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LAVA install ‘giant digital origami tigers’ at Customs House, Sydney

Jan 24, 2010
  • Article by Online Editor

Chris Bosse’s architecture practice, LAVA, has installed two giant tiger-shaped lanterns outside Sydney’s Customs House to mark the Chinese New Year celebrations in the city.

*Previous story, from 25/01/2010*
Sydney-based architecture practice, LAVA, is set to install two giant lanterns shaped like tigers at Customs House in Sydney, as part of the city’s Chinese New Year celebrations.

The sculptures are inspired by the Chinese art of zhezhi – a paper folding technique used to create the lanterns, which traditionally mark the beginning of the celebrations of the Lunar New Year.

The tigers, made from recyclable materials, aluminium and barrisol, will sit 2.5 metres high and 7 metres long, each weighing 200kgs. The sculptures will glow at night, lit by LED lights.

The project is a continuation of LAVA’s exploration into lightweight structures, and building more with less. The installation follows the practice’s 2009 work, Green Void, also installed at Customs House. The 20m high sculpture, made from lycra, was an experiment in covering a large area using a minimal surface of 300 square metres.

Chris Bosse, director of LAVA, said that as well as investigating digitally driven design and fabrication, the project has a playful edge. “We also believe that humour belongs to architecture, too, and so the tigers are playing soccer to kick off the FIFA world cup starting later this year,” he said.

The installation will appear at Customs House, Sydney from 11 February to 14 March 2010.

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