Soft Shells - Porous and Deployable Architecture

Courtesy of Sophia Vyzoviti and BIS Publishers

Cut, Pleat, Tile, Weave. Four principles guide every project in the publication Soft Shells - a new publication that features porous, deployable, expandable and retractable architecture. Keep reading after the break to see two of the featured projects, but make sure to check out the full book here.


With applications from sun screens to building skins, a project in which the designer has complete control over each individual hole. 

"The series of objects manifests augmentation and curvature of a single surface as it performs under tension. In material terms, the experiment utilizes the elastic behavior of a perforated sheet of acrylic along the horizon of its thermal malleability, in the ten seconds before it settles into a plastic form. Local variability of the overall regular pattern that striates it emerges in this interval. Patterns tested here include line segments and arcs in alternating rows, as well as randomly distributed splines."

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Courtesy of Sophia Vyzoviti and BIS Publishers

A project that tries to solve the issue of emergency relief through thoughtful and rapidly deployable architecture. 

"The project aims at the production of an emergency park strategically designed with the potential to transform within a few days into a settlement to shelter people affected by natural disasters. The proposed shelter unit is energy-efficient, recyclable, polymorphic and extendable, easy to transfer and install and engaging the dwellers in its construction process. It provides safety and the highest quality of living possible under the circumstances. Thermal comfort and individual floor area within the dwelling are considered as a set of minimum necessary conditions. The dwell-ing core is a self-supporting pleated tube to which deployable components – sleeping areas, veranda and bathroom – adhere. Dwelling parts are transported to the location by truck in flat packages and erected in situ. The pleated surface is multi-layered, including structural strata (honeycomb cardboard, Tectan board) and insulation strata (Actis, Gore-Tex). On its south-facing side, the hot air accumulated between the pleats can be released into the interior. Side and top facets can rotate into openings." 

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Discover the rest of the projects in Soft Shells here

About this author
Cite: Andrew Galloway. "Soft Shells - Porous and Deployable Architecture " 21 Jun 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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