University innovation on show at Sydney Design Festival 2018

1 March 2018
Part of the Sydney Design Festival
A series of events in early March will explore the diverse uses of design - from encouraging innovation in the workplace, to solving complex humanitarian challenges, and even weaving robotic spiderwebs.

The Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning precinct will become a hive of activity as its doors are opened to the public as thought leaders from the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning and Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies share their unique insights and demonstrate innovative new research with design experts, architectural enthusiasts and curious community members. The events are part of the broader Sydney Design Festival 2018 program, which brings together leading practitioners from around the world to celebrate and examine the future of design. All events and exhibitions will be curated around this year's festival theme - 'Call to Action'.

Key events

Talk - Robotic Weave: New Ceiling Structures

This talk will explore some of the ways design practice and academia are working together to use industrial robotics to enable completely new ways of advancing manufacturing for the building industry.

Audience members will hear about the development of a new, integrated ceiling structure that is a trailblazer for a new concept of fabrication and is the result of intense co-design and collaboration process between the architecture practice Bligh Voller Nield (BVN) and robotic researchers and technicians from the Robotics Lab and Design, Modelling and Fabrication Lab led by Dr Dagmar Reinhardt.

The talk will cover the project's multiple criteria, from the development of workspace scenarios and conditions to new robotic applications and material practices. It will present the stages of prototyping of geometrically complex, fiber-reinforced building elements as a distribution system for data and light, the structural performance, and the challenges of onsite live construction and testing environment of robotic manufacturing within the running architecture practice.

Date: Friday 2 March, 4-9pm
Location: BVN, Level 11, 255 Pitt St, Sydney.
Tickets: Free with booking
More information

Robotic weaving

Event - Strong and Tough: Weaving a Robotic Spiderweb

Following on from the talk at BVN (above), visit the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning's Robotics Lab for an Australian-first demonstration showing industrial robotic arms weaving a lightweight structure from lightweight and super-strong carbon fibres.

Date: Saturday 3 March, 10am-5pm
Location: The University of Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, 148 City Rd, Darlington. Map here.
Tickets: Free
More information

Join the LinkedIn group to find out more about research and explorations using robots and digital fabrication in the Architecture and Construction industries.

Design. Think. Make. Break. Repeat. book cover

Book Launch - Design. Think. Make. Break. Repeat.

Authored by University of Sydney design experts, Design. Think. Make. Break. Repeat. is the first publication to bring together methods, tools and case studies that involve multiple design disciplines and perspectives - from product and service design to interaction and user experience design. To launch the book, University of Sydney design educators will join industry experts from software company Atlassian and digital agency Wunderman-Bienalto to discuss their experiences of using design methods in teaching, research and practice. Opened by Professor Pip Pattison, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) at the University of Sydney, the event also marks the launch of a new major in Design that will provide design thinking skills to students from various disciplines and across the University of Sydney.

Date: Wednesday 7 March, from 5.45pm
Location: The University of Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning (Level 2), 148 City Rd, Darlington. Map here.
Tickets: Free with registration via Eventbrite.
More information

Children playing in Vanuatu

Exhibition - Ohlen Freswind: Patterns for a Community School

This exhibition is the result of a collaboration between students from the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning and the Freswind community of Ohlen, Vanuatu, to design and build a new school in Port Vila. The area was badly affected by the severe tropical Cyclone Pam in 2015, in what was regarded as one of the worst natural disasters in Vanuatu's history. Sydney students and tutors travelled to Ohlen in 2017 in order to develop a set of patterns, parameters and principles to guide the design of the school and other future projects to be built. The project is ongoing and the next stage will be to prefabricate much of the structure of the first classroom, transport it to Vanuatu and erect it on site with community, student and volunteer labour. To support the project long-term, the team has launched a crowdfunding campaign.

Date: opening event Thursday 8 March, 6-8pm; exhibition runs from Thursday 8 March - Thursday 29 March 2018
Location: Tin Sheds Gallery, 148 City Road, Darlington. Map here.
Tickets: This exhibition is free.
More information

Symposium - Architecture as Agency: Humanitarian Design

This symposium will address the responsibility of practitioners in the built environment to provide creative solutions and positive action to address global humanitarian challenges. The day will begin with a panel discussion led by Michael Muir, Program Director of the University's Bachelor of Design in Architecture, and featuring humanitarian engineer Dr Jacqueline Thomas and other speakers who have worked on local and international humanitarian projects, followed by a hands-on workshop to develop creative solutions to real-world challenges.

Date: Saturday 10 March, 10am-4pm
Location: Wilkinson Building, University of Sydney School of Architecture, Design & Planning, 148 City Road, Darlington. Map here.
Tickets: Available to purchase via Sydney Design Festival.
More information
View the full Sydney Design Festival 2018 program.

Related articles