Dong Guan, China

The project is a full scale concrete prototype of an umbrella structure, executed in a large precast factory in the Pearl River Delta.
It is an experiment in concrete formwork techniques that expands on historical precedents of a column to slab monolith (mushroom column), as found in the work of Wright, Candela or Artigas. Yet the project addresses formwork design with radically different methods of fabrication.
The fabrication procedure explores geotextile materials as a mean to conceive formworks that are more responsive to the material properties and adaptive to the casting process. The prototype was also conducted as a teaching exercise, bridging academia and industry. Through a three-week residency with students from HKU, we lived and worked with factory workers and learnt from different trades.