Performative Architecture and Fiber Materials. Overview of the Main European Research Paths

  • Angelo FigliolaEmail author
  • Alessandra Battisti


A new field of exploration in the European research context on Informed Architecture is related to the digital innovations and fibrous materials to design and fabrication of units and technological systems as well as architectural organisms at 1:1 scale. To analyze this path, the contribution proposes a series of 1:1 scale pavilions as results of the applied research yearly conducted at the Institute for Computational Design Stuttgart (ICD) on the topic of Fibrous Tectonics. The research pavilion selected outlines the topics of the investigation: the importance of biology and the study of complex biological systems; the use of the material as an active agent capable to participate in the generation of form and structures through its physical characteristics; the adaptive manufacturing method is able to work in relation to the digital model and to expand the morphogenetic space of possible design solutions. The contribution allows gathering pros and cons in the three different investigative macroareas: performance-based design, material culture, and fabrication process. This analytical examination helps to create a clear research scenario around the concept as well as the definition of an innovative pathway for future studies, projecting into the future the assimilation of these innovative concepts in the building construction sector.


Composites systems Parametric design Fabrication strategies Biology and architecture Cyber-Physical making Informed fibers structures 


ICD/ITKE University of Stuttgart Projects Credits

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2012: ICD Institute for Computational Design—Prof. Achim Menges; ITKE Institute of Building Structures and Structural Design—Prof. Jan Knippers; Concept Development: Jakob Weigele, Manuel Schloz; System Development & Realization: Sarah Haase, Markus Mittner, Josephine Ross, Manuel Schloz, Jonas Unger, Simone Vielhuber, Franziska Weidemann, Jakob Weigele, Natthida Wiwatwicha with the support of Michael Preisack, Michael Tondera (Faculty of Architecture Workshop); Scientific Development & Project Management: Riccardo La Magna (structural design), Steffen Reichert (detail design), Tobias Schwinn (robotic fabrication), Frédéric Waimer (fibre composite technology & structural design); In collaboration with University of Tuebingen, Departement of Evolutionary Biology of Invertebrates—Prof. Oliver Betz, Departement of Palaeontology of Invertebrates—Prof. James Nebelsick ITV Denkendorf—Dr.-Ing. Markus Milwich; Funding: KUKA Roboter GmbH, Competence Network Biomimetics, SGL Group Momentive, AFBW—Allianz Faserbasierte Werkstoffe Baden-Württemberg, FBGS Technologies GmbH, MFTech SARL, Minda Schenk Plastic Solutions GmbH, Stiftungen LBBW, Südwestbank AG, Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau AG.

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2014–15: ICD Institute for Computational Design—Prof. Achim Menges; ITKE Institute of Building Structures and Structural Design—Prof. Jan Knippers; Scientific Development: Moritz Dörstelmann, Valentin Koslowski, Marshall Prado, Gundula Schieber, Lauren Vasey; System Development, Fabrication & Construction: WS13/14, SoSe14, WS14/15: Hassan Abbasi, Yassmin Al-Khasawneh, Yuliya Baranovskaya, Marta Besalu, Giulio Brugnaro, Elena Chiridnik, Tobias Grun, Mark Hageman, Matthias Helmreich, Julian Höll, Jessica Jorge, Yohei Kanzaki, Shim Karmin, Georgi Kazlachev, Vangel Kukov, David Leon, Kantaro Makanae, Amanda Moore, Paul Poinet, Emily Scoones, Djordje Stanojevic, Andrei Stoiculescu, Kenryo Takahashi and Maria Yablonina; WS14/15: Rebecca Jaroszewski, Yavar Khonsari, Ondrej Kyjanek, Alberto Lago, Kuan-Ting Lai, Luigi Olivieri, Guiseppe Pultrone, Annie Scherer, Raquel Silva, Shota Tsikoliya. With the support of: Ehsan Baharlou, Benjamin Felbrich, Manfred Hammer, Axel Körner, Anja Mader, Michael Preisack, Seiichi Suzuki, Michael Tondera. In collaboration with: Departement of Evolutionary Biology of Invertebrates, University of Tuebingen Prof. Dr.Oliver Betz, Departement of Palaeontology of Invertebrates, University of Tuebingen, Prof. Dr.James Nebelsick, Dr.Christoph Allgaier Institute for Machine Tools, University of Stuttgart Dr. Thomas Stehle, Rolf Bauer, Michael Reichersdörfer Institute of Aircraft Design, University of Stuttgart, Stefan Carosella, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Peter Middendorf. Funding: KUKA Roboter GmbH, GETTYLAB, tat aiRstructures, SGL Carbon SE, Sika Deutschland GmbH, Daimler AG, Walther Spritz- und Lackiersysteme GmbH, Lange + Ritter GmbH, Gibbons Fan Products Ltd, igus® GmbH, Peri GmbH, HERZOG Maschinenfabrik GmbH & Co. KG, AFBW—Allianz Faserbasierter Werkstoffe Baden-Württemberg e.V., Reinhausen Plasma GmbH, Reka Klebetechnik GmbH, HECO-Schrauben GmbH & Co. KG, Airtech Europe S.A., Mack Gerüsttechnik GmbH, RentES, Stahlbau Wendeler GmbH + Co. KG, CARU Containers GmbH, EmmeShop Electronics, STILL GmbH, SH-Elektrotechnik, GEMCO, Zeppelin Rental GmbH & Co. KG.

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2016–17: Project Team ICD Institute for Computational Design and Construction—Prof. Achim Menges; ITKE Institute of Building Structures and Structural Design—Prof. Jan Knippers; Scientific Development: Benjamin Felbrich, Nikolas Früh, Marshall Prado, Daniel Reist, Sam Saffarian, James Solly, Lauren Vasey; System Development, Fabrication and Construction: Miguel Aflalo, Bahar Al Bahar, Lotte Aldinger, Chris Arias, Léonard Balas, Jingcheng Chen, Federico Forestiero, Dominga Garufi, Pedro Giachini, Kyriaki Goti, Sachin Gupta, Olga Kalina, Shir Katz, Bruno Knychalla, Shamil Lallani, Patricio Lara, Ayoub Lharchi, Dongyuan Liu, Yencheng Lu, Georgia Margariti, Alexandre Mballa, Behrooz Tahanzadeh, Hans Jakob Wagner, Benedikt Wannemacher, Nikolaos Xenos, Andre Zolnerkevic, Paula Baptista, Kevin Croneigh, Tatsunori Shibuya, Nicoló Temperi, Manon Uhlen, Li Wenhan. With the support of Michael Preisack and Artyom Maxim. In collaboration with: Institute of Aircraft Design (IFB)—Prof. Dr.-Ing. P. Middendorf, Markus Blandl, Florian Gnädinger, Institute of Engineering Geodesy (IIGS)—Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Volker Schwieger, Otto Lerke, Department of Evolutionary Biology of Invertebrates, University of Tuebingen—Prof. Oliver Betz Department of Palaeontology of Invertebrates, University of Tuebingen—Prof. James Nebelsick. Supported by Volkswagen Stiftung, GETTYLAB, Kuka Roboter GmbH, Peri GmbH, SGL Technologies GmbH, Hexion Stuttgart GmbH, Ed. Züblin AG, Lange Ritter GmbH, Stahlbau Wendeler GmbH, Leica Geosystems GmbH, KOFI GmbH.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2021

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Planning, D&T of ArchitectureSapienza University of RomeRomeItaly

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