The arrival of new methods for production like 3D printers challenges the way of traditional textile fabrication methods and asks for a re-thinking of their fabrication processes. Parametric design and 3D modelling for computation fabrication have both challenged and changed the way buildings can be realised in constructing of complex structures from the design stage through to construction. Developments in Materials Science and technology augment the conventional applications of textile materials. The Architextiles project is an interdisciplinary research project between Architecture, Textile Design and Materials Science, aimed at developing future manufacturing methods for textile architecture as well as intelligent textile structures and new materials in the architectonic context of design and building. The quality of the project comes through investigation, establishment and innovative cross-referencing of practices and tools between textiles fabrication and architectural design and construction in determining textiles as applied tectonic materiality.

The focus of the research is the investigation of woven three-dimensional textile structures shaped from the processes of form-finding in architectural design. Processes of translating architectural digital programming to textiles machinery will be developed resulting in machine looms operating not unlike 3D printers. The nature of textiles; woven yarn that inherently comprises the characteristics of three-dimensional form have yet to be applied in structural terms utilising their tectonic properties.

Conceiving textiles as spatial structures require the development of modelling form and structure as a single entity. Employing parametric design principles with the techniques of weaving, tension and form-finding, the research will evolve the processes of textile fabrication in defining textile binding properties that will express their overall tectonic form. The research will focus on three fields of investigation in textile fabrication: fibres & yarns, weave structure and architectural modelling.

UTS, Sydney, CSIRO Aus, UDK Berlin
Collaborators: Prof. Gesche Joost, Dr. Louis Kyratzis, Ebba Fransen Waldhor, David Pigram, Ben Anderson