The Monarch Butterfly population has declined 80% over the past 20 years. Climate change caused by human activity and the development of pesticides to combat unwanted vegetation in crops have destroyed milkweed, which monarchs depend on for nutrition and rest stops along their 3000-mile migration route to the north. The Monarch sanctuary is a double-skin facade concept for commercial development in Nolita, NYC. We developed a prototype section for the 2019 Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial that demonstrates the structure of the facade and our aims to create biodiversity within the 4' wide facade enclosure.
We collaborated with BASF for the fabrication of the final pieces. I provided recommendations for the concrete mix in order to meet our specifications: lightness, sustainable construction and minimization of Portland cement used, and silicone molding for the experimental casts during exploration phase. I also technical support in the form of renderings and detailing throughout the collaboration.
Bednark provided their waterjet cutter for the fabrication of the piece. I analyzed the backplate under 200lb loading to identify the appropriate backplate thickness.
Bednark provided their equipment and installers for the final fabrication of the piece. I performed a structural analysis of the structure to ensure stability under loading (1000lbs. of concrete panels and steel backplates, as well as the miscellaneous elements that were mounted on the front and back walls), drafted the sheets & assisted in toolpath writing for the routing of the MDF elements, sourced mechanical components and performed screw spacing calculations to secure the pieces.
Rhinoceros, RhinoCAM, Grasshopper, AutoCAD, V-Ray, Photoshop, Illustrator, Silicone molding.