Gehry tower for LUMA Arles Foundation, Atelier LUMA’s Crystallization Plant created a salt panel wall produced in collaboration with the Camargue region’s salt farmers. Designers used the natural properties of salt to grow crystalized panels naturally, using only the sun and wind, connecting the building interior to the surrounding ecology. (Pictured above, growing the salt crystal panels, image courtesy of Atelier LUMA)

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Installed salt panels at Frank Gehry's tower for Arles from Atelier LUMA’s Crystallization Plant. Photo by Adrian Deweerdt.
Installed salt panels at Frank Gehry's tower for Arles from Atelier LUMA’s Crystallization Plant. Photo by Adrian Deweerdt.
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