Truncated Octahedron

In 2007 I started doing some experiments with making ceramic volumes that tessellate 3 dimensionally – with the goal of using repeating units to aggregate into large compositions/sculptures.  One of the first forms I started working with was the Truncated Octahedron, an Archimedean Solid and a space filling polyhedron (meaning it tessellates in 3 dimensional space).  I came upon this shape pretty empirically: by cutting equilateral polygons out of foam core and taping them together to construct polyhedrons.  I started making molds from these models and casting them in porcelain.

photo EG Schempf

The image above is constructed from about 250 blocks (each an aggregation of 12 truncated octahedrons) cast in a black porcelain.

I’m currently working on an element for an installation that uses the same geometry to create a more visually porous volume.

This form was created by “Shelling” the edges of an aggregation of truncated polyhedrons to build a porous poly-surface.  (to build this form in Rhino, Grasshopper, I used a Grasshopper Definition from Luis Farraguada of Live Architecture Network  GH Shelling Definition:

The volume was then translated into mesh to which Catmull/Clark subdivisions were applied (Weaverbird:

This geometry was split into units using another quick grasshopper definition, with a section extracted that when cast and connected will reproduce the overall geometry.

segment with geometry of Truncated Octahedron overlayed

segment parted for milling

mold parts CNC cut from styrofoam

pouring Plaster Mold

5 part plaster mold

cast porcelain section (before firing)

StudioTimeLapse from Del Harrow on Vimeo.



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