Thorsten Helbig - form:frei

Tue, Oct 16, 2018 12pm - Fri, Nov 2, 2018 11:59pm

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Staatsoper Unter den Linden. Germany, 2017.

Staatsoper Unter den Linden. Germany, 2017.

Reception and Gallery Remarks
Tuesday, October 16 – 6PM

Third Floor Hallway Gallery – Foundation Building
Open to Students, Faculty, and Staff

Thorsten Helbig is a founding partner of Knippers Helbig (KH), a structural and façade engineering firm based in Stuttgart, New York and Berlin, established in 2001. Since 2018, he is an Associate Professor at The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of The Cooper Union in New York.

form:frei is an exploration of the ‘Freiraum’ (free space) between architecture and engineering, design and fabrication, research and practice. KH’s engineering approach is rooted in Stuttgart’s interdisciplinary design culture. This very school of thought was inspired and fostered by personalities such as Frei Otto who developed form-finding methods and other design principles focusing on working ‘with a minimal amount of materials using a minimum of energy.’ The featured projects and explorations in this exhibition are based on such ‘finding but not making’ strategies.

While considerably varied in application, program and materiality, the featured aspects of each project share one common theme: an openness to explore traditional and ‘new’ materials and understand their inherent characteristics to discover new applications for innovative architecture. This is enabled by a disciplined intelligence about available technologies and a wide range of materials, from timber to granite to fiber-reinforced polymers and ceramics. Such endeavors force a break away from the traditional, linear design process and enter into more dynamic forms of interaction in a highly specialized and unrestrained collaborative environment.

Along with the presentation of a highly technical journey through design processes, form:frei provides insight into the collaboration of Thorsten Helbig’s KH team with Renzo Piano, Massimiliano Fuksas, Höweler + Yoon, Allied Works, Steven Holl, Stefan Behnisch and others.

View the full Fall 2018 Lectures and Events List.

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