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MoCA Pavilion in Los Angeles by Tom Wiscombe Design
November 20th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: Tom Wiscombe Design
This inhabitable pavilion is a study of surface-to-volume transformations, where mass is achieved by pushing into a surface like a fist through a rubber sheet. In this case, chunky objects are pushed into exterior skins, creating volumetric effects on the interior. The perimeter edges of the three components of the piece are razor-thin, creating visual tension between the realms of 2D/flat and 3D/massive.
Through the triangular arrangement of the three super-components, the piece also reads as an series of objects nested within an implied outer enclosure. Placing objects inside other objects creates the effect of depth and internalized figuration like in an aquarium.
The construction of the piece, like the wing of a stealth fighter, is a composite monocoque construction with variable-depth honeycomb core material to provide graded structural performance. What at first appears to be a single thin surface is in fact two surfaces which sometimes fuse and sometimes delaminate.
The material matrix is an advanced water-based polymer with Kevlar weave reinforcement; it is commonly used by the aerospace industry in the construction of 1:1 prototypes due to its lightness, strength, and the fact that it is a ‘green’ composite system. It is non-toxic and fireproof, solving two technical hurdles composites have consistently faced in architectural applications. Finally, the piece is finished with an ultra-matte rubber-like coating that is soft and velvety to the touch, similar to the skin of a manta ray.
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Tags: Los Angeles