Seed Archive by Brittany Bell

| 75 comments

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Designer Brittany Bell, a student at Victoria University School of Design in Wellington, New Zealand, has designed a conceptual seed archive.

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"Seeds will be stored in the event of a future apocalypse," explains Bell, who goes on to say that "Structure is a plant that has grown from the city."

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The following text is from Brittany Bell:

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Every year more and more species of plants are becoming endangered or extinct.  The New Zealand government has proposed the notion to create a seed archive for the Pacific Region to house its native plants and preserve them for future generations.

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The major problem to overcome will be constructing architecture that will adapt to the changing and unpredictable future environment.  Therefore the architecture will mimic the architecture of a plant, as plants have the innate ability to adapt to their changing environment.  The architecture of the seed archive is in the form of a growing cytoskeleton of a plant.

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It continues to grow and adapt to prevailing wind, rainfall and sun exposure.  For example the wings on the sides of the structure are heat sensitive and move to accommodate the protected plants within.

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The funnel forms in the interior act as the main structural columns, but also house the large trees that need to grow upwards towards the sun.  The architecture will be able to grow and expand overtime and rely on element-sensitive technology to exist without human presence.

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| 75 comments

Posted on Wednesday, December 10th, 2008 at 2:09 am by . See our copyright policy. Before commenting, please read our comments policy.

  • skilistjenkins

    typo:

    i meant to put

    architecture often lacks vision and wild imagination as its strangled by stuffy purists – i’d far rather see blade runner-esque cities cropping up (roll on OMA) than endless purist toss- BUT THATS ONLY MY PERSONAL PREFERENCE

    theres a balance – and a place for both – the worlds really large!

  • pennguy08

    i see great maya skills. the form isn’t that novel.

  • gaque

    I’d like to comment on the actual aesthetics and architecture of this project, not the background of Zaha nor circumstances of student work…

    I think there are some interesting spatial proposals, namely the bridge that swoops over the ground. There also appears to be a variety of different sizes of spaces..big, small, medium, and with different light qualities.

    I think the notion of a place with seldom human presence is exciting. It is a bit like a resort, except peak season is only once or twice a year when scientists drop by.

    Where these images fail for me is the materiality. I think the singularity of this white, mirroring material is overbearing and underdeveloped. Whereas you have determinedly chosen glass, one of the most traditional buildings materials, you also selected an imaginative material. Its apparent that materiality was not a focus, but there is a strong disconnection between tradition and invention here. Does glass suit such a project…?

    While the interior perspectives are exciting, the storage of the seeds is still unclear. The exterior images are awfully unsuccessful, because they give no statement about the building…not even as an object. I gather very little quality from these outside images. I also find the detailing of the exterior too fussy. Not over the top, just fussy.

    The starting concept does not appear in the actual project, in my opinion. This idea to grow and adapt seems also underdeveloped, as there is no hint or drawing of growth. In urban design proposals, you often see boring phasing diagrams (5 years, 15 years, 50 years), but we are not even given such a drawing to inspect.

    In terms of rendering, there isnt too much skill involved here. Any architecture student with a day on the computer can make such renderings. The modeling however is definitely showing talent.

    You seem have to have placed quite a bit of importance on the natural daylighting. I wonder if your material selection has anything to do with this–the reflections make a well lit, diffuse interior environment. Did you consider other environmental factors?

    Thats all for now…more student projects! But please something not Zaha-inspired…please. It’s sexy, but getting stale like my baguette from Tuesday…!

  • http://www.a10studio.net MaRiAnO

    i would hire her as a render-girl/3d modeller for my office… as a designer never!! ;)

  • Peanut

    I just have to say I went to university with her and she is actually really, really hot too. Some people.

  • togon

    hmm, nice but do we really need to house a tree in a funnel?? Or protect plants from..SUNLIGHT & HEAT? that’s what plants thrive on, sunlight and heat..

    But, good effort nonetheless, seems like lotsa material reference were taken from futuristic laboratories.

  • Lawr09

    this is zaha hadid with calatrava

  • steven

    a nice imagination…but is it posible??mayb no such thing call imposible for a designer..but,back to logic…u dont think it waste quite a lot of space??
    anyways,its a very amazing design…i lov eit too…hee…

  • peridotprince

    No plans? no sections? Nothing to really measure this out as a whole – its just a bunch of highly polished renderings. Sure its all there, but I really don’t get ‘why’ I should be looking at any of these scenes?

    Really the whole ‘seed sanctuary’ thing is just tacked on after the fact as a way to explain the formal topologies and make it ‘programmatic’.

    Vapid.

  • majestictopaz

    To everyone throwing names of designers: dont forget Colani!

  • Tajima

    Sexy!!! Very very Sexy!

  • Arash Dailami

    It’s really outstanding.congratulations!

  • benson

    some good images here?

    http://sarah-schneider.blogspot.com/

    Well done… i see your work is getting further attention!!

    your project has,.. erm, come along way?

  • MenaMac

    I love this so much…colors and atmosphere is just stunnin’! This is best organic design of the year…..eat ur heart out zaha!

  • Sam

    Check out Design Advance January issue – this project features! The designer is also a feature in January CG Magazine.

  • AbFab

    LOVELY! HOT! SEXY! this girl is a genius!

    Check here blog – GOODNESS!

    Brittany Bell take over Zaha Architects, Please…!

  • http://www.activeingredient.org Guy

    Santiago Calatrava… melted ;)

  • w

    How do I drive a forklift around in that?

  • reece

    I really like the “melted” aesthetic, as Guy correctly states. It really works this time (as generally modern architecture seems to get melted ever-so-randomly). I think it works because where the “white stuff” (unknown futuristic material) completely melts away it exposes the inner workings and structural details. I think the beauty of this project is really in the fine detailing. For example each stair case is very individual and obviously made from scratch, not just thrown in standard stuff. Great work – Bravo!

  • Morrisey Walt

    Holy mother of organic!

  • NoArt

    I like the fourth image down, great seeing a hint of program. Also like how their are no scale people, gives a really great sense of atmosphere. Nice rendering and modeling skills, theory I am not to sure about – but would love to see more.

  • Andrew

    Wonderful vision… well done!
    There appears to be nothing but praise and jealousy in the comments above…. two very flattering things for any designer to have bestowed on them and a true indication of success!!!!!!! ; )
    If any of the above ‘critics’ have had their own work published (here or elsewhere) I would be pleased to compare their work against this project!
    Keep up the good work Brittany!
    A

  • Brian

    DUDE,
    GREAT GREAT PROJECT! i CANT GET ENOUGH OF THIS FIGURATIVE DESIGN! i JUST WISH THAT THESE ARE NOT LOST IN DIGITAL TRANSLATION.

    ARE WE DOING OUR STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS? CAN IT BE BUILT.

    IF NOT, THESE VERY VERY COMPETENT AND CREATIVE ARCHITECTS SHOULD BE DOING INDUSTRIAL DESIGN! (AT LEAST WE CAN MOULD THEM IN ONE PIECE!)

    KEEP ON THE CREATIVE CREST!

    bRIAN

  • Adonis

    I though that this project showed some true talent, . . . almost to good to be true for a young student. . . turns out it was too good to be true:
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_i
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_i

    Disappointing !

  • Tim

    Exciting Images, however Brittany Bell contradicts herself by saying "…more and more species of plants are becoming endangered or extinct…" and then arguing "…the architecture will mimic the architecture of a plant, as plants have the innate ability to adapt to their changing environment…".
    Actually Plants can't really adapt to a (fast) changing environment- it takes time which we don't have – otherwise plants and animals would not become extinct.
    One more…Why is ther such a conventional stair in the design, if everything else is designed to a different credo.