Transient materialization: Ephemeral, material-oriented digital fabrication

Shih-Yuan Wang, Yu Ting Sheng, Alex Barchiesi, Jeffrey Huang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


This paper explores the relationship between digital and material-based fabrications in architecture. The notion of transient materialization proposes that immaterial architecture is a trigger for investigating new possibilities for digital fabrication through space and time. This project is mainly inspired by the beauty of nature, focusing on soap foam bubbles, which have an n-hedron structure and are usually blown by air. The paper questions this structure's materiality, examines its physical performance and ephemeral characteristics, and expands on its meaning through an experiment in digital fabrication. In addition, we present the first phase of this technology, in which an anti-gravity and programmable foam structure was achieved. The experiment demonstrates the different shapes possible for dynamic and transient soap foam structures.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdaptive Architecture and Programmable Matter - Next Generation Building Skins and Systems from Nano to Macro
EditorsM. Gutierrez, C. Santangelo, J. Sabin
PublisherMaterials Research Society
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781510826533
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015
Event2015 MRS Spring Meeting - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 6 Apr 201510 Apr 2015

Publication series

NameMaterials Research Society Symposium Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0272-9172


Conference2015 MRS Spring Meeting
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco

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