Blank Canvas or Billboard? Stretch Fabric Architecture

Sculptural forms of translucent stretch fabric twist your loftiest design visions free from constraint. With lightweight properties, stretch fabric applications defy gravity and scale limitations. Large sleek expanses of material act as a blank canvas, producing sensational effects when illuminated or used as a projector screen to transmit images.

With an aesthetic that expresses impermanence and soaring freedom, stretch fabrics panels create a distinct spatial mood.  Imagine the potential for stretch fabric installations to function as key branding elements in your design! Check out this unique project:

The “E-Motion” light sculpture by architect Shashi Caan and lighting designer Matthew Tanteri crowns the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh.  Polyester-based fabric weave is PVC coated for both UV protection and flame resistance, with a 50% open weave that allows it to adapt to the daylight and nighttime lighting conditions.  Four high intensity discharge luminaires distributed around the base of the sculpture (and one at the center) create the multicolor lighting effects at night.  The lighting program is run with computers, and it has been rumored that the design might eventually allow public control over the colors of the light sculpture.

Wondering what the vague form of the sculpture is intended to represent? According to FTL Design Engineering Studio’s website, the organic shape was derived from the “buildings round forms, which mimic nature’s structurally efficient, curved shapes”. The landmark “marks this intriguing point in history when art and science are being linked in new, evocative ways. The sculpture connects the science and art of color, light and form, illustrating how colors subliminally evoke moods and moods evoke emotions. It also alludes to the era of telecommunications, information and interaction”.

Has the subsequent addition of the lettering squashed the artistic representation of the sculpture, becoming just another mass-distributed corporate logo? What do you think?

Image credit: Shashi Caan, CJRodkey