Fologram Docs

Mixed Reality Fabrication

notion image
Author: Gwyllim Jahn
This research posits design methods and implications for architectural fabrication in mixed reality. The notion of spatialising fabrication instructions in mixed reality to guide processes of formation by hand is a new and novel contribution to the discourse on digital fabrication and craft. The benefits of mixed reality environments for visualisation of unbuilt designs, or assembly of designs agnostic to methods of construction has been well established by the literature. However the impact that these new affordances will have on architectural design thinking and production represents a gap in disciplinary knowledge that this research seeks to address. By defining the capacities, limitations and affordances of subjective interpretation of digital fabrication instructions in mixed reality, this research proposes a framework for thinking about the new design conventions and opportunities for designing for mixed reality fabrication. Several case study projects provide practical evidence of this framework by demonstrating the impact of mixed reality on enabling creative exploration and application of traditional craft skills within digital design-to-production processes, as well as improving performance in conventional fabrication processes such as non-linear bricklaying. A reflection on these projects speculates on the broader implications of adoption of mixed reality fabrication by manufacturing and construction industries, the extent to which traditional craft practices may be reinterpreted in mixed reality and the possibilities of an expanded design space for architecture and art.