©Kengo Kuma & Associates

Japan 2011Bubble Wrap


We made a dome for lighting installation produced by Mariko Mori. In this project, we tried to use polyurethane foam as structure. This material is normally used as building insulation and has very unique features. Once sprayed, It expands to 100 times its initial volume and goes solid within a second. 99% of it is air and 1% is polyurethane. That’s why it’s very light and eco-friendly material. In order to realize natural shape by using polyurethane foam, we didn’t use any structural material. Instead we used a very cheap polypropylene mesh.

First, we hanged the mesh to make a catenary shell. Then we sprayed polyurethane based on the mesh catenary. After that we rotated it by 180 degrees. Then we got a rational and primitive shape of dome. Since polyurethane has sound absorbability, interior space is silent. Everything is done at exhibition space.

Publication GA JAPAN 112 Photography ©︎ KKAA