One morning, I was staring out across the studio at the whitewashed wall against which a stack of empty cardboard boxes I'd been too lazy to throw out rested, when suddenly an idea came to me. Partly by the strength of that idea and partly because I had little else at that moment to do, I said to myself, "Fuck it, why not?

    Reaching for a ruler and a retractable utility knife, one by one I measured and cut the boxes down into triangular panels following instructions I'd found online, and by the time I came to the end a week later, after much bucking, cussing and struggling to get the obstinate panels to fit together, I felt as if I'd never done anything else. But now there it stood: my very own geodesic dome constructed entirely from post-consumer waste.

    To say that I was pleased with the final result would be a colossal understatement. I was thrilled, categorically proud, hard put not to jump up and down and shout, "Fuck yes!". I mean, I'd managed on my own to build not only a 3v geodesic dome *, but one with a base diameter of three metres – what I'd read seasoned experts online claim at minimum required three but ideally five people to assemble, apparently.

    All the same, putting aside my pride and how much time and effort it took me to assemble, I had to concede to the fact that the dome had simply been a playful exercise, a mere distraction, a way of keeping myself busy until I was ready to start searching for something suggesting a new avenue of research, in other words, hardly a candidate for an artwork, and because of which all there was left for me to do was to document the dome before taking it down and throwing it into recycling.

 

    And really that kind of could've been the last of it, were it not when sweeping all the off-cut pieces of cardboard strewn across my studio floor that day, I was suddenly reminded of something I'd read somewhere the "populariser"† of the geodesic dome, Buckminster Fuller, had once asked an architect when touring their building: How much does the building weigh?

    Once the question entered my head, I found myself unable to stop thinking about it, and with nothing at the time to distract me from my thoughts, I kept on thinking all that day and long into the next about what the answer to the question might be.

 

    After a day or so, an idea finally came to me, an altogether brilliant solution, I thought. I rigged up a rope and pulley system, and fastened the dome to one end of the rope, then one by one gathered all the off-cut pieces of cardboard and held them aloft in my arms as a friend I'd enlisted for help wound the rope's opposite end around the off-cuts.

   

    I had butterflies.

 

    In a few moments, I was about to find out the answer that had been preying on my mind. Although I didn't know the answer for certain, the fact I'd taken painstaking care to measure and cut the cardboard boxes to minimise waste, combined with all the facts in numerous books I'd read about the geodesic dome being a pioneering example of sustainability for its efficient use of energy and material, had led me to expect that the weight of the off-cuts would have little to no appreciable effect on the dome, which would remain more or less right where it currently was, more or less static and functionally unmolested on the floor.

    Now that my friend had finished securing the off-cuts to the rope and pulley system, he took a step back, and I took a deep breath.

 

    Gently, I released my grip.

 

    No sooner had I let go of the off-cuts and let gravity take over than it became quickly apparent to me the dome was going to fail to lend weight to my expectations, though. Watching the dome rise from the floor and into the air, and then gradually, almost entropically fall into a state of near equilibrium with its very own waste, I was shocked. So well and truly shocked that straining to believe what I was seeing, I exploded in disbelieving laughter.

    "No way" I cried. "No fucking way." 

 

______________________________________________________________

 

* 3V is shorthand for 3 frequency. Simply put, the higher the frequency, the more triangles there are in a geodesic dome, and the more triangles there are, the rounder the geodesic dome becomes.

 

† If you think Fuller invented the geodesic dome, then I'm going to have to ask you to cancel that thought. Know that in fact the geodesic dome was invented and later patented sometime in the 1920s by German engineer Walther Bauersfeld. Shortly after Germany's surrender in 1945, the Allies (most especially the United States) confiscated large amounts of German copyrights, trademarks and patents, including Bauersfeld's, permitting Fuller years later to legally patent the dome under his own name. That only recently I heard an architectural expert on the radio declare that fuller invented the dome, and that neither the host nor anyone calling in once pointed up the historical inaccuracy shows just how pervasive this incorrect view of architectural history remains to this very day.   

 

 

 

Much like anything, thinking of nothing in particular

was how it all started.

How Much 

Does Your 

Building

Weigh?

 

2012

 

Dome: ø300 cm / installation variable

 

Reclaimed cardboard, rope and pulley system,

fold-back clips, steel wire and wood

 

Much like anything, thinking of nothing in particular was how it all started.

One morning, I was staring out across the studio at the whitewashed wall against which a stack of empty cardboard boxes I'd been too lazy to throw out rested, when suddenly the thought came to me.

On the strength of that thought, and in part due to the fact that I had little else at that moment to do, I said to myself, "Fuck it, why not?

Reaching for a ruler and a retractable utility knife, one by one I measured and cut the boxes down into triangular panels following instructions I'd found online, and a few days later, and after much bucking, cussing and struggling to get the obstinate panels to fit together, finally there it stood: my very own geodesic dome constructed entirely from post-consumer waste.

 

To say that I was pleased with the final result would be a colossal understatement.

I was thrilled, categorically proud, hard put not to jump up and down and shout, "Fuck yes!".

I mean, I'd managed on my own to build not only a 3v geodesic dome *, but one with a base diameter of three metres, what I'd read seasoned experts online claim at minimum required three but ideally five people to assemble, apparently.

 

All the same, putting aside my pride and how much time and effort it took me to assemble, I had to concede to the fact that the dome had simply been a playful exercise, a mere distraction, a way of keeping myself busy until I was ready to start searching for something suggesting a new avenue of research, in other words, hardly a candidate for an artwork, and because of which all there was left for me to do was to document the dome before taking it down and throwing it into recycling.

 

And really that kind of could've been the last of it, were it not when sweeping all the off-cut pieces of cardboard strewn across my studio floor that day I was suddenly reminded of something I'd read somewhere the "populariser"† of the geodesic dome, Buckminster Fuller, had once asked an architect when touring their building: How much does the building weigh?

 

Once the question entered my head, I found myself unable to stop thinking about it, and with nothing at the time to distract me from my thoughts, I kept on thinking all that day and long into the next about what the answer to the question might be.

 

After a day or so, an idea finally came to me, an altogether practical solution.

I rigged up a rope and pulley system, and fastened the dome to one end of the rope, then one by one gathered all the off-cut pieces of cardboard and held them aloft in my arms as a friend wound the rope's opposite end around them.

 

I had butterflies.

 

In a few moments, I was about to find out the answer that had been preying on my mind. Although I didn't know the answer for certain, the fact I'd taken painstaking care to measure and cut the cardboard boxes to minimise waste, combined with all the facts in numerous books I'd read about the geodesic dome being a pioneering example of sustainability for its efficient use of energy and material, I'd expected that the weight of the off-cuts would have little to no appreciable effect on the dome, which would remain more or less right where it currently was, more or less static and functionally unmolested on the floor.

 

Now that my friend had finished tying the off-cuts to the rope and pulley system, he took a step back, and I took a deep breath.

 

Gently, I released my grip.

 

However, no sooner had I let go of the off-cuts and let gravity take over than it became quickly apparent to me the dome was going to fail to lend weight to my expectations. 

Watching the dome rise from the floor and into the air, and then gradually, almost entropically fall into a state of near equilibrium with its very own waste, I was shocked. So well and truly shocked that straining to believe what I saw, I exploded in disbelieving laughter.

"No way" I cried. "No fucking way." 

 

 

____________________

 

* 3V is shorthand for 3 frequency. Simply put, the higher the frequency, the more triangles there are in a geodesic dome, and the more triangles there are, the rounder the geodesic dome becomes.

 

† If you think Fuller invented the geodesic dome, then I'm going to have to ask you to cancel that thought. Know that in fact the geodesic dome was invented and later patented sometime in the 1920s by German engineer Walther Bauersfeld. Shortly after Germany's surrender in 1945, the Allies (most especially the United States) confiscated large amounts of German copyrights, trademarks and patents, including Bauersfeld's, permitting Fuller years later to legally patent the dome under his own name. That only recently I heard an architectural expert on the radio declare that fuller invented the dome, and that neither the host nor anyone calling in once pointed up the historical inaccuracy shows just how pervasive this incorrect view of architectural history remains to this very day.   

How Much Does Your Building Weigh?, 

 

2 0 1 2

  

Installation variable (dome: ø300cm)

 

Reclaimed cardboard, rope and pulley system, fold-back clips, steel wire and wood

 

Studio shot

H o w   M u c h   D o e s   Y o u r   

B u i l d i n g   W e i g h ?   

 

2 0 1 2

  

Dome: ø 300 cm / installation variable

 

Reclaimed cardboard, rope and pulley system, fold-back clips, steel wire and wood

 

 

H o w   M u c h    D o e s   Y o u r   B u i l d i n g   W e i g h ?   

2 0 1 2

Dome: ø 300 cm / installation variable

 

Reclaimed cardboard, rope and pulley system,

fold-back clips, steel wire and wood

 

 

 

 

 

Much like anything, thinking of nothing in particular was how it all started.

 

 

 

 

    One morning, I was staring out across the studio at the whitewashed wall against which a stack of empty cardboard boxes I'd been too lazy to throw out rested, when suddenly an idea came to me.

Partly by the strength of that idea, and partly because I had little else at that moment to do, I said to myself, Fuck it, why not? 

    Reaching for a ruler and a retractable utility knife, one by one I measured and cut the boxes down into triangular panels following instructions I'd found online, and by the time I came to the end a week later, after much bucking, cussing and struggling to get the obstinate panels to fit together, I felt as if I'd never done anything else. But now there it stood: my very own geodesic dome constructed entirely from post-consumer waste.

 

 

_______________________________________________

 

 

 

 

 

_______________________________________________

 

 

To say I was pleased with the final result would be a colossal understatement. I was thrilled, categorically proud, hard put not to jump up and down and pump my fist and shout, Fuck yes! I mean, I'd managed on my own to build not only a 3v geodesic dome *, but one with a base diameter of three metres – what I'd read seasoned experts online claim at minimum required three but ideally five people to assemble, apparently.

    All the same, putting aside my pride and how much time and effort it took me to assemble, I had to concede to the fact that the dome had simply been a playful exercise, a mere distraction, a way of keeping myself busy until I was ready to start searching for something suggesting a new avenue of research, in other words, hardly a candidate for an artwork, and because of which all there was left for me to do was to document the dome before taking it down and throwing it into recycling.

 

 

_______________________________________________

 

 

 

 

 

_______________________________________________

 

 

And really that kind of could've been the last of it, were it not when sweeping all the off-cut pieces of cardboard strewn across my studio floor that day I was suddenly reminded of something I'd read somewhere the 'populariser'  of the geodesic dome, Buckminster Fuller, had once asked an architect when touring their building: How much does the building weigh? Once the question entered my head, I found myself unable to stop thinking about it, and with nothing at the time to distract me from my thoughts, I kept on thinking all that day and long into the next about what the answer to the question might be.

 

After a day or so, an idea finally came to me, an altogether brilliant solution, I thought. I rigged up a rope and pulley system, and fastened the dome to one end of the rope, then one by one gathered all the off-cut pieces of cardboard and held them aloft in my arms as a friend I'd enlisted for help wound the rope's opposite end around them.

 

 

_______________________________________________

    

 

   

_______________________________________________

   

 

    I had butterflies.

 

    In a few moments, I was about to find out the answer that had been preying on my mind. 

Although I didn't know the answer for certain, the fact I'd taken painstaking care to measure and cut the cardboard boxes to minimise waste, combined with all the facts in numerous books I'd read about the geodesic dome being a pioneering example of sustainability for its efficient use of energy and material, had led me to expect that the weight of the off-cuts would have little to no appreciable effect on the dome, which would remain more or less right where it currently was, more or less static and functionally unmolested on the floor.

    Now that my friend had finished tying the off-cuts to the rope and pulley system, he took a step back, and I took a deep breath.

 

    Gently, I released my grip.

 

    No sooner had I let go of the off-cuts and let gravity take over than it became quickly apparent to me the dome was going to fail to lend weight to my expectations, though. Watching the dome rise from the floor and into the air, and then gradually, almost entropically fall into a state of near equilibrium with its very own waste, I was shocked. So well and truly shocked that straining to believe what I was seeing, I exploded in disbelieving laughter.

    No way, I cried. No fucking way. ∎

 

____________________

 

* 3V is shorthand for 3 frequency. Simply put, the higher the frequency, the more triangles there are in a geodesic dome, and the more triangles there are, the rounder the geodesic dome becomes.

 

If you think Fuller invented the geodesic dome, then I'm going to have to ask you to cancel that thought. Know that in fact the geodesic dome was invented and later patented sometime in the 1920s by German engineer Walther Bauersfeld. Shortly after Germany's surrender in 1945, the Allies (most especially the United States) confiscated large amounts of German copyrights, trademarks and patents, including Bauersfeld's, permitting Fuller years later to legally patent the dome under his own name. That only recently I heard an architectural expert on the radio declare that fuller invented the dome, and that neither the host nor anyone calling in once pointed up the historical inaccuracy shows just how pervasive this incorrect view of architectural history remains to this very day.   

 

 

 

Much like anything, thinking of nothing in particular was how it all started.

 

 

 

 

    One morning, I was staring out across the studio at the whitewashed wall against which a stack of empty cardboard boxes I'd been too lazy to throw out rested, when suddenly an idea came to me.

Partly by the strength of that idea, and partly because I had little else at that moment to do, I said to myself, Fuck it, why not? 

    Reaching for a ruler and a retractable utility knife, one by one I measured and cut the boxes down into triangular panels following instructions I'd found online, and by the time I came to the end a week later, after much bucking, cussing and struggling to get the obstinate panels to fit together, I felt as if I'd never done anything else. But now there it stood: my very own geodesic dome constructed entirely from post-consumer waste.

 

_________________________________

 

 

 

 

________________________________

 

 To say I was pleased with the final result would be a colossal understatement. I was thrilled, categorically proud, hard put not to jump up and down and pump my fist and shout, Fuck yes! I mean, I'd managed on my own to build not only a 3v geodesic dome *, but one with a base diameter of three metres – what I'd read seasoned experts online claim at minimum required three but ideally five people to assemble, apparently.

    All the same, putting aside my pride and how much time and effort it took me to assemble, I had to concede to the fact that the dome had simply been a playful exercise, a mere distraction, a way of keeping myself busy until I was ready to start searching for something suggesting a new avenue of research, in other words, hardly a candidate for an artwork, and because of which all there was left for me to do was to document the dome before taking it down and throwing it into recycling.

 

________________________________

 

 

 

 

 

________________________________

 

And really that kind of could've been the last of it, were it not when sweeping all the off-cut pieces of cardboard strewn across my studio floor that day I was suddenly reminded of something I'd read somewhere the 'populariser'  of the geodesic dome, Buckminster Fuller, had once asked an architect when touring their building: How much does the building weigh? Once the question entered my head, I found myself unable to stop thinking about it, and with nothing at the time to distract me from my thoughts, I kept on thinking all that day and long into the next about what the answer to the question might be.

 

After a day or so, an idea finally came to me, an altogether brilliant solution, I thought. I rigged up a rope and pulley system, and fastened the dome to one end of the rope, then one by one gathered all the off-cut pieces of cardboard and held them aloft in my arms as a friend I'd enlisted for help wound the rope's opposite end around them.

 

________________________________

    

 

   

________________________________

   

 

    I had butterflies.

 

    In a few moments, I was about to find out the answer that had been preying on my mind. 

Although I didn't know the answer for certain, the fact I'd taken painstaking care to measure and cut the cardboard boxes to minimise waste, combined with all the facts in numerous books I'd read about the geodesic dome being a pioneering example of sustainability for its efficient use of energy and material, had led me to expect that the weight of the off-cuts would have little to no appreciable effect on the dome, which would remain more or less right where it currently was, more or less static and functionally unmolested on the floor.

    Now that my friend had finished tying the off-cuts to the rope and pulley system, he took a step back, and I took a deep breath.

 

    Gently, I released my grip.

 

    No sooner had I let go of the off-cuts and let gravity take over than it became quickly apparent to me the dome was going to fail to lend weight to my expectations, though. Watching the dome rise from the floor and into the air, and then gradually, almost entropically fall into a state of near equilibrium with its very own waste, I was shocked. So well and truly shocked that straining to believe what I was seeing, I exploded in disbelieving laughter.

    No way, I cried. No fucking way. ∎

 

___________

 

3V is shorthand for 3 frequency. Simply put, the higher the frequency, the more triangles there are in a geodesic dome, and the more triangles there are, the rounder the geodesic dome becomes.

 

 If you think Fuller invented the geodesic dome, then I'm going to have to ask you to cancel that thought. Know that in fact the geodesic dome was invented and later patented sometime in the 1920s by German engineer Walther Bauersfeld. Shortly after Germany's surrender in 1945, the Allies (most especially the United States) confiscated large amounts of German copyrights, trademarks and patents, including Bauersfeld's, permitting Fuller years later to legally patent the dome under his own name. That only recently I heard an architectural expert on the radio declare that fuller invented the dome, and that neither the host nor anyone calling in once pointed up the historical inaccuracy shows just how pervasive this incorrect view of architectural history remains to this very day.