Cecil Balmond “Philosopher of Forms” @ Milan Design Week 2011

joseph grima

via Domus Magazine  click here to see the video interview

Cecil Balmond talks to Joseph Grima  about his first Italian project, created for the new Milan showroom of Targetti for the Fuori Salone.

The entire Targetti Milan showroom will be occupied by Nebula, an artwork created specifically for Targetti by Cecil Balmond, the world-renowned engineer and artist.

Nebula is an evolving sculptural phenomenon conceived from a deep inner logic. It is an installation that combines the geometry of fractals with artificial light. It comprises a labyrinth of over 10,000 metallic plates held in tension between suspended stainless steel chains. It will be lit with Targetti fixtures and Louis Poulsen products will be positioned within and around the Nebula, highlighting the products’ beautiful sculptural quality.

The result is a complete holistic experience, an ever-changing realm of illumination and illusion, both day and night.

via Lodovico il Moro 25/27

As Mr. Balmond explains it, his view of both architecture and engineering has always been more intuitive than mathematical. “I was always looking at patterns — in music, literature,” he said. “It was never only about structure.”

Cecil’s artistic influence has been highly influential in a multitude of collaborations on large scale public art projects such as the ArcelorMittal Orbit (2012) Olympic Park Commission with Anish Kapoor, and other critically acclaimed architectural projects including CCTV tower with OMA, and the Serpentine Gallery pavilions with Daniel Libeskind, Rem Koolhaas, Alvaro Siza and Toyo Ito.

The 370ft (114m) tall ArcelorMittal Orbit will be situated between the Olympic Stadium and the Aquatics Centre.

The structure is the creation of U.K.-based artist Anish Kapoor and structural engineer Cecil Balmond, former deputy chairman of the engineering firm Arup Group. Ltd., London. The team’s seemingly unstable tower/sculpture won a design competition in 2010 promoted by London Mayor Boris Johnson.

Like a loosely knotted rope frozen in space, Orbit’s diagrid tube will rise about 80 m to a 20-m-dia, two-floor observation deck, before twisting and turning around itself.

The hope is that it will become a major tourist attraction after the 2012 Games. The cutting edge design, likened to a shisha pipe, will boast a viewing platform, a spiral staircase, a lift and a restaurant.

It will be 71ft (22m) taller than the world-famous Statue of Liberty in New York.

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