Dezeen Magazine

Roth Architecture Fab Lab

Roth Architecture creates office in Tulum with "insect wing" forms

Local studio Roth Architecture has built an organically shaped creative lab in Tulum made of concrete and palm fibre with a form driven by "nature's artistic wills".

Called the Fab Lab, the project is located in the Yucatán peninsula. The space serves the Roth Architecture studio as an office and maker space.

A curving building made of concrete
Roth Architecture has created a workspace in Tulum

"We create driven by nature's patterns and artistic wills," said the studio. "The inspiration for this building, like many of the studio's constructions, is the organic, irregular, yet harmonic forms we find in nature itself".

"The spaces are distributed as independent buildings to adapt to the site. The central module rises in a meandering form, providing a visual impact of dynamism."

A bulbous concrete form installed in the jungle
The structure will house an office and machinery like 3D printers and laser cutters for the studio

Made of reinforced concrete and steel, the Fab Lab's narrow structure was wound through its jungle site and in some places wrapped directly around trees, with trunks exposed to the interior.

Bulbous forms were distributed along the length of its body.

A curving building made of concrete that wraps around trees
The structure winds through the jungle and was wrapped around trees

Curvilinear windows and doors of different shapes, interlaced with scale-like metal reinforcement, were placed at varying heights and intervals, with some directly touching the ground and others acting as slim skylights.

"Both the doors and the windows use patterns and shapes that could be reminiscent of tree leaves or insect wings from the jungle," said the studio.

Office with organic windows lined with a translucenct skin
It is made of concrete, steel, glass and windows covered with resins and palm fibre

Curving fins made of concrete also span the length to create small overhangs and protections for glass components.

Created to house machinery like 3D printers, thermoforming machines, laser cutters, water jets and a six-axis robotic arm, the interior of the space contains spaces of varying heights.

An organic, white interior with planting beds
The interior contains organically shaped benches and planting beds

One section contains a computer lab with windows covered in translucent resins and palm fibres.

An undulating wooden desk was installed along the length of its walls.

An organic, white interior with planting beds
The interior reflects the same organic form as the exterior

Another, which houses the robot, was made of a dome of woven tree trunks and vines, with a base of the same curving windows.

The remaining interior contains open atriums, with trees running through the centre.

A robot underneath a dome made of sticks
It is located on the Azulik resort

Several planting beds were integrated into the floor, which is also made from concrete, and were populated with native jungle plants.

Concrete benches and tables also rise up from the floor in various spaces.

Small wooden shelves were installed throughout the structure and studio lights were interspersed along the curving ceiling.

"The space was deliberately constructed to be enduring," said the studio. "Paradoxically, one of the lab's future functions is to create components that can be both assembled and disassembled."

The Fab Lab structure is a part of the Azulik resort by Roth Studio, which contains accommodations, a museum, free-standing installations and a restaurant which are all built in a similar, organic style.

Founded by Eduardo "Roth" Neira, a self-taught architect and builder and president of the Enchanting Transformation Foundation, the studio "aims to find original and eco-centric solutions to the needs of everyday life."

Other projects recently built in Tulum include a red housing complex by Coyote Arquitectura and a brutalist-style villa by Espacio 18. 

The photography is courtesy of Roth Architecture.

More images

Roth Architecture drawings
An amoeba shaped building with fins and a skylight
A little dome in the jungle
A curving building made of concrete
A concrete building that wraps around trees
Organic concrete forms
A window in a concrete building that slopes down with a concrete bench attached
A building with organic shaped windows
Fab Lab by Roth Architecture
Fab Lab by Roth Architecture
Fab Lab by Roth Architecture
An organic shaped building in the jungle