Restoration of Buckminster Fuller’s iconic Fly’s Eye Dome at America’s Cup

Restoration of Buckminster Fuller’s iconic Fly’s Eye Dome at America’s Cup

Goetz Composites, fabricators of some of the most successful race boats in the world including three of today’s most high profile yachts as well as ten America’s Cup racing yachts completed a historic restoration of one of Buckminster Fuller‘s most iconic structures, the 24 foot Fly’s Eye Dome.

Patented in 1965, Fuller created two prototypes of this structure; a 24 foot and 50 foot dome. Fuller writes in his seminal book, Critical Path that “the Fly’s Eye domes are designed as part of a ‘livingry’ service. The basic hardware components will produce a beautiful, fully equipped air-deliverable house that weighs and costs about as much as a good automobile. Not only will it be highly efficient in its use of energy and materials, it also will be capable of harvesting incoming light and wind energies.”

More images and information after the break.

The 24 foot dome has undergone extensive restorations in an effort to return the dome to its original condition by the renowned Goetz Composites in Bristol Rhode Island.

“Having the Bucky Dome at our shop has been fun and a broadening experience. It has been amazing, how many people to whom I have talked recently, appreciate Bucky’s work and are interested in this project’ said Eric Goetz, Chief Technology Officer. Applying our expertise with composites in the world of architecture is exciting and the possibilities are enormous. We are just seeing the tip of the iceberg of composites in the architectural space.

“This process has been totally amazing”, said Elizabeth Thompson, Executive Director of The Buckminster Fuller Institute. “Eric and his team’ working with Daniel J. Reiser and John Warren who fabricated the original structure with Bucky, have gone to extraordinary lengths to engage this process with the same meticulous detail as a world-class fine art restorer. The 24 foot Fly’s Eye dome is a convergence of Fuller’s most advanced thinking with regard to synergetic geometry, advanced structural systems, and the very contemporary notion of a dwelling machine.”

The 24 foot Fly’s Eye dome has been restored in preparation for installation during Art Basel I Miami Beach and Design Miami in December and for inclusion in the contemporary art and design collection of Craig Robins, CEO and President of Dacra, Miami.

About this author
Cite: Sebastian Jordana. "Restoration of Buckminster Fuller’s iconic Fly’s Eye Dome at America’s Cup" 30 May 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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