Orkhestra, Orchestrating the Depth of Light 2014, Germany, Frankfurt


Orkhestra: Orchestrating the Depth of Light

The installation Orkhēstra, at the 2014 Luminale in Frankfurt, explores this question and is the result of the Media Architecture Institute (Vienna/Sydney) and Städelschule Architecture Class (SAC, Frankfurt) teaming up with the University of New South Wales (Sydney); Ludwig Maximillian University (Munich) and AHL LED (Shenzhen) for an experimental and architectural design challenge. Subtitled ‘Orchestrating the Depth of Light’, the installation brings together a playful interaction of state-of-the-art design expertise and media and interaction technology. Installed at the central Rossmarkt in Frankfurt, where previous times saw horses traded, criminals beheaded and Johann Städel founded was has become the Städel Museum and Städelschule, Orkhēstra is at once a glowing celebration of its location, the future of light technology in architecture and the relationship between human curiosity and material forms. Orkhēstra pushes the boundaries of what embedded media technology in architecture is. The installation forms an intersection of the historical axes on Rossmarkt and the contemporary commercial urban context. It uses the media technology to animate the complex depth of the architectural surfaces while inviting passers-by and visitors to engage with ODL’s interactive lighting system, which is triggered by camera flashlights. Orkhēstra consists of a double-curved polypropylene skin that infolds and exfolds in numerous, differentialy scaled perforations. The installation was developed using state-of- the-art computer modelling technology and delivers an organic form that challenges the conventional use of orthogonal surfaces for building components and LED placement. The double curvature surfaces are constructed with the advantage of material elastic bending behaviour in the 1.2 mm thick polypropylene sheets. The polypropylene sheets are laser- cut to generate 7732 unique pieces, which are assembled with a finger joint system to form a thick, double-layered outer


Project sponsor/ support : Media Architecture Institute


Participatory architecture & urban interaction