2013 Conference


Student Information

Billeting program: The billeting program is now closed. If you still need to find affordable accommodations for the conference, here are some local motel options:

  • Satellite Motel: 195 Hespeler Rd, 519-622-6777
  • Super 8 Motel Cambridge: 650 Hespeler Rd, 519-622-1070
  • Horizon Motel 11: 1512 King St E, 519-653-1153

Research Team Exhibits


Victoria University at Wellington
By using the digital to push beyond our known ideas of craft and making, it raises the question, is digital making an opportunity to explore new forms of production and social practice while recapturing all the richness and diversity we value in the natural world – and denied to us in the monotony of mass production? It presents an opportunity to discover, test and create innovative new ways in which the digital and natural worlds may begin to merge and how this may effect on-going changes in the discipline of design. We present the outcomes of this research in the form of physical specimens grouped under three themes; “Pattern and Growth”, “Generative Code” and “Digital Materials”.


UCL Bartlett
Several related projects from the Bartlett’s MSc in Adaptive Architecture and Computation represent current research in adap- tation for uncertain and unstructured environments. As a group, these address uncertainty occurring at the design phase, through methods of simulation and modelling that account for impreci- sion, approximation and flexibility, in the manufacturing phase, through intelligent fabrication devices, and in the self-control and behaviour of the architecture itself.


Architectural Association
The research seeks to develop a family of parts based system for adaptive sport infrastructure to function as distributed multiuse entities within the urban fabric. The research in its current phase is focussed on spatial and material prototypes for movement based sporting events that can allow for a hyper specific adaptation pro- cess to occur.


University of Toronto | RADlab
Although discretized as individual elements for stand-alone use or modular aggregation, the DropMossTM tiles are wirelessly con- nected to their neighbors and linked to the Internet. They report individually on their status (wetness and pH) and together on ambient environmental conditions (temperature, ambient light, humidity, C02). They join other networked moss communities around the globe in an eco-system of live correlated data whose feedback serves their resilience and sustainability.


The University of Nottingham
Seven Students from MARS were awarded the ACADIA 2013 Prototyping Architecture Prize for the excellence of their contribution to the design, organisation and delivery of the Prototyping Architecture Exhibition in Nottingham, London and now Cambridge. The prize winners are: Laura Gaskell, Jenny Grewcock, William Hathaway, Jonty Hallett, Maddy Ike, Mehrnoush Rad and Ben Stanforth.


The University of Nottingham
MARS advocates an iterative design process, making to draw and drawing to make architecture. Drawing by hand will be explored as a key skill, ‘used as a direct, spontaneous yet considered means to pitch construction against deconstruction, macro against micro, polished against raw, fragile against concrete’.The participants in the studio are encouraged to be radical and situated in their design practice, the primary mode of design research will be mak- ing. A fundamental well spring of MARS is making and how the decisions related to architecture develop as physical realization is approached. MARS tutors are primarily drawn from Michael Stacey Architects and S4AA.


Tongji University
Projects featured from the 2012 and 2013 DigitalFUTURE Shanghai Workshop. Mechanical Garden (2012) simulates a real garden through Arduino Technology. Dynamic Force (2013) aims to reveal the inner essence of tensegrity through the integration of LED variability that allows the understanding of applied load changes in truss systems.


MAT UCSB, SciArc, Otis and USC
IMUM COELI, IC is a systemic work that invites the reflection on the technological apparatus required to perceive and experience our world. The interplay of three orbiting spheres suspended above 233 pendulums present an exploration of local electromag- netic fields, and earth’s rotational and gravitational forces.


ETH Zurich
Resinance is an interactive installation that emphasizes new mate- rial techniques, interaction and networked intelligence. It is com- prised of networked modules enhanced with thermo-chromic pigments which vibrate and slowly shift colour in response to touch and which the extend the interactive response through ‘neighbourhoods’ and ‘colonies’ in complex and emergent patterns.


University of Calgary
The work of the responsive architecture research team engages and speculates upon many important social, technological and cultural issues raised by the notion of adaptive architecture. Thinking in terms of exchange, dynamics, energy, and flow brings forward fundamentally different attitude towards materialization, form, performance and construction of the built environment. The projects presented here engage the question of adaptability and resilience in different ways. The goal was to engage, as part of the design process, natural or manufactured processes in order to form a productive relationship between an architectural intervention, its environment and a user. The work presented here varies in scope and nature from kinetic surfaces to urban design proposals.


Ryerson University’s Department of Architectural Science has cultivated an curriculum where anything that can be imagined can manifest into reality. This sampling of recent student projects showcases some of the academic and extracurricular work undertaken within the department ranging from parametric performance-based designs and microprocessor-driven responsive envelopes to digitally fabricated installations and interventions.


University at Buffalo | CAST
The Situated Technologies Group at the University of Buffalo, Department of Architecture focuses on the design of artifacts, spaces, and media that are responsive to their context. In addi- tion, the group conducts material research through computational workflows and digital fabrication. This installation highlights a few work examples taken from a recent technical seminar and glimps- es from a current studio. The seminar investigates both repre- sentational and full scale material prototyping, the latter of which places an emphasis on self-supporting, thin-gauge sheet metal structures. The studio, XS, focuses on “excessive” programming through tiny interventions in large scale post-industrial sites.


UCL Bartlett
An embedded drawing machine which translates a coercive and emergent choreography between the observer and observed into a superimposed spatialised diagram of perpetual misperception.


University of Waterloo | F_RMlab
F_RMlab is a design and research collective en- gaged in advanced computational design tools in support of new paradigms of public space where dynamic interaction, social re- sponsiveness, regenerative materials and systemic resilience are integral goals in building. The CUBE is an undergraduate initiative exploring fabrication techniques and the field of interactive archi- tecture. Stemming from the groundwork of Field Guide, exhibited at the Gladstone Hotel last April, The CUBE brings a sense of dis- covery to an interactive canopy, encouraging the user engage with the components in a playful and intimate setting.


Royal Danish Academy (CITA)
The concept of “The Rise” is the idea of a growing architecture. Like a bush the installation has its own internal growth patterns that guide the material in a highly distributed aggregation of small members that keep branching off and multiplying. The installation looks at distributed systems as an alternative to traditional structural systems. Where contemporary design approaches in architecture have difficulties to conceptualise complex systems we grow a multitude of intersecting members that all together create a structural network system.


University of Texas Arlington School of Architecture
TOPOCAST Lab is a joint research initiative led by Assistant Professor Brad Bell between the professional work of TOPOCAST and the University ofTexas Arlington School of Architecture. The work is supported through the Digital Fabrication Labandindustry partners in the North Texas Region. Projects examine the use of parametric design to produce digitally generated cast surfaces.


University of Houston
Vitreous, an active prototype was developed and takes a role in understanding fabrication in the field of architectural design. The form of Vitreous came from an attempt to create an active landscape that simultaneously blends into and stands out from the Marfa desert, creating a mutual dialog of respect and identity to and from the site.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology
This project is an extension of a design created for Massachusetts Institute of Technology design and computation workshop, “Synthetic Exoskeletons: Translations from Biological to Design Systems,” taught by Katia Zolotovsky. This workshop was part of the interdisciplinary collaboration with the Ortiz Group from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and part of the Human Exoskeletons Initiative. Work for the class occurred in the spring of 2013.