master in architecture

LIGHTNESS [experimental design] 
 2016 | Professor Matt Fajkus, UTSoA 
idea + parti
project + information
stages of experience
inside atmosphere

INTRO: The air we breathe is invisible to us, yet if affects our entire existence. It is air that moves to create wind, evaporates from our oceans to form clouds, and then falls as rain back into our bodies of water. In this study, we wanted to focus specifically on harnessing humid air to explore how we can use this ethereal matter as a construction material in human environments

Imagine yourself exploring the vast landscape of  tropical climates, perhaps a rainforest or a large city. The proposed shelter allows for optimal control over your immediate atmosphere, even if you are surrounded by hot and humid weather. Health and well being are vastly improved by improving air quality which adapts to the user’s needs. Levitating above the ground creates new sensations, as you experience life from a new perspective.

FUTURE: Future boundaries of architecture are yet unknown.  The understanding of natures’ systems is one great advantage of human intelligence. Architecture’s future approach towards a new way of living could take advantage of such systems. 

An architectural space that responds to the environment will transform the way we live. 


A new era of space design and material development can transform architecture as we usually perceive it. An architecture that blurs the limits between the tangible and the intangible will change our perception of everyday life - especially in unconquered spaces as the AIR; and start thinking about ethereal materials as part of our repertoire of construction materials in the progress of the human history.


STEP 1: When the shelter is located at ground level it is able to interact with its surroundings. Due to its permeable and transparent design, it provides a visual and physical connection from inside to outside. However, hot and humid environments cause a transformation in the object. The materials in the structure are able to reduce the amount of water in the air in order to increase human comfort. STEP  2 and STEP 3 offer other settings for comfortability.


STEP 2: The shelter is able to transform into ethereal matter with a skin of vapor that surrounds the form. In order create a micro climate inside the shelter for a pleasant atmosphere , V-shaped  materials act to absorb H2O  in the air. The H2O is transported along the metal V-shaped legs , turning to vapor and ejecting it as a skin. The user would be able to enjoy this transformation on the ground or in the air.


STEP 3: The process takes place in the absorbtion of  H2O  through the V-shaped designed elements. After this procedure, the  vertical levitation process  happens  by the propulsion of the shelter with the water vapor force released. The  increase in altitude  allows for a more pleasant climate for human comfort and it would be controlled with the closure and aperture of the V-shaped elements. Additionally the vapor skin provides temperature and wind protection.


2016 Spring | Professor Matt Fajkus studio, UTSoA 

authors: viviana andrada baumann + andrea manrique


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