In this installation at Milan’s Nilufar Gallery, Weisshaar and Kram introduce a new paradigm of Force-Driven Structures, a term coined to describe how the supporting frame of the objects on display—tables, shelves and desks—were determined by a custom software that analyzes, modifies and paints a structure based on the forces passing through them. As such, the MULTITHREAD series hints at a different way of manufacturing and building in general – one that bypasses existing engineering conventions, to instead demonstrate how unique architectural objects can be made with software design.
The design of each piece of MULTITHREAD furniture begins with a set of horizontal surfaces positioned in the space of a table top, a shelf, and a desk. A web of thin connecting bars is defined to support these surfaces. The custom software then analyzes the forces and stresses passing through it. The final form and colour of every joint is a direct representation of the energy it supports.
The software outputs a complete set of digital blueprints for the tubes and connecting joints which are subsequently 3D printed by the latest metal printing technology: Selective Laser Melting (SLM). These are then handed to a team of master craftsmen who join the parts together and apply colours to the frame according to the computer generated finite elements calculations. Each joint is custom painted to illustrate the forces acting within it.
Nilufar Gallery hosted this special exhibition together with an installation of important antique Chinese carpets from Nina Yashar’s collection in the Sala Pericoli of the Gio Ponti designed Palazzo Garzanti on Via della Spiga, Milan in April, 2012.