Hextic design heralds future direction in Sydney Festival of Architecture

TRADITIONAL building forms — slab, columns, walls and roof — could become somewhat old-fashioned once new, computer-generated forms take over.

Take Hextic as an example.

The installation created for the 2014 Sydney Architecture Festival borrows its hexagonal shape from nature, uses computational scripts and algorithms for its design and digital fabrication for its three dimensional reality.

It is a collaborative work by various people from the University of NSW including Rebekah Araullo of Penshurst, an associate lecturer who teaches how to design architecture using computational scripts and algorithms and Dominique Heraud, of Cronulla, a student who is studying how computational methods and technology are changing the way architecture is created.

Ms Heraud project-managed the work.

Ms Araullo said although these new forms of architecture posed challenges in the engineering field, the hexagon cells illustrated the strength and efficiency of circle packing structures found in nature.

Ms Heraud said it was amazing to be part of something that would affect people and change the built environment.

"The Hextic project has made me realise how much work is involved and how important it is to overcome hurdles," she said.

"We've had many sleepless nights trying to meet our project schedule.

"I hope people will appreciate our work and get enjoyment from it."

The structure — 4 metres high and 5.5 metres wide — will come to life after dark in a CBD alleyway.

Triggered by sensors, the embedded lights in the structure will display dynamic images in the form of contemporary media.

See the structure at Grasshopper Bar, 1 Temperance Lane, Sydney,until November 20.

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