Posts tagged with "Jenny Sabin":

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Cornell forms new interdisciplinary collaboration to teach students about digital design

"Design is inherently interdisciplinary," J. Meejin Yoon, Gale and Ira Drukier Dean of Cornell Architecture Art Planning (AAP) school, told the department’s blog last month. In that spirit, Cornell AAP and Cornell Tech have announced a collaborative, cross-disciplinary program for digital design solutions. The partnership includes the new M.S. Matter Design Computation (MDC) program for graduate students and undergraduate architecture students at AAP NYC, along with Cornell Tech students in computer science, business, engineering, law, and health technology. The school has already hosted classes such as Design Topic Research Studio: Matter Design Computation; Special Topics in Visual Representation: Coding for Design; and Product Studio.  Faculty across various disciplines lead the classes and students are encouraged to create new digital design product solutions in response to prompts from both their teachers and companies. "Our undergraduate and graduate students bring an ability to synthesize a set of complex relationships, form a plan, and follow through in a meaningful way," said Jenny Sabin, Cornell’s Arthur L. and Isabel B. Wiesenberger Professor in Architecture and associate dean for design initiatives. "It's not only about problem-solving but problem generating." And those problems are increasingly complex—Yoon added: "At a moment when the challenges facing the built environment and society are multiscalar, complex, and dynamic, the collaborative initiatives between AAP and Cornell Tech will give our students opportunities to engage in pressing questions across technology, human-centered design, and the built environment with an expanded perspective on the design challenges facing society today." Andrea Simitch, the Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow and architecture department chair describes the program as a natural extension for architectural learning. "Architecture pedagogy is by default a collaborative practice based on interactive dialogues," she told Cornell AAP’s blog. The hope is that students will learn to collaborate, think beyond siloed disciplines, and get an education in delivering functional, well-executed projects.
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Jenny Sabin's installation for Microsoft responds to occupants' emotions

At Microsoft’s Redmond, Washington, campus, architect Jenny Sabin has helped realize a large-scale installation powered by artificial intelligence. Suspended from three points within an atrium, the two-story, 1,800-pound sculpture is a compressive mesh of 895 3D-printed nodes connected by fiberglass rods and arranged in hexagons along with fabric knit from photoluminescent yarn. Created as part of Microsoft’s artist-in-residence program, the project is named Ada, after Ada Lovelace, the English mathematician whose work on the analytical engine laid the groundwork for the invention of computer programming as we know it. Anonymized information is collected from microphones and cameras throughout the building. An AI platform designed by a team led by researcher Daniel McDuff processes this data to try to accurately sense people’s emotions based on visual and sonic cues, like facial movements and voice tone. This data is then synthesized and run through algorithms that create a shifting color gradient that Ada produces from an array of LEDs, fiber optics, and par (can) lights. “To my knowledge, this installation is the first architectural structure to be driven by artificial intelligence in real-time,” Sabin, Microsoft’s current artist in residence, told the company’s AI Blog. Microsoft touts Ada as an example of “embedded intelligence,” AI that’s built-in and responsive to our real-world environment. McDuff also hopes that his emotion tracking technology, as dystopian as it might sound, could have solutions in healthcare or other caregiving situations. (Microsoft employees are able to opt-out of individuated tracking and they assure that all identifying info is removed from the media collected).  Ada is part of a broader push to embed sensing and artificial intelligence into the built environment by Microsoft and many other companies, as well as artistic pavilions that grapple with the future of AI in our built world, like Refik Anadol's recent project at New York's ARTECHOUSE.
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From research to practice: Catching up with Jenny Sabin

Being able to translate research finds into practical applications on a construction site is never a sure thing, but having a lab-to-studio pipeline definitely helps. For Jenny Sabin, that means a close integration between her lab at the Cornell College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP), and her eponymous studio in Ithaca, New York. Sabin wears three hats: A teacher with a focus on emerging technologies at Cornell, principal investigator of Cornell’s Sabin Design Lab, and principal of Jenny Sabin Studio. The overlap between the lab and the studio means that Sabin has an incubator for fundamental research that can that can be refined and integrated into real-world projects. When AN last toured the Sabin Design Lab, researchers were hard at work using robot arms for novel 3D printing solutions and were looking at sunflowers for inspiration for designing the next generation of photovoltaics. The projects stemming from fundamental research have been realized in projects ranging from the ethereal canopy over MoMA PS1’s courtyard in 2017 to a refinement of the studio’s woven forms for a traveling Peroni pop-up. Rather than directly referencing nature in the biomimetic sense, Sabin’s projects instead draw inspiration from, and converge with, natural processes and forms. Here are a few examples of what Sabin, her team, and collaborators are working on. PolyBrick Brick and tile have been standardized construction materials for hundreds of years, but Sabin Design Lab’s PolyBrick pushes nonstandard ceramics into the future. The first iteration of PolyBrick imagined an interlocking, component-based “brick” that could twist, turn, and eliminate the need for mortar. PolyBrick 1.0 used additive 3D printing to create hollow, fired, and glazed ceramic blocks that could one day be low-cost brick alternatives that would enable the creation of complex forms. PolyBrick 2.0 took the concept even further by emulating human bone growth, creating porous, curvilinear components that Sabin and her team of researchers and students hope to scale up to wall and pavilion size. PolyBrick 3.0 is even more advanced. The 3D-printed blocks contain microscopic divots and are glazed with DNA hydrogel; the polymer coating can react to a variety of situations. Imagine a bioengineered facade glaze that can change color based on air pollution levels or temperature changes, or a component “stamped” with a unique DNA profile for easy supply chain tracking. Responsive textiles As Sabin notes, knitting is an ancient craft, but one that laid the foundation for the digital age; the punch cards used in early computers were originally designed for looms. As material requirements evolve, so too must the material itself, and Jenny Sabin Studio has been experimenting with lightweight, cellular structures woven into self-supporting forms. Sabin’s most famous such installations are gossamer canopies of digitally knit, tubular structures that absorb, store, and re-emit sunlight at night to illuminate repurposed spool chairs. MoMA PS1’s Lumen for YAP 2017, House of Peroni’s Luster, and the 2016 Beauty-Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial installation PolyThread have all pushed textile science forward. As opposed to rigidly defined stonework or stalwart glass, woven architecture takes on ambiguous forms. As GSAPP’s Christoph Kumpusch pointed out while in conversation with Sabin at the House of Peroni opening in NYC last October, these tensile canopies proudly display their boundary conditions instead of hiding them like more traditional forms. The dangling, sometimes-expanded, sometimes-flaccid fabric cones extrude from the cells of the woven canopy and naturally delineate the programming of the area below. These stalactites create the feeling of wandering through a natural formation and encourage a playful, tactile exploration of the space. Kirigami Origami and kirigami (a form of paper folding that requires cutting) are traditional practices that, like other techniques previously mentioned, have seen a modern resurgence in everything from solar sails to airbags. The Sabin Lab has taken an interest in kirigami, particularly its ability to expand two-dimensional representations into three-dimensional forms. The lab’s transdisciplinary research has blended material science, architecture, and electrical engineering to create rapidly deployable, responsive, and scalable architecture that can unpack at a moment’s notice. Two projects, ColorFolds and UniFolds, were made possible by funding from the National Science Foundation. ColorFolds was realized as a canopy of tessellated “blossoms,” each made from polycarbonate panels covered in dichroic film. The modules open or close in response to the density of the crowd below, creating a shimmering exploration of structural color—3M’s dichroic film produces color by scattering and diffusing light through nanoscale structures rather than using pigments. Visitors below the ColorFolds installation were treated to chromatic, shifting displays of light as the flock-like piece rearranged itself. UniFolds reimagined the Unisphere in Queens’s Flushing Meadow Park as part of the Storefront for Art and Architecture show Souvenirs: New New York Icon, which asked architects and artists to produce objects inspired by New York City icons. The 140-foot-tall, 120-foot-diameter landmarked Unisphere was the centerpiece of the 1964 World’s Fair, and Sabin Design Lab’s UniFolds piece references the utopian aspirations of the sphere and domed architecture more broadly. By using holes, folds, and strategic cuts, Sabin Labs has envisioned a modular dome system that’s quick to unfold and can be replicated at any scale, which is part of the “Interact Locally, Fold Globally,” methodology used to guide both kirigami projects.
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House of Peroni popup brings Jenny Sabin's textile tubes down to Earth

The 2018 House of Peroni art popup is now open to the public, and at the preview event on October 18 in Manhattan, guests had the chance to wander through Jenny Sabin Studio’s hanging textile sculptures and snack on sugar sculptures. This year’s installation, LUSTER, which was curated by the nonprofit Art Production Fund, presented a more intimate, and refined, version of Sabin’s 2017 Lumen installation for the MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Program. The exhibition encompasses a bar serving up beers and cocktails from Italian beermaker Peroni, as well as functional seating and tables from Sabin. A woven canopy of photoluminescent materials, reflective textiles, and tubing has been lit with color-changing lights, creating a constantly shifting environment. The cell-like structure of the canopy, strung from supports just below the ceiling, both filters and diffuses sunlight during the day and seems to pulse when lit at night. “Tubes,” some defined and others deflated, hang down from the installation and encourage visitors to mingle around and touch them. Depending on the lighting, the effect varies from being inside of a cave, to drinking beer in a dense forest surrounded by tree trunks. Even the spool stools were given an update, their solid cores replaced with spindly, rebar-like supports. The same basic form of the stools was also elongated to form components of the central bar and taller tables. LUSTER was fabricated under very different constraints than the courtyard condition of Lumen. In a discussion at the House of Peroni with GSAPP’s Christoph Kumpusch, Sabin discussed the technical challenges of bringing such an installation to an enclosed space and designing it to travel. After New York, Peroni will bring LUSTER to Los Angeles, Miami, and Washington D.C. The entire canopy zips up for easy transport, and everything was built to fit the specific site. Kumpusch and Sabin also touched on the way that LUSTER openly presents boundary conditions and exposed edges, as well as how the fluid nature of fabric works as an analogy for gender. In terms of the craft itself, Sabin was quick to point out the storied history of textiles and their tangled history with technology—the first punch cards were developed to guide looms, which evolved into the calculator, mainframes, and more, paving the way for modern computing. Also present at House of Peroni 2018 was Glass Garden Lost & Found: Of Healing & Knowledge, an exhibition of carved sugar flowers from candy artist Maayan Zilberman. Mixing live flowers with candy facsimiles, Zilberman’s Peroni installation references the Orto botanico di Padova garden in Padula, Italy, a garden famously known for its collection of both medicinal and poisonous plants. The live flowers take on the healing, medicinal role, while the sugar flowers represent the deadly, artificial constructs created from human knowledge. House of Peroni 2018 will run through October 20 in New York, and then move Los Angeles on November 8, Miami on November 14, and end in Washington D.C. on November 28. Tickets and more information can be found on the House of Peroni website.
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Jenny Sabin Studio to bring high-tech textiles to Peroni's traveling popup

For the third year of Italian beer maker Peroni’s House of Peroni popup, the company has commissioned an interactive installation from the Ithaca-based Jenny Sabin Studio. LUSTER will be a full-service bar topped with an immersive woven canopy similar to Lumen, Sabin’s 2017 installation for MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Program. The 2018 House of Peroni was curated by the Art Production Fund, a nonprofit that commissions and produces large-scale public art. Sabin’s selection was a conscious shift by Peroni toward showcasing cross-disciplinary, sustainable contemporary design pieces. Much like Lumen, LUSTER will use its canopy to delineate the popup’s programming through different lengths of hanging protrusions across a full bar and lounge, complete with high-top tables and seating. The space will be topped with a lightweight structure shaped into patterns that take their shape from Sabin’s research into the structure of cells and will be woven from textiles, tubing, photoluminescent materials, and fibers that can absorb and re-emit light. During the day the canopy will cast dynamic shadows over the bar and seating as the sun changes position, and the installation will glow at night, similar to the psychedelic experience that Lumen gave PS1 visitors. “We’re excited to be working with House of Peroni and Art Production Fund on this project, as it embraces collaboration and aims to provide a unique venue for artists and designers to share their work with diverse audiences in multiple cities,” said Sabin in a press release. “We’re honored to have the opportunity to design and produce the immersive environment that these exciting events and gatherings will take place in.” “Following the past two years, we’re excited to continue expanding House of Peroni throughout the U.S.,” said David Schmid, senior director of marketing for Peroni in the U.S. “Art Production Fund shares our mission to champion the arts and applies a modern outlook to everything they do. In their expertise and through Jenny Sabin Studio, House of Peroni is shifting from a focus on contemporary Italian style to a more expansive outlook on creative expression.” This year’s House of Peroni will kick off its cross-country tour in Manhattan’s West Village on October 19 and 20. After that, the bar will move to Los Angeles on November 8, Miami on November 14, and end in Washington D.C. on November 28. Tickets and more information can be found on the House of Peroni website.
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Jenny Sabin's selling stools from her MoMA PS1 installation

At MoMA PS1 this year, Jenny Sabin's Lumen gave many a reason to look up through the SolarActive and photo-luminescent thread knitted funnels. Look down, however, and you would have spotted an array of equally exquisite "spool stools" that complimented the installation. The last Warm Up—the last chance to see Lumen—is this weekend. The stools, however, are available to purchase through Jenny Sabin Studio's website. There you can own one (or more) of the 100 stools that were used during the installation's three-month run. Though three variations of the seat were produced, all were made in a similar fashion. To make the "spool stool," recycled plywood spools, carved into serrated pinwheels were placed at either end while a robot—named Sulla—spun woven micro-cord thread in a hyperbolic fashion around their perimeter. Each stool is also topped and bottomed by CNC cut caps, which, to Jenny Sabin Studio's own admission, may be a tad word from usage, but are in general in great condition. Three stool sizes are on sale. The smallest, priced at $150, is able to double-up as a side table, while the medium and large–sized stools, $200 and $250 respectively, can seat up to three people and be used as table as well. The stools are available to purchase at jennysabin.com but there's no delivery—they must be picked up from MoMA PS1.
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Jenny Sabin wins this year's MoMA Young Architects Program

Ithaca, New York—based practice Jenny Sabin Studio has won the 18th iteration of The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and MoMA PS1’s annual Young Architects Program for her project entitled Lumen. The immersive design will be on show starting June 27 at the MoMA PS1 courtyard in Long Island City.

Lumen changes throughout the day, offering shade and shelter from the sun, while also providing artificial illumination after sunset. This is achieved thanks to a tubular lattice canopy comprised of recycled, photo-luminescent, and solar active textiles that absorb, collect, and emit light. The canopy reacts to changes in daylight, absorbing and producing light when necessary. In conjunction with this, fabric stalactites will release mist in response to visitors' proximity, allowing the adaptive structure to respond to changes in heat and the density of the crowd.

Sabin's design will be present for the 20th season of Warm Up, an outdoor music series from MoMA PS1, and will stay on view for the rest of summer. Lumen was chosen as the winner ahead of four other projects. The competition brief called for projects that address environmental issues such as sustainability and recycling. The temporary outdoor installation had to be capable of providing water as well as seating and shade.

"Jenny Sabin's catalytic immersive environment, Lumen, captured the jury's attention for imaginatively merging public and private spaces," said Sean Anderson, associate curator in MoMA’s Department of Architecture and Design. "With innovative construction and design processes borne from a critical merging of technology and nature to precise attention to detail at every scale, Lumen will no doubt engage visitors from day to night in a series of graduated environments and experiences."

Losing out to Sabin were four other finalists. These included Bureau Spectacular (Jimenez Lai and Joanna Grant), Ania Jaworska, Office of III (Sean Canty, Ryan Golenberg, and Stephanie Lin), and SCHAUM/SHIEH (Rosalyne Shieh and Troy Schaum). Despite not being realized, their work will be on show at the MoMA during the summer.

“The Young Architects Program remains one of the most significant opportunities for architects and designers from across the country and world to build radical yet transformative ideas. This year's finalists are no exception; their projects illustrate a diversity of approaches and refreshing ideas for architecture today,” Anderson added.

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Finalists announced for 2017 MoMA/PS1 Young Architects Program

The five finalists for the 2017 MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program (YAP) are here. The annual competition provides a stage for some of the best up-and-coming architects in the world; the winning installation is built in the MoMA PS1's courtyard for its Warm Up music series of performances. "The Young Architects Program is committed to offering emerging architectural talent the opportunity to design and present innovative projects, challenging each year’s winners to develop creative designs for a temporary, outdoor installation that provides shade, seating, and water. The architects must also work within guidelines that address environmental issues, including sustainability and recycling," according to the MoMA PS1 website.
This year's finalists are:
Recent YAP winners include Escobedo Soliz Studio (2016), Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation (2015), The Living / David Benjamin, CODA / Caroline O'Donnell, as well as MOS Architects, SO-IL, WORKac, HWKN, and SHoP.
The winner will be announced in February and the installation will be built in time for the Warm Up series that starts in June.
Finalists are nominated by prominent journalists and academics, and the selection of five is made by a panel including Glenn D. Lowry, Director of The Museum of Modern Art; Kathy Halbreich, Associate Director at MoMA; Klaus Biesenbach, Director of MoMA PS1; Peter Reed, Senior Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs; Martino Stierli, Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture & Design at MoMA, Sean Anderson, Associate Curator of Architecture at MoMA; and Jenny Schlenzka, Associate Curator at MoMA PS1.
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Wrapping up CCA's Data Clay Symposium on combining experimental form with new materials

With the scent of wet St. Louis clay wafting through the air, the Data Clay Symposium kicked off at CCA last weekend. Hosted by the Architecture & Fine Arts Divisions at CCA, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, and the CCA Digital Craft Lab, the event joined architects, artists, designers, makers, critics and creators to discuss and display their latest syncretic experiments and the possibilities of the seemingly disparate mediums of data (i.e. computation) and clay. Moderated and curated by Joshua G. Stein and Del Harrow, and following on the heels of an exhibition on view at the San Francisco's Museum of Craft & Design, the symposium started with a talk by Future Cities Lab co-founder Jason Johnson and his Creative Architecture Machines research group at CCA, exhibiting student work that integrates robotics, interactivity, coding, and clay extrusions manifested in real time. Ron Rael of UC Berkeley and Emerging Objects followed with his research into Earth Architecture and the ancient strategies of clay building. Walking the line between passive building and high-tech computational techniques with his experiments on evaporative cooling bricks, Rael demonstrated the potential of the ancient and the modern coming together in a coherent and cogent architecture of today. Jenny Sabin of Cornell University and Jenny Sabin Studio presented work connecting biology, coding, and material systems that have fostered her experimental practice, which works at the intersection of rapid-prototyping, scientific exploration, and ceramics. With a BFA in Ceramics and a Masters of Architecture, Sabin has been able to integrate and develop a unique space for a practice that radically combines the digital and the analogue. Andy Brayman, a studio potter of the Kansas City–based Matter Factory, presented his unique take on traditional ceramics and data by showing off his knowledge of code and software platforms through his open-sourced self-education and research developments. The morning session came to a close with work presented by UC Berkeley PhD student Laura Devendorf and her playful syntheses of art practice, technology, and research. Her experiments, work at the intersections of a diverse set of disciplines, presenting innovative promise for the "maker" field.
The afternoon featured a keynote by Dries Verbruggen from Antwerp design studio Unfold. Verbruggen’s talk traced the history of digital design, then referenced his book Printing Things, which investigates the myriad techniques and processes of printing. He touched on notions of copying, iteration, and the physics of the physical world gone digital. One of the most intriguing projects of the symposium, on display at the Museum of Craft and Design, is Unfold's recreation of a potter's throwing wheel in digital form, which can be changed through your hands'  interaction.
Bobby Tigerman, associate curator of decorate arts and design at LACMA, followed, channeled remotely from Los Angeles, with a historical look at issues of technology and the hand-made, ending with a note that digital craft is on the rise and has prompted stimulating debate and connected cultures worldwide. From the History of Art and Architecture department at UC Santa Barabara, Assistant Professor Jenni Sorkin expounded on the nature of open source, and the hotly-debated realm of ownership and originality in object-hood. Wrapping up the Symposium was Stephanie Syjuco, a sculptor and Assistant Professor in the Ceramics department at UC Berkeley. She glided through her own work, focused on clay, data, and large scale installations, synthesizing traditional ceramic techniques and digital software such as Cinema 4D. Ending the day was an engaging debate revolving around disciplinary identity, scales and modes of production, the quality and quantity of education, and the ability of the arts, architecture, and design to make a real difference in the world today.