by Roopinder Tara, Tenlinks.com
The conference here in Troy, Michigan was supposed to be about the use of parametric-shaped geometry, but the lasting image for me may be of the pig's head. Severed, bloody, stuffed in plastic.
It was supposed to be appropriate for what it was resting on, a artsy butchers block. Zoe Coombes, founder of Cmmnwlth Studio, knows how to get attention. We were stunned into silence.
Only much later at dinner, one of us deemed it vaguely pornographic, someone else objected to her use of the word "orgasm," yet another deplored her use of Autodesk Mudbox. But all of us remembered her. Zoe went on to discuss the return she is seeing among the city folk to basics (her furniture studio is in New York city), on the verge of condeming plastics, and so on.
Only when my brain was able to release the image did I realize Zoe was here because some of her designs, such as the butcher block, rely on the complex shapes created by tools used by generative component practioners, like Rhino.
The Smart Geometry conference is like that: a variety of topics, sometimes dead relevant to its name, other times not, but often arousing. Right now I am listening to a painter and simultaneously seeing a clip of Robin Williams with a butterfly. Hmm... the connection is not apparent immediately. But I do appreciate the bamboo bicycle, as presentations about material science and materials being the theme of this years conference.
Why bamboo for a bike? According to Dr Hull, head of the material science at Rensaeller Polytechnic Institute (host of SG20112), bamboo can absorb the shock and vibration better than conventional materials. Metal and carbon fiber are totally beat up bike racers, for example those who race the cobblestones of the famed Spring Classic, Paris-Roubaix.
[Reprinted with permission of CAD Insider.com]